Tokina will make its SZ 300mm PRO Reflex f/7.1, SZ 600mm PRO Reflex f/8, and SZ 900mm PRO Reflex f/11 reflex lenses available on February 3, 2023.
The three APS-C mirrorless camera lenses were first announced last October via a Japanese-based crowdfunding campaign. The company raised about $85,771, which is more than 3,600% of its goal. Even before blowing its goal out of the water, Tokina said that it planned to launch the lenses internationally by the beginning of 2023, so today’s announcement that they would be generally available by February 3 is right in line with those promises.
The lenses, which are being made available for Sony E, Fujifilm X, and Canon EF-M, are fully manual and are reflex lenses — also known as a mirror or catadioptric design — which allows them to be considerably more compact than lenses that use a more typical optical design.
“Thanks to a catadioptric optical design these lenses are very light weight and super compact,” Tokina says. “These products allow you to enjoy the world of super-tele photography, and is a perfect option for users who are looking for affordable super tele photo lens.”
The main downside with this type of lens is that they don’t produce a “normal” bokeh pattern, but instead one that appears like groups of small rings. Some photographers don’t mind it, but others find it to be too distracting. For those that are able to look past the bokeh pattern, the benefit to the design is how small the lenses can be.
The Tokina SZ 300mmPRO Reflex f/7.1 MF CF is described as “smaller than a cup of coffee” and weighs 235 grams. The SZ 600mmPRO Reflex f/8 MF CF is larger and weighs 545 grams. The SZ 900mmPRO Reflex f/11 MF CF is larger still and weighs 725 grams. The latter two lenses are not what anyone would describe as “small,” but compared to traditional lenses, they are ridiculously compact for the zoom throw.
Another advantage of the reflex lens design is that it tends to be much more affordable to produce. The Tokina SZ 300mmPRO Reflex f/7.1 MF CF is available for pre-order for $399, The SZ 600mmPRO Reflex f/8 MF CF is available to pre-order for $599, and the SZ 900mmPRO Reflex f/11 MF CF is available to pre-order for $699.