There is some argument about whether third party lenses such as those manufactured by Tamron are worthy of your attention. But those arguments are quite one-sided. It’s kind of like trying to convince a life long Republican to vote Democratic. The mind is closed to all arguments.
But the truth is that third party designers are doing a commendable job of creating lenses for Canon EOS cameras. And some of the Tamron Canon lenses are right up at the top of the heap in terms of performance and image quality.
On a personal note, using a Canon EOS digital SLR camera, there are Tamron and Sigma lenses in my camera bag right next to the Canon lenses. But, as with any camera gear purchase, I always do the research before buying.
You will find that there are some Tamron Canon lens choices that are not that good. Lenses are made to match certain price points that will make them available to those who do not have deep pockets. When that happens, they are forced to use materials and technology that does not produce excellent lenses. Bottom line is to check the ratings before buying.
The highest rated lens that Tamron adds to the market is undoubtedly the Tamron 90mm macro lens. It has been holding its own against all competition for years, and continues to be well thought of by all those who have it in their arsenal.
Then there are some newer additions in the super zoom category that are very well received by photographers. These include some 10x zooms with excellent image quality.
Again, on a personal note, I have used a Tamron 28-75 all purpose lens since my first Canon Rebel. At a constant f/2.8 aperture, it has performed very well for me. No complaints or regrets. In fact, it is so good, I have not ever thought about replacing it with a more expensive lens.
Here are a few of the CanonEOSLenses.com Tamron Lens recommendations:
Tamron AF 90mm f/2.8 Di SP A/M 1:1 Macro Lens. Compare this $500 lens to the Canon 100mm at $900. This makes it a fantastic alternative for the Canon 100mm macro. Prime lenses (single focal length) have the very best optical results, without exception. Tamron has had a winner with this lens from its inception. Also doubles as a Portrait Lens.
See more about the Tamron 90mm Macro for Canon.
Tamron AF 17-50mm F/2.8 SP XR Di II VC priced at about $500. This one is light weight and fast. It has the added benefit of VC (vibration compensation). Highly rated “general purpose” lens for APS-C sensor cameras. Great walk around lens at a constant f2.8 aperture. It is much cheaper than the Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM, Highly recommended!!
Tamron AF 28-75mm f/2.8 SP XR ZL Di LD Aspherical (IF) – price about $500. A well regarded lens at 1/3 the cost of the Canon 24-70/2.8L. As already mentioned, this one is a personal favorite. Image quality is exceptional, with quick focus that never misses. There are professionals who use this lens as a portrait lens when they need to be more mobile, like when doing senior yearbook photos with a casual pose. Great lens!
I love this lens. It is my personal favorite and has been since my first Canon DSLR purchase. See a review of the Tamron 28-75mm Lens for Canon.
Tamron AF 18-250mm F/3.5-6.3 Di-II LD Aspherical (IF) – Great price is one of the super benefits of this super zoom at less than $400. Anytime you get this much diversity in any lens, it is a feat of engineering that is difficult to attain. There are some issues with image distortion at the wide end especially. But Tamron has done an admirable job of producing a lens that will satisfy all but the “camera snobs” with this gem of a lens. Two things to note. First, is the VC which stands for “vibration compensation”. This is the Tamron jargon for Image Stabilization which was added so that you can take hand held shots in lower light. Second is the obvious one, 15x zoom. You can keep this lens on your Canon EOS digital SLR almost 24/7 if you want. You won’t miss a shot because you needed to change the lens.