NOT ALL MONOFOCALS ARE CREATED EQUAL someone says with a grin, "a lens is a lens is a lens". The fact of the matter is, not all lenses are created equal: there are differences in as much as they may look alike.
The proof is in a closer look:
Tamron takes a unique
position toward the optical design of its monofocal line. The entire group of lenses are designed as one whole family. To expand the number of common parts
and components throughout a line is a "norm" today in both the electronics and
automobile industries. In designing optics, however, such an approach has been
considered to be almost impossible. Tamron's optical engineers saw a challenge
and in turn came up with a break-through design approach.
What are the user benefits by taking a component-design approach? First, it ensures economy in cost management which leads to savings in user cost. All of Tamron's monofocals are priced quite favorably yet no sacrifice has been made in terms of performance and quality. In point of fact, quality standards are much better managed by using this design approach, which accounts for the second user benefit: quality.
To retain a "family
similarity" in optical design does not automatically ensure "similarity" in
mechanical dimensions. Due to sophisticated mechanical design approach coupled
with Tamron's expertise in optics, our monofocal lenses are made very close in
their dimensional configurations from one lens to the next.
What are the user benefits? First, similar size makes installation design easier. Regardless of the final choice of any focal length model, variations in size are minimal especially should there be a case where any housing is involved. In addition, the protrusion of the iris meter portion (DC or AI model) is minute. You need not be overly concerned about the "extra" length for such a protrusion unlike others in the market.
When you look through
the lens, how many iris blades can you see? Yes, there are three as opposed to
two. Once again, two is the industry's "norm". A vast majority of CCTV lenses
employ 2-bladed diaphragm because of its cost advantage and ease in the
What is the user advantage? The 3-bladed diaphragm renders better control of the iris from wide open position down to the minimum aperture range. Coupled with an ND filter in the case of DC and AI models, Tamron's monofocals deliver optimal performance in the minimum aperture area.
"All Auto Iris'
perform the same" is a common misconception. Do yourself a favor and conduct a comparative side-by-side test. It is astonishing how "AI" (video) lenses will
perform differently from one model to the other.
AI (video) lenses incorporate a circuit to regulate the iris meter. That tiny circuitry reveals the differences in know-how from one company to the other. In some cases, you will have a hard time obtaining the optimized position in AI adjustment no matter how much you work on "ALC" and "Level" controls. Think back to your nightmares of a frustrating iris adjustment process; going back and forth between the camera and the monitor; being puzzled and asking "what the hell is goin' on!?!?" When you pay extra money for the AI (video) model, make sure you get the lens that ensures smooth and accurate performance. Otherwise, the whole investment will wind up a waste.
All of these extra
features are incorporated in Tamron's new series of monofocal lenses because we
are full-fledged manufacturer.
What does that mean?
We design and process optics
We design and process mechanical parts and components
We design our electronic circuitry
We design and produce ultra high-precision molds
We produce high-precision injection-mold components
We are experienced in video and digital imaging by virtue of working with world's leading electronics manufacturers.
All of this comes together at our own factory which is certified under ISO 9000-series standards.