LensTip.com

Lens review

Tokina AT-X PRO FX SD 24-70 mm f/2.8 (IF)

8 April 2016
Arkadiusz Olech

11. Summary

Pros:
  • solid casing,
  • excellent image quality in the frame centre, no matter what focal length you employ,
  • very good image quality on the edge of the APS-C/DX sensor,
  • Acceptable image quality on the edge of full frame,
  • lack of problems with lateral chromatic aberration at the longer end of focal range,
  • negligible distortion on the smaller sensor,
  • good coma correction on the APS-C/DX,
  • imperceptible vignetting on the APS-C/DX sensor.

Cons:

  • bad technical solution of the AF/MF ring,
  • dreadful performance against bright light,
  • longitudinal chromatic aberration level could have been lower,
  • huge moustache distortion at the widest angle of view,
  • noticeable astigmatism at the longer end of the focal range,
  • slow autofocus.
I admit my feelings are mixed. On the one hand the Tokina fared exceedingly well when it comes to many optical aspects, being able to compete on equal terms with the best brand name devices. If I needed to choose a 24-70 mm lens and my budget was fairly limited, I would pick the Tokina among all independent producers, not the Tamron or the Sigma.

Unfortunately the situation is not completely rosy because the Tokina had some painful slip-ups. I don’t speak here about noticeable astigmatism at longer focal lengths, a tad too high chromatic aberration in some places or moustache distortion at the wide angle. All those things can be forgiven, taking into account very good resolution results. Still there are two serious fails which we cannot forgive. A high quality lens cannot generate flares which overexpose the whole shot, especially if the sun is situated far from the frame. The problem is especially painful as the Tokina instruments have shown such flaws before and, it is clear, the producer haven’t eradicated it and haven’t drawn the right conclusions.


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The autofocus is the second problem. Journalistic parameters obligate you to keep the quality pretty high. If a producer decides to limit the working range of the manual focus ring to a record low value of 50 degrees we expect the focus will be set with lightning speed in the automatic mode. It is clearly not the case. Apart from that the AF motor is not noiseless and it’s already become a standard in the case of mechanisms featured by the rival lenses…