Tokina 12-24mm f/4 AT-X 124 AF PRO DX SD
(From Tokina lens literature) The AT-X 124 AF PRO DX lens is Tokina's first lens designed for use exclusively on Canon and Nikon Digital SLR cameras having an APS-C sized sensor.
This lens gives the Digital Photographer an ultra wide-angle zoom lens that has the equivalent of an 18-36mm zoom range on a 35mm film camera while maintaining a bright constant aperture of f/4.
Non-rotating 77mm filter threads mean special effect filters will not change when the lens' focus is changed. Tokina recommends using HOYA PRO 1 Series low profile filters with the AT-X 124 PRO DX.
Fast internal focusing with Tokina's One-Touch focus clutch mechanism allows the lens to AF focus faster and switching between auto and manual focus is as easy as snapping the focus ring back and forth.
2 sharp-cut aspherical elements accurately correct aspherical aberration usually associated with ultra-wide angle lenses.
Bright, constant f/4 aperture allows plenty of light to enter the camera for shooting in a wide variety of photographic situations.
Chrome plated brass mount plate and all-metal zoom unit can stand up to regular use while advanced polycarbonate outer lens barrels reduce the weight of the lens, making it a pleasure to carry.
This lens is Tokina's first foray into the world of reduced image circle optics, and it's an excellent effort. From 12-20mm, it shows just excellent sharpness across the frame, even when wide open. Its performance suffers somewhat at the 24mm "tele" end of its range, but stopping down to f/8 cleans up the problems there quite well.
Chromatic aberration is on the high side at maximum wide angle, decreasing steadly to moderate to low levels at 24mm. Exposure uniformity is quite good, particular for such a wide-angle lens, with a worst case vignetting of 1/2 stop at 12mm wide open, dropping to 1/4 stop at f/5.6. Performance at f/5.6 at all longer focal lengths tested was 1/10 stop or better. Geometric distortion is probably this lens' weakest point, but even there it's no worse than one might expect, reaching a maximum of roughly 0.75% barrel distortion at 12mm, decreasing to about 0.4% at 15mm, and dropping to almost zero at 24mm.
We found this lens to be a very pleasant surprise, particularly given its relatively modest price point. It delivers excellent performance wide open across most of its range, and its troubles at 24mm are easily corrected by stopping down. All in all, a great little lens, nicely compact thanks to its reduced image circle, well built, and optically much better than its modest price would lead you to expect.
Tokina 12-24mm f/4 AT-X 124 AF PRO DX SD User Reviews
9 out of 10 points and recommended by DaveInAZ (2 reviews)Excellent Image Quality, Price, Size, Build Quality, Constant ApertureCA
Like most Tokina lenses, this is an awesome lens for the money. It's only real weakness is a very moderate amount of CA, which is almost unavoidable with UWA lenses.reviewed March 1st, 2014
As the official review says, stopping down clears up the softness at the long end, and the short end is amazing. It's a little loud and a little slow compared to some lenses, but who cares? It's a landscape lens; speed is not an issue.
9 out of 10 points and recommended by makcv113 (8 reviews)Image quality, tough build, zoom range, constant aperture F4my lens crapped out on me, slow aperture F4
I used this lens on a Canon 500D/T1i body. The build quality of this lens is that of a TANK! Feels solid, but feels like it outweighs an entry-level body. I adjusted to it, and never had a problem with it.reviewed August 19th, 2012 (purchased for $350)
The zoom range is the most useful, unlike the Tamron 11-18mm or Tokina 11-16mm (if you don't need the fast aperture). The image quality was also good enough for me, but I think it could be a bit sharper, never really complained about it. AF and MF switching works perfect, different, but suck it up and adjust to it.
The only problem I encountered with it was it one day gave me an error when I try to adjust the aperture past 5.6 at 12mm. If I remember, it was perfectly fine when it was above 18mm. I quickly sold it since landscape photos at the wide end wouldn't allow me to use apertures like f/11.
If I felt like this was a common occurance, I would not bother getting another copy of this lens. But I know some people that have the same lens and has never crapped out on them. I'd try my luck again with this lens.
Here are some photos taken with the lens on a Canon 500D/T1i body:
Find the whole set on the lens here:
8 out of 10 points and recommended by dougsmit (2 reviews)Canon version usable on full framelocks up when used at 12mm on my crop cameras after 5 years use
After owning this lens for 5 years, I upgraded to a Canon 5DmkII and expected to have to junk it because it had stopped working at 12mm (gives error message and locks up camera). Now I find that it covers the FF sensor starting at 17mm (take off the lens hood) giving me slightly wider results than it did on my old crop body. Image quality is not bad except for some red-green chromatic aberration that corrects out using DPP RAW adjustments. I taped the ring giving me a 17mm 'prime' for free since I could not sell it due to the other defect. I would not recommend you buy this lens to use on your 5DmkII but if you already have one, give it a try.reviewed January 15th, 2012 (purchased for $471)
9 out of 10 points and recommended by kaci (10 reviews)sharpness, overall IQ, priceslow AF if You care, CA little bit
Great UWA lens on APS-C. Super sharp, really nice colours and contrast. Solidely built, cheap. Tokina makes fantastic zoom lenses for APS-C.reviewed April 15th, 2011 (purchased for $390)
9 out of 10 points and recommended by shamtastic1 (2 reviews)Value for money, solid construction, sharp focusNone so far
I have this lens for almost two years, it is a solid performer.reviewed November 11th, 2010 (purchased for $420)
The zoom range covers the ultra-wide (12mm) which allows me to take the architectural scene with perspective to a 24mm which allows me to take streetscapes and people.
Highly recommended if you are on a budget and want a decent ultra-wide angle lens.
8 out of 10 points and recommended by poorbokeh (1 reviews)Solid build, sharp, low distortion, priceChromatic abberation
I had this lens for a few years before moving to a FF camera. It always good in the hand - good materials and smooth operation. I did have to correct for CA a bit, though.reviewed May 21st, 2010
10 out of 10 points by cian (3 reviews)excellent contrast and colournothing
Tokina 12-24mm f.4 Pro Dx II series Af motorized with a solid movement and constructionreviewed January 4th, 2010 (purchased for $550)
9 out of 10 points and recommended by rewer (2 reviews)Sharpness,Build quality,Nice coloursCA(but for me is good)
Excelent value for DX users. Very sharp image ,nice touch and solid body.CA are not a big problem .I think only Tokina 11-16/2,8 is better then 12-24/4 ,if you try one you buy one, i did it!reviewed September 15th, 2009 (purchased for $680)
10 out of 10 points and recommended by Renato (5 reviews)Strongly built, constant aperture, 9 bladesF4 instead than F2.8
I got this lens almost as soon as it came out, and I took great photos with it, much better than with Nikon 12-24mm (promptly sold), I see that there is a newer version with internal USM/HSM type motor, that should be a welcome improvement. But I have been very happy with this lens. it did prove once again that you do not need big name lenses to make great photos.reviewed January 1st, 2009 (purchased for $500)
10 out of 10 points and recommended by andre_ (31 reviews)high body quality, definition from f5.6, flare resistanceCA, color rendition (warm....)
This lens has absolutely reliable results from f4 (better, f5.6) to f16.reviewed December 8th, 2008 (purchased for $450)
For me it's a fantastic lens for landscapes, a little bit prone to flare, but with high definition and CA (but CA is very easily controlled in Photoshop).
The distorsion is "simple", so the software can control it in very simple way.
The color rendition is warmest than any Nikkor lens, but it's a "characteristic", not really a problem.
5 out of 10 points and not recommended by sflorio (8 reviews)Looks like it would be sharp, if it focused with my Canon xSiAutofocus doesn't work with Canon xSi
I hate to give this lens a negative rating, because it appears to simply be an incompatibility problem between the lens and my new Canon xSi, but it NEVER focuses perfectly using the standard through-the-viewfinder autofocus. It seems to focus quite well when using the camera's slow live view focusing system, (which seems to work well with all lenses) so I can tell that probably the only fault with the lens is that it simply doesn't work with my new Canon. (The lens predates the camera by three years, so you can't really "blame" the lens; it's the manufacturers who have no interest in being compatible with third party lenses. Canon warns you not to buy third party lenses, though that's what all manufacturers say). I went through the hassle of getting two of these, and neither focused properly. It might be a Canon firmware deficiency , but there is no update for the xSi firmware at this time. I wanted to warn anyone else out there that I've tried two of these, and neither worked well except when using live view focus, and so I must reluctantly return this one and perhaps go with the Sigma 10-20 mm and cross my fingers.reviewed August 28th, 2008 (purchased for $450)
UPDATE: Canon did issue a firmware update for the XSi, and although they don't say that it helps autofocus, it sure seems to me that my Canon f/1.8 50mm lens, which never used to focus well, now seems to focus much better. Of course the firmware update was issued two days after I returned the Tokina. Wish I had it back now, though the Sigma 10-20 has given me a number of very nice photos.
9 out of 10 points and recommended by lextalionis (82 reviews)Built like a tank and very good IQVignetting is moderate at 12mm
Not a bad piece of machinery...I like using machinery because it's built rugged and solid.reviewed August 1st, 2008 (purchased for $400)
The IQ is very good, only issue is that vignetting is moderate at 12mm and severe if you use a filter.
Samples High Resolution Photos
9 out of 10 points and recommended by Rover (13 reviews)wide angle, build, image quality, reasonable max. apertureslow AF
This is currently my mainstay lens. I bought it before the vacation as a replacement for my venerable Canon 17-55 and wasn't disappointed. The extra reach (when compared to the zooms that start at 17 or 18 mm) is immense (maybe I should have gotten a Canon 10-22 because you simply can't go TOO wide!). The image quality is great although I need to stop down to 5.6 or 6.3 (especially at 24 mm) to get the most out of this Tokina.reviewed July 28th, 2008 (purchased for $460)
Oh yes, and it's of a very solid build. I dropped it on to a pavement once but after the few moments of dread I put it back on my 30D and it worked like nothing has happened.
The only drawback is a noisy and rather slow (though still snappy) AF. I'm yet to determine if this will preclude me from using this lens efficiently for the general journalistic photography.
8 out of 10 points and recommended by norcalphotographer (6 reviews)image quality, cost, build quality...
Excellent wide zoom lens. Provides great image quality, outstanding build quality, and excellent wide angle solution.reviewed July 21st, 2008 (purchased for $550)
Only downside I can offer is that it's not an f/2.8 lens but for what you're getting, you can't really complain about that.
7 out of 10 points and recommended by onlyone (8 reviews)Excellent construction, sharp image (but a little soft at 24)Not that accuracy AF, CA
My first wide-zoom len.reviewed June 1st, 2008 (purchased for $450)
It's strong and good looking. Its weight is fit for my 30D with grip. Its image quality is pretty nice.
By the way, its AF sometimes make me nervous (Sigma 10-20 and Canon 10-22 are both better in AF) and a little non-issue problem is CA.
If you want wide-zoom lens in this price, try checking Sigma 10-20 and compare them with your feeling.
9 out of 10 points and recommended by epj1906 (2 reviews)Solid, great feel, Fast internal focusing,not as sharp at 24mm
Only had this lens for short time, but so far it meets my expectation for a wide angle zoom.reviewed April 7th, 2008 (purchased for $459)
Its heavy duty and built rock solid.
Can't compare it to any other lens in this category as far as overall sharpness and image quality, but it seems to on par with other pro Nikon lenses I have for half the price.
9 out of 10 points and recommended by Barbu (2 reviews)Build quality, luminousCA
I have this lens for more than a year, so I can give a balanced opinion. I mainly used it on a Canon 30D, 90% of the time set at a fixed 12mm, and I was in doubt if I should fork almost the double amount of money for the EF-S 10-22; while now I know that Tankina is a great lens, Canon 10-22 has a few tricks of its own.reviewed April 3rd, 2008 (purchased for $800)
The best part: Tokina 12-24 construction is very (and I mean VERY!) sturdy. The included lens shade is good, and the interior surface is satin-matte to avoid any reflection.
I use it mainly for "creative" angles, so the wide end gets me an accentuated perspective.
Compared to the Canon's 10-22, the weak point is distortion; even in a very flat plane the corners are significantly skewed, so you can't really use it for large groups of people. Also the 12mm end is not that wide; one can get significantly more from Canon's 10mm.
One other use is landscapes, and this is hands-down the best option; the contrast and colours are very pleasant, and it has something that really make the pictures look bright.
As a bonus, I used it on a film camera; from 15-18mm you get acceptable vigneting if you DON'T use the lens shade.
Last, I would like to mention that it's decent wide-open at f/4, but the best results come from f/6.3.
Overall, it's the best alternative non-manufacturer lens; I would advise against Sigma or other equivalents, and only if you have excess money you might think to buy the Canon 10-22.
LATER EDIT, after more than three years of (pleasurable) use:
It's an excellent lens, and its only drawback could be the somehow antiquated technology; Tokina seems reluctant about newer autofocus engines, and also the chromatic aberration could be a bit lower.
In its defense, here's the lowdown:
1) Image quality: very decent at f/4, with only some soft corners; but if you need speed, the Tankina delivers and I wouldn't hesitate using it indoors wide open. It's especially nice on close-ups for intentional deformation given by the wide-angle.
2) Geometric distortion: most of the time there isn't sesizable distortion, only the usual one produced by any wideangle. Usable even on people, if you take care to post-process it accordingly (lens deformation filter in Photoshop gives a straightaway rectilinear image, with no waviness).
3) Chromatic aberration: nothing to be worried about; it has some CA in the corners, but only if you're really sensitive to it. Again, it's very easy to correct for that (and on newer Nikon cameras this isn't an issue, since the camera corrects that automatically).
4) Focus: perfect on four different (Canon) cameras, including an old film one. Some might have less than stellar results, but that's only because the lens is more than happy to converge towards infinity, while the depth of field would allow hyperfocal tehnique from only a couple meters. Basically you can set the lens to focus at 3-5 meters away, close the aperture to f/8 and fire away! One special mention: the field curvature seems to be a bit accentuated, so the corners would have a significantly different distance of focus compared to the center. Take care to optimize the focus region for the intended subject, or simply stop down to at least f/5.6 if you're taking landscape pics and the corners are relevant.
If you're looking for an even higher quality lens, Tokina 11-16 f/2.8 is your sure bet; I've tried it, it's as fantastic as everyone says, but if you're using it indoors (at a party or something like that) you might feel it lacking zoom. For outdoor photographers, the 11-16 model is way better; I've used 12-24 for landscapes only at 12mm, basically as a fixed 12mm prime.
Sample for 12mm on a Canon 40D: http://www.flickr.com/photos/bomath/4406436764/
Full size: http://tr.im/TankinaFull (please use it only at home, for printing or any other way, but respect the copyright and don't republish it without my written consent).
BIG BONUS: if you're using a full-frame camera, take off the lens hood and you can use the lens (with full coverage) in the 15-24mm interval.
Check the coverage for 12mm, lens hood removed:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bomath/4280373124/ (direct scan with a Nikon 9000ED; film: Kodak BW400CN)
10 out of 10 points and recommended by Jeremy-G (1 reviews)Build Quality, sharpness @ f/5.6 , zoom ring and did i mention the tank like built?with that price ... absolutely no complain!
was struggling for few month between this Tokina and other lenses (sigma, canon, tamron..) For the price itself, this lens was superior! Flare did happened but it's easily corrected with PS.reviewed March 10th, 2008 (purchased for $592)
Distortion? i just love the 12mm with less distortion compared to the rest 10mm lens.. just Perfect i must say.
it does suffer from CA and as i said earlier.. PS was it's remedy.
the very first test shot against nature most beautiful moment... Sunset!
9 out of 10 points and recommended by hhm (1 reviews)Zoom range, build qualityA little bit soft on the wide end, weight
Great for landscapes, narrow streets or small rooms.reviewed October 28th, 2007 (purchased for $600)
A little bit too heavy in a Nikon D50 and very sharp around 18-24mm and a little bit softer around 12mm (probably I am spoiled by the 18-24mm range sharpness).
Overall a great lens, good contrast and colors.
0 out of 10 points and recommended by Shutter steve (1 reviews)
how can i find out if this fits on the nikon d50???reviewed September 29th, 2007
9 out of 10 points and recommended by f43tgv (16 reviews)sharp, well built great pricenone yet
Purchased to go with my Fuji S5. I know I wont use this wide a lens too much, so the Nikkor , despite its alleged good image quality was a non starter on price alone.reviewed September 21st, 2007 (purchased for $440)
I had looked at the Sigma 10-20, but dont like the feel or look of the finish on that lens.
My local camera store in the UK bought a lot of bankrupt stock from another victim of internet selling, amongst which was the Tokina lens which I bought for less than the usual UK price by some margin.
To date I have been pleased with it. It does seem to cause my S5 to underexpose by about a stop, I have no Idea why, but oterwise the results have been good. Sharpness is very good, distortion reasonable , and colour rendition as I expected. The lens is much more nicely built than the Sigma, but not as good as the old Tokina 28-70, which was built like a tank.
Given it price, compared to the Nikon offering anyway, I think I have got a bit of a bargain, always a nice feeling.
In the UK Tokina lenses dont get much attention, which is a shame, I am more than happy with mine.
9 out of 10 points and recommended by rainerknappe (24 reviews)everything!CAÃÂ´s
Very good ultrawide-lens. Very low distorsions, only a little cornershading, strong sharpness and lots of details (resolution), nice colours and an outstanding construccion mixed up with a brilliant price. I don´t have to say more? Okay, there are sometimes a lot of CA´s, but only at indirect light-situations - so knowing that, you have to handle this carefull....reviewed May 15th, 2007 (purchased for $480)
Together with the expensive Canon 10-22 and the Sigma EX DC 10-20 one of the best ultra-wide-lenses. What not everybody knows - at 18mm one of the sharpest lenses on the market!
8 out of 10 points and recommended by ddt332 (6 reviews)price compared to Nikon's, my copy's CA is GOOD!pay attention to the quality problem
The first copy I got had HORRIBLE IQ compared with my 18-200 VR! It was obviously a trash and something was seriously wrong. Returned the copy and got the new one. This copy is OK, the IQ from 18-22 is slightly better than my 18-200 VR (better in the corner but a bit worse in the center). At 24 this len is much worse than 18-200 VR until you step down to f8 which become just a little worse.reviewed May 10th, 2007 (purchased for $480)
It cannot focus well indoor at short distance (4 feet) on a white stuffed animal. My 18-200 VR has no problem.
However, the CA of my copy is very good!!
8 out of 10 points and recommended by billrogers945 (4 reviews)Price, build quality.Optical distortion, lack of internal focusing motor.
As others have noted, this lens is a satisfactory alternative to the Nikkor 12-24mm when price is taken into account. The build quality is first rate, and the image quality is acceptable.reviewed May 8th, 2007 (purchased for $500)
It's a useful lens for shooting indoor events and landscapes. I don't use it often, but it's there when I need it, and it does a fine job.
9 out of 10 points and recommended by jmancini (4 reviews)Very sharp, built like a tankHeavy-ish, prone to flare
An excellent landscape lens at half the price of the Nikkor equivalent and 90% of the image quality.reviewed April 8th, 2007 (purchased for $500)
If you like landscapes but don't use an ultra-wide angle 100% of the time, this is a great alternative to save some cash. Sharper in the corners than the 20/2.8 prime on my D200, and sharper than most other zooms at shared lengths. The weak spot is 24mm, but I have other lenses that do that quite well.
Keep the hood on it! It does NOT like contra light AT ALL. I ruined a few shots that way before realizing how sensitive it is.
It's the only 3rd party lens I own and plan on keeping; I have no yearning for the nikkor after using it.
8 out of 10 points and recommended by Iyhel (6 reviews)Sharpness, construction, low distorsion at the wide endWeight, chormatic aberrations
Sharpness is good, especially at the wide end. Distorsion is highly acceptable as well.reviewed March 13th, 2007 (purchased for $550)
This lens is a tank - a non volontary drop test confrimed that - with the pros... and the cons : weight.
I owned it for 4 months and changed it, it is clearly no bad lens but :
- I don't really enjoy zooms
- chromatic aberrations are omnipresent when you shoot against light - easily correctbile on PS or Gimp, but I don't want to bother with too much post-treatment
- this is typically a landscape lens, and I enjoy hiking light : there is almost 1 pound difference between this one and my 20/2.8
If these are no problem to you, just go for it !
9 out of 10 points and recommended by ArunasM (6 reviews)Sharpness and contrast, construction quality, focal range, speedEdge sharpness wide open, no AF-S
This lens was purchased to complement a 17-55 or 28-70 Nikkor zoom for a D200. I am very happy with this lens overall, considering the price was about 1/2 of the Nikkor 12-24. Prior to purchasing this lens, I looked at many reviews and found that this lens could rival the Nikkor in terms of resolving power, especially in the centre, but suffered from higher CA. My experience is consistent with the reviews.reviewed January 15th, 2007 (purchased for $600)
The lens focusses quickly, and has excellent colour and contrast. I like the feel of both the zoom and manual focus controls, which have adequate drag (like many of the the F2.8 Nikkor zooms) for quick and precise control.
I have found that stopping down 1 to 1/2 stops is sufficient to achieve very good IQ from this lens. As others have noted, the lens will produce noticeable flare when shot with the sun within the frame, but otherwise does not suffer an overall contrast degradation uder such conditions (as does the Nikkor 70-200 2.8 AF-S).
I may consider upgrading to the Nikkor 12-24 AF-S in the future, but primary for its compatibility with the new Nikon D40 camera without the old AF lense motor, and only partially for differnces in IQ.
0 out of 10 points and recommended by wishbone (6 reviews)Sharp, good contrast, fast AF, great build!Slightly heavy, need a 77mm thin filter for protection
This is a digital only lens. The gold ring indicate it's a Tokina pro quality lens. Considering the price compared to the Nikon 12-24, this is a bargain. Having searched around for people's reviews of the Nikon, Tokina, Sigma, and Tamron ultra-wide zoom lens, I bought the Tokina because it fits my budget and does what I need it to do.reviewed January 5th, 2007
Pro: This is a very sharp lens across 12-24. Images have very good contrast and IQ right out of the camera and I have been very happy using it. During my last vacation, I used it extensively for landscape and group shots. Take care not to tilt it up or down or you will add more distortion. With a minimum focusing range of 0.30m, it lets you be very flexible and also let you take some very funny shots of people up close and wide. This is (I believe) a metal covering so it very sturdy and well built but somewhat heavy.
One thing to watch out for is not to shoot into bright lights or the sun. I always have my hood on and try to compose away from lights to avoid flaring.
Con: It is heavier than the d70 17-70 kit lens at weighing 570g. You will need the large 77mm thin filter. I use the Kenko version. Vignetting has not been a major problem
9 out of 10 points and recommended by Wolfini (10 reviews)Build, AF, IQ, RangeCA
Actually I wanted to buy a Sigma 10-20, but I was leaving for vacation and the Sigma was not yet available back then, so I got the Tokina und use it now on my Canon 30d. So far I feel no regrets whatsoever about this choice. Actually 12mm is very wide indeed, and I am glad to have 24mm with this lens, as this is a wide-normal focal length that IMHO is very useful.reviewed January 5th, 2007 (purchased for $650)
The build quality is great. Maybe I would wish for the lens to be a bit smaller and lighter, but it is still very compact und handles nicely.
In practical use I always was very happy with the pictures it produced, although you have to closely watch your exposure, to make sure to get best contrast - but I guess that is the nature of ultra-wideangle.
When I was doing some real test shots lately (straight wall etc.) I noticed for the first time, that at f4 and f5,6 the borders are noticeably softer than the center, but from f8 on sharpness is very nice all over the frame - and I guess you will use this at f8 and f11 mostly.
Although I have to say that I found another unexpected use for this lens, which is indoor night pictures. When only one lamp or two are lit you get very nice "isles of light" in a dark picture by using a wide angle, and the short focal length and f4,0 make the lens very handholdable for such a use.
Sharpness may be not quite as great as with eg my primes (24, 85, 200), but it is still very good, and eg much better than my 28-135 IS.
The only real optical flaw are quite strong CAs- but I can live with that.
So: Highly Recommended
8 out of 10 points and recommended by aalto (12 reviews)Build Quality, opticsCA, Clutch AF/MF (personal opinion)
I have been using this lens on a D70 for a good while now, and lets just say it right away, this lens is incredibly good considering the price. Ive used similar lenses from tamron, sigma and nikon and only the nikon lens is better than the Tokina, but considering costs, Tokina is the winner, since the Nikon is only slightly better and costs the double.reviewed December 21st, 2006 (purchased for $660)
My lens has survived a near crash in a bus, where it bounced from all the way from the back all the way to the bus driver along the floor, and it still works like a beauty. The build quality is very good and the use of the lens is very comfy because of this. The only thing i would put a finger on is the Clutch mechanism, since you have to use some force to switch the fokus mode, and using some force on an object that you are holding against your eye is not always that preferable. But this is a minor issue at best.
Considering optical quality, I havent taken a photo yet where i could honestly say that this lens wasn't up to the job, lousy photos? Yeah, lots of them, but they're my fault and no matter how much I would love to blame the gear, I still cant blame this lens for any of them.
There has been som issues with CA on extremely difficult conditions, but well within my acceptability limits. The CA is there, but unless you zoom in and look for it, youll never know. The CA is not an issue for prints unless you emphasize it with lousy post-processing.
Of all the lenses I own, this one is always with me, simply because it gets the job done.
8 out of 10 points and recommended by Picasso Moon (1 reviews)Overall Image Quality, Built Like a Tank, Focal LengthFlare, Purple Fringing
I use this lens on my D200 and it is my primary landscape lens. The 12-24 focal length is ideal on a DX body for capturing the great outdoors. The construction quality of the lens is outstanding. It feels much better in your hands than some lenses that cost much more.reviewed December 20th, 2006 (purchased for $500)
The lens is sharp a across the entire zoom range, when stopped down a bit. I find the color and contrast to be good also. The lens is used along with the Nikon 18-70mm kit lens and it works out quite well. The kit lens is not the best at the 18mm end which is OK because the Tokina can handle the 18-24 range quite well.
A few things to watch out for. First, take care when shooting into the sun and use the supplied hood. This lens will flare quite readily in contra light situations. Also, when wide open, the edges will get soft, especially at extremes of the zoom range along with purple fringing in high contrast scenes. Stopping down 1 or 2 stops will cure both the soft edges and greatly reduce the purple fringing. This works out very well for me since I very rarely shoot wide open with this lens.
Overall, I am very happy with the Tokina and would recommend it. You get outstanding build quality and very good image quality (see caveats)
at about 1/2 the price of the Nikon equivalent.
7 out of 10 points and recommended by kanabeans (5 reviews)AffordableNone
I bought this lens for my trip to Russia and it definately got some great captures inside the museums. I don't use it as much otherwise because I primarily do portraits but this lens is fun to play with and do creative shots and landscapes/architecture.reviewed December 17th, 2006 (purchased for $375)
8 out of 10 points and recommended by gadgetguy (62 reviews)ultrawide, great build, constant f/4APS-C only
Awesome feel and build and great resolution (compared to my Sigma 10-20). It also feels mcuh more 'pro'.reviewed December 13th, 2006
Can't think of any cons except that it won't work on a full frame camera and it zooms the 'wrong way' (counter-clockwise) comapred to my Canon zooms.
8 out of 10 points and recommended by deanzat (9 reviews)range, build quality, color and contrasthood approximately the size of a mini-cooper
This lens is a little more contrasty than most of my others, so it took some time to adjust my photoshop routines, but as I've learned how to use the lens and how to process the images, I've come to appreciate its capabilities.reviewed December 12th, 2006 (purchased for $500)
In combination with a Lightsphere-equipped SB800, this lens has served me well at crowded house parties. I'm still learning how to use wide-angles for best effect, but here are some images I've made with this lens:
7 out of 10 points and recommended by kirehe (9 reviews)Solid build. Relatively fast aperture. Pretty sharp.Heavy. No USM focus motor.
Maybe the sharpest of the ultra-wides for 1.6 crop DSLRs (at least according to Sweden's premiere photo magazine, Foto). The Canon 10-22 has better distortion though. I ended up getting rid of because it is so difficult to shoot with in my opinion. Extreme wide isn't for me, I don't master it.reviewed December 5th, 2006 (purchased for $450)
9 out of 10 points and recommended by bfischer (15 reviews)very sharp, good color & contrast, value for moneyno AF-S, little high CA, purple fringing, susceptible to flare
The 12-24 Tokina is a lens with much value for little money. I would prefer the Tokina over the 12-24 Nikkor, even if I could get the Nikkor for the same money. The Tokina has more sharpness and contrast than the Nikkor and it's distortion is less annoying. The Nikkor wins over the Tokina in backlit situations, where the Tokina has much more flare, CA and sometimes pruple fringing than the Nikkor.reviewed November 27th, 2006 (purchased for $590)
So it depends on your general shooting style whether you would prefer one or the other.
The 12-24 Tokina is already very sharp wide open with little fall-off and improves slightly up to f/8. It renders images with high contrast and vivid colors. Without distortion correction software it has a barrel distortion with a little waviness at 12mm and virtually no distortion at 24mm. The distortion at 12mm is much easier to correct than the distortion of the 12-24 Nikkor or the 10-20 Sigma.
The main problem of this lens may catch you in strongly backlit situations, where not only lateral CA but also longitudinal CA and PF may occur. If you can avoid these situations or don't mind the CA/PF, the Tokina is hard to fault.
Build quality is ok, the outer barrel is plastic and so is the filter thread. You will get dark corners with a slim B&W polarizer and 12mm, which are gone at 13mm.
Speaking of focal length: I doubt that the wide end is really 12mm. On my D200 it has the FOV much more like a 20mm and not a 18mm which you would expect on a 1.5-crop camera.
9 out of 10 points and recommended by boatdetective (11 reviews)build quality, pricefocus motor, optical short comings
This lens is a compromise- but a fine one at that. I appreciate the fine construction and smooth operation- it's not like other plasticy third party lenses. Yes, there is some distortion, but it's not objectionable. the range of 18-36mm is pretty darned useful- so i'm willing to sacrifice a little in order to get perfect framing. In the end, the reasonable price really seals the deal. I would recommend this lens highlyreviewed November 21st, 2006
9 out of 10 points and recommended by KPBara (1 reviews)Image Quality, Constant f/4, Build, PriceOnly 12 mm wide end
I chose Tokina over Sigma, Tamron, and Canon for the constant f/4 and price, and the superior image and build quality reported in numerous reviews. My only concerns were about weight/size, focus clutch, and wide-end coverage.reviewed November 20th, 2006 (purchased for $431)
In actual use, the Tokina indeed delivers excellent sharpness wide open from 10-18mm. From 20mm up, the lens is slightly soft but sharpens up by f/5.6.
This lens feels substantial, professional, well balanced, and not at all heavy. The smooth focus & zoom rings and superb finish is very satisfying. The lens assembly is completely enclosed in and moves independently of the outer barrel, which should mean better protection against the elements and accidental bumps.
Focus clutch allows switching to manual without taking your eye off the viewfiender. This can be the difference between making and missing the shot for many cameras that won't shoot unless focus is locked.
Finally, on my film camera the lens works down to 17mm without vignetting.
To me, the only drawback is the 12mm wide end, but the longer tele end may mean fewer lens changes.
7 out of 10 points and recommended by DoFJerk (7 reviews)Sharp at wide open, Low Distortion (distortionless at 24mm), Economictoo much CA, medium contrast
This lens is producing sharp image event at f/4. But at 24mm, distortionless, the stoping down is required to get sharp image as at 12-20mm.reviewed November 16th, 2006 (purchased for $430)
Nice color reproduction but a bit low contrast. This is good lens for photographer who need low-light shot. You can wide-open with low vignette.
Not recommend for shooting a high contrasty scence with having blowout area, because color fringe from CA with cannot be correct easily.
9 out of 10 points and recommended by cold_fire (5 reviews)Superb image quality, great build, works on 1.3 from 15mm, constant f4CAs, not USM
great for 1.6 bodies, works ok on 1.3 bodies. one of the best built lenses shorter than 300mm. it's the CAs that sometimes mar this lens, otherwise it's perfect.reviewed November 15th, 2006 (purchased for $500)
8 out of 10 points and recommended by Josstover (4 reviews)sharp, beautiful colors, build, very wide, pricedistortion (to be expected in tis range), moirÃÂ© on D70, some CA
Bought this lens after extensive reading of test and reviews. I don't regret it. The build quality is of a very high standard. The lens is very sharp and colors are bright indeedreviewed August 20th, 2006 (purchased for $450)
Distortion is a (minor) problem. It can be corrected in easily in PS. PT-lens is also very usable, since this program has a special correction item for this lens. Very handy. More of a nuissance is the moiré that sometimes occurs in very fine patterns (i.e. brick walls etc), but that maybe a camera fault, since the D70 is rather sensitive for moiré. Moiré is difficult to correct. Best take several shots from different angles if moiré danger exists.
There is also some CA, mostly in the edges of the picture. That can be corrected easily in PS too.
9 out of 10 points and recommended by RomanJohnston (1 reviews)Tank like build, Image quality for the price, Filters fit on front.....PRICE!!A bit more CA than the compitition
I shoot Nikon and usually buy Nikon lenses, but after testing this against the Nikon 12-24, I did not see any reason the spend the extra $500.00 Nikon was asking. Optical performance was darned close, With very mild CA and Flare showing in the Tokina Lens. CA is easily corrected in PP, andFlare only shows itself in very harsh conditions....(no problems with sunsets etc)reviewed March 18th, 2006 (purchased for $490)
The Nikon has a MUCH worse build quality on their 12-24.....the Tokina is built like a tank...and I shoot landscapes so this makes ALL the diffrence to me.
I would reccomend this wonderful lens to ANYONE.
Here are a few shots that will give you an idea of the lenses performance. Exif is below each shot.
If your looking for a great lens at a great price.....this is it.
8 out of 10 points and recommended by jlipkin (1 reviews)
I bought this lens to shoot with my 20d, and to replace the Canon 17-40 f/4 D lens I had been shooting with. I simply needed to go wider.reviewed October 20th, 2005 (purchased for $500)
I did moderately extensive testing, shooting in cloudy conditions at various apertures and focal lengths, comparing the two lenses. The purposes of this was simply to see if I would keep the Tokina or not. I don't remember exactly the restults of each and every comparison, but the Canon was clearly sharper. However, the Tokina did well enough, and I decided to keep it.
I've been shooting with it for a few months now, and am quite happy. The build is very good, the autofocusing is as fast as the Canon, though it's wider and I'm not sure how that factors in. It's about the same size and weight.
Noticed some slight CA in the lens, but not enough to bother me into going back to the Canon. Evenually, I'll try to purchase a 5D and go back to the Canon, but for now I'm very happy with the Tokina.
9 out of 10 points and recommended by killersnowman (10 reviews)sharp, wide, great build, relatively cheap, constant f/4, great hood, very little CAflares in bright light, but what UWA doesnt?
I am not one to go and test all my lenses by taking "test shots" of targets and seeing the lines per inch or any other meaning less statistic. on the other hand i do a more practical test: i use the lens the way i would on a daily basis.reviewed October 20th, 2005 (purchased for $450)
The first thing that i noticed on this lens is the amazing build quality; the finish is nice and smooth yet not plasticky and when you hold it in your hand you know that you are holding something serious. When i first started using it the zoom ring was a bit tight but has loosened to a comfortable level since then. the focus ring had no such problems.
The focusing is smooth in manual and fairly fast in auto; although it really doesnt have to be very fast because of its wide nature. one point of interest is that the length of the lens does not change when focusing or zooming, although the front element moves about 3mm back and forth when zooming.
The lens felt very comfortable on my 20d. the lens hood is a pettle type (its felt lined to boot!) and does a pretty good job except for when the sun, or a bright light source, is right on the edge of the frame.
The Pictures! the pictures taken with this lens are quite amazing. the constant f/4 aperature is extremely usable and i did not notice very much vignetting (even at f/4). The color and saturation are quite impressive although i ended up messing with the colors and saturation in PP to bring the most out of the lens. I did not notice anything good or bad about the contrast -- it just works, nothing to get excited about for the contrast.
1. Gift of Light
# Shutter Speed: 1/320 second
# F Number: F/10.0
# Focal Length: 24 mm
# ISO Speed: 100
2. Big Sky
# Shutter Speed: 1/80 second
# F Number: F/16.0
# Focal Length: 12 mm
# ISO Speed: 100
3. Castle Geyser
# Shutter Speed: 1/250 second
# F Number: F/14.0
# Focal Length: 12 mm
# ISO Speed: 100
# Shutter Speed: 13/10 second
# F Number: F/22.0
# Focal Length: 12 mm
# ISO Speed: 100
# Shutter Speed: 1/100 second
# F Number: F/10.0
# Focal Length: 24 mm
# ISO Speed: 100
note: all taken with a canon 20d
Opticaly very sharp
Felt lined hood
Ergonomics are great
Flares a bit in the sun
Hope this helps!
-Tyler Brigham [email]email@example.com[/email]