I have what I consider to be a very good copy of tamron 24-70 VC, and just received my first copy of canon 24-70II. did some field test and brick wall test, as well as some sharpness test using the Focal software.
My findings, based on testing the lenses at 24, 28, 35, 50 and 70mm
1.Sharpness. wide open
Center of the frame is very similar at all focal lengths except for 70, where the canon has a clear advantage at f 2.8. at close focus distance, focal detected a slight advantage to canon at all focal lengths but with the wall about 20 feet away, even at 200% the difference is marginal, except at f 70
corners: Canon is definitely sharper here at 2.8 at all focal lengths, they are close in the central 2/3, but canon clearly pulls ahead in the corners.
2. Sharpness stopped down:
Center, they stay very similar. at 70, tamron about catches up at f4, and beyond that I dont see a difference.
Corners: Here is the surprising part. at 24, canon is sharper. Tamron narrows the gap the more you stop down, and I would call it very good at f8, but even at f11, canon has a slight edge. At 35, by f5.6 they are fairly similar
however, on the longer end, 50, and 70, tamron is clearly sharper at f5.6 and beyond in the corners. canon starts good, but reaches very good levels. Tamron starts ok, but reaches excellent level. definitely visible difference.
2. Distortion. Tamron has more of it at 24. beyond that I did not find it problematic.
I was surprised that the sharpness comparison is a mixed bag. Canon has clear advantage at 70 2.8 in center, and also wide open in the corners. It has a clear disadvantage stopped down in the corners on the long end (though slight advantage at 24mm) so much so, that I would say tamron turns in a more even performance for landscape shooting when it comes to sharpness.
Tamron also has a very effective VC. Canon does not.
Now, by far the biggest advantage of canon is autofocus speed and consistency. taking images of my kids running around in good or borderline light, with 5d3, the canon naiils focus 90% of time. In marginal light, with moving objects, the tamron is near hopeless. even in good light, it does maybe 60-70 in focus. Even with stationary objects, in good light, tamron occasionally produces oof, or just soft images. Not sure if its the VC, or what.
I am now torn between these two lenses. I dont mind the price tag of canon, and I can even live with lack of VC. I am just honestly disapponted with its stop down performance in the corners at 50 and 70. would be interested to hear from others with experience with this lenses.