Tokina 100-300mm F4 AT-X 340 AF-II A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 24   
reviewer#44100 date: Jul-11-2018
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Min. 100-400mm APO
price paid:$230 USD
positive:Tokina got it right on this lens. If I gave zoom lenses a 5 rating this would get it. (I reserve 5 for exceptional primes.)
It is sharp through the entire range, even to 300mm.
It's small and light enough to hand hold but heavy enough to be stable when held.
I have a Sigma 1.4x APO EX DG tele converter that fits perfectly giving me 140-420mm with little to no image degradation.
negative:None really. This lens preforms wonderfully for what it is intended. Great for birding!
comment:The Tokina exceeds the Minolta APO 100-400mm in almost every category, especially resolution & contrast. The Min. is easier to handle being significantly lighter. At this point the Minolta is redundant.
The Tokina is one of those lenses that I will never sell.
reviewer#26581 date: May-9-2016
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.6
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:minolta 70-210 f4 and minolta 75-300
price paid:300usd
positive:Great build quality. This lens is very sharp wide open even without the best light (outside).
negative:zoom ring travels in the opposite direction
comment:I gave this lens a 5 for sharpness because I'm rounding up. It's a 4.8 all day. I would rather bring the overall rating up than down, this is a fine lens. This is a great lens for the money if you can find one. I got lucky and found one in Tokyo without any caps or lens hood which cost me more money but still worth it. I use this lens for sports and head shots. I don't hesitate to open it up to f4 as long as you can keep the SS you need. I use this more on a tripod than free hand but on a summer day at the baseball fields where there is plenty of light, no problem hand holding. When shooting into the sun I didn't notice flare but rather haze which cleaned up nicely in Ps. As others have stated, if you find it, buy it!
reviewer#25520 date: Mar-7-2016
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 70-210, Sigma 300 F4, Sigma 135-400, Minolat 70-210 F4, Sigma 70-210 F2.8, etc...
price paid:200 USD
positive:Very sharp from opened diaphragm. Very reliable constructive. backlight resistance.
negative:no! rare...
comment:Very good sharpness, buld "as tank", fast enough, natural color rendition. Rare.
reviewer#14230 date: Apr-23-2015
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:AF 135/2.8.
Sony 70-300G.
Sigma 70-200/2.8
price paid:USD 400 (used)
positive:F/4, of course.
Sharp!
Extremely solid build.
Internal focusing.
Super tele on APS-C. 150-450/f4 on APS-C.
Affordable price.
negative:Rare. Not that many around.
MFD is pretty long. 1:4 or better macro would have been nice.
Not a big deal, but the zoom ring rotates the opposite way compared to the majority of AF lenses.
Not an APO lens. CA is present.
Colors are a bit cool and not quite as saturated as with Minolta lenses. I prefer warmer colors with more saturation.
comment:I haven't run a thorough comparison with the bodies and lenses mentioned above but this is an impression based on overall use, experience, and comparison of my photos on my computer taken with various bodies and lenses. Maybe I'll get to it one day!
Now for the review.
The other reviews are fairly accurate. This is a very high quality constant fast aperture zoom. Sharpness is excellent, on part with 70-300G, which is a stop slower at the longer end and a bit more expensive. At F/4, it is acceptably sharp but not quite as sharp at the 135/2.8 or 85/1.4 G. That's definitely an unfair comparison, I know. However, for me, the ultimate sharpness is both those lenses so I tend to use them for a benchmark.
At f/7.1 it's razor sharp and f/8 seems to be the sweet spot for sharpness. It's stunningly sharp at f/8.
Colors are on the cooler side and a tad lower on the saturation. Definitely not Minolta colors! Can be tweaked to one's liking via an editor.
It does show CA under bad situations like branches against bright sky.
Performs very well across all focal lengths and apertures.

In summary, an excellent lens overall. A very good bang for the buck in terms of a fast mid tele.
The only lenses I can think of which can rival this one are Min 300/f4 (an unfair comparison), Tokina 300/f4 (again unfair due to prime vs zoom) and maybe the 70-400G and 70-400G II (again unfair, from a price perspective).
The Sigma 100-300/f4 is also well regarded and perhaps the closest competitor for the Tokina 100-300/f4. I believe the Sigma supports 1:4 macro which is better than what the Tokina can support.
reviewer#9036 date: May-17-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:400/5.6 Sigma
500/8 Minolta AF Mirror
100-300/4 Sigma
300/4 Minolta G
price paid:
missing
positive:Rotating tripod collar
Exceptional built quality
Well Balanced
Absurdly good flare control, the stock metal hood is almost unncessary
Retains sharpness with a850 when using matched teleconverter
negative:Tokina makes a terrible lens cap
Zoom is the opposite rotation of Minolta lenses
comment:I have the gold ring version of this lens and I possibly just have a perfect copy because I can't fault the lens for what it gives me. The Tokina metal lens hood is quite long for a lens with such great flare control, I ended up buying a rubber collapsible screw in lens hood and have been very happy with it. The tripod collar rotates in 90 degree increments making it very easy to swap to portrait orientation on a tripod or monopod, and helps with handholding as I can rest it on the palm of my hand and use my thumb and fingers to adjust the zoom level. I have used the lens for outdoor portraits, sports, surfers, and it hasn't let me down. I would highly recommend this lens, but you will have to buy it from someone else as I'm not selling.
reviewer#8419 date: Dec-19-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 80-200 HS G, Sony 70-300G, beercon
price paid:518 USD (used, LN-)
positive:Constant f4, build quality, colors, weight
negative:Fixed tripod collar, screw on hood, weight
comment:It's as sharp as the 80-200 HS G or the 70-300G; sharper than the beercan. The colors are very comparable to 80-200 HS G and better than the 70-300G, in my eyes. Focus speed is not quite as fast as either of the above but faster than the beercan. The weight is a two-edged sword for me. It's a big help in panning at the races, but you need a monopod or a blackstrap to carry it any length of time. I have the red ring'd early version with a hard case. I highly recommend this lens, if you can find one.
reviewer#8366 date: Dec-6-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta AF 75-300 F4.5-5.6 Vers. 1!
price paid:399 EUR (USED)
positive:+ sharp at F4
+ nice colours and bokeh
+ great quality (lens and the pictures!)
+ less until none CA's
+ less until none flare and distortion
+ AF faster than the compared lens!
+ eyecatcher!!! :D
negative:- maybe a bit heavy, but train ur arms then its no problem ;)
- otherwise for me nothing
comment:Very very good lens in all things!
Positive and negative see above.
With THIS lens u will have the other glances -> eyecatcher!!! ;)
reviewer#8048 date: Oct-5-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:-Tokina 828 AF Pro
price paid:
missing
positive:-Please see negative.
negative:-Heavy , Too long
-Nothing to complain else
comment:For conclusion , very short word , this is the best tele lens I ever tried.

Surpass 828 Pro easily win every test. Nothing to say.

King of Tokina tele zoom !!
reviewer#8018 date: Sep-24-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:BC,BBC, Tamron 70-300 LD macro1:2
price paid:
missing
positive:sharp
colour
bokeh
CA control
Build
negative:weight, maybe.
not removable tripod collar
comment:nice sharpness even at wide open, stop down aliitle..super sharp. Nice color..similiar to minolta glasses, Tokina Hads More superior beercan body than BBC. Bokeh is smooth. At F4.0, I did not notice any CA, even at Sun bright. you will get nice potrait with this lens..

its true it very heavy, but is not abig deal.. it's hard to find the original hood.. my lens came with 3rd party hood

Recommended Value Tele Lens..
reviewer#6965 date: Feb-25-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:135 2.8, 50 macro, beercan
price paid:400 mint
positive:sharp even with a 2x teleconverter. good contrast, good color. built for life
negative:its heavy
comment:I was using it at my kids gymnastics pratice and the owner had to come make sure i wasn't a LA Photog. It s big, heavy and pure bliss. Amazing lens. I was getting good sharpness with a 2x quantaray teleconverter. f8 600mm sharp lens
reviewer#6329 date: Nov-5-2009
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.9
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:Sony 75-300
Sony 70-300 G SSM
Sigma 70-200 EX F2.8
price paid:350 EUR (Used)
positive:Build like a tank
Constant F4

negative:Weight
Non-removable Tripod mount
comment:I was looking for a replacement for my sony 75-300 (which i bought as kit with the A200), and i found this lens on the internet in very good condition. It a very well build lens, it's all metal. But the build comes with price of a heavy weight.

This lens is really sharp, the sharpness is equal to the sony 70-300G and the sigma 70-200 F2.8. I Gave it 4.5 for sharpness because at 300 wide open it can be a little soft.

One of the down sides of this lens is the Tripod mount, because it's non-removable. When you shoot for the hand, the tripod mount makes the lens difficult to handle.

I sold this lens because of the weight (and i found a cheap sigma 70-200)
reviewer#6210 date: Oct-10-2009
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:Beercan
Big Beercan
Tamron SP 2.8
Tokina 80-200 AT-X Pro 2.8
Quantaray 70-300mm Macro
Minolta 75-300mm (new)
price paid:expensive (new)
positive:everything
negative:Min distance
Weight
comment:I got this lens in new condition (open box).
For the kids, birding or walk around.... The lens is perfect (if you don't mind the weight (~4 pounds with the camera)
I feel the Tokina AT-X pro 80-200 is a little sharper
reviewer#6050 date: Sep-14-2009
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:Beercan (Tokina has better contrast), SAL18-250 (Tokina has much better contrast), Minolta 70-210 (3.5-4.5 and 4.5-5.6) the Tokina again has much better contrast and is way sharper.
Minolta 100-400 APO, I wish my 'new' Apo was as sharp as that Tokina.
price paid:€ 350
positive:Really sharp, even wide open. Watch out for flying insects, they will be seen in the photo... Quite fast autofocus and not too noisy. A beercan isn't build like a tank, this one is! When you use it with the hood, you'll catch everybody's attention. I like the colours and the bokeh is acceptable. Did I say that is really sharp!?
negative:Heavy, it's going away because it's too heavy. I've used it on A350, and its weight test the build quality of the camera. I've always got the feeling that the Tokina was superiour to my A350.
The hood is screw-on-type, which takes quite a lot time to put on. When not using the hood, you'll find out it can't be stored on the lens (backwards).
comment:It's great, build to last and to perform. If you need one, train your arms and buy a bigger bag, then find one and you'll wont be disappointed.

Update 25-2-2010: this lens has been sold, it was too heave for me. Although I miss the lens, because it was better than the beercan and 100-400 I still have.

reviewer#5958 date: Sep-2-2009
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 80-200/2.8 (black)
Minolta 70-210/4 (Beercan)
price paid:650 USD (minty)
positive:- Sharp, sharp, sharp!
- Constant F4
- Build quality (like a tank!)
- Fast AF
- Nice tripod collar
negative:- Screw-in hood
- Heavy (but that's expected)
- Hard to find
comment:I've only had this lens for a very short time, but I can't stop talking about how great it is! Several reviews here are for the "red ring" version of this lens, I own the "gold ring" version – don’t know if there's really a difference.

I listed “Heavy” as a negative and this beast does weigh more than any other lens I own (over 3 pounds!) It’s built like a tank and tanks should be heavy, but it still weighs you down after carrying it around for a while! The screw-in lens hood is very sturdy and very deep, but when it’s in place you can’t remove or replace the lens cap.

This lens is very sharp – even wide open – and it produces wonderful colors and contrast (very similar to my Minolta 80-200/2.8). The zoom range is very nice – 100-300mm is a very useful range and the constant F4 is an added bonus. Although the lens is heavy, it feels well-balanced. The tripod collar is very good - I love that it "clicks" into place when you switch between landscape and portrait.

This lens has been discontinued for a few years and it’s becoming increasingly harder to find. If you happen to run across one – snatch it up quickly! You will not be disappointed!
reviewer#5656 date: Jul-6-2009
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:Maxxum 80-200/2.8
Maxxum 100-300 APO D
Sony 70-200/2.8 SSM
Tamron 70-210 APO
Sigma 70-200 APO
price paid:$400 USD mint-
positive:Very very SHARP
Build quality
f4 constant speed
A tremendous lens!!
negative:Heavy but OK
RARE
Zoom is in opposite direction
comment:What a fantastic lens! The sharpness is very impressive. I have a minty red-ring version that came with a factory clip-on hood...not the usual screw-on variety.

I agree with most other reviews here. This lens has a special build quality. Its very solid and smooth. The pictures I have taken with the example I own are extremely sharp, crisp and contrasty. What a bargain at $400! I believe it is as sharp and contrasty as the Sony/Minolta 70-200 SSM.

It just kills the Maxxum 100-300 APO D I had...and it was a very good lens. Its heavy and long, but that's the only nit-picks I have. Beautiful lens.

The bottom line is this: If you have a chance to purchase this GEM you'd better do it. This Tokina is an excellent, excellent lens. It also uses 77mm filters and is EASILY worth twice what I paid. Hard to find.

UPDATE 11/2010:

Having owned this lens for a couple years I can say with all honesty that this ATX 100-300/4 is at least as good, or BETTER than anything I have owned...that includes the 70-200 SSM and my prized 80-200 HS. As a bonus it performs surprisingly well with the 1.4x Kenko Pro TC. 2x TC is not as good but OK. It's the best zoom lens I have ever used and the last one I would ever sell.
reviewer#4597 date: Dec-30-2008
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Beercan
BBC
Sigma 75-300 DG APO
price paid:569.00 USD
positive:Constant F4
Solid build
Good balance, weight is even across the body
Fairly fast focus
Screw on OEM hood is wide and deep
negative:No focus limiter. Lens will hunt in low contrast/light conditions on occasion.
Screw on OEM hood can be awkward to use.
comment:I have the older "red ring" version. This is a nice lens, even if very rare. This lens takes very nice photos, even at F4. Stop it down to 6.3 or 7.1 and see it really sharpen up. It focuses fairly quick and the constant F4 is a big plus for me. I'd like to run the red ring up against the gold ring ver. to see how they compare. If you can find a red ring it might be worth your while to buy one.
reviewer#4317 date: Nov-3-2008
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 80-200 2.8
Minolta 70-210 F4 (Beercan)
Minolta 100-300 4.5-5.6
price paid:680 USD (used)
positive:- Excellent build
- Solid performer
- Great wide open
- Precise focus
- Built to last
negative:- Just a little heavy, but well balanced, escpecially on the a700 (even better on a monopod or tripod)
- Hard-to-find lens these days
comment:Awesome lens. Even wide open with decent available light. A little on the heavy side, but superb build makes up for it.

Versatile zoom range with F4 constant. Awesome deal compared to Sony 70-200 2.8 SSM for about half the price. Much better range than the Beercan. Solid performer with excellent value. A real gem of a lens.
reviewer#3598 date: May-15-2008
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 100 300 APO
Sigma 70 300 APO DG
Beercan
Minolta 100 2.8 RS MACRO
Minolta 500 F8
price paid:EXPENSIVE
positive:Awesome Sharpness, af speed on 5d and A100 sorprisely quick. build like a tank!!
Very good quality / weigth
negative:Very dificult to find
comment:I´m very happy with this lens!!
I am enchanted and surprised with this objective. much more fast that I hope for it. GREAT quality/weight.
It is very I practical focal range.

If you see one take it!!
reviewer#3255 date: Feb-12-2008
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 100-300APO
Sigma 70-300 DG APO
Tokina 80-400
price paid:300 USD (broken)
positive:Build
Handling
f4
negative:Focusing accuracy? (see review)
comment:New Comments
Over a longer time period I have come to appreciate this lens more and more - though I use it very infrequently. If you can find one it is a worthy alternative to the Sigma 100-300/4.

The only thing I should add to my original review, is that I've noticed at f4 moderate to strong CA in typical high contrast areas (tree branches against bright sky) which I failed to mention below. Also there are occasional situations where flare can wash out the contrast.

Original Review
I bought this lens from eBay in broken condition (condition stated in auction). The AF was not working properly and would often get "stuck". I sent it off to THK Photo (official Tokina west coast repair). They repaired it quickly and for about $100. Once back it looked and worked like new.

I purchased this lens for a specific wildlife safari I was planning to Kanha NP India. A year before I went to Sasan Gir India with the Sigma 70-300 DG APO and was disappointed with its low-light + 300mm performance.

As far as comparing the 2 lenses I can say that the Tokina 100-300 was quite satisfactory in areas where the Sigma failed me and the extra cost and size/weight were well worth the trade off.

I really like the build of this lens. The weight and handling on the A700 actually came to be something I appreciated. The zoom feels very smooth and pleasant to adjust. The focus ring is a little slow for manual focusing but at the same time gives precise control.

As far as optical quality goes, my wife tells me its great (and she is a good authority on this). I write this in a funny way since right now I am looking too critically at my pictures - especially since many of my pictures were mainly taken at high ISO (800+).

Unfortunately the lens' AF broke during the trip. Fortunately it broke in such a way that it only affected focusing near minimum focusing distance and I was able to continue shooting through the trip with it. I'll be sending it back to THK for a re-repair since evidently they didn't do it right the first time.

Speaking of AF, I found it to be quite fast on the A700. In a few situations it surprised me with how well it focused on some fast moving birds. On the 7D it is obviously slower but not terrible. I do wonder if the fast focusing motor of the A700 was what killed the AF though... If I did have a complaint about the AF, it would be that it isn't as accurate as I would like - but maybe that was due to the failing AF system in my specific lens.

Overall I really enjoyed using this lens. I did some research before I went on this trip and was trying to decide between the Sigma 100-300/4 (similar to the Tokina) and a Minolta 200/2.8 with TC (~300/4). In hind sight I know that I made the right decision.
reviewer#2761 date: Sep-21-2007
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.9
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:100 2.8 Macro
Sigma 400 5.6 APO
100-200 4.5
price paid:
missing
positive:Quite sharp
Great colors
Impeccable flare control
Sturdy hood
The camera attaches to the lens, not the other way around.
negative:Screw on hood
Fitting it into a bag (it does fit in the slingshot 200 though)
It zooms the canikon way, not the minolta way.
comment:The lens is very sharp, and light enough for me to handhold. I could see people who are very frail having difficulty getting sharp shots with it, but it does indeed produce beautiful results throughout its aperture range. The colors are great, if a bit warm. The tripod mount swivels around and locks in place securely. It's very strong. The case for it is decent for a hard case. The lens hood is adequate, though I've been finding that the flare is so well controlled that the hood is rarely necessary (I use it anyway though). It's very difficult to find nowadays, and it's a lens that can be had cheaper than anything else even close to its class in the range. I have been getting sharper shots with it than a friend using his sigma 100-300 f/4 on a rebel XT, but it's impossible to say if its sharper overall because there are too many factors involved in cross system (and different user) comparisons to make it of value. All in all though, the lens is sharp and does what you ask of it throughout it's range. If you are going to use the lens for more than a few hours at a time without resting, I'd recommend a monopod. The tripod mount is very nice in both portrait orientation and normal. No complaints there. The autofocus is reliable and much faster on a 7 than a 5D. It's internal focusing and internal zooming, so once you get used to the feel of the lens you're golden. The only real downside is that it's hard to get ahold of nowadays. If you see it, snatch it up.
reviewer#1816 date: Feb-10-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:- Sharp
- Fantastic build quality
- Great colour and contrast
- Convenient range
- Made of metal and is heavy
negative:- Focus not particularly quick
- Lens cap can't be used with lens hood on
comment:I just love this lens on my D7, I find that I use it as much as all my other lenses together (Min 28/2RS, Min 85/1.4, Min 100/2.8RS Macro and more...). In my opinion no Minolta lens that I have held comes close to the feeling of this all metal gem. I do use all of the zoom range, not just the 300mm end. I usually step down to F4.5 but the quality is good at F4.0 as well. If you don't have a lens in this range and you happen to find a Tokina AF 100-300/4 in good shape, do youself a favour and buy it!
reviewer#654 date: Apr-2-2006
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.9
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I have experience with this lens
compared to:KM 11-18, KM 28-75, Tamron 24-135, Tokina 300 F4
price paid:
missing
positive:built like a tank, constant F4, beautiful color rendition
negative:Non-removable lens holder, no built in lens hood, 77MM filter, spun opposite when zooming compared to other lenses lenses
comment:I LOVED this lens. It has to be one of the best zoom ranges for DSLRs. I owned it for 7 months and sold it beacuse I began shooting at weddings and didn't need the range nor weight. Also, when shooting wildlife it wasn't enough range to really get up close to animals.
F4 was great but it still seemed soft.
reviewer#268 date: Dec-7-2005
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tokina 100-400 f/5.6-6.7
Tokina 400 f/5.6 AT-X
Sony 70-300 SSM G
Minolta 300 f/4 G
price paid:~$200 (used)
positive:SHARP!
Built like a tank.
good ergonomics.
well placed tripod collar
negative:It is heavy, but well built lenses weigh more. Not sure if this is really a negative.
comment:I owned a cheap Tokina 100-400 and was very disappointed in the picture quality (sharpness, flare). I was looking for a replacement and considering the new KM 100-300 D, but it was out of stock everywhere. I stumbled across this lens on KEH and read a few reviews which sounded positive, so I splurged the $200 for it. Wow! What a great lens.

I also have a Tokina 400 f/5.6 AT-X since I had read good reviews. This lens blows that lens away when it comes to sharpness and contrast.

Prior to this purchase, I had every intention of buying the KM 300 f/4 G as my main wildlife lens (I can't afford the big glass!). However, I am so happy with the sharpness of this lens at 300 that I don't really see the need to go out and buy another sharp 300 f/4.

It doesn't focus lighting fast, but it is fast enough for me and it doesn't hunt.

Sure, it is a big lens and the KM is smaller and lighter. But the constant f/4 and tripod collar make this lens a better choice for me.

Great lens. If you can find one, snatch it up!

EDIT - I have subsequently purchased the Minolta 300 f/4 G and the Sony 70-300 SSM G. The Minolta is clearly a superior lens to the Tokina, but not so much so that I put the Tokina away. It's closer focusing and ability to zoom means I still pull it out when I need the flexibility of a zoom.
The Sony SSM does focus faster and is lighter, but I think the image quality at the long end is superior in the Tokina lens. The Sony is a little bit softer at 300mm. It is really close, and the Sony is a nice lens, but it isn't twice as nice as the Tokina and yet it costs twice as much (or more!).
reviewer#102 date: Aug-16-2005
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I have experience with this lens
compared to:Minolta 70-210 f4, Nikkor 70-200vr f2.8, Tokina 300mm f2.8, Tamron 300mm f2.8, Minolta 300mm f4
price paid:
missing
positive:Wonderful build quality, excellent optics, great lens.
negative:No longer manufactured.
comment:I use this lens on a Minolta 7d. For the money, there appears to be no equal. Why doesn't Tokina bring this beautiful gem back to production?
reviews found: 24   

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 24
  • sharpness: 4.83
  • color: 4.79
  • build: 5.00
  • distortion: 4.96
  • flare control: 4.71
  • overall: 4.86

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