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Tokina 150-500mm OR...?
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 8:38 pm    Post subject: Tokina 150-500mm OR...? Reply with quote

New to the forum, first post. Hoping I can pick some more experienced brains.

Out of necessity, I've been doing something pretty unusual... shooting "action" photography with MF. Specifically a Canon 100-400 f/4-5.6 v1 adapted to a Panasonic GX8. I have both the straight up 1:1 and XL Speedbooster from Metabones. The lens was a hand me down from my Dad, but I dropped it yesterday and likely screwed up the focusing mechanism (it's crunchy, but I'm going to take it in to have it looked at)

I've done pretty well with MF, to the point that I've seen some advantages to it, and I prefer it. The problem with the Canon (and my adapted Sigma 50-100 for that matter) is that the throw of the focusing is too short.

I've done some digging around and the Tokina 150-500 f/5.6 seems to meet many of my requirements. I liked the fixed aperture, and the push/pull zoom. And with a speedbooster/focal reducer I'd have a slightly faster 105- 355mm as well. I've been shooting kiteboarding/surfing/surfkayaking from a tripod https://www.Instagram.com/gwydionjhr


Are there any other lenses out there that I should be considering?


PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 10:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm tempted to suggest the Tamron 200-500mm f/5.6 Adaptall-2 lens, but it's "two-touch" and I know from experience that a one-touch telephoto zoom is a "good thing", so I suspect you've already made a good choice Wink


PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 12:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have both the Tokina ATX 150-500/5.6 SD and the Tamron SP 200-500/5.6. I have compared the two quite closely and here is my take on them.

Both are excellent lenses and do a decent job of things like controlling chromatic aberrations. Both have a constant f/5.6 maximum aperture value. Both take rear drop-in filters. Both are big lenses. But the Tamron is the real heavyweight here -- weighing in at almost exactly 6 pounds, whereas the Tokina is a bit less than 5. Both are well-built optics, but the Tamron is closer to a military sort of grade. Very beefy. The Tamron has an edge over the Tokina in one category -- its Adaptall-2 mount, which allows the lens to be used with quite a few different camera makes. My Tokina has a Nikon mount, which to me is one of the most versatile ones to have if you'll be mounting the lens to a digital camera.

Both lenses came with a case when new, and I believe both came with rear-mount filters. My Tamron did not have either a case or filters when I bought it, but my Tokina did. I just checked this on eBay. The Tamron case is kinda cool. It has extra pockets for a teleconverter and spare Adaptall-2 mounts. The Tokinas I found that had cases, did not have filters. So I suspect my filters were an option.

Many people prefer the two-touch type of zoom because they're used to this arrangement after having using AF lenses for so long. Others, like me, who date back to the age of manual photography, prefer a 1-touch push-pull zoom. I find that I don't really have a preference. I do not think that a push-pull zoom is faster than a well-designed two-ring zoom, which the Tamron 200-500 is. Both lenses have amply long focus throws.

As for price, if you check out eBay, typically you'll see the Tamron selling for more than the Tokina, but often this price differential is small.

I tested both lenses against each other, and try as hard as I could, I could not get the Tokina to produce images as sharp as the Tamron's. The Tamron is a truly exceptional lens. At 500mm, it is as sharp as a 500mm f/5.6 telephoto I own, which is a very sharp lens. The Tokina is no slouch, however. I would rate it as an excellent performer, just not quite up to the hair-splitting accuracy of the Tamron. Unfortunately, I don't know where I've saved these comparison photos, so I don't have any to show at this time.

In the field, I think that, with a high enough shutter speed, it would be technically possible to use the Tokina off-hand. The Tamron, however, because of its weight, almost requires the use of a tripod, or at least a monopod. But honestly, I'd recommend that either a monopod or tripod be used with either lens when shooting at the far end of their range.

Finally, here are some photos I've taken with the two lenses:

Tokina 150-500mm @ f/5.6, Sony NEX 7 ISO 100:
grown over branch stump, Tokina 150-500mm f/5.6 by Michael McBroom, on Flickr

This is a 100% crop of the original. Tamron 200-500mm @ f/11, Sony NEX 7 ISO 100:
Full Moon with Tamron SP 200-500mm f/5.6 by Michael McBroom, on Flickr

Tamron 200-500mm @ f/5.6 Sony NEX 7 ISO 100:


As you can see, that Tokina is a very fine lens. The photo of the cat, I feel, could have been a bit sharper. It doesn't quite display the fine degree of focusing precision this lens has.


PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 6:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Both lenses look sharp enough to me. The image of the cat is very good.

On a side note, being a Canon shooter, the Nex white balance looks like it tends to shoot images on the cool side.


PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 3:57 pm    Post subject: Re: Tokina 150-500mm OR...? Reply with quote

gwydionjhr wrote:
New to the forum, first post. Hoping I can pick some more experienced brains.

Out of necessity, I've been doing something pretty unusual... shooting "action" photography with MF. Specifically a Canon 100-400 f/4-5.6 v1 adapted to a Panasonic GX8. I have both the straight up 1:1 and XL Speedbooster from Metabones. The lens was a hand me down from my Dad, but I dropped it yesterday and likely screwed up the focusing mechanism (it's crunchy, but I'm going to take it in to have it looked at)

I've done pretty well with MF, to the point that I've seen some advantages to it, and I prefer it. The problem with the Canon (and my adapted Sigma 50-100 for that matter) is that the throw of the focusing is too short.

I've done some digging around and the Tokina 150-500 f/5.6 seems to meet many of my requirements. I liked the fixed aperture, and the push/pull zoom. And with a speedbooster/focal reducer I'd have a slightly faster 105- 355mm as well. I've been shooting kiteboarding/surfing/surfkayaking from a tripod https://www.Instagram.com/gwydionjhr


Are there any other lenses out there that I should be considering?


Another solution : the cosina 100-500 5.6/8 (also sold as vivitar series 1 or soligor c/d 100-500 5.6/7.5 ) which is also one touch/very good with advantage of beeing much more
    lighter (1500g vs 2240g)
    compact (26cm vs 31cms)
    handy

and has much narrower closer focus (1.8m vs 3.1m) than the tokina but without constant aperture


PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 4:18 pm    Post subject: Nikon mounted Tokia Reply with quote

Thanks for the replies!

With regards to the Nikon variant of the Tokina....

I've dug around as best I could, and I can't seem to get my head around the F-Mount variants.

The Metabones speedbooster is compatible with G and F mount lenses. http://www.metabones.com/products/details/MB_SPNFG-M43-BM3

That will work with the Tokina?


PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2018 7:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, the Nikon mount Tokina has the Nikon F mount and the AIs meter coupling method. G lenses still use the classic F mount -- they just lack aperture rings.

There's not much to getting one's head around the F mount. Mostly with Nikon lenses, it isn't the mount -- it's the metering system that you have to watch out for, whether pre-AI or AI. AIs and Series E manual focus lenses are just variations of the AI mount. So are Nikon's AF lenses through the D-series. I don't have any G lenses here, so I don't know if they still have the AI metering tab, so I can't comment on them.