Tamron's compact 70-300mm lens is coming to the Nikon Z mount soon

Tamron 70-300mm F/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD
(Image credit: Tamron)

The Tamron 70-300mm F/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD is not itself new, since it’s already available in the Sony FE mount, but what is new is that Tamron is broadening its scope to bring in Nikon Z users.

When we reviewed the Tamron 70-300mm F/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD we were impressed by the compact, lightweight build which Tamron says is the world's smallest and lightest 70-300mm. Will the Z mount version of the lens be exactly the same?

Until now, Tamron’s Di III RXD lenses have been targeted at Sony users, but the release of a 70-300mm F/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD Z mount version will offer an affordable telephoto option to owners of the Nikon Z5 and Z6 II, filling a huge gap in the full frame Nikon Z line-up of best Nikon Z lenses. Nikon’s own telephotos are more expensive pro-spec constant aperture designs that might appeal to owners of higher-end Nikons like the Z7 II and Z9 but remain expensive options.

The new Tamron lens could sit within the best telephoto lenses, and it's an interesting option for Nikon’s APS-C Z-mount models, including the Nikon Z50, Z fc, and Z30. On these cameras it will offer an equivalent focal range of 105-450mm, making it a pretty powerful long-range telephoto. However, Nikon does already make the NIKKOR Z DX 50-250mm f/4.5-6.3 VR for these cameras at a lower price.

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Tamron 70-300mm F/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD specifications
Focal length70-300mm
Maximum apertureF4.5-6.3
Optical construction15 elements in 10 groups
Filter size67mm
AccessoriesFlower-shaped hood

Tamron 70-300mm F/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD features

Tamron 70-300mm F/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD for Nikon Z mirrorless cameras

(Image credit: Tamron)

The Tamron 70-300mm F/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD is claimed to be the “world’s smallest and lightest telephoto zoom for full-frame mirrorless cameras” (lenses capable of 300mm).

It has what Tamron describes as a “moisture resistant” construction, BBAR (Broad Band Anti-Reflection) coating, and works with Tamron’s Lens Utility software.

Tamron has a long history of affordable telephotos in the DSLR market, but this one is designed specifically for mirrorless cameras, with a length of 150mm (5.9 inches) and a weight of 581g (20.5 oz).

The optical design includes 15 elements in 10 groups, with one LD (Low Dispersion) element. The RXD AF actuator promises speed, accuracy, and very quiet operation.

The lens will also work alongside TAMRON Lens Utility, a piece of software that enables the latest firmware to be updated directly on the lens itself, rather than through the camera.

The 70-300mm F/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD (Model A047) for the Nikon Z mount system will be available from September 29 at $699 / £699.99 (about AU$1,040), although Tamron states that "due to the current global health crisis, the release date or product supply schedule could change."

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Rod Lawton

Rod is an independent photography journalist and editor, and a long-standing Digital Camera World contributor, having previously worked as DCW's Group Reviews editor. Before that he has been technique editor on N-Photo, Head of Testing for the photography division and Camera Channel editor on TechRadar, as well as contributing to many other publications. He has been writing about photography technique, photo editing and digital cameras since they first appeared, and before that began his career writing about film photography. He has used and reviewed practically every interchangeable lens camera launched in the past 20 years, from entry-level DSLRs to medium format cameras, together with lenses, tripods, gimbals, light meters, camera bags and more. Rod has his own camera gear blog at fotovolo.com but also writes about photo-editing applications and techniques at lifeafterphotoshop.com

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