Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm Auto Focus Review

The Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm F4 (IF) DX is a part of an unique triumvirate of 3rd celebration wideangle zooms which were presented just as cost-effective APS-C structure DSLRs become popular items, along with the Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC HSM and Tamron SP AF 11-18mm F4.5-5.6 Di-II LD Aspherical (IF). It first became available in 2004, and has since obtained automobile as strong entertainer in its category. Tokina’s technological information for the lens are (typically for the company) somewhat rare, but expose an visual system of 13 components in 11 categories, which functions 2 aspherical components plus SD cup components to fight aberrations. One other excellent function is a one-touch concentrate clutch i465 black procedure, which allows the consumer to change from automatic to guide concentrate basically by taking the main concentrate band towards you.

Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm
Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm

Tokina lately modified this lens; most significantly, the new ‘II’ design contributes an auto-focus engine for Nikon customers (allowing AF on the D40 / D40X / D60 bodies), but also functions enhanced coverings to lessen surface, plus a identifying red red stripe on the name logo. However the underying visual and technological style continues to be the same, so Cannon customers will advantage only from the new coverings. Because these changes are relatively minimal, and accessibility of the ‘II’ edition is restricted, we have selected to use the very first edition for this evaluation.

Tokina clearly cooperates very carefully with Pentax (and its mother or father organization Hoya), and even a general look at the specific lens lineups reveals many styles in accordance. The Pentax smc DA 12-24mm F4 ED AL (IF) stocks many of its important research with the Tokina, and seems to use an basically identical visual style, although in a less heavy whole body developed much like mid-range zooms such as the 17-70mm F4. It therefore seems likely that the efficiency of these two 12-24mm contacts will be very identical.

Of course the Tokina’s significant aggressive drawback is its relatively restricted extensive end; many customers will select the Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 or Tamron 10-24mm F3.5-4.5 instead, centered basically on area of perspective concerns. Tokina lately resolved this (at least partially) with a new 11-16mm F2.8, but this offers plus the 12-24mm at a more expensive (and unfortunately is not yet available to us for review). With this stress from all ends, does the 12-24mm F4 have anything remaining on provide to entice the critical photographer?

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Headline Features

  • Ultra-wideangle 18-36mm comparative central duration range
  • F4 continuous highest possible aperture
  • Available for Cannon and Nikon mounts
  • Designed for APS-C/DX structure DSLRs only

Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm Body And Design

From the moment you pick up the 12-24mm F4, its reassuringly heavy design gives an effect of high quality. Tokina has a popularity for excellent build, and this lens well and truly lives up to it; fit and complete is top of its class, and the manages are sleek smooth operating. The cruising and concentrating systems are fully inner to the lens gun barrel, and this lack of exterior motions further supports the sense of stability.

Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm Body
Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm Body

Special discuss has to make of the concentrate clutch system i465 black, which is one of the better implementations of this idea. Simply pull the concentrate band towards you to change to guide concentrate, and back again to return to autofocus; the clutch system involves efficiently each time. Sometimes, however, it does result in a small change in the concentrate position, so isn’t completely efficient if you like to set concentrate using AF, then secure it by changing to guide.

Lens whole body elements

  • The lens comes in editions for Cannon and Nikon DSLRs. Our example was the very first Nikon F install edition, with ‘screw-drive’ auto-focus combining. Five and a half changes are required to generate the lens from infinity to nearest concentrate.
  • The filter line is 77mm. It does not move on autofocusing, which should please filter users. A observe of caution though;  Click here for an example of this vignetting (upper left one fourth of the structure, 12mm F8, standard-type Hoya polariser).
  • The large petal-type BH-777 bayonet-mount bonnet emerged as conventional, and suits favorably onto the front of the lens. It’s made of dense dark nasty, and has dark experienced to reduce insights of wander light into the lens. A white dot on the outside helps positioning for increasing.
  • The broadly-flared design does however mean the bonnet will take up more than its reasonable proportion of space in your bag. It’s no less than 10.3cm / 4.1″ across.
  • The zoom capability band is a little bit filter at 14mm, but the action is extremely sleek and precise. It moves 60 levels clockwise from 12-24mm; the ‘right’ way for Nikon owners, but reverse to Cannon contacts. Cruising is fully inner, so the lens remains the same duration at all central measures.
  • The feel of the main concentrate band is again excellent, smooth sleek and highly precise, enabling continually precise guide concentrate.
  • Manual concentrate is involved by taking the main concentrate band towards the digicam whole body. A nice function of this procedure is that the main concentrate band does not move during auto-focus. This means that using the digital camera’s AF to concentrate, then changing to guide to secure, doesn’t invariably work completely.


Sharpness answers are very good indeed, especially for an ultrawide zoom capability. The lens is usually very distinct start up, enhancing a little bit on avoiding down, with F5.6 – F8 the the best possible apertures. The only problem is at 24mm, where sharpness is affected at F4 and F5.6; in our assessments this seems to be to be due at least partly to a decentering of the zoom capability team as it gets to the end of its journey. Excessive sides are a little smooth at the largest main measures, but this is unlikely to be challenging in real-world use. As always on APS-C, apertures more compact than F16 are best prevented.

Chromatic Aberration

The lens reveals blue/yellow fringing towards the middle, which changes to green/magenta towards the sides. Stopping down gradually cuts down on main blue/yellow element, but at the same time improves the red/cyan element. Edge size is biggest at wideangle, and decreases gradually at more time main measures. The complexness of this actions makes it difficult to fix completely in application if needed.


We consider falloff to start becoming obvious when the area lighting drops to more than 1 quit below the middle. The 12-24mm reveals only moderate falloff (1.3 stops) at 12mm F4, which vanishes on avoiding down to F5.6. Nothing to bother with here.


It cuts down on gradually at more time main measures, and is very fairly neutral at 18mm before moving to minor pincushion at 24mm (-0.3%). In exercise, distortions is likely to be creatively imperceptible from 15mm to 24mm.

Macro images

If there’s one thing the Tokina 12-24mm isn’t very good at, it’s closeup photos. Highest possible zoom is 0.13x, acquired at a lowest concentrate range of 30cm, which translates to a working range of 16cm from the topic to the top side of the lens. Sharpness is inadequate start up, with important conditioning due to halation (not that uncommon with inner concentrate zooms). Distortions is low, but there’s quite powerful blue/yellow chromatic aberration.

FX (Full Frame) Coverage

Both the Nikon and Cannon install editions of this lens will install on full-frame DSLRs; on Nikon cameras (D3, D3X, D700) The lens’s picture group obviously doesn’t completely cover the Negatives complete structure structure at wideangle, but as is common for this type of lens, the vignetting gradually decreases on cruising in, and protection is complete at central measures of 18mm and longer (essentially providing the same largest position of view on complete structure as on DX). We’re not going to officially test a DX lens on full-frame, but opinions are that the lens would be completely useful as an 18-24mm in desperate situations or for non-critical programs.

Color balance

Third party contacts have obtained something of a good name for less-than-neutral colour stability, so in this analyze we measure any colour throw created by the lens as opposed to digicam manufacturer’s 50mm lens (generally considered a good standard for neutrality). We’ve seen little proof in our previous reviews of Sigma and Tamron contacts to support this popularity, but the 12-24mm is the first Tokina we have looked at.

Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm
Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm

In this analyze, you is indicated towards an equally lighted white-colored wall, and light coming into the lens completely diffused using an ‘Expodisc’ white-colored stability filter. The Tokina 12-24mm F4 gave basically no colour throw as opposed to reference lens.


Control of surface is a crucial feature of a superwide lens; with such an extensive view of the world, shiny mild resources will discover themselves in the structure on a consistent basis. However it’s reasonable to say that this isn’t the Tokina’s most powerful suit, and on a shiny warm day surface styles can locate their way into your pictures. in the second picture surface areas are noticeable in both sides.

Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm Flare
Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm Flare

Chromatic aberration

The other weak point of the Tokina 12-24mm F4 can be found in its horizontal chromatic aberration features. Fringing is quite powerful at 12mm, and most problematically is of the creatively invasive green/magenta wide range in the sides of the structure (where it’s normally most pronounced). To substance the problem, though, it differs in color across the structure, and in a way which changes with aperture. The examples below demonstrate this; at F4 the fringing is green/magenta in the area, but blue/yellow further into the structure. Quit down to F8 and the area fringing becomes creatively more extreme due to an surge in the red component; this also outcomes in some new edge color to green/magenta in the second plants.

Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm Chromatic aberration
Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm Chromatic aberration

Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm Specifications

Street price • US: $490 ($580 for ‘II’ version)
• UK: £440 (£450 for ‘II’ version)
Date introduced 2004
Maximum format size APS-C/DX
Focal length 12-24mm
35mm equivalent focal length
• 18-36mm (1.5x DX)
• 19-38mm (1.6x APS-C)
Diagonal Angle of view (APS-C) 99º – 61º
Maximum aperture F4
Minimum aperture F22
Lens Construction • 13 elements/11 groups
• SD glass elements
•2 sharp-cut aspherical elements
Number of diaphragm blades 9
Minimum focus 0.30m
Maximum magnification 0.13x
AF motor type Micro Motor (Canon mount versions and Nikon mount ‘II’ version)
Focus method Internal
Image stabilization None
Filter thread • 77mm
• Does not rotate on focus
Supplied accessories* • Front and rear caps
• Lens Hood BH-777
Optional accessories Fitted case
Weight 570 g (20.1 oz)
Dimensions 84 mm diameter x 89.5 mm length
(3.3 x 3.5 in)
Lens Mount Canon EF, Nikon F