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View Full Version : Tokina 12-24 f/4 vs. nikkor 14-24 f/2.8 (UGGH)




Shacklebolt
Feb 27, 2008, 04:50 AM
Tokina

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00099C2M6/kenrockwellcom

Nikkor

http://www.amazon.com/Nikon-14-24mm-2-8G-Nikkor-Angle/dp/B000VDCTCI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1204109236&sr=1-1

The last piece I feel I need, for the moment, is a good wide-angle lens. Man, though: At an over 1k price difference, the Tokina is... extremely tempting. Extremely. Can anyone justify the price difference between the two, or even the 2x price difference between the Nikkon 12-24 f/4 and the Tokina? I mean, the first I can understand the price discrepancy (just not the degree) but the latter I'm baffled.



Abstract
Feb 27, 2008, 05:04 AM
No, I can't justify the difference.

Get the Tokina 12-24 mm f/4 or Sigma 10-20 mm. The difference between 12 and 14 mm is huge, and the difference between 10 and 12 is even bigger. You're paying a lot of money because that lens is designed for full frame cameras, but if you have a full frame camera, you would probably just buy a lens that goes to 18 mm or something, which is as wide as the 12 mm Tokina on any Nikon other than a D3.

juanm
Feb 27, 2008, 05:07 AM
There's quite a difference between 12mm and 14mm, so for DX, the 14-24 would be a very bad choice, unless you plan to go FX in the next two years. The Nikon 12-24 (I have one) is just very nice. Is it worth the price difference? I guess not, unless like me, you only like Nikkors.

OreoCookie
Feb 27, 2008, 05:27 AM
Get the Tokina, it has received very good reviews and is usually regarded as the wide-angle zoom with the best price-performance by far.

The 14-24 zoom -- while it's the best wide-angle zoom out there -- is much heavier, much more expensive and starts to really shine on an FX body.

Bottom line: save yourself a lot of money and get the Tokina.

miloblithe
Feb 27, 2008, 06:14 AM
Well, obviously the huge price difference is full-frame vrs crop frame and f/2.8 vrs f/4. Those are the two factors that make the lens expensive, so the justification is that the extra stop is essential (unlikely on wide angle) or that you plan on getting a D3 or a less expensive full-frame Nikon when Nikon starts making one. If not, then you should be comparing the Tokina with the f/4 DX Nikon lens.

onomatopoeia
Feb 27, 2008, 09:17 AM
Don't forget about the Nikon 12-24mm f/4 (http://www.amazon.com/Nikon-12-24mm-Autofocus-Nikkor-Zoom/dp/B000092M1T/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1204125184&sr=1-6).

Love him or hate him Ken Rockwell offers a pretty decent comparison of popular ultra wide lenses. (http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/digital-wide-zooms/comparison.htm) The Tokina performs quite well but for my money I would go with the Nikon 12-24.

I have the Sigma 10-20 which didn't fare well in the comparison. It's a fun lens because it goes so wide but image quality can be iffy in the details.

mrsollars
Feb 27, 2008, 09:26 AM
12-24 nikon if you can swing it......if not, the tokina is a fantastic substitute.
matt

Westside guy
Feb 27, 2008, 01:26 PM
I like my Tokina 12-24.

For what most people want to shoot w/ a wide-angle lens, I don't know that the max aperture matters much - certainly for landscapes you're probably going to shoot at the hyperfocal distance at f/8 or f/11 anyway.

ksz
Feb 27, 2008, 01:36 PM
I have the Tokina 12-24 f/4 as well and I've been using it more frequently than I expected because of the wonderful image quality it renders on my D200. For my (prosumer) needs I really cannot justify paying more for greatly diminishing returns.

Digital Skunk
Feb 27, 2008, 01:45 PM
If you have enough dough for the FX 14-24 f2.8 lens, then go for the Nikkor 12-24 f4. At $1700 the FX glass is worth it, but not comparable to the DX lens because it is far superior for FX bodies. You can use it on a DX body but why spend the cash if you're not going FX in a few years?

Go for the Nikkor. Now if you can't get the Nikkor at $1100 or so, then go for the just as good Tokina. The only difference you will find is the build construction IMHO.

the Helix
Feb 27, 2008, 02:05 PM
This is why the Nikon 14-24mm f2.8 costs the money that it does:

http://www.16-9.net/lens_tests/nikon_14_24mm_1/nikon14_24mm_a.html

pdxflint
Feb 27, 2008, 02:20 PM
One not-so-minor difference between the Nikkor 12-24 f/4 and the Tokina 12-24 f/4 lenses is the way they're driven. Last time I checked (admittedly, over a year ago..) the Tokina did not have a built-in AF motor and required the screw drive AF motor built-in to the Nikon body. The Nikkor has a AF motor in the lens. So, it depends on your body, and what matters to you. I've seen the screw drive slots in lenses wear out on some Nikkor lenses with heavy use and frequent lens changing. Just something to think about.

I agree, it doesn't make sense to compare the Tokina 12-24 to the Nikkor 14-24 f/2.8 FX lens.

Digital Skunk
Feb 27, 2008, 02:25 PM
One not-so-minor difference between the Nikkor 12-24 f/4 and the Tokina 12-24 f/4 lenses is the way they're driven. Last time I checked (admittedly, over a year ago..) the Tokina did not have a built-in AF motor and required the screw drive AF motor built-in to the Nikon body. The Nikkor has a AF motor in the lens. So, it depends on your body, and what matters to you. I've seen the screw drive slots in lenses wear out on some Nikkor lenses with heavy use and frequent lens changing. Just something to think about.

I agree, it doesn't make sense to compare the Tokina 12-24 to the Nikkor 14-24 f/2.8 FX lens.

The Tokina is AF-S. There are some lenses out there that aren't and salespersons will try to sell them to you and will be unaware that they aren't motor driven. The Tamron 17-50 f2.8 is a good example. It's optical quality is on par with the Nikkors in some respects, but once you take into account the build quality, and lack of a motor drive it's not worth the cash.

Personally, I was looking at the Tokina 16-50 f2.8 and 12-24 f4 and both are motor driven.

cube
Feb 27, 2008, 02:53 PM
Just get the Sigma 12-24 and a used Kodak 14n, 14nx, or SLR/n to go with it.

Shacklebolt
Feb 27, 2008, 03:31 PM
Just get the Sigma 12-24 and a used Kodak 14n, 14nx, or SLR/n to go with it.

Don't see that logic behind that one. I'm perfectly satisfied with Nikon, other than the fact that they don't make a full frame prosumer camera, but that'll happen soon enough.

notjustjay
Feb 27, 2008, 03:50 PM
Does lens speed factor into any of your decisions? The Nikkor is f/2.8 versus the Tokina's f/4. Wouldn't be worth it to me... what about you guys?

pdxflint
Feb 27, 2008, 04:44 PM
The Tokina is AF-S. There are some lenses out there that aren't and salespersons will try to sell them to you and will be unaware that they aren't motor driven. The Tamron 17-50 f2.8 is a good example. It's optical quality is on par with the Nikkors in some respects, but once you take into account the build quality, and lack of a motor drive it's not worth the cash.

Personally, I was looking at the Tokina 16-50 f2.8 and 12-24 f4 and both are motor driven.

Well, if that's true, I now stand corrected on the Tokina AF drive system. Somewhere during my comparing of the Wide angle zoom lenses a year or so ago I came under the impression that the Tokina 12-24 f/4 (for Nikon mount) was not a built-in motor lens, but it was built-in for the Canon mount version. This is what made the lens drop down in my list of desirablility at the time. I suppose I should read a little more closely... :)

Update: I just checked a couple of places to see where I might have gotten the impression the Tokina did not have a built-in AF motor (AF-S,) and still come up with the same information...

http://www.nikonians.org/nikon/nikkor-12-24mm/super-wide_shootout_5.html

http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/digital-wide-zooms/comparison.htm

There are a few postings I've found on some forums by folks who either own, or have used the Tokina 12-24 f/4, and one guy says it's got a "silent wave" motor, so the info is a bit contradictory...

Perhaps someone out there can clear this up.

Digital Skunk
Feb 27, 2008, 05:04 PM
Just get the Sigma 12-24 and a used Kodak 14n, 14nx, or SLR/n to go with it.

I wouldn't recommend that setup to anyone. The Kodak is a dinosaur and about as large as one. And for an FX camera it had the worst noise imaginable, even at ISO 400 where every camera, even point and shoots shine. The sigma version of that lens is terrible from what I have seen in the image comparison tests.

Does lens speed factor into any of your decisions? The Nikkor is f/2.8 versus the Tokina's f/4. Wouldn't be worth it to me... what about you guys?

Lens speed does factor into my decision, but so does price, the other equipment I need for my system, and where I am going in the next few years. The Nikon 14-24 f2.8 is a killer piece of glass, but at $1600 and with my DX system it's overkill, and too expensive. If I had the cash, and planned on going FX in the future then I'd go for it in anticipation of a larger sensor, but right now DX will be my mistress, and for the price of that lens I can get the 17-55 DX Nikkor and another SB800 or other gear that I may need.

I would love it if Nikon made a 12-24 f2.8, they don't. Tokina has announced an 11-18 f2.8 so that will hold me off from buying the 12-24 unless I really needed it.

Well, if that's true, I now stand corrected on the Tokina AF drive system. Somewhere during my comparing of the Wide angle zoom lenses a year or so ago I came under the impression that the Tokina 12-24 f/4 (for Nikon mount) was not a built-in motor lens, but it was built-in for the Canon mount version. This is what made the lens drop down in my list of desirablility at the time. I suppose I should read a little more closely... :)

It might have lacked the AF-S drive back then. Tokina and Tamron are pushing to get motors in all of their glass since the introduction of the consumers bodies with no motor. Canon did away with internal motors a long time ago, so their glass has to come with an internal motor, but Nikon held on (for good reason) until just recently with the D40.

But I was eyeballing three pieces of Tokina glass, and the three things that I care about when going 3rd party lenses is build quality, image quality, and AF-S for autofocus speed and quietness.

compuwar
Feb 28, 2008, 07:19 AM
The last piece I feel I need, for the moment, is a good wide-angle lens.

The thing you have to ask yourself is "How wide is wide enough?" or "What ranges would I shoot?" While they're difficult to answer, they'll make lens focal length choices easier.

Many subjects don't lend themselves well to ultra-wide, where you get to experience that whole "Tiny subject in the distance" feeling all over again when the image doesn't match what you thought you saw in the viewfinder.

If you want ultra-wide, the Sigma 10-20mm is the best F-mount alternative. You may want to get Bibble or some other correction program for things shot from 10-12mm, though the distortion isn't horrendous for the field of view, straightening it up well just makes the images all that much better if you shoot at the wide end. At the long end, it'll be good to go no matter what.

In terms of 12-24mm, the Tokina gets great reviews, the Nikkor 12-24mm gets slightly better reviews, but at a significant price premium.

None of these are fast glass, so if you're looking for very shallow DoF, or to shoot higher shutter speeds early in the morning or late at night, you're going to have to go to an f/2.8 option like the 14-24 (which is wide, but not ultra-wide on APS-C.)

I actually find that my 20-35mm AF-D lens is wide enough for lots of landscape and cityscape shots, and when it isn't, the extra reach of the 10-20mm Sigma fits the bill quite well (normally when I'm sidewalk-close to a building but need more angle of view.)

The other thing to consider is pano stitching if you're just looking at landscapes- that may ultimately give you better results depending on what you're wanting to shoot wide.

cube
Feb 28, 2008, 11:40 AM
I wouldn't recommend that setup to anyone. The Kodak is a dinosaur and about as large as one. And for an FX camera it had the worst noise imaginable, even at ISO 400 where every camera, even point and shoots shine. The sigma version of that lens is terrible from what I have seen in the image comparison tests.


I happen to have a Kodak 14n (which is the one that has the most problems) and a Sigma 12-24 and it works quite well. Obviously it's not a low light camera.
The camera is quite compact. Nothing like a D3 that I wouldn't really want because of the size, even if it were cheap.

If you only read what it's written about it, you'll never get it. But if you are aware of the limitations and actually try it, you might love it (like the lack of AA filter might bite you for some subjects, but on the other hand you have a definition that would only be attainable with over 20MP with AA).

Digital Skunk
Feb 28, 2008, 02:04 PM
I happen to have a Kodak 14n (which is the one that has the most problems) and a Sigma 12-24 and it works quite well. Obviously it's not a low light camera.
The camera is quite compact. Nothing like a D3 that I wouldn't really want because of the size, even if it were cheap.

If you only read what it's written about it, you'll never get it. But if you are aware of the limitations and actually try it, you might love it (like the lack of AA filter might bite you for some subjects, but on the other hand you have a definition that would only be attainable with over 20MP with AA).

I understand. I hope that I didn't sound harsh in my past comment. The 14n, yes it was the one with the most problems, was and kinda still is the highest resolution Nikon FX camera ever.... but the only issue I have really seen with it is the noise at ISO 400. The speed of the camera for the time and the build of the frame (based on the N80) where also and issue for me.

My biggest point in the last post was just that the body is so old and technology has gotten so much better that the advantages of the body aren't really evident, at least for a guy like me who hasn't used it, only seen images from it.

As for the Sigma, I was also going on 3rd hand accounts, reading that review site that was posted in an earlier comment. I was really surprised about how soft the Sigma appeared. But me experience with Sigma has been a good one, they usually make a hit or miss lens. If it's soft and focuses funny it's a dud, get it replaced and the replacement should work fine. So those guys must have gotten a dud.