Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?

Started Jul 23, 2013 | Discussions
Smiller4128
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Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
Jul 23, 2013

Trying to decide on which wide angle lens is better? I have a 16-85mm right now that I absolutely love. But was looking for a wider angle lens for landscapes, architectural shots,and to take to the aquarium with me. Which would be the better choice in your opinion?

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Wade Tregaskis
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Smiller4128, Jul 24, 2013

DxOmark recently reviewed the new 11-16.  They gave it a noticeably higher overall score than the Nikon 10-24, but when you actually look at their measurements, it's really hard to figure out why.  They seem to be paying a lot of deference to the Tokina's f2.8 max aperture, which is about all it has going for it - the Nikon is sharper (and much more uniformly-so across the frame, which is usually crucial for super-wide-angle lenses), has less chromatic aberration, etc.  In other reviews (DxO don't test for it) the Nikon has also held up better against flare and similar, whereas the Tokina family of super-wide-angles have a long history of doing poorly in that regard.

That said, I know a few people who have Tokina's previous model 11-16/2.8, and they unanimously love it.  One of them was very adamant, after trying the Nikon 10-24, that the Tokina worked way better for low-light photography if only because autofocus worked much better (not surprisingly, given the significant difference in maximum aperture).

I have the 10-24 myself and I'm happy with it for what it is.  The image quality is nowhere near your typical 35, 50 or 85 primes, and at the 18-24 end is at best only comparable to your kit 18-55 or 18-105.  But it works well enough.  And if you use DxO Optics Pro you can pull an incredible amount of extra detail out of your images, in a lot of cases.  It's the only lens for which I've seriously considered buying DxO Optics Pro - I'd even go so far as to say that if you're using the 10-24 for anything more than the occasional novelty, you really must buy DxO Optics Pro, otherwise you're getting terrible value from the lens.

I have not yet tried the Tokina with DxO Optics Pro, but I'm very curious if it likewise sees huge benefits.

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Hisma
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Smiller4128, Jul 24, 2013

Smiller4128 wrote:

Trying to decide on which wide angle lens is better? I have a 16-85mm right now that I absolutely love. But was looking for a wider angle lens for landscapes, architectural shots,and to take to the aquarium with me. Which would be the better choice in your opinion?

what camera do you have? If you have a d7x00 with a built-in focus motor, you could get the older tokina 11-16mm for around $550, which is an excellent deal for a WA of that quality, in my opinion, especially if you plan to use it for indoor shots (there is a lot of complaints about the flare, which seems to be the most universally negative issue with this lens).

I have a d7100 and the older 11-16mm. I have been pleased with the results I will leave the disclaimer that I am a newb (since it probably shows in my photos), but I took some real estate shots inside my house recently, so I could list my property on a real estate web site.

Both I and the real estate agent were pleased with the results, given my level of experience. I used f/5.6, a tripod and shot between 11 and 14mm.

14mm?

11mm

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Hisma
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Hisma, Jul 24, 2013

ok, according to the exif data, the kitchen shot was at 16mm.  I pulled these shots from the web so I couldn't remember what I shot them at, lol

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petermoons
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Smiller4128, Jul 24, 2013

i've got the tokina (first version). bought it four years ago. quality piece. suits my needs just fine. if i'd have to buy one today ... i'd be tempted by the siggy 8-16.

peter

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Smiller4128
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Hisma, Jul 24, 2013

Those shots look incredible! And I have the D7100 as well. As I was trying to look on ebay for a good price for the Nikon 10-24mm but it's still rather expensive and that might just sway my decision towards the Tokina. If I do go for the older version though, I'm curious what upgrades there are to the newer lens and if it's worth taking a look at the newer one or sticking with the older version?

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Hisma
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Smiller4128, Jul 24, 2013

Smiller4128 wrote:

Those shots look incredible! And I have the D7100 as well. As I was trying to look on ebay for a good price for the Nikon 10-24mm but it's still rather expensive and that might just sway my decision towards the Tokina. If I do go for the older version though, I'm curious what upgrades there are to the newer lens and if it's worth taking a look at the newer one or sticking with the older version?

the new one has a focus motor, and apparently slightly upgraded lens coatings that reduce flare. Though from what I've read, they are optically equivalent and the differences are negligible, as both the new and old lens are prone to flare.

Here's a recent thread where this was debated -

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3517476

Some say spend the extra money on the new one, some say the old is just fine.  Some say to buy the sigma instead.  I really think you can't go wrong with either of the three.  Just don't shoot straight into the sun.

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Stacey_K
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Smiller4128, Jul 24, 2013

I did a lot of research on multiple web sites and decided on the 11-16 Tokina. Almost every review shows one stop from wide open it has great performance across the frame. Even wide open the corners are decent at every focal length, one stop down it's good everywhere. My limited testing so far shows they are right. Plus for a F2.8 lens it's compact and fairly lightweight. Lens rentals did note some people have had problems with inaccurate AF (and some errors?) using the 1st gen on a D7000 so I bought the second gen/focus motor model.

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Sammy Yousef
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Sigma 8-16 is great
In reply to petermoons, Jul 24, 2013

petermoons wrote:

i've got the tokina (first version). bought it four years ago. quality piece. suits my needs just fine. if i'd have to buy one today ... i'd be tempted by the siggy 8-16.

I got the Sigma 8-16 at a very good price second hand from someone with a reliable feedback score and history on Ebay. It's a FANTASTIC lens. I can't tell you how much I love shooting with it....and because it's so wide you can shoot at slower shutter speeds without feeling bad about the lack of VR. I've gotten usuable results at 1/4 second and good results at about 1/8.

That said there are 2 stipulations.

1) It is not an all in one "walk around" lens. Even at 16mm, it's not really well suited to portaits unless we're talking caricatures. It is best suited to being a dedicated ultrawide.

2) No filters and bulbous front element is annoying, particularly if you're use to keeping a filter on your front elements to prevent damage. I'd love to be able to use a CPL with the lens but the truth is I don't do that very much anyway. (There are DIY solutions involving Cokin filters and even dedicated filter holders, but they're clunky and expensive - I have better things to spend my photo dollars on)

Since I have other lenses, and I was looking for an ultrawide, I'm very glad I went this route.

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Mickslick
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Smiller4128, Jul 25, 2013

I have the Sigma 10-20 F4 EX lens and offered to sell it to my sister since I was intrigued with replacing it with the Tokina 11-16 F2.8 DXII.  Research indicated that the Tokina might be overall a bit sharper, especially in the corners.  So I ordered one.  Today I tested both on my D7100 at F9, F11 and F14 at 11mm and 16mm.  I developed in RAW and compared.  Note, I'm mostly a Landscaper so wasn't too concerned about the lower apertures.

To my surprise the Tokina did not trump the Sigma.  In general, the Sigma was better at F11 and F14 and a touch less sharp than the Tokina at F9.  The corners were very close in all comparisons, the Tokina might have been barely better at F9 and almost the same at F11 and F14.  The Tokina did display a richer / deeper contrast, but with slight adjustments in lightroom the Sigma images could come very close to the same "richness" the Tokina displayed out of the gate.

Bottom line I was a bit surprised that the Sigma was really just as good overall in fact besting the Tokina in some areas and losing only by the slightest of margins in others.  I did not test flaring, however, Tokina is routinely known for more propensity to flare than the Sigma 10-20.  I know this Tokina flare, I have the excellent full frame Tokina 16-28 pro for my D800, it is fantastic in every respect, except flare, if you get it anywhere near direct sun, watch out.

So I had to call my sister and break the news, the Sigma 10-20 wasn't going anywhere and I was returning the Tokina.  To me it's a no brainer, not only did the Sigma essentially match and even exceed the Tokina in most areas, it's 10-20 range gives me more room and less lens changing when I overlap and probably is better with lens flare. lare.  Plus I wont be out the difference of selling and buying.  Right now, apples to apples the Sigma is $429 with a $50 rebate through Sept. 25th, and the Tokina is running around $600.

Good Luck

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io_bg
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Wade Tregaskis, Jul 25, 2013

Wade Tregaskis wrote:

the Nikon is sharper and much more uniformly-so across the frame,

Oh yeah? Let's take a look here:

10-24mm review

11-16mm review

I hope they test the latter on a D7000 as well although I doubt there'll be a significant difference from the 50D review.

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Nexu1
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Smiller4128, Jul 25, 2013

I did some comparing of the Nikon 10-24 with the new Tokina 12-28 and posted example photos here:  http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3511791

I found the Nikon to struggle mightily in the 18-24 range, so much so that my kit 18-55 usually beat it.  For that reason, I didn't buy it even though I had my heart set on buying it.  Instead I picked up a the new Tokina 12-28 and to my delight not only did it perform well at 12-16mm it actually outperformed the kit lens at 18+.  Which is important to me because I'm trying to carry less gear and this lens allows me to leave the kit at home.

I posted some 28mm and flare results here:  http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3518991

Even though I had bad luck with the Nikon 10-24, it gets such universal praise that I'd still recommend it and chalk my experience up to either a bad example or a lens that didn't mate well with my body.

In general, for the wide angles, I think the choice comes down to a few things:

1.  Do you want a bigger focal length range.  If so, the Sig 10-20, Nikon 10-24, Tokina 12-28 are all good choices, with the new Tokina have the biggest range.

2.  Do you want a more prime like wide angle?  The 11-16 is the most prime like and will give you close to prime like results (and feel like a prime with it's limited range).  It also has that big aperture that makes it easier to use for shots of the milky way (if you ever get into that).

3.  Flare... as much landscape as I shoot, and even though the 12-28 seems to perform quite well against flare, I find most of the flare talk overrated.  Shooting directly at the sun is unappealing to me, IMO, for most photos/situations.  One of the best landscape shooters on these forums, Roman Johnson, used the Tokina 12-24 for years and that lens has the worst flare performance of them all, yet his landscape shots are fabulous.

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Smiller4128
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What about the Tokina 12-24mm or the sigma 10-20mm?
In reply to Smiller4128, Jul 25, 2013

I keep seeing recommendations for these lenses as well.

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Wade Tregaskis
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Stacey_K, Jul 25, 2013

I did a lot of research on multiple web sites and decided on the 11-16 Tokina. Almost every review shows one stop from wide open it has great performance across the frame. Even wide open the corners are decent at every focal length, one stop down it's good everywhere. My limited testing so far shows they are right.

This is at odds with DxOmark's measurements.  According to them it's extremely non-uniform w.r.t. sharpness, with the corners and sides being noticeably soft until you get to at least f/5.6 (at 11mm).  It only ever beats the Nikon in the very very centre, regardless of focal length or aperture, and even then by only a tiny amount at best.

Not to say that DxOmark is the unequivocal authority, but they do actually test multiple copies of all the lenses they evaluate, objectively, with a reproducible test environment.  I'm inclined to take their word on these things vs internet anecdotes.

Which makes me think that despite the Tokina being really soft in the corners, people that use and love it just don't care.  So perhaps it doesn't matter.  But I'm curious about how they're using it, that this non-uniform sharpness isn't a problem.  I use my 10-24 for landscapes, for example, where soft corners are really noticeable (and the Nikon does have slightly soft corners, in my judgement, though DxOmark measures it as relatively uniform).

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Wade Tregaskis
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to io_bg, Jul 25, 2013

10-24mm review

11-16mm review

Huh, that's weird.  I had seen DxOmark's measurements, which at the wide end of these two are basically opposite to what Photozone's review shows.  Photozone seems to reckon the Nikon is sharper in the centre pretty much all the time but softer in the corners.  DxOmark unilaterally disagrees.

My own 10-24 is noticeably soft in the corners, but I don't think nearly as much as these Photozone reviews claim (but conversely I'm not entirely convinced it's as good in those corners as DxOmark claims).

I hope they test the latter on a D7000 as well although I doubt there'll be a significant difference from the 50D review.

I have to wonder if there's something to that.  I've seen before that comparing off-brand lenses on Canon vs Nikon gives unpredictable results.  It makes no sense to me, since one would presume that the bulk of the lens - and certainly the optics - is exactly the same between mounts, but, perhaps not?

Now I'm going to have to try to borrow the new model Tokina 11-16 and test it out for myself.

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Wade Tregaskis
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Re: Sigma 8-16 is great
In reply to Sammy Yousef, Jul 25, 2013

2) No filters and bulbous front element is annoying, particularly if you're use to keeping a filter on your front elements to prevent damage. I'd love to be able to use a CPL with the lens but the truth is I don't do that very much anyway. (There are DIY solutions involving Cokin filters and even dedicated filter holders, but they're clunky and expensive - I have better things to spend my photo dollars on)

How would you use a CPL on a ultra-wide-angle anyway?  The non-uniform incident light across that wide angle of view usually gives you decidedly inconsistent results across the frame.  Certainly for typical landscapes and such.

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Stacey_K
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Wade Tregaskis, Jul 25, 2013

Wade Tregaskis wrote:

I did a lot of research on multiple web sites and decided on the 11-16 Tokina. Almost every review shows one stop from wide open it has great performance across the frame. Even wide open the corners are decent at every focal length, one stop down it's good everywhere. My limited testing so far shows they are right.

This is at odds with DxOmark's measurements. According to them it's extremely non-uniform w.r.t. sharpness, with the corners and sides being noticeably soft until you get to at least f/5.6 (at 11mm).

I quit looking at that site a long time ago.

http://www.photozone.de/canon_eos_ff/595-tokina162828eosff and others say they like it, other than sample variation. Make sure you test the sample you buy.

And please don't assume if someone likes this lens they "don't care" or are too dumb to know if it's good or not.

BTW look at how the nikon 10-24 does on this site, wide open at 10mm the corners have some of the worst resolution of any lens I have seen tested there.

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Stacey_K
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Mickslick, Jul 25, 2013

Mickslick wrote:


So I had to call my sister and break the news, the Sigma 10-20 wasn't going anywhere and I was returning the Tokina. To me it's a no brainer, not only did the Sigma essentially match and even exceed the Tokina in most areas,

From what I have gathered reading various sites, most of these UWA zooms for DX are close in performance if you get a good copy, especially when stopped down to f5.6-f11 where they will spend most of their time. The main reason I went with the tokina is the corners aren't total mush at any setting and it gives a brighter finder for composing.

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Stacey_K
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Re: Nikon 10-22mm f3.5-56 or Tokina 11-16mm f2.8?
In reply to Nexu1, Jul 25, 2013

Nexu1 wrote:

 Shooting directly at the sun is unappealing to me, IMO, for most photos/situations.

+1 for this. I shot with -uncoated- large format lenses on my 4X5 and never had flare problems.

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Sammy Yousef
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Re: Sigma 8-16 is great
In reply to Wade Tregaskis, Jul 26, 2013

Wade Tregaskis wrote:

2) No filters and bulbous front element is annoying, particularly if you're use to keeping a filter on your front elements to prevent damage. I'd love to be able to use a CPL with the lens but the truth is I don't do that very much anyway. (There are DIY solutions involving Cokin filters and even dedicated filter holders, but they're clunky and expensive - I have better things to spend my photo dollars on)

How would you use a CPL on a ultra-wide-angle anyway? The non-uniform incident light across that wide angle of view usually gives you decidedly inconsistent results across the frame. Certainly for typical landscapes and such.

I have no personal experience with an ultrawide and CPL but if you go to flickr you'll see that there are people who've had decent results with CPL and Sigma 8-16. It probably requires extra care and experience/experimentation and won't work in every situation....but you can say the same for using an ultrawide in the first place.

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