Tokina AT-X M35 PRO DX AF 35mm f/2.8 Macro for Canon and Nikon review

Friday September 07 2012

Lens Review
Introduction | Tokina AT-X M35 PRO DX AF 35mm f/2.8 Macro lens performance | Tokina AT-X M35 PRO DX AF 35mm f/2.8 Macro versus competition | Conclusion

Tokina AT-X M35 PRO DX AF 35mm f/2.8 Macro Canon mounted on Canon 7D vs Pentax smc DA 35mm F2.8 Macro Limited mounted on Pentax K-5 vs Nikon AF-S DX Micro NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G mounted on Nikon D7000 :

Tokina is not the only manufacturer to produce a unique prime standard macro lens. Pentax has the nearly identical, at least in specifications, smc DA 35mm f/2.8 Macro Limited. Nikon also competes with its AF-S DX Micro NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G.

But the Tokina AT-X M35 PRO DX AF 35mm f/2.8 Macro for Canon and Nikon rises above the competition for its:

  • Price, marketed at about $600 (USD), it can be found for half that price on a number of web retail sites like Amazon and B&H. This makes it a bargain against the $700 priced Pentax smc DA 35mm f/2.8 Macro Limited.
  • Better resolution, especially against Pentax’s 35mm macro, and at the widest apertures of f/2.8 and f/4.
  • Slightly better control of lens shading, especially against the Nikon AF-S DX Micro NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G.
The Tokina AT-X M35 PRO DX AF 35mm f/2.8 Macro for Canon and Nikon, left, has the best control of lens shading of the bunch, especially compared to Nikon’s Micro NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G.

Nikon users deciding between Tokina 35mm f/2.8 Macro for Nikon and the Nikon AF-S DX Micro NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G can note the latter is better at:

  • Controlling chromatic aberration, making it particularly useful in high contrast environments.
  • Price, with a suggested retail value of $280 (USD), it is the most affordable lens of the three.

Photographers considering an investment in a Pentax camera and pool of lenses will be happy to know the smc DA 35mm f/2.8 Macro Limited ran mostly even with the image quality of Tokina’s 35mm f/2.8 macro and Nikon’s 40mm f/2.8 micro. The Pentax lens’ biggest advantage is its size, measuring about 4.5 centimeters in length and weighing a feather-like 215 grams, makes it an ideal piece of optics for photographers who are looking to lighten the load of their camera bags.