If I was able to purchase every lens that I've ever wanted and/or thought was necessary for our business, I'd easily be over $10,000 in. Being that I'm not made of money and that our business is only a secondary source of income, I am always on the lookout for value. I have always heard the pros say to first upgrade your lens before upgrading your camera body... but I didn't listen. I upgraded from my Canon M50 with a 50mm 1.8 to a Canon R with the 24-105 f/4-7.1 kit lens. Don't get me wrong, the Canon R has vastly improved my ease of shooting, my comfort and has upped the quality of my work to something I would consider pro level. It's quite easily worth the investment on my end. However, seeing the kind of impact a new quality lens has had on my work makes me urge new photographers to upgrade glass before bodies. My partner, in both life and this business, has seen a great bump in her photography as well and she uses this lens with an entry level DSLR. In knowing this and with a price tag of $650 I HIGHLY recommend picking up a Tamron 70-210 f/4, even if your camera body isn't at that "pro" level. I have scoured the internet for suggestions, reviews and even coupons for any canon lens that you can think of. For my workflow, in both paid shoots and not, a telephoto lens was a necessary and potentially expensive investment. While I hear nothing but praises from the L series lenses and always read a glowing recommendation for f/2.8 glass, I was always hesitant to throw $2,500 into the Canon L 70-200 f/2.8. Though it is still a dream lens of mine I am happy to say I am in no rush and no need of upgrading anymore! I am so beyond satisfied with the Tamron 70-210, not only with the price, quality and versatility but with the size and weight as well.
As you can see from these images, it is extremely versatile. I am able to stand a little back to get a beautiful full body image; then I can come a little closer and zoom in to capture awesome tight portraits. It is tack sharp and it renders beautiful bokeh, especially at 210. While the auto focus isn't quite as fast as I would like it to be, it is still fast enough for me to shoot sports. It fits perfectly in my every day carry bag and doesn't add much weight to my kit. The only negative thing that I can think of is the fact that the zoom ring and focus ring are reversed. So it takes some getting used to, but even the higher end Tamron and Sigma lenses do that. Over all, I cannot stress how important this lens has been to me and how much of a viable investment it has been. If you're still working with a kit lens, or even if you've upgrade already but need a telephoto, I will recommend this lens even if you had the money to get a 2.8. The size and weight will always factor in and this is about half the weight of any 2.8. If you typically work outside then f/4 is plenty, even inside I always use a flash so I haven't had any issues. I will admit though I lean toward my prime lenses when working inside events anyway, but when I need some more reach I am happy to grab this lens.