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Got a spare $9000? Tokina unveils ambitious 135mm T1.5 Vista Cinema Prime

Tokina 135mm T1.5 Vista Cinema Prime
(Image credit: Tokina)

Tokina have long been a provider of pro-quality third party lenses to the photography industry, garnering a loyal following for their superior optics and high-end handling. Favorites include the AT-X 116 PRO DX II wide angle lens and AT-X 24-70 F2.8 PRO FX standard zoom, although the range covers a wide spectrum of focal lengths and functions for both APS-C and Full Frame camera models. 

Shown at IBC 2019, this new announcement is aimed squarely at videographers however and is sure to get the market excited. Introducing the Tokina Cinema Vista 135mm T1.5 which becomes the seventh model in Tokina's Vista cine lens range - and the seventh in the range with a wide T1.5 maximum iris setting (which is particularly impressive on a 135mm lens).

The 135mm T1.5 will be available in Canon EF, Sony E, Micro Four Thirds, and Arri PL mounts

The lens, which projects an image circle covering an area larger than a standard 36x24mm Full Frame sensor, combines an exciting 135mm focal length with a bright T1.5 aperture. This should enable standard to short-telephoto shots with reduced depth-of-field, for that professional cinematic look many videographers crave, while allowing clips to be made in lower ambient light, without having to increase sensitivity.

Sstandout features from the specification are 8K compatibility, for sharp images at ultra-high resolutions and 9 blade aperture, for silkier bokeh effects and pleasant spectral highlights. The lens construction also incorporates aspherical elements for reduced distortion and special coatings for minimal chromatic aberration. At the front there is a 112mm filter ring.

The 135mm optic joins a family of Tokina cinema lenses, previously spanning 18mm wideangle to 105mm short telephoto 

The 135mm optic joins a family of Tokina cinema lenses, previously spanning 18mm wideangle to 105mm short telephoto 

(Image credit: Tokina)

Geared focus and aperture control rings allow for more precise adjustments. A feature which sets the Tokina Cinema Vista 135mm T1.5 apart as a true professional video lens, is a design which minimizes focus breathing - an effect where a slight change in composition occurs as focus is pulled from infinity towards the minimum focus distance. 

The lens employs an MFT mount, imperial focus markings, a support foot for extra stabilization and weighs in at 3.12 kg. Probably the most notable aspect of the new optic is the price which, while not insignificant, is considerably lower than for competing models such as the $21,750 ZEISS Supreme Prime 135mm T1.5.

The Tokina lens is already available for pre-order for $8,999.

The Zeiss Supreme Prime 135mm T1.5 is a competing model but costs more than twice the price of the Tokina lens

The Zeiss Supreme Prime 135mm T1.5 is a competing model but costs more than twice the price of the Tokina lens

(Image credit: Zeiss)

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