In a previous post I wrote about the possibility to use the Tokina AT-X 116 Pro DX 11-16mm lens on a Nikon FX body – in FX mode. I detected some corner softness with the Tokina on my D700 so I thought it would be useful to have a direct comparison between the two lenses in FX mode. The comparison itself is pretty unfair because the Tokina was designed to work only on APS-C (DX) DSLR’s and costs 3 times less than the Nikkor AF-S 14-24mm ultra wide zoom.
Weather conditions for a comparison test shot weren’t too good today but still sufficient to show the sharpness differences between the two ultra wide zoom lenses.
Scene (full image)
f/2.8 corner crop samples
Wide open the Tokina’s corners are pretty ugly in FX mode compared to the Nikkor.
f/5.6 corner crop samples
Even at f/5.6 the Tokina shows very soft corners even though not as bad as at f/2.8.
f/5.6 center crop samples
The Nikkor seems to be a tad sharper in the center and has more overall contrast.
These photos show that the Tokina AT-X 116 Pro DX ultra wide zoom can operate in FX mode on a Nikon FX body but image quality obviously suffers when (ab)using a DX lens in FX mode. Do not use this lens on an FX body, it has too many limitations.
The Tokina is made for DX bodies and image quality on APS-C DX bodies is very good. I’d go as far as to say that it has the best price-perfomance ratio of all DX ultra wide zooms on the market today when used on a DX body.