RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 Review

07/05/2017 - 11:18
RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5. review




 RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 — wide-angle manual prime lens for 35mm format. Produced by different systems: Nikon, Canon FD, Pentax P/K, Minolta.

Abbreviation 'RMC' means that lens has brand Tokina multicoating calls 'Rainbow Multi Coating', it was using in 80-th. Another same lens was produced under the name Vivitar 17mm F3.5 MC.

Optical design — 11 elements in 9 groups.

Generally, Tokina made four version of the 17mm f/ 3.5 lens, all from the film era.
First Tokina MF 17 mm f/ 3.5 SL, which has the single coating (1979-1984).
Second (1984-1993) — RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5, which presented in this review.
Third (1993-1999) — Tokina AF 17 mm f/ 3.5 AT-X Aspherical, which has autofocus and aspherical element.
Fourth (1999-2005) — Tokina AF 17 mm f/ 3.5 AT-X PRO, AT-X PRO series.

 

RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 specs

Focal length: 17mm
Aperture: f/ 3.5—16
Weight (g): 305
Length (mm): 50
Filter Ø (mm.): 67
Aperture blades: 6
Min. Focus distance (m.): 0.25

 

RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 handling and mechanics

A lens assembled in the metal barrel and pleasant for use.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 on Nikon

RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 on Nikon D3100, well set on the camera.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5

The front lens has a diameter of only 40 mm and is slightly planted in the barrel.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5

Closer to the front lens there is a rubberized focusing ring 12 mm wide. The ring rotates 180 degrees, providing a smooth focus. In this case, the front part of the lens extends approximately 2 mm, it is almost imperceptible. The front lens does not rotate.

Closer to the bayonet is the metal diaphragm control ring. The diaphragm closes discretely in the steps: 3.5 - 5.6 - 8 - 11 - 16. There are no middle values, but it would be desirable. The number of petals of the diaphragm is 6.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5

Initially, my copy was for Pentax with a P/K mount, but I adapt it for Nikon F.

 

RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 Photo Examples

All photos are taken with Nikon D3100, export from RAW with slight correction of exposure.

RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 Sharpness

The lens has a good sharpness from the wide-open, and when it closes to f / 5.6 it increases even more.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples children
f/ 3.5

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples subway
f/ 3.5

When it closed to f/ 8, I did not notice a big increase in sharpness, but the DOF grows and vignetting disappears.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples lake
f/ 5.6

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples Lviv
f/ 5.6

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples perspective
f/ 8

It seemed to me that at infinity the sharpness is better than at short distances.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples panorama
f/ 8

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples
f/ 8

RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 character

The lens has good plasticity. Images are nice. Thanks to an ultra-wide angle on a full frame, you can get unusual perspectives.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples pigeons
f/ 8

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples flowers
f/ 5.6

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples car
f/ 3.5

On the APS/C sensor camera, the angle will be equal to 25.5 mm, which is also quite well.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples building
f/ 8

The lens is good for shooting landscapes and panoramas. In landscapes thanks to a wide angle, you can focus on the front subjects.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples forest
f/ 5.6

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples rock
f/ 8

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples trees
f/ 8

You can also shoot with such an angle of growth and belt portraits of people with an informative background when it is part of the scene.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples child portrait
f/ 5.6

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples kid on lake
f/ 3.5

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples kid
f/ 8

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples child
f/ 3.5

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples portrait
f/ 3.5

On wide-angle lenses, a good blur is not easy to achieve, almost impossible. But at MFD, you can still observe a pleasant blur.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples bokeh
f/ 3.5 MFD

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples bokeh
f/ 3.5 MFD

The lens is also well suited for outdoor photography. The hyperfocal distance at the diaphragm f / 3.5 starts from about 9 meters, and at f/ 8 - 4 meters. So on a bright, sunny day, you can put f/ 8 focus on hyperfocal and catch interesting street stories without worrying about focusing.

Also, it is convenient to shoot night panoramas. Thanks to a short focus, I was able to shoot handheld at a shutter speed of 1/6 sec and get a clear unblurred photo.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples night
f/ 3.5 1/8 ISO 400 handheld

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples night
f/ 3.5 1/6 ISO 400 handheld

 

RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 contrast and color rendition

The lens performs a good contrast. Well copes with strong back and side light.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples sun
f/ 8

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples ducks
f/ 8

At a certain angle, you can catch a flare, and they are very pronounced, especially on the wide-open.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples
f/ 3.5

You can use the flare as an artistic technique, but if you do not want to catch them, it is recommended to use a hood.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples road
f/ 8

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 photo examples
f/ 5.6

 

RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 distortion and vignetting

The lens has a well-adjusted distortion. On the APS/C sensor, it is almost invisible, I did not check it on the full frame camera. For such a wide angle, these are very good indicators.

Below is an example of distortion, and you can also see vignetting on the wide-open.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 distortion and vignetting
f/ 3.5 distance of 2 meters

Vignetting is well present and begins to disappear after f/ 8.

RMC Tokina 17mm f/ 3.5 distortion
f/ 3.5

Summary
RMC Tokina 17mm 1:3.5 is a nice wide-angle manual focus lens. Has good optical characteristics and build quality.





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