Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 AT-X 116 PRO DX SD & Nikon D3200 (N APS-C)
The Tokina 11-16 mm lens has been available for several years. It is a wide-angle zoom lens with a large aperture, designed for cameras with an APS-C / DX sensor. Cheaper Nikon SLR cameras, such as the Nikon D3200 , have no built-in AF motor. That is why in 2012, especially for owners of these Nikon cameras, a Tokina 11-16mm II has been released that features a built-in AF motor.
We will publish our Tokina 11-16 II review soon. We give you a little foretaste with a Tokina 11-16 mm DX review of the version without built-in motor. All more expensive Nikon SLR cameras have a built-in AF motor. For owners of such a camera, this Tokina 11-16 mm is a cheaper alternative to the Tokina 11-16 mm DX II. We have tested the Tokina 11-16 lens on a camera with as many megapixels as possible: a 24 megapixel Nikon D3200 .
Field of view Tokina 11-16 mm @ 16 mm
As can be clearly seen in the figures above, the 1.5 x zoom range of this Tokina lens is limited. The Tokina 11-16 mm is only for cameras with a DX / APS-C sensor. On a camera with a DX / APS-C sensor, the field of view of the Tokina 11-16mm is equivalent to that of an 18-26 mm zoom lens on a camera with a full frame sensor. You still have a real wide-angle zoom lens with that, despite the crop factor of the DX sensor. Coupled with the f/2.8 aperture of the Tokina 11-16 mm DX, this lens is unique and there are few alternatives to it.
Construction and autofocus
There is nothing to criticize about the construction of the Tokina Pro series lenses. It does its Pro name honor. Both the zoom ring and the focus ring have the right friction over the entire area. The drive of the autofocus is very fast, but also clearly audible. There is little evidence of searching in low light, thanks to the high aperture of the Tokina 11-16 mm. The way you choose between autofocus and manual focus with Tokina AT-X lenses is striking. This is done by means of a ring at the end of the lens, instead of a switch on the side of the lens, as with other brands. If you pull out the ring, the lens works through AF. If you pull this ring towards you, you can focus manually.
The Tokina 11-16 mm does not have built-in image stabilization. Given the high aperture and the focal length range of this lens, there will be very few situations where the image stabilization will be missed.
VignettingTokina 11-16 mm
For a wide-angle zoom lens, the amount of vignetting is remarkably low. Only with fully open aperture, you will recognize vignetting if you take a picture of a very evenly illuminated surface, such as a blue sky. Here you see a worst case. However, using software, this is easy to correct. At the other apertures, you will not suffer from vignetting.
Distortion Tokina 11-16 mm
Also in terms of distortion, the Tokina 11-16mm scores very well. Only at a focal length of 16 mm, barrel distortion is evident, but that is not surprising given the short focal length. RAW and JPG files have given exactly the same picture for distortion. In our Tokina 11-16mm II review, we will show how you can solve this simply.
Tokina 11-16mm @ 11mm
You do not choose wide-angle lenses for a nice bokeh, but for the greatest possible depth of field. The bokeh is indeed less beautiful and clearly shows edges. The aperture blades of the Tokina 11-16 mm are not rounded, so the bokeh changes from a pointy light source to the shape of the aperture, when you stop down. This is less beautiful than the bokeh of a lens with rounded aperture blades.
The Tokina 11-16 mm is supplied with a lens hood, but flare and ghosting cannot always be avoided with a wide-angle lens. After all, the field of view is so large that the probability of a strong light source coming into the picture increases. In such situations, you will encounter green ghosting, as shown in the figure.
Resolution Tokina 11-16 mm
Because this lens combined with the Nikon D3200 has no AF, we have reviewed this part by focusing manually. The resolution of the Tokina 11-16 mm is high. The resolution in the center is higher than in the corners. Yet this is not distracting: with more than 2000 lines per picture height (LW/PH), the resolution in the corners is higher than the center resolution of a large number of lenses previously reviewed.
Colors are broken by the glass elements from which a lens is built up in different ways. Therefore, you may sometimes encounter green and purple edges in great contrast transitions in the image corners. This is called chromatic aberration.
Thanks to the in-camera correction of chromatic aberration by the Nikon D3200 , there is no visible chromatic aberration in the jpg files. In the RAW files, there is visible chromatic aberration in the outer corners, as you can see in the 100% image area. In Photoshop or Lightroom, this is resolved quickly.
Conclusion Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 AT-X 116 PRO DX SD review
- Ultra-wide field of view on a camera with DX sensor
- Good optical performance; very high center resolution and high corner resolution
- Low vignetting for an ultra-wide-angle
- Very solid construction
- Sensitive to ghosting
- Visible chromatic aberration in the corners
- Visible distortion at 11mm focal length
- No built-in AF or IS
The Tokina 11-16 mm is one of the few zoom lenses with which you can take real wide-angle pictures on a camera with an APS-C sensor, despite the crop factor of the DX sensor. In combination with the high f/2.8 aperture of the Tokina 11-16 mm DX, this lens is unique. This lens is built very solidly. The drive of the autofocus is very fast, but also clearly audible. The image quality of this lens is very high. Definitely a must.