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09-05-2012, 07:29 PM   #1
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Comparable lens to Tokina 11-16?

I bought my k-5 back in February, and the more I look for good glass the more I become upset at my decision to go with Pentax. I refuse to buy any DA* model until the SDM issue is acknowledged and FIXED, which really doesn't leave a whole lot of high-quality glass to choose from IMHO.

Earlier today a friend mentioned the Tokina 11-16 as something for me to look at, and as I read about it I was thrilled until I learned there is no Pentax version available, and it looks like there never will be at this point. Is there even anything close to the Tokina? I know Sigma's 10-20 is a pretty good wide-angle, and I've read the 8-16 is even better but a lot more difficult to work with. Also I don't know much about wide-angle zooms, but wouldn't a lens with less zoom have a better overall picture as it's closer to a prime lens (comparing the 5mm difference of the 11-16 with the 8/10mm differences of the Sigmas)?

I'm frustrated as all hell right now. If you could shed some light on this situation I'd appreciate it.

09-05-2012, 07:41 PM   #2
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I'm a bit confused by your issues with SDM - if you buy new, you have warranty. In many cases, it's easy and inexpensive to add an extended warranty at the time of purchase as well. My understanding is that in the last few years SDM has undergone revisions, and recently produced lenses are much less prone to problems. Therefore, the SDM issue would only be an issue for you if you are set on purchasing a second-hand lens. Is that your plan?

Also, how is the 8-16mm "a lot more difficult to work with"?
09-05-2012, 07:42 PM   #3
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The Pentax 12-24 is great
09-05-2012, 07:51 PM   #4
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There's absolutely nothing comparable for Pentax mount unfortunately, at least not a zoom with a similarly fast aperture.

The Pentax 12-24/4 is the same as the Tokina 12-24, a product of the former Hoya/Pentax merger. It's not SDM. So if you want a Tokina lens in particular then there's your choice.

The Pentax DA 14/2.8 is fast but not terribly sharp. About the same size as the zooms & not cheap. The 12-24 is sharper.

The Sigma 10-20/3.5 is the next-fastest, but if you don't think you need the extra speed the 10-20/4-5.6 produces very similar results.

The Pentax DA 15/4 Limited is reasonably sharp (slight corner softness wide open), has great colors, contrast & flare control, great all metal build quality and it's Tiny compared to everything else in the ultra-wide category save for the DA 21/3.2 Limited.

The Tamron 10-24/3.5-4.5 is a little faster than the slower Sigma 10-20, similarly priced, and not as nice build quality. Optics are about even maybe slightly softer.

I don't know much about the Sigma 8-16, or the few fisheye options in this range.

I was trying to decide between the 15 Limited and slower Sigma 10-20, a lot of people chimed in but I still haven't quite pulled the trigger. You can see that thread here: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/197044-trying-...0-4-5-6-a.html

09-05-2012, 09:00 PM   #5
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The Tokina 11-16 probably is the best zoom lens available in this range - it's too bad it's not available in K-mount. This is a lens I wish were available for Pentax as well.

The DA15 is especially good, and the DA10-17 FE is quite nice too. That's what I chose to do - I got both.


Samyang/Vivitar 13/2.8 (MF) is a consideration too: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/711895-REG/Vivitar_VIV13MMP_Series_1_13mm_f_2_8.html

Pentax also has a couple of wide-angle zooms on the lens roadmap, but I'm not sure if they're as wide as you want: http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=2&cad=rja&ved=0...Z2zB-ALkD9hlpA

Furthermore, I expect this roadmap will be updated within the next week or two, possibly giving you even more options. Your fear of the DA* zooms is keeping you away from the best value in photography - the DA*16-50 and DA*50-135, combined with any recent Pentax body.


But you probably haven't got too far into purchasing a Pentax lens collection if you're lamenting it so much. Nikon and Sony (Zeiss) have some of the most fantastic lenses on the planet. But the lenses I'm thinking of cost about $2000 each. Pentax has fantastic lenses in the $500-1000 price range, and some even less than that.


Go ahead and go to another brand if you like. They have some great stuff. But I think most of my fellow Pentaxians would agree that it's your loss, not ours, if you do.

Last edited by DSims; 09-05-2012 at 09:34 PM.
09-05-2012, 09:04 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by nater Quote
I'm a bit confused by your issues with SDM - if you buy new, you have warranty. In many cases, it's easy and inexpensive to add an extended warranty at the time of purchase as well. My understanding is that in the last few years SDM has undergone revisions, and recently produced lenses are much less prone to problems. Therefore, the SDM issue would only be an issue for you if you are set on purchasing a second-hand lens. Is that your plan?

Also, how is the 8-16mm "a lot more difficult to work with"?
Unless something's specifically in writing from Pentax about the SDM issue, I'm still staying away. A warranty means nothing to me when a product has a failure rate the SDM motors do, especially with the price increase a few months back (I wrote about that as well). I did consider them at one point, but third-party value is now better considering the price increase IMO.

As for the difficulty of the 8-16, basically I've read that if you have weaknesses in technique, etc.., they will stand out dramatically. I don't really know any other way to put it, although I understand any wide-angle will probably show weaknesses of the photographer. I hope that makes sense, which it probably doesn't.

I have been extremely impressed with fs999's shots with the 8-16.

QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
The Pentax 12-24 is great
Yes but $900 makes me cry a little bit. The Tokina 11-16 apparently is pretty damn excellent even wide open, although truthfully I'll be shooting mostly landscapes where a fast lens won't matter too much so mostly I'm looking for the most sharpness I can get across the entire picture. I also was hoping to get a fisheye to partner it up with for some close-up skateboarding shots which is why the $900 makes me shed tears (The Rokinon/Bower fisheyes seem to be a good value for the lower cost). Maybe Tokina's version that Msatlas noted would be a better choice.

QuoteOriginally posted by msatlas Quote
There's absolutely nothing comparable for Pentax mount unfortunately, at least not a zoom with a similarly fast aperture.

The Pentax 12-24/4 is the same as the Tokina 12-24, a product of the former Hoya/Pentax merger. It's not SDM. So if you want a Tokina lens in particular then there's your choice.

The Pentax DA 14/2.8 is fast but not terribly sharp. About the same size as the zooms & not cheap. The 12-24 is sharper.

The Sigma 10-20/3.5 is the next-fastest, but if you don't think you need the extra speed the 10-20/4-5.6 produces very similar results.

The Pentax DA 15/4 Limited is reasonably sharp (slight corner softness wide open), has great colors, contrast & flare control, great all metal build quality and it's Tiny compared to everything else in the ultra-wide category save for the DA 21/3.2 Limited.

The Tamron 10-24/3.5-4.5 is a little faster than the slower Sigma 10-20, similarly priced, and not as nice build quality. Optics are about even maybe slightly softer.

I don't know much about the Sigma 8-16, or the few fisheye options in this range.

I was trying to decide between the 15 Limited and slower Sigma 10-20, a lot of people chimed in but I still haven't quite pulled the trigger. You can see that thread here: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/197044-trying-...0-4-5-6-a.html
Thank you for the input. I had the 10-20/3.5 before, but the price increase over the f/4-5.6 isn't worth it (I believe it uses a larger filter too, another negative). For the cost, it appears the Tokina 12-24 may be the best. I think it's going to be that or the Sigma 8-16.

Last edited by PushTheRedButton; 09-05-2012 at 09:17 PM.
09-05-2012, 09:15 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by DSims Quote
The Tokina 11-16 probably is the best zoom lens available in this range - it's too bad it's not available in K-mount. This is a lens I wish were available for Pentax as well.

The DA15 is especially good, and the DA10-17 FE is quite nice too. That's what I chose to do - I got both.


Samyang/Vivitar 13/2.8 (MF) is a consideration too.
I'm limited on funds at the moment (last semester of going back to college, a little late at 30 though), which is what makes this a difficult decision. I agree on the 10-17, it's lovely. Had her for a few weeks but at the time it wasn't what I needed (kept the D FA 100mm instead).

My situation is such that I'm most likely going with Sigma's 150-500 very soon, and the $600 saved over the 50-500 is going towards another lens. If I have to put in a little extra it's OK, but ultimately am limited on what I can do right now. The 11-16 for the money is an incredible value.
09-05-2012, 09:18 PM   #8
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If you haven't read it yet, there was also this comparative review that covers a lot of the ultrawide options:

DA 12-24mm vs Sigma and Tamron 10-24mm Comparison - Introduction - PentaxForums.com

09-05-2012, 09:23 PM   #9
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The Tokina 12-24 doesn't come in Pentax mount. Since it's the same basic lens as the Pentax they don't compete.

The strength of the Pentax lens lineup is primes. If you look only at zooms (especially higher-end but not SDM) the choices are more limited.

Honestly the only reason I haven't bought a 15 Limited yet is because the FL is pretty close to my Tamron 17-50.
09-05-2012, 09:50 PM   #10
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Evening,

I have both the DA 12-24 (for the last 4 years) and the Sig 8-16 (for several weeks). So here is what I have found.
  • DA 12-24 - Had this for over 4 years now. It is at its sharpest at 18mm f8. I will use it any where, any time. I will shoot directly into the sun with it. I can nail just about anything with it. No worries. Pentax and Tokina co designed the lens - as to who did what - who knows. The Tokina 11-16 is based on it. Why Pentax does not offer it - who knows. I wish that they did to some extent, however f4 is fast enough for me. I can and have shot in near total darkness with it. Here are some examples with it...

So having said all of that, what are you really wanting to go after? Wide Angle and Ultra Wide Angle I am assuming from asking about these lenses. So, I have the DA 10-17, Sig 8-16, DA 12-24, DA 16-45, Zeiss 25 ZK, CZ 28, FA 31 for wide angle stuff. They all have their place. I have acquired these over a period of a number of years.
  • DA 10-17 - Same as the Tokina 10-17 and co designed with Tokina. Very contrasty!!! Excellent and very rich colors - and sharp for its width. Fisheye is pretty well controlled by 17mm.
  • Sig 8-16 - Good lens for needing a rectilinear that is VERY wide. Good colors, sharp for its width. There are a lot of shots that need something wider than 12 that would not stitch very well for various reasons. This is the reason for this lens.
  • DA 12-24 - I actually like this lens better than the Sig. There is nothing I can't do with it. Stitching is good, but I wanted to reach a certain angle of view without stitching - so I got the Sig.
  • DA 16-45 - Again, excellent. Complements the 12-24. This lens picks up the sharpness just as the 12-24 starts to drop off.
  • Zeiss 25 ZK - No zoom can touch this. Excellent sharpness, color and contrast.
  • K 28 Shift - Pentax's only shift lens in the 135mm format. Excellent and has a very unique capability to shoot the clock positions thus providing the equivalent of a 4x5 format ~ 8000x8000 pixels.
  • CZ 28 - Contax Carl Zeiss 28/f2.8 - I converted the mount on this lens. One of the sharpest lenses Zeiss has ever made. Exceeds Canon's L and its 35 years old. Wonderful contrast, color and character. A poor man's FA 31
  • FA 31 - One of the Three Amigos. Everything about it is wonderful. My go to lens.
I do not have any SDM lenses either. I do not need the speed. I shoot ambient low light - i.e., I shoot at night.

What do you want to shoot? Zooms or primes, or a bit of both? Are you looking at f2.8 or faster? If so, is it an absolute need or just a want? In wide angles f4 is really sufficiently fast enough - even in near 0 light (before the moon comes up) - you need a good tripod and head along with a remote shutter control. Compare Canon and Nikon, neither of which has stabilized lenses in the wide angle focal lengths. Pentax has sensor stabilization which does help if you are caught hand holding to a degree.

The other aspect that you need to understand is that wide angle and fast do not really go well together. Optical engineering - wide angle lenses are complex designs to start with. Notice in zooms they are only about 2x as compared to the nominal 4x for normal focal lengths for a rule of thumb. Complexity is the reason - you can only bend the light so much when trying to minimize distortion. To add really fast to this is just not being reasonable as the physical size of the glass starts to get large. The other thing is that the main complexity for wide angle is distortion. 12mm can provide pretty good distortion control. 10mm starts with the radical distortion and 8 gets pretty extreme. That is why I went with the DA 12-24 its is as well controlled as any and better than most (Tameron and Sigma at 10-20 and 10-24). Here is a comparison done by the Forum. The Sigma 12-24 came out on top.There is also the DA 14/2.8 and DA 15/4 Limited primes to choose from also.

Hope that helps....

09-05-2012, 09:53 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by nater Quote
If you haven't read it yet, there was also this comparative review that covers a lot of the ultrawide options:

DA 12-24mm vs Sigma and Tamron 10-24mm Comparison - Introduction - PentaxForums.com
Thank you. I have some studying to do but will read up on that.

QuoteOriginally posted by msatlas Quote
The Tokina 12-24 doesn't come in Pentax mount. Since it's the same basic lens as the Pentax they don't compete.

The strength of the Pentax lens lineup is primes. If you look only at zooms (especially higher-end but not SDM) the choices are more limited.

Honestly the only reason I haven't bought a 15 Limited yet is because the FL is pretty close to my Tamron 17-50.
Oh, balls. I should have figured that much. I'll read a little more into things before I pull the trigger, although I probably need to order the glass by Friday at the latest. I recently came into an internship for a local paper and am covering a 9/11 memorial next week in Beverly Hills.
09-05-2012, 10:04 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by interested_observer Quote
Evening,

I have both the DA 12-24 (for the last 4 years) and the Sig 8-16 (for several weeks). So here is what I have found.
  • DA 12-24 - Had this for over 4 years now. It is at its sharpest at 18mm f8. I will use it any where, any time. I will shoot directly into the sun with it. I can nail just about anything with it. No worries. Pentax and Tokina co designed the lens - as to who did what - who knows. The Tokina 11-16 is based on it. Why Pentax does not offer it - who knows. I wish that they did to some extent, however f4 is fast enough for me. I can and have shot in near total darkness with it. Here are some examples with it...

So having said all of that, what are you really wanting to go after? Wide Angle and Ultra Wide Angle I am assuming from asking about these lenses. So, I have the DA 10-17, Sig 8-16, DA 12-24, DA 16-45, Zeiss 25 ZK, CZ 28, FA 31 for wide angle stuff. They all have their place. I have acquired these over a period of a number of years.
  • DA 10-17 - Same as the Tokina 10-17 and co designed with Tokina. Very contrasty!!! Excellent and very rich colors - and sharp for its width. Fisheye is pretty well controlled by 17mm.
  • Sig 8-16 - Good lens for needing a rectilinear that is VERY wide. Good colors, sharp for its width. There are a lot of shots that need something wider than 12 that would not stitch very well for various reasons. This is the reason for this lens.
  • DA 12-24 - I actually like this lens better than the Sig. There is nothing I can't do with it. Stitching is good, but I wanted to reach a certain angle of view without stitching - so I got the Sig.
  • DA 16-45 - Again, excellent. Complements the 12-24. This lens picks up the sharpness just as the 12-24 starts to drop off.
  • Zeiss 25 ZK - No zoom can touch this. Excellent sharpness, color and contrast.
  • K 28 Shift - Pentax's only shift lens in the 135mm format. Excellent and has a very unique capability to shoot the clock positions thus providing the equivalent of a 4x5 format ~ 8000x8000 pixels.
  • CZ 28 - Contax Carl Zeiss 28/f2.8 - I converted the mount on this lens. One of the sharpest lenses Zeiss has ever made. Exceeds Canon's L and its 35 years old. Wonderful contrast, color and character. A poor man's FA 31
  • FA 31 - One of the Three Amigos. Everything about it is wonderful. My go to lens.
I do not have any SDM lenses either. I do not need the speed. I shoot ambient low light - i.e., I shoot at night.

What do you want to shoot? Zooms or primes, or a bit of both? Are you looking at f2.8 or faster? If so, is it an absolute need or just a want? In wide angles f4 is really sufficiently fast enough - even in near 0 light (before the moon comes up) - you need a good tripod and head along with a remote shutter control. Compare Canon and Nikon, neither of which has stabilized lenses in the wide angle focal lengths. Pentax has sensor stabilization which does help if you are caught hand holding to a degree.

The other aspect that you need to understand is that wide angle and fast do not really go well together. Optical engineering - wide angle lenses are complex designs to start with. Notice in zooms they are only about 2x as compared to the nominal 4x for normal focal lengths for a rule of thumb. Complexity is the reason - you can only bend the light so much when trying to minimize distortion. To add really fast to this is just not being reasonable as the physical size of the glass starts to get large. The other thing is that the main complexity for wide angle is distortion. 12mm can provide pretty good distortion control. 10mm starts with the radical distortion and 8 gets pretty extreme. That is why I went with the DA 12-24 its is as well controlled as any and better than most (Tameron and Sigma at 10-20 and 10-24). Here is a comparison done by the Forum. The Sigma 12-24 came out on top.There is also the DA 14/2.8 and DA 15/4 Limited primes to choose from also.

Hope that helps....

I love you.
09-06-2012, 02:21 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by msatlas Quote
The Pentax DA 14/2.8 is fast but not terribly sharp. About the same size as the zooms & not cheap. The 12-24 is sharper.
The DA14 is sharp enough at close focus. It's weak at distant focus. At least that's what I gathered from the recent DA14-vs-Rokinon14 test Pentax 14mm F2.8 vs Rokinon 14mm F2.8 - Sharpness - PentaxForums.com.

Some successful wideangle compositions have a foreground element in close focus. The DA14 will handle such shots well.

I don't have the DA14 myself, so I just convey other people's findings (have the DA15 though, what a lens!).

Regards,
--Anders.
09-06-2012, 06:37 AM   #14
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to be very honest
when shoot those lens at f8..there is no difference I can notice
I owned sigma 8-16 and sigma 10-20 for pentax before
and tokina 11-16 and canon 10-22 for canon (I returned tokina and bought canon afterall)
I usually only use f8 for those lens. I can not notice which one has better sharpness.
they all produce very sharp photo at f8

so if you plan to shoot mainly at f8. sigma 10-20 f4-5.6 is the best value.

Last edited by liukaitc; 09-06-2012 at 06:43 AM.
09-06-2012, 07:31 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by PushTheRedButton Quote
I'll be shooting mostly landscapes where a fast lens won't matter too much so mostly I'm looking for the most sharpness I can get across the entire picture.
Under those circumstances,
stitching might serve you better
than any ultra-wide angle lens would.
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