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03-10-2007, 08:19 AM   #1
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Tokina 28-70 f2.8 ATX Pro

Well I got this lens on Wednesday from KEH, and I'm sad to say it's going back. I knew from asking questions and reading everything I could find on the the lens that it was "relatively" soft at 2.8. Don't know if it's just this copy, but I'd change that "relatively" to "quite". It's also "relatively" soft up to about 4.0 and worse at the wide end. Spent yesterday afternoon with it, took over 100 shots and pretty much anything below f5.6 is iffy, especially at the wide end. I will say it's nice and contrasty, and it's colors are very good. Bokeh is OK, not super, but not bad either. But I got it primarily as a relatively low light walk around lens, and it's just not there for me. Interestingly enough Photoshop Elements 3.0 reports the lens as "smc Pentax F 28-80 3.5-5.6" in its "file info" tho my Opanda EXIF doesn't. I really wanted this lens to work out, but sadly, it's just not there, at least this copy isn't.
So my question is...can anybody recommend a good "older" low light zoom in the 28-80 or 28-70 range? I can't quite afford the new Sigma 17-70, but I'd like about 2.8 or lower f stop.

NaCl(and the hunt continues)H2O

03-10-2007, 08:28 AM   #2
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sorry to hear that...

QuoteOriginally posted by NaClH2O Quote
Well I got this lens on Wednesday from KEH, and I'm sad to say it's going back. I knew from asking questions and reading everything I could find on the the lens that it was "relatively" soft at 2.8. Don't know if it's just this copy, but I'd change that "relatively" to "quite". It's also "relatively" soft up to about 4.0 and worse at the wide end. Spent yesterday afternoon with it, took over 100 shots and pretty much anything below f5.6 is iffy, especially at the wide end. I will say it's nice and contrasty, and it's colors are very good. Bokeh is OK, not super, but not bad either. But I got it primarily as a relatively low light walk around lens, and it's just not there for me. Interestingly enough Photoshop Elements 3.0 reports the lens as "smc Pentax F 28-80 3.5-5.6" in its "file info" tho my Opanda EXIF doesn't. I really wanted this lens to work out, but sadly, it's just not there, at least this copy isn't.
So my question is...can anybody recommend a good "older" low light zoom in the 28-80 or 28-70 range? I can't quite afford the new Sigma 17-70, but I'd like about 2.8 or lower f stop.

NaCl(and the hunt continues)H2O
Have you considered the Tamron version? A LOT of people state it's sharp, even wide open (AlinLA, Benjikan, etc.). I had someone concur on this at our photographic society board meeting just this week. She does portraiture a lot and loves it.

Mine should arrive next Tuesday - ordered from Tri-State, which has always been good to me in the past.

Thoughts?

Regards,
Marc
03-10-2007, 08:31 AM   #3
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HeHe, Mines coming on Monday from B&H.
03-10-2007, 08:39 AM   #4
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So, now the truth is exposed! Looks like this lens isn't based on the FA* 28-70mm after all.


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03-10-2007, 08:40 AM   #5
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Hi Salty,
So you were the one. I got an email, but it was gone when I looked.
From what I've read, there is 4 or 5 versions of this lens. It's a bit confusing.

According to the SPLOSdb the best ones are:
the original AT-X or the AT-X Pro SV.

Not knowing your price range, I'll 2nd the Tamron 28-75. The results I've seen from it are very very good.
03-10-2007, 08:41 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by 35mmfilm_user Quote
Have you considered the Tamron version? A LOT of people state it's sharp, even wide open (AlinLA, Benjikan, etc.). I had someone concur on this at our photographic society board meeting just this week. She does portraiture a lot and loves it.

Mine should arrive next Tuesday - ordered from Tri-State, which has always been good to me in the past.

Thoughts?

Regards,
Marc
Thanks, Marc, are you talking about the Tamron 28-75 f2.8 XR? It looks like a really nice lens, but I was hoping for something "pre loved". I'm still trying to save up for a DA 12-24 too.

NaCl(maybe I should just go rob a bank)H2O
03-10-2007, 08:51 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by NaClH2O Quote
Thanks, Marc, are you talking about the Tamron 28-75 f2.8 XR? It looks like a really nice lens, but I was hoping for something "pre loved". I'm still trying to save up for a DA 12-24 too.

NaCl(maybe I should just go rob a bank)H2O
Yessir - the 28-75/2.8 XR Di version. I couldn't wait any longer - it's the one area in lenses I lack (constant aperture wide-->normal angle zoom).

I also lack a super telephoto length lens. I love my 300/2.8 like a firstborn child, and it's nice with the 1.7x or 2X-S converter, but it's not the same as a dedicated one...

True confessions - I am stupid: hunting for a mint or new FA* 600/4... I have no sanity...
03-10-2007, 08:55 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by roscot Quote
Hi Salty,
So you were the one. I got an email, but it was gone when I looked.
From what I've read, there is 4 or 5 versions of this lens. It's a bit confusing.
Yep, that was me. Looks like I saved you a bit of a headache,

QuoteQuote:
According to the SPLOSdb the best ones are:
the original AT-X or the AT-X Pro SV.
Mine reads "Tokina AT-X Pro 28-70mm" no "SV". There is a "CE" on the focus ring.

QuoteQuote:
Not knowing your price range, I'll 2nd the Tamron 28-75. The results I've seen from it are very very good.
Looks like a nice lens but unfortunately out of my range atm. Still trying to save up for the DA 12-24 too. I'm looking to spend no more than about 150 or so USD.

NaCl(looks like I'll have to make do with my trusty Tamron 28-80 for a while longer)H2O

03-10-2007, 09:00 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by 35mmfilm_user Quote
Yessir - the 28-75/2.8 XR Di version. I couldn't wait any longer - it's the one area in lenses I lack (constant aperture wide-->normal angle zoom).

I also lack a super telephoto length lens. I love my 300/2.8 like a firstborn child, and it's nice with the 1.7x or 2X-S converter, but it's not the same as a dedicated one...
The elk shots you've gotten with that rig are superb! Some of the ones I saw on DPR were absolutely stunning!

QuoteQuote:
True confessions - I am stupid: hunting for a mint or new FA* 600/4... I have no sanity...
Well, a second mortgage isn't bad, is it? Or do you have the floor plans to Ft Knox?

NaCl(maybe you hit the lotto?)H2O
03-10-2007, 09:13 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by NaClH2O Quote
The elk shots you've gotten with that rig are superb! Some of the ones I saw on DPR were absolutely stunning!
Thank you - they are a tad soft at full size (with the 2X-S), although they're quite nice even at 50%. I guess I am really demanding in my standards.

Of course, shutter speeds of 1/125 or 1/250 at 600mm on a monopod proves SR does work...

QuoteQuote:

Well, a second mortgage isn't bad, is it? Or do you have the floor plans to Ft Knox?

NaCl(maybe you hit the lotto?)H2O
Sssshhh... since I am a law abiding person, I burned the floor plans - my moral conscience couldn't cope. Therefore it's option one...
03-10-2007, 09:23 AM   #11
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Haha, Goldfinger does. Wait..was it him that hit Ft. Knox? I remember Oddjob was in on it as well.

Anyways, can you post some pics of the Tokina? Are you sure you are focusing right? I found the swtich to dslr really hard because I lost the split image microprism and still have a tough time squinting at the viewfinder.

Anyhow, if the Tokina doesn't deliver (I have an SD70-210 and yea its soft open wide) try some cheaper alternatives.

Kiron 28-85mm f2.8-3.8 (The StovePipe)
Vivitar 28-90mm f2.8-3.5 (by Komine)

Both of these are very sharp throughout the image (both center and corners). They were highly regarded in their day. At present, although masked by marketing and AF and 'pro' zooms, their cult status remains. If you can find one, get it!

Just beware that both are rather a bad statistic when it comes to oil on the aperture blades. My ViviS1 had some grease on the blades but not enough to cause major stop down problems.
03-10-2007, 09:25 AM   #12
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Do you need constant f2.8? If not, have you considered any of the Pentax FA28-105s? They all are really nice, underrated lenses, and some used ones can be had for less than $200. You may need to be patient for one to show up though.
03-10-2007, 10:32 AM   #13
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I'll check into them for sure

QuoteOriginally posted by roscot Quote
Do you need constant f2.8? If not, have you considered any of the Pentax FA28-105s? They all are really nice, underrated lenses, and some used ones can be had for less than $200. You may need to be patient for one to show up though.
Nah, constant 2.8 would be nice, but not a deal breaker if it's not there. For longish stuff I've got the Tamron 90mm 2.8 anyway. I'm more looking for low light capability on the wide end, my venerable Tamron 28-80 gets down to 3.5 (barely) but I'd like the one more stop.

NaCl(thanks for the tip)H2O
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