12 lenses of Christmas: August 2023 saw lots of addition, along with some subtraction for Tamron

Tamron lenses
(Image credit: Tamron)

September brought the announcement that Tamron would no longer be able to repair some 15 of its lenses there were originally engineered for Canon, Nikon and Pentax DSLRs, plus Sony A mount for translucent lens cameras. So while the company is giving new lenses for mirrorless cameras with one hand, it’s taking away a few golden oldies with the other. To be fair though, some of the lenses on the hit list are up to 20 years old. We ran a full list of affected Tamron lenses in our news piece.

In better news, Tamron announced the advent of the Tamron 70-180mm F2.8 Di III VC VXD G2, the ‘Generation 2’ of its relatively compact and affordable ‘trinity’ telephoto news for Sony cameras, with added VC (Vibration Compensation). It followed up with the spangly new Tamron 17-50mm F4 Di III VXD, also for Sony full-frame mirrorless cameras. A date was also set for the launch of the Nikon Z-mount version of the Tamron 35-150mm F2-2.8 Di III VXD, previously made in E-mount.

It might lack the final 20mm but, compared with most 70-200mm f/2.8 lenses, the Tamron 70-180mm F2.8 Di III VC VXD G2 is only about half the weight and half the price. (Image credit: Tamron)

A YouTube teaser brought our attention to an upcoming Laowa 24mm T8 2X Macro Pro2be cine lens. Adding to the existing line-up, it shares the Periprobe’s feature of interchangeable tubes to enable different shooting perspectives. The company also announced new Laowa 65mm and 80mm T2.4 lenses for the Nanomorph anamorphic series. And for stills, a new APS-C format Laowa CF 8-16mm f/3.5-5.0 C-Dreamer popped up at a Chinese trade show, to be made in a variety of mount options. The same goes for the newly announced Laowa FFII 15mm F5.0 Cookie full-frame lens.

The clue's in the name. The TTartisan 50mm F1.4 Tilt lens has no ‘shift’ function but its tilt mechanism enables you to monkey around with depth of field, and for much less outlay. (Image credit: Pergear)

The review schedule for August kicked off with the sporty Canon RF 100-300mm F2.8L IS USM. It’s a real powerhouse of a lens but you’ll need deep pockets to buy it, and a strong pair of hands to wield it, as it weighs in at more than 2.5kg.

The Canon RF 100-300mm F2.8L IS USM is an absolutely spectacular lens but, then again, we’d expect nothing less for around $9,500 / £11,500. (Image credit: Matthew Richards)

Next up was the Sony FE 16-35mm F2.8 GM II, a ‘trinity’ wide-angle zoom with a difference, having a comparatively compact and lightweight build. The same goes for the Nikon Z 70-180mm f/2.8 telephoto lens that we also reviewed. 

Unlike the Tamron G2 version, the Nikon Z 70-180mm f/2.8 doesn’t have optical stabilization but, on a personal note, I liked it so much while reviewing it that I bought one myself. (Image credit: Matthew Richards)

The August tests rounded off with reviews of the Samyang AF 75mm F1.8 X for Fujifilm X system cameras, delivering high performance at an attractive price, and the particularly small and budget-friendly TTArtisan AF 27mm f/2.8 for APS-C format Sony E, Fujifilm X and Nikon Z cameras.

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Matthew Richards

Matthew Richards is a photographer and journalist who has spent years using and reviewing all manner of photo gear. He is Digital Camera World's principal lens reviewer – and has tested more primes and zooms than most people have had hot dinners! 

His expertise with equipment doesn’t end there, though. He is also an encyclopedia  when it comes to all manner of cameras, camera holsters and bags, flashguns, tripods and heads, printers, papers and inks, and just about anything imaging-related. 

In an earlier life he was a broadcast engineer at the BBC, as well as a former editor of PC Guide.