Tamron Adaptall-2 35-70mm f3.5 17AThe Tamron Adaptall-2 35-70mm f3.5 is a compact and moderately fast zoom lens that allows macro focusing down to 1:2.8 at 70mm.

Technical Details

Launch Year 1982
Discontinued 1987
List Price when new ¥
Focal Length 35-70mm
Aperture Range f3.5-32
Aperture Blades
Angle of view 64°-34°
Optical Construction (Groups / Elements) 7 / 7
Minimum Focus 9.8″ (0.25m) at 70mm
Maximum Macro Magnification ratio 1:2.8 at 70mm
Filter Size 58mm
Diameter 2.6″ (65.6mm)
Length 2″ (50.5mm)
Weight 330g


Optional push-on type #42FH.

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Optical Layout

Tamron Adaptall 2 35-70 f3.5 17A Optical Layout

Background and availability

The Tamron Adaptall-2 35-70mm f3.5 (17A) shares a lot of its optical layout with the larger, faster and heavier SP 35-80mm f2.8-3.8 (01A), which has rightly attained cult status among manual lens users. Users who have used both lenses speak very highly of the 35-70mm, and although absolute performance is generally bested by the SP 35-80, the 17A has the advantage of being smaller, lighter and cheaper.

The Tamron Adaptall-2 35-70mm f3.5 (17A) is widely available for very little money, although it is hard to track down with the original lens hood (which also fits the 35-80 and is actually better than the rubber hood designed for the 35-80).

Performance and handling

The Tamron Adaptall-2 35-70mm f3.5 (17A) does benefit from being lighter and smaller than the SP 35-80, but it perhaps isn’t as great a difference as you’d imagine by just looking at the lens individually. The weight difference is 56g (330g vs 386g) and the size difference is only slight when both lenses are fully retracted – the main difference is the wider zoom ring on the 35-80, rather than the unusual partial grip on the 35-70. The lens handles beautifully, and the use of plastic in construction as opposed to metal does not detract from the feel that this is a quality lens.

It is well-weighted on the Sony A7ii, and an absolute bargain compared to the zoom lenses available natively for Sony’s full frame cameras. I generally find 35mm wide enough for most scenes, whilst 70mm is enough for portraits (although the extra reach of the 35-80 is beneficial here) and it makes a light walkaround lens that is fast enough – generally – for indoor work in reasonably well-lit conditions.

I’ve been very impressed with this lens wide open, throughout the zoom range, and impressed with the casual macro shots taken so far. I cannot see it replacing the SP 35-80, but I am going to use it a lot to build up the image gallery below.

Sample Images

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