Old Lens Modern Camera – Tokina 20-35mm f/3.5-4.5 Review (Autofocus)

July 06, 2015  •  Leave a Comment



Tokina 20-35mm f/3.5-4.5

Some of you probably know by now i have a thing for vintage and old lenses from the days of film era. I had been searching for a lens for my Landscape work and night time light painting, Wide enough for Full frame and that would not break the bank. A lot of decent old lenses originally meant for film camera’s can be had for fairly cheap on eBay.

After doing a bit of research and knowing that i did not need a fast lens or my landscape work i decided to hunt down one of these lenses.

They come in two different versions mk1 and mk2 (mk1 apparently better and is smaller, I found a mk1). They are unfortunately as rare as hens teeth, When found though can be had for a very reasonable price.  This one came in at £120 with shipping from Japan, It came with original case and UV Filter (72mm thread).

When it arrived this morning i was surprised at how small and compact the lens actually is. When i opened the package i wanted to send it off to a museum, for something so old it looks as though it has never been used in its life, The leather case still smells new. (It was released early 90’s).

It has a solid metal construction, manual aperture ring, and lovely smooth focus and zoom rings.

Of course though the proof is in the pudding and i decided to test it out in a garden, These images are just test shots, all shot wide open at 3.5 and 4.5 because of course things only get better when you go higher on the f stop range.

20mm wide open. Nice and sharp in the center, Not so much around the edges.  a small amount of vignetting which is easily fixed in Post. (Remember to shoot RAW.)

The close focus on this lens is 0.4 meters.



At 35mm Nice and sharp all round the image with some nice DOF.



20mm Landscape again very sharp, fall off at the edges though.



35mm Pretty sharp across the image.




The focus seems pretty fast with this lens too, of course you wont be shooting wildlife with these lengths.

I am so pleased with this lens and highly recommend it for anyone on a budget. It will do me until i can get my hands on a Nikon 14-24mm again, Or for when i need to use filters on the front of the lens (This one does rotate though).

As always look for a good copy with no dust and scratches. I managed to get lucky with this one.




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