Tamron has launched the third entry in its expanding range of lenses for Fujifilm X-mount cameras. The 150-500mm F/5-6.7 Di III VC VXD (Model A057X) is a super-telephoto zoom lens and lines up alongside the existing X-mount 17-70mm F/2.8 Di III-A VC RXD and 18-300mm F/3.5-6.3 Di III-A VC VXD.
Tamron already produces the 150-500mm f/5-6.7 Di III VC VXD for full-frame Sony FE-mount cameras (full review), and it forms the basis of this X-mount version, providing a 35mm-equiv. focal length of 225-750mm when used on an APS-C Fujifilm camera. The advantage of converting a full-frame lens for use on APS-C cameras should result in excellent edge-to-edge image quality, with high corner sharpness and minimized light fall-off.
Despite being a super-telephoto optic, the 150-500mm measures a relatively compact 209.9mm long and 93mm in diameter. The barrel will extend to 284.9mm when used at 500mm, while the zoom ring's short 75-degree rotation has been designed for rapid focal length adjustment. At 1725g, this is no featherweight contender, but it's reasonable for this category of lens.
The optical stack is made up of 25 elements arranged in 16 groups and includes one XLD (eXtra Low Dispersion) element, five LD (Low Dispersion) elements, and two Hybrid Aspherical lens elements to control aberrations including axial chromatic aberrations. Tamron's BBAR-G2 anti-reflective coating is also employed to boost clarity and contrast, while the weather-resistant construction is aided by a fluorine coating to repel grease and moisture from the front element.
Autofocussing is controlled by Tamron's VXD AF linear autofocus mechanism, which is said to deliver "high-speed, high-precision movement". The system should also reduce noise and vibrations during focus transitions, which is good news for both stills and video shooting. The AF system is paired with Tamron's VC (Vibration Compensation) stabilizer which includes three modes: Standard, Panning, and Framing Priority. No information has yet been given about the VC system's shutter speed effectiveness. Extra features include an Arca-Swiss compatible tripod mount with strap attachment, plus a lens hood with protective rubber front, both included with the lens.
Additional versatility comes from the lens's relatively short 60cm minimum focus distance at 150mm, and 1.8 meters at 500mm. Combined with a fairly high 1:3.1 maximum magnification ratio, it's therefore possible to use the lens for tele-macro photography on subjects like flowers and insects.
Retail availability is expected from October 13th, priced at $1499/£1399.99. At this price it will be significantly cheaper than both the Fujifilm XF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR, and the XF 150-600mm f/5.6-8 R LM OIS WR.
We'll be sure to give the 150-500mm F/5-6.7 Di III VC VXD a full review as soon as a sample is available.