Tokina FíRIN 20mm f/2 FE AF - Review / Test Report
Lens Reviews - Sony Alpha (Full Format)

Review by Klaus Schroiff, published June 2019

Introduction

As far as ultra-wide lenses are concerned, all the rage is about going even more extreme. A few years ago, 16mm was considered to be the far wide end. Then 15mm, 14mm and now even 10mm lenses are available. However, does this make sense? In a moment of honesty, we probably have to admit that 18mm - and maybe even 20mm is really in the mainstream spot in this lens segment providing images that are still wide without the artificial look. Tokina obviously thought along the same lines and released two lenses here - the Tokina FíRIN 20mm f/2 FE AF and MF for Sony FE mount. They share the very same design and only differ mechanically with the AF version (tested here) targeting photographers and the manual focus version meant for video (including de-clicked manual aperture ring). Price-wise you should be able to buy the AF lens for around 900USD/EUR. The MF version is ca. 200USD/EUR more affordable.

The mechanical quality is of the Tokina lens is impressive. It's a simple yet beautiful all-metal construction. The physical length remains constant throughout the focus range (internal focusing system). Tokina abandoned the somewhat dated focus-clutch mechanism in favor of a modern AF/MF integration similar to what you can find on Sony lenses. You may have noticed that we are talking about a f/2 lens here - thus it's faster than most lenses in this range. Keeping this in mind, the lens size is surprisingly small and light-weight and it matches nicely with the Sony mirrorless cameras. A petal-shaped lens hood is provided as part of the package.

Autofocusing has always been a bit of a weak spot with Tokina lenses and this also applies here. The speed is rather slow by contemporary standards. However, in this lens segment, the aspect is more surprising rather than really relevant. Manual focusing works "by wire" thus you drive the AF motor by turning the lens. The coupling is very indirect. If you do precision focusing, you sometimes have to turn the focus ring a lot till you actually see some focus action. If manual focusing is on your priority list, you may be better off with the Tokina FíRIN 20mm f/2 FE MF. The Tokina lenses are compatible with Sony's in-body image stabilization system as well as image auto-correction.

Specifications
Optical construction13 elements in 11 groups including 2xAspherical & 3x SLD elements
Number of aperture blades9 (rounded)
min. focus distance0.28m (max. magnification ratio 1:10.3)
Dimensions73.4x81.5mm
Weight464g
Filter size62mm
Hoodpetal-shaped (bayonet mount, supplied)
Other features-
MountSony FE