Tokina AT-X 80-200mm f/2.8 vs Pentax SMC 200mm f/2.5

Tokina AT-X 80-200mm f/2.8 vs Pentax SMC 200mm f/2.5

After doing 2 separate tests on 2 of my better long lenses, Tokina AT-X 80-200mm f/2.8 and Pentax SMC 200mm f/2.5 I decided to put them against each other at 200mm to figure out which one is better.

As I expected Tokina is much softer wide open. Pentax is sharp even wide open., which is probably the best thing about this lens. The problem with the Pentax thought is that there is a lot of chromatic aberration, which is visible even at f/5.6, but finally disappears at f/8. The Tokina on other hand deals with the chromatic aberration much better and what’s more important even at f/4 it matches the sharpness of Pentax.  At f/4 Tokina actually achieves more pleasant image than much more expensive Pentax. At f/8 both lenses look pretty much identical, but since these are suppose to be fast lenses, that is a bit irrelevant.

Pentax is probably more usable at f/2.8, but from f/4 I choose Tokina as the winner.  F/4 is fine for me, I don’t need the lens to be completely wide open, so I’m glad I kept the Tokina and sold the Pentax.  Tokina much cheaper than Pentax and much more flexible thanks to it’s convenient zoom range. Pentax is still a great lens, but probably a bit overpriced even for a vintage lens. I love great value for money lenses and Tokina is exactly than, so this is the one I highly recommend to anyone.

These are my opinions. I would love to hear yours.

pentax smc 200mm f/2.5Pentax SMC 200mm f2.5 on eBay





Tokina 80-200mm f/2.8

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3 Responses to Tokina AT-X 80-200mm f/2.8 vs Pentax SMC 200mm f/2.5

  1. I didn’t initially plan to buy this lens as i’m only just starting out film, but it came up on Trademe (the New Zealand version of eBay) for $35! (just below $30USD). It’s listed as good condition with no scratches or fungus, so I’m insanely pleased with this (given they seem to sell for a huge range of prices between $100 and $400 on ebay). Thanks for this video in making me realise this was a good lens to buy! (hopefully this isn’t a too good to be true story

    • You are really lucky J P. For such price you are getting amazing deal. The lens is awesome even for $200, let alone $30. I’m sure you;ll like it, but either way let me know what you think of it when you get it.

  2. Thank you for the review and recommendation of the Tokina 80 – 200mm F2.8 I purchased this lens with a Nikon D200 camera for $300.00 a few years ago from a friend of a my friend. Am recently using it more often, shooting birds and other wildlife. I like this lens very much. Also have a tokina 11-20mm F2.8 wide angle lens. Much more expensive but also a very good lens. I will try shooting more at F4 with the 80 – 200mm to get sharper images. Once again thanks and I have subscribed to your website!

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