Tokina AT-X 16-28mm F2.8 Pro vs Nikon 16-35 F4 and others

Started Oct 19, 2012 | Discussions thread
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sthlm Regular Member • Posts: 136
Tokina AT-X 16-28mm F2.8 Pro vs Nikon 16-35 F4 and others

Greetings all,

I'm getting a D600 for hobby and travel photography and the first lens I'd like to get is a good wide angle.  Below I listed those I've been looking at but I should point out that since I'm not a paid professional I'm not looking to spend $2000 on a 14-24.  I might do some paid model work and weddings but it's relatively rare on my part and not really the point of this lens.  Mostly this is for landscapes, cityscapes, beachscapes, and it's just a hobby.  I want a sharp lens though.  Doesn't have to be perfect but I want one that's very good.

Nikon 16-35mm F4 - $1200 (680g)
Nikon 14-24mm F2.8 - $2000 (1kg)
Nikon 17-35mm F2.8 - $1800
Nikon AF 14mm F2.8 - $1700
Samyang 14mm F2.8 (manual focus) - $430
Tokina AT-X 16-28mm F2.8 Pro - $850 (946g)
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG ASP HSM II - $950

I've used the 16-35 before, but briefly, and I didn't form an opinion.  I've also used 20mm primes but I think I want something a bit wider.  Thus how the 14mm lenses got on this list.  I looked at the Sigma 12-24 but the aperture concerns me since I do like to do some concert photography and a lot of night photography so a faster lens would probably make me happier.  I can't have a tripod at all concerts and I'm not always dragging a tripod with me at night.  I'm also looking to do some astrophotography but that's a minor point.

I was pretty set on the 16-35 F4 at first but I'm wondering if I would be better off with the faster Tokina.  It seems to get great reviews if you get a good sample.  How I would test for a good sample though concerns me.  I'm currently living in Europe and going to have a friend bring me gear over from the states since it will save me over 25% on the price.  I'm really not sure how any of this will work with the warranty since I'm only in the states once a year.  Would I be better off losing the stop, raising the ISO, and getting the 16-35 f4?

I know there have been a lot of similar threads but any insight would be appreciated.

 sthlm's gear list:sthlm's gear list
Nikon D600 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G VR Tokina AT-X 16-28mm f/2.8 Pro FX Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G +1 more
Nikon D600
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