Tokina 80-400mm F4.5-5.6 AT-X 840 AF-II A-mount lens review by SiSweeney

reviewer#11341 date: Sep-14-2013
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony 18-70 4.5-5.6
Sony 50mm 1.8
Sony 18-135 SAM 3.5-5.6
price paid:£165
positive:Brilliant Range
Well built
Very Sharp @ 80mm
Tri/monopod bracket
Heavy (but doesn't bother me that much)
comment:O.K as a beginner to DSLR it has taken me a few years to commit to buying another lenses. As an avid windsurfer and outdoor enthusiast I wanted to get some better shots of my mates windsurfing. Looking at the reviews on Dyxum it seemed fair enough to part with my money for a lenses of this size at under £200.
I agree with the majority of the reviews and can only elaborate that it is not too good on full 400mm zoom (600 equivalent to FF), but still good to have the extra 100 as an option. It's built to last and has a nice solid ring instead of a plastic one, has a tripod mount (but you can't take it off)and a decent hood to reduce flare.
Looking into other zooms at this price I think I defiantly got a steal, if you see one grab one because they are very rare for the Sony Alpha's.

It is very sharp @ 80-150 range and above this a bit of sharpening in Lightroom goes a long way. I agree that just taking maximum zoom down a notch results in better quality and less CA. I have managed to get some fantastic pics using this lenses (I'll add them) and realise what a difference a bit a glass can make especially compared to the kit lenses.

This Lens has made me buy a better camera A65 and I am now looking at buying prime lenses to really get the most out photography. If your a novice like me, don't hesitate to get better glass than the horrible kit lenses supplied.

I've have to re-comment on the 400mm, I'm still learning and realise at this distance not only using a tripod but timer or remote release can have brilliant results and is vital! Please see the photo of the moon shot @ 400mm in this way and therefore it is still pretty sharp at 400mm if used correctly (by the photographer).

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 6
  • sharpness: 4.00
  • color: 4.33
  • build: 5.00
  • distortion: 4.50
  • flare control: 4.00
  • overall: 4.37 - Home of the alpha system photographer
In memory of Cameron Hill - brettania