Tokina AT-X 16-28 F2.8 PRO FX lens
For most people the name Tokina does not ring a bell. For those in the world of photography that know the name they know that Tokina produces s high quality lens. While it may be argued that they are 3rd party and therefore are inferior, it has been proven that their lenses are by far the best deal on the market today. Quite simply their 12-24 and 11-16 have no rival for the price and quality you get.
Ken Rockwell states; in comparing the Tokina 12-24 against the Nikon 12-24:
“The Tokina is the easy choice among third party lenses. It’s the only one that feels solid and professional. It has the fastest focus, the fastest aperture and has the best handling of all third party lenses.
Get the Tokina if cost is an issue. If I didn’t already have the Nikon and didn’t have $1,000 then I’d buy this Tokina. The only way you’ll see any of the subtle optical superiority of the Nikon is if you’re one of those people who worry more about snapping test charts than making great images.
I prefer the Tokina because it’s the only $500 lens that feels durable and professional. It’s also faster in f/stop and focusing than any of the other third party lenses. The Tokina is the heaviest and feels great. You get your money’s worth. It feels like a well made solid lens and it is. It works well and handles well, too.”
In a nutshell, Tokina knows what they are doing. Yes you can spend the money and the Nikon or Canon lens that will cost you 2 – 4 times the price of the Tokina but let me ask you this, do you honestly think that you will notice the difference between the two?
Anyways, in July 2010Tokina released the AT-X 16-28 F2.8 PRO FX lens, featuring the newly developed SD-M (Silent Drive-Module). The lens constitutes of 15 elements in 13 groups and has nine diaphragm blades. The angle of view is 107.11° -76.87° and the minimum focusing distance is 0.28m. The overall length is 133.3mm, the diameter 90.0mm and the lens weighs 950 grams. The Tokina AT-X 16-28 F2.8 PRO FX is available for Canon and Nikon mounts.
This lens is one of the few lenses Tokina makes that is compatible with full frame cameras. Most of the newer Tokina lenses are design for smaller sensors and will not work with full frame cameras or 35mm cameras. They are obviously looking to get into a new market with this lens. Its biggest completion comes from the Nikon 16-35 f/4 and the Canon 16-35 f/2.8. While this lens is compatible with a crop sensor it would be equal to a 28-52mm lens. This actually does fit nicely in the lineup and should provide a decent wide angle lens. A few things the stand out right away is the lack of its ability to take filters. The Tokina features a petal hood that is built in much the same as the Nikon 14-24. This might not be an issue for some but I would prefer to be able to use filters.
A few key features of the lens are as follows:
NEW Silent DC Motor with GMR sensor
The 16-28 f/2.8 uses a newly developed silent DC motor that allows the lens to focus faster and more quietly then previous generations. The DC motor coupled with a new GMR magnetic AF sensor work together to increase AF Speed.
Ashperical and Super-low Dispersion glass elements
A new, 56mm in diameter, large sizes aspherical glass element is incorporated into the front lens group, while there are 2 more aspherical elements in the rear group. 3 SD super-low dispersion glass elements are also incorporated through-out the optical design to reduce chromatic aberration, give maximum resolution, more even brightness and distortion correction.
One-Touch Focus Clutch
Tokina’s exclusive One-touch Focus Clutch Mechanism allows the photographer to switch between AF and MF simply by snapping the focus ring forward for AF and back toward the camera to focus manually. There is no need to change the AF/MF switch on Nikon camera bodies and there is no second AF/MF switch on the lens for Canon, everything is accomplished by the focus ring.
• Focal length 16-28mm
• Maximum aperture F2.38
• Construction 12 elements in 13 groups
• Coating, multi layer
• Minimum focus distance .28 metres
• Angle of view 1.7011 – 76.87
• Reproduction ratio 1:5.26
• Focusing mode, internal focusing
• Zoom mode, rotary zoom
• Aperture blades .8
• Filter size, not applicable at present
• Lens width 90mm
• Lens length 133.3mm
• WEight 950g
Though the price tag is a little higher than some of the other Tokina lenses on the market is justified by its quality. The Tokina retails for $849 while the Nikon retails for $1100 and the Canon retails for $1500. It is one of the few lenses that is actually priced around the same as it’s competitors. One thing to point out is that the Nikon is F/4 while the Tokina is F/2.8. The Tokina actually has more light gather ability than the Nikon at $250 cheaper. In the end it is up to you to decide which way to go.