Tamron 55-200mm F4-5.6 Di II LD Macro Review

General information

This is a zoom lens manufactured by Tamron and the lens was released 2005.
The lens belongs to the category telephoto zoom lenses, a telephoto lens where you have the possibility to zoom in and out.

The lens has macro-properties but is unable to reproduce things in their real size (otherwise called '1:1'). You should therefor consider taking the term 'macro' with a pinch of salt and if the macro-possibilities you are looking for you should perhaps look at other options.

Product description from Tamron

At launch 2005 Tamron wrote this regarding Tamron 55-200mm F4-5.6 Di II LD Macro:

"Considered the perfect lens to compliment an APS-C-sensor DSLR kit lens (e.g., 18-55mm), the 55-200mm F/4-5.6 offers optical properties often reserved for more costly lenses. Its zoom range begins precisely where typical kit zooms end, making it an ideal ”next” lens for those eager to magnify distant subjects, filling the viewfinder when shooting youth sports, family events, portraits, wildlife and more. Both compact and lightweight, the 55-200mm is easy to pack, making it an ideal travel companion.

Digital Di-II generation telephoto lens - The lens was designed exclusively for digital SLR cameras with sensors up to 16x24mm and delivers a high image quality with regard to resolution, contrast and sharpness. An ideal second lens to complement the standard kit lens bought together with your SLR. The 55-200mm opens the important tele-range and can be used for portrait, nature, sport, theatre, and people photography. The lens uses a new optical system to limit the angle of incidence of the beams of light falling onto the image sensor. This is necessary when taking into account the physical circumstances of the sensor and to avoid vignetting. The occurring rays are limited to a narrow frame throughout the entire focal length range. Furthermore the 55-200mm was optimized with regard to resolution, stray light and chromatic aberration, throughout the entire focal range so that consistently high-quality images can be captured at all focal lengths.

Please note: The Nikon mount is only compatible in the MF mode with the following Nikon cameras: D40, D40X and D60. This is due to fact that these 3 cameras require lenses with a built-in motor. The Nikon version of this lens does not have a built-in motor.

Please note that Di II lenses are made for the exclusive use on digital SLR cameras with image sensors smaller than 24mm x 16mm. Di II lenses cannot be used together with a full format or 35mm SLR camera, as their image sensors are not able to cover the entire area of full format resulting in dark corners of the (i.e. vignetting becomes noticeable). "

Compatibility, autofocus and focal length

The lens is available for both Canon and Nikon cameras, but there are two different versions of this lens (one for each brand and mount) so it is important that you ask for and choose the right version when bying the lens.

This lens is designed and meant for Canon and Nikon cameras with a smaller sensor (often referred to as 'APS-C') which means that the lens does not fit all camera models. By clicking on the link below you can make sure that the lens works with your camera model and you should do an additional check with your local dealer as well, before you buy the lens just to be sure.

Here it is the only Canon version of the lens that has a built-in autofocus (AF) motor. The possibility to use autofocus (AF) is available for Nikon cameras but only if the camera itself has a built-in autofocus (AF) motor. Some cheaper and budget camera models from Nikon lacks a built-in autofocus motor, and we at Lensora appreciate autofocus, so in the list of compatible cameras we have chosen to display only the cameras that you can get autofocus with.

The lens has a focal length of 55-200 mm. Since the lens is designed to be used on a camera with smaller sensor ('APS-C') the focal length will be equivalent to 88-320 mm if you have a Canon camera or 82-300 mm if you have a Niko camera.

A positive thing is that this lens has a versitale zoom range, where the difference between 'maximum zoomed out' to 'maximum zoomed in' increases the lens versatility since you as a photographer easily can compose your picture without moving yourself physically.

Lens brightness and image stabilizer

The lens brightness and aperture value is f/4-5,6.

This lens is not considered to have a good aperture value and brightness. It is something to consider before you purchase the lens. To compensate for this you might, while photographing in less favorable light conditions, be forced to either use higher ISO settings (which generates more noise in the image), slower shutter speeds (which may give some motion blur) or flash lightning. Read more at the link below what lens brightness means to you as a photographer.

One thing to consider is that the lens has a variable brightness, which means that depending on how much you are zooming the lens will have a different maximum aperture value. At 55 mm the lens brightness is f/4 and at 200 mm the brightness is f/5,6. Through the link below you can read more about what this could mean for you as a photographer.

The lens lacks image stabilization, which otherwise os good for avoiding the blur that can occur when using slow shutter speeds. 

Filter and Lens Hood

The lens has a traditional filter thread on the front and its measuring 52 mm which also the filter you will use must have. If you use for example an UV filter can be a cheap insurance against scratches and dust.

If you buy this lens it will come with a lens hood, whose model name is "DA15".

Images of Tamron 55-200mm F4-5.6 Di II LD Macro

In order to see larger product images of the lens, click the link below.

Things to consider before buying

Below you will find some summarized points and facts that can be considered as the 'pros and cons' of this lens. These are based entirely on the facts and values that are accessible through the lens specification, so we highly recommend that you also read the reported reviews available (see tab 'Reviews'); this in order to get a more complete view of the lens and its capabilities. Reviewer opinions reflect the lens, its use and its optical performance in a more accurate way, but any way - here a few different points to consider before buying this lens.

  • The price (more info)
  • An impressive focal range
  • A lens hood is included
  • Light weight (300 gr)
  • No built-in autofocus motor (the Nikon version)
  • Works only on cameras with APS-C sensor
  • No built-in image stabilizer
  • Poor aperture value with its f/5,6
  • A variable lens brightness at different focal lengths
  • The lens is called 'Macro' but can not reproduce at a scale of 1:1
  • The lens is not sealed against moisture and dust

Our Review Ratings

Time to grade Tamron 55-200mm F4-5.6 Di II LD Macro.

Build Quality     
Image Quality     
Overall rating 3 of 5

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