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Anyone Experience Tamron Repair Service in NY, USA

Tim Witt , Sep 21, 2008; 10:28 p.m.

I was given a inoperable Tamron SP 24-135mm f3.5-5.6 Aspherical AD (IF) lens. Looks just like new but the aperture starts to open and close very fast at various zoom settings without pressing the shutter release. Probably opening and closing about 4 cycles per second. It then locks up a 30D or EOS 3 when the shutter release is pressed.

- What would be the maximum you would pay for repair before just scrapping the lens?

- How is the IQ and build quality?

- What have been your repair costs of like or similar Tamrons for various problems?

- Anyone ever had this problem?

Responses

Ed V. , Sep 22, 2008; 08:56 a.m.

I've never sent anything to them for repair but I did contact them at one point for compatibility questions about the same lens. The gentleman I got on the phone was knowledgeable and forthcoming with information. You could try giving them a call and asking them directly.

Robert Budding , Sep 22, 2008; 10:09 a.m.

They replaced the film transport of my Bronica RF645 under warranty. The repair was done quickly and correctly. Nice camera, but I sold it because I lost faith in the engineering of the film transport.

Ron Hartman , Sep 22, 2008; 12:42 p.m.

I had a 17-50 Tamron lens calibrated by them a couple of years ago. As I recall, it went smoothly, had it back in 10 days or so.

Bill Owens , Sep 22, 2008; 12:58 p.m.

No idea on costs since my lens is under warranty (warranty is 6-years for Tamron!), but I also sent in a 17-50 recently and service was fast and effective. Can't hurt to send it in for an estimate.

Tim Witt , Sep 22, 2008; 07:20 p.m.

Reply from Tamron indicates minimum charge is $150 and likely to cost no more based on my description of the symptoms. Of course the cost could go up upon inspection and troubleshooting by their technicians.

The lens looks like new and seems to be built comparable to at least the less than "L" lenses but higher than the low end lenses.

I have been searching for information about the IQ for this lens but so far have only found an opinion of IQ and build quality being "very good".

I don't know if the IQ is worth $150. Anyone with an IQ opinion or experience?

Ed V. , Sep 24, 2008; 10:54 p.m.

The lens is discontinued now, but when I was shopping last year it was about US$370 street price. The website www.photozone.de has a detailed review, which I believe showed it to be a bit above average, but not exceptional. You could compare the review to some other $150 lenses and see if it's worth it for you.

Doug Harhai , Sep 26, 2008; 09:28 p.m.

Tim--funny you ask. I just received mine back from them (again). I have owned it since 2001, it is the 50th anniversary edition, almost like new. Two years ago the zoom ring stuck around 90mm and the af/mf switch popped out on vacation in mexico. I sent the lens in for repair and it was fixed within a few weeks under warranty. This spring, I dropped my camera case on a church floor with Canon 5D/Tamron lens from 3 ft--lens later exhibits same symptoms as last year, Tamron says there is evidence of impact damage to the same part that broke before, bill is $150 (ok, I can believe the internal impact damage even if none was apparent) and I get 90 day warranty on the work. The repair took about a month. Then, last month, with a few days left on the warranty, lens exhibits the same problems as before, no impact damage this time. Tamron fixes it with no hassle, takes about two weeks. I just got it back this week.

I tell you this just FWIW--they have been pleasant to deal with, and I don't know if the repeated failure of that ring is an inherent flaw of the lens design, my copy, or the workmanship done by the tech who repaired it when I dropped it. I don't remember hearing anybody else talk about it so I assume that I am just unlucky.

As far as the image quality, it is good to very good. Some apertures are a little soft when wide open. I wouldn't say it's performance is exceptional, that would be reserved for L glass (even my 85 1.8 which is sweet). Not as good as my 50 1.4 at most apertures, but then again we are comparing a zoom to a prime. There are shots that I took a few years ago that I will stumble across now and then when I am looking at old slides, old prints, etc., and I am surprised at the resolution and saturation of the lens. For a while, it was the only lens that I used.

The build quality is very heavy. I haven't held L glass (yet) but it is better built than any other lens that I have, be it large format, medium format, 35mm...it is heavy and rubberized, very easy to grip.

All that said, I am right now saving up for L glass, and I am probably going to sell the Tamron. Why? The autofocus isn't USM and it doesn't have IS. I didn't need USM 5 years ago when I was taking pics of babies in cribs, but now my kids move faster than lightning on greased rails. The IS isn't something that I always need but is nice to have occasionally. I think that the Tamron would give you a good bargain for what you could get in a comparable Canon. If you don't need the USM, I think that it is a great lens; mine has overall better resolution than my Canon 28-105 3.5- 4.5 MkII USM.

Good luck,

Doug

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