In debuting the new SP series, Tamron is breaking a bit with prime lens convention by offering image stabilization–up to 3 stops for the 35mm lens and 3.5 stops for the 45mm, per CIPA standards. They’ve also pushed the close focusing capabilities of the news lenses. The 35mm lens can focus on objects up to 7.9 inches away while the 45mm lens can focus as close as 11.4 inches.
The new lenses are fast, with f/1.8 apertures (stopping down to f/16) and in the sample images we saw from the lenses’ official unveiling in New York, they look to offer excellent corner-to-corner sharpness with no vignetting. The SP series will get some new esthetics (new logo, a new font for lens markings and a gold ring around the lens mount) but more importantly, a robust metal body that’s sealed against the weather.
Both SP primes offer circular aperture diaphragms, eBAND coating to reduce flare as well fluorine coating on the front lens to make them easier to clean. Both lenses will accept 67mm filters. Finally, the SP series lenses will have a larger window over the distance scales to make them easier to read (20 percent larger than prior models).
Both the SP 35mm f1.8 VC USD (F012) and SP 45mm f/1.8 VC USD (F013) will retail for $599 and ship by the end of September in either a Canon or Nikon mount. A Sony A-mount is coming down the road at an unspecified time. Like other models, the Sony mount version won’t offer VC as Sony handles stabilization in-camera. The lenses will come with six year warranties.
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