The Tamron 28-300mm XR Di lens replaces the popular XR LD Ultra Zoom version, and has now been improved to include Tamron’s “Di” design. Digitally integrated design is the designation that Tamron uses for lenses that feature the improved optical design that meets the performance characteristics of digital SLR cameras, as well as film cameras. When used with APS-C size (standard) digital SLR cameras, the lens provides an angle of view equivalent to approximately 43-465mm, covering the standard-to-ultra-telephoto range with no sacrifice of quality or aperture range.
This lens is ultra-compact and light-weight, with a constant minimum focus distance of 1.6′ (0.5 m) and a high maximum magnification of 1:2.9. The remarkable achievements are brought about through XR (extra refractive index) glass and efficient use of aspherical lenses. Size is reduced 25%, weight 27% and filter diameter was decreased from 72mm to 62mm. The ideal “all-in-one” zoom lens, for indoor and outdoor use.
In answer to the original question “Does the Tamron 28-300 deserve respect”, I’d have to answer that it does. While I think you could probably do better with two zooms, one covering something like 28-100mm and one covering 100-300mm, not everyone wants to use two lenses. For those who don’t, the Tamron 28-300 may be an appropriate choice.
This lens was designed to cope wit most situations in the days of full frame 35mm film, but now, on a cropped dSLR, acts as a standard to long telephoto zoom. The close focusing ability helps in a number of areas to make it a useful lens where weight or dust is a problem. The range does save changing lenses every couple of minutes. Good at the wide end, it does fall away considerably at the long end.