I’ve been using my Tokina 400mm f/5.6 ever since I bought it as an alternative to my Canon 100-400mm as that lens was getting a bit to expensive for the amount of time I was using it. Here is my test video, which shows how Tokina performs against the 10 times more expensive Canon. In the end the result were not different enough for me to stick with Canon. The Tokina is quite compact for 400mm lens, has a great, smooth focusing ring and nice optical performance. This quick video shows what it’s capable off. It does have some chromatic aberration and flares easier than Canon, but in right lighting conditions it performs beautifully and definitely worth it’s money.
Note, the one I have is a Canon EF mount, so only works with Canon DSLRs. On a plus side you get auto-focusing for stills. If you want to use such lens with different cameras go for Nikon mount, which has aperture adjustment ring on the actual lens, however don’t expect auto-focusing for stills unless you’re using it on Nikon camera.
I try my best to make this website a great resource people interested in vintage lenses for video use, so I hope you’ve enjoyed this post and it will help you save some money on your future lens investments. I’ve joined the ebay partnership program to help me run this website and fund my monthly lens giveaways, so if you found this post useful and would like to help me produce more similar content, please use the links in this post if you’re planning to buy one of these lenses or use this link if you want to buy anything else on eBay. You will not be spending a penny more using these links, while still helping me as I will get a small percentage from any purchase or successful bid you make. A win-win solution for everyone!
Well done and gives a good sense of what the lens can do… I think you could quickly become the GO TO source on the web for vintage lenses. I don’t see a lot of other people doing it… keep up the good work! BEST! Mike
Thank you for your kind comment Mike & sorry for such a late reply!
I got this Tokina AT-X AF SD 400mm F:5.6 with Canon EOS mount, exactly the same lens as yours for very cheap because the old owner says the AF and aperture control via camera is busted, faulty. The aperture is stack on f22.
Now I would use this lens on my Sony NEX 7 body but I would like to be able to control the aperture manually, ( as I looked up on Ebay it’s possible to get an adapter with aperture control for this lens ) do you know how it would be possible to unstack the aperture back to f5,6 without an Canon EOS DSLR body ?
Is it possible to do it manually by disassembling the rear part of the lens ?
I would very much appreciate your answer, thanks :-))
BTW, an excellent review and video about the 400mm lenses and a very good and informative site you have here !
Would be nice to see more videos taken with the Tokina 400mm lens :-))
Hey Ludwig. Thank you for your comments. With Canon EF mount unfortunately it’s not possible to control the aperture manually. It can only be done electronically. Maybe if you take the lens apart you will be able to open the aperture back up, but no manual adapter will help you do that.
Sorry about bad news 🙁
No worries, I fixed some really bad camera and lens problems before so this one shouldn’t be a biggie 🙂
Look my work here: http://www.pbase.com/pganzel/lajson_dissassembly_of_sony_a100
and here: http://www.pbase.com/pganzel/lajson_beercan_project
I will rapport the progress on this one soon :-))