I'm almost through with my wide-angle-zoom comparison. See some conclusions here:
As you start with lenses, let me asure you that 18mm is already quite wide on an APS-C sensor cam like the Nikons or the resp. Canons: It translates into 27mm on a Nikon and 29mm on an Canon.
So after a lot of testing with the ultr-wides between 10(!) and 24mm I can say if you're not really really into serious ultra-wide photos, try starting with a 17/18mm-XXmm lens.
"Serious" meaning, doing photos like this (@12mm)
. The first photo could have been done with a kit-zoom starting at 17/18mm by stepping a few feet away but with a serious change in perspective - not the "in the face" feeling with the dog. The second shot would have been impossible due to the fact that with a few steps back I would have drowned in the Gracht behind my back
Addendum: If you forego the last two millimeters (10mm vs 12mm) you could start with a 12-24mm lens like the Tokina and than add a standard-zoom beginning with 24mm like the Nikon 24-120mm VR. Or if you want the FF (aka FX) route to be open for later upgrade consider the brand spanking new Nikon 14-24mm. This is rumoured to be the best full-frame glass you can get for that range beeing equivalent to a 9mm (!) straight (non-fisheye) lens on an APS-C sensor. The alternative, the Sigma 12-24mm is also FF/FX compatible (beeing equivalent to a 8(!!)mm on APS-C), but sadly has some nasty color-fringing (see here
) and flare
. Both can be looked over/avoided esp. as this lens is only 1/3 of the respective Nikon lens...
Thomas (beware: Nikon-fanboy and moderator!) My Lens Reviews
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