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Tamron 18-400mm Ultra-Telephoto Lens

Tamron announced the Ultra-Telephoto 18-400mm lens last week boasting its large range and quoting it has a ‘powerful performance that exceeds your imagination.’ We were lucky enough to get a little hands on time with the new lens while in Winchester and Adrian and Alan took it out for a quick test.

Key Features

  • World’s FIRST ultra-telephoto 22.2x
  • 18mm to 400mm zoom range (equiv. to 620mm -crop sensors)
  • VC Image Stabilization
  • Min focus 45cm at 400mm
  • 1:2.9 magnification ratio MACRO Capability
  • Electromagnetic Diaphragm
  • Moisture Resistant Construction
  • New HLD High Low Torque focusing motor


Shooting ultra-telephoto has always meant in the past carrying large lenses and when off travelling you’ve either had to sacrifice luggage space or the kit you take. We have seen large telephotos for a while, with the likes of the Tamron 18-250mm, which at the time were considered brilliant for travelling. Yet when looking at the results users found the lens to be softer at the extreme wide and telephoto end.

The 18-400mm is a single lens capable of shooting at 620mm (equivalent to APS-C format) while only being 4.8” long and weighing just over 700 grams. With Low Dispersion glass and aspherical lenses throughout the 18-400Tamron have been able to overcome issues like chromatic aberration and distortion across the entire zoom range giving you sharp, crisp images whether shooting wide-angle or telephoto.

We do of course see Tamron’s VC (Vibration Compensation) technology within the lens, allowing you to shoot free hand at its full 400mm extent. The VC also helps when using the viewfinder, helping frame your subjects even when shooting in poorly lit conditions

Not only do you get a wide-angle to telephoto lens but the 18-400mm also features a macro capability when at the maximum magnification. You can now capture close ups at a ratio of 1:2.9 and the 18-400 keeps your subjects sharp with a smooth bokeh in the back ground.

The lens has a new barrel design allowing Tamron to create the large range and not compromise the overall end size. With this new design Tamron ensures that all the zoom extensions are smooth and easy to use while out shooting.

The exclusive HLD (High/Low torque-modulated Drive) provides the low power motor allowing the 18-400mm to focus accurately and quietly while the motors rotation from low to high speeds gives you a smooth and non distracting auto focus. The HLD has also aided the sleek and compact design of the lens.


If you are heading off on your travels or just don’t fancy the hassle of carrying multiple lens and having to swap them out in the field or work out which lens combination you want to carry for the day then the 18-400mm may just tick your box. It gives you the range to capture wide landscapes and interiors of buildings, to general street and portraiture, and long distance subjects including wildlife and not forgetting close up detailed shots of smaller subjects with its macro capabilities. Tamron have really managed to create a true all in one lens.

Available now in Nikon and Canon fit.

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