Tamron 18-400mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC HLD lens review with samples

A few months ago, Tamron broke yet another superzoom lens record by releasing this instrument, with its astonishing 18-400mm zoom range. I remember seeing early sample pictures on the internet and actually being quite impressed with its image quality at 400mm. Let’s put it through its paces.

All pictures shot by me on a Canon EOS M3 camera.

If you’ve found this or other videos I’ve made to be helpful, then support me on Patreon! https://www.patreon.com/christopherfrost

Be sure to follow my Photostream on Flickr, to see sample pictures of lenses I’ve reviewed and to see previews of upcoming lenses, too! https://www.flickr.com/photos/56334263@N07/

‘Opportunity Walks’, Kevin MacLeod (www.incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0


Genevieve Laurin says:

Very helpful review. Love your attention to detail and the image quality tests. Sorry to say this, but I really hate the background music and found it very distracting, but I understand that’s a personal thing. Thank you for this video!

Allen Gray says:

I have this lens. This is the most honest evaluation of this lens I have seen. If you are looking for sharp images, don’t even shoot at less than f8. That being said, if you understand photography at all, you can see the limitations of this lens. It’s a good amateur lens for people who are not “pixel peepers”. I enjoy this lens, but for $650.00 U.S. I was hoping for a bit more.

René says:

Any chance of comparing those superzoom lenses for ILCs to high-end superzooms “compact” cameras like Panasonic FZ1000 or Sony RX 10 III/IV?

Simon says:

That 400mm is 640mm in FF equivalent – so it has to be a sport hall to get that maximum zoom picture !

Naveed Ahmed says:

Awesome review, but your music makes me sleepy 🙂


Great review

Simon Nordblad Schmidt says:

Hey Chris, could you do a video on using EF/EF-S lenses on cannon mirrorless cameras? Drawbacks? Benefits? Quality of images from adapted lenses? etc.
Also thanks for the honest and through reviews, helps out when looking for new equipment!

Mr. JAM says:

The one lens to rule the all range!

Gal or says:

I am so enjoying your professionalism. I want very much to buy a 24-70 lens, I do not know what to decide. Until you guys do not audit the two Sigma art lenses vs Tamron G2 .I do not buy a lens. I really ask you. All the lenses I have are only after I’ve seen the most professional review in the world and it’s yours .

Ark says:

I always loved my superzooms, but I always found that Tamron zooms really just aren’t built well. I would spring on a main brand superzoom if you want better image quality throughout the range.

Paul Moadibe says:

those lens are just crap…I bought the 16-300mm after watching the review you made of it and regret it. You should be more honest !

Expert Gameing says:

The 70-200mm f4 l series non is or tamron 18-400?

Amit Raam says:

very useful review, every time I asked “and how about..” you went and did it! thanks.

Freddy Iglesias says:

finally! ive been waiting for your take on this lens forever now as i feel you are the only one who can really convince me to buy this lens

nurd45 says:

They still sell Crystal Pepsi in the UK? I haven’t seen that in the US since the 80′ or 90’s !

sanjin jakupovic says:

Can you compare this Lens 400mm to a Fullframe Lens at 400. I tested my kit Lens 18-105mm at 105mm i get the same fov as my sigma 70-300 at 70mm. The Kit Lens is for Crop camera and the Sigma ist for Fullframe.

Peter Mitchell says:

Amazing value, 3.5 isn’t too bad and what a zoom range.

Too many compromises for me though. I got a 70-200 tamron vc for sport and it’s spoiled me.

I guess if I was starting out I’d be strongly tempted though.

Love your reviews mate.

Harin Mehta says:

Hello Christopher ,
I m using nikon d5600 have 18-55 but i need bigger Zoom, I would like you to help me out between this ones all Tamron, 18-270, 16-300, 18-400,
the prices are high as we go up zoom
I will be travelling to Switzerland, Paris and London, which one you think i should carry,

Furthermore, I m planning to get 50mm or do u think i should go for 35mm cost is same but the purpose is to take portraits ?

Thanks is advance and my compliments to you for making such a in-depth reviews.

ibtehaj islam says:

I need yours advice..! I have canon 77D , so , is this len useful for filmMaking?????

Nasser M A Haque says:

Thank you very much for the detailed review as usual. How does this Tamron 18-400 compare against Sigma 18-300?

Frank Mattox says:

I currently have the tamron 18-270 and I’m hearing mixed reviews about it’s image quality. So here’s the question is it worth the upgrade?

Marcel Barriel says:

Tested it myself, found the images really bad compared to my 2 other non prof lenses. Really soft and not sharp. Wanted this lens but i am out.

Ashraf Ahmed Khan says:

Finally, a review I’d been waiting for. Thanks a lot, Sir 🙂

Pieter de Wit says:

Could you please review the Tamron 100-400 ?

alsogooraa says:

Hello Christopher. What mike do you use for your videos and what is your suggestions for solo mics that give a rich sound. I am using Nikon d3400 which does not have mic jack, so I should only use external mic and than sync it manually

Itimonium says:

Minute 1:20 „…it will also appeal to people, who know nothing about photography but just want the lens with the biggest numbers on it” that is gold

Jonas Knutson says:

Any plans of reviewing the 150-600 G2? 🙂

Stephen Jeremy says:

Please review the 7artisans 35mm f1.2
It’s a very inexpensive lens, but is it any good?

Abhijith M Panicker says:

Well done bro, I was waiting for your review on this Lens. Now am totally confused to select which lens to buy. I was saving money to buy Canon 70-200 f4L and now I’m confused with this lens. Can you please help me out. Thank you

Ammar Habjouqa says:

Thanks again for an excellent review. My general travel lens used to be a Sigma 18-250 but this one has easily replaced it although it is heavier and more expensive. It is sharper and gives the extra reach as you have pointed out in your review. One thing I don’t like about it though is slow to nearly no focusing at the 400mm end. I may have a bad copy though but it is still fun to use and can replace several lenses when traveling unless I have a very specific target that requires another lens. Cheers and keep up the good work. I really appreciate your efforts and miss that old brick wall. Maybe you can replicate it somehow in a virtual reality setting 😉

David S says:

I’d personally rather have the 2 extra mm on the wide side and lose the 100mm on the long end and just go with the 16-300

Jean-Claude Ben says:

The focus breathing makes this lens useless for wildlife photography where you are not likely to focus at infinity.

Chris Summers says:

Hi Chris, I bought this lens and have been pretty happy with it. I use it a lot on my Canon EOS M5 camera with the EF/M adapter and often travel now with this lens and the M 11-22mm lens. I ended up selling the M 55-200mm as this is sharper, has a bigger focal range and is only a bit larger than the M lens.

rendezvous009 says:

Does the lens flicker when zooming in/out when shooting video? Maybe you can perform the flicker test in your future videos.

Yahya Alrobaie says:

You should review the GM lenses from sony

Iamdonald duck says:

it’s not only for amature’s

Pizza Calzone says:

very nice review!

Pieter de Wit says:

Ah, thanks so much for this review ! Was waiting for this one 🙂

Iamdonald duck says:

Many pro’s will use this lens eg: expedition adventurers,journalist’s, battlefield photographers etc

Zaber Ansary says:

Currently enjoying a Tamron 70-300 VC USD on 70D, An Awesome Lens and your review helped me to decide on it. Got it for $170 used tho…

Filip Huzjak says:

Please make review of Tamron 100-400mm. Maybe compare it to sigma 100-400.

Pablo García de los Salmones says:

It would be great if you could make a review about latest Sigma 24-70mm 2.8 Art, and perhaps, a comparison with Canon’s 24-70s and Tamron’s one too

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