So yesterday I was in the camera store and and was eying the Nikkor 10.5 and the Tokina 10-17. For starters I hadn't read Ken Rockwells review on the 10-17 till yesterday. But even in the short time I used it, and I am not to picky sometimes, I didn't see any issues with it. So I like having options so I picked up the Tokina 10-17. The intent is to create a 360 pano with 4 shots, not counting up and down. So I get home and I am eager to try this lens out. I take a few standard shots with the lens and they look fine. So I start researching the settings for this lens. Not seeing where anyone had their exact settings for this lens and knowing the point will be near the focus ring I setup for try number one. Which is this shot here. I use two programs for stitching, Autopano Pro and PTGui. I take my first 4 shots into Autopano and it doesn't even detect a pano in the four shots. Odd I thought.. so I open them in PTGui. After I do a basic stitch without making any adjustments I notice the black holes you see on the left and right of the 4 different shots. Keep in mind I ball-parked the pivot point. After some playing around I settled on the settings used for the Nikkor 10.5 as best I could tell it looked about right. So the best I could get it is the result in Shot 1 above. Shot 2 is at approx 13mm with 6 shots taken at 60 degrees dialed in on the RD16. You will notice a stitching error on the right side of shot 2. I think that was from the weight of my flash moving the camera off center as I pivoted.
So... the questions I have are this. It looks like there is not a 180 degree FOV at the top and bottom in landscape or Right and Left in Portrait. Is that an accurate assumption? or did I do something wrong? I shot the pano shots with the camera on the arms in Portrait. Should I shoot the 4 shot 180 degree panos with the camera in landscape? Would I have the same results with the Nikkor 10.5? or do I need to get an 8mm?
I returned the lens the same day I bought it. Because as far as I could tell that lens wasn't going to work and the camera shop person that helped me wasn't familiar with the 4 shot 180 pano setup.
The Tokina @ 10mm and the Nikkor 10.5mm lens are both fullframe fisheyes with a diagonal fov of 180°. In portrait orientation, the fov is around 87°, so 4 shots are not sufficient to cover the full 360° view. The vertical fov is 139°. An 8mm fisheye will give adequate image overlap with 4 shots. See http://www.vrwave.com/ for recommended shooting configurations for various lenses. Choose equivalent camera and lens types when the ones you are interested in are not explicitly listed.
The intent is to create a 360 pano with 4 shots, not counting up and down.
Impossible with the D300 and the Tokina 10-17mm set to 10mm. Only possible with the Sigma 8mm. With the Tokina 10-17mm you need 6 around @ -15 degs plus one up at +60 degs (plus optional down shots...).
Thanks for the input. Thankfully I wasn't off my rocker to far. I should have done some research before I made the initial purchase. I had seen the vrwave site before but I didn't bookmark it, it is now. After doing some research this morning and knowing now that I would have to go real wide to do 4 shots, I am on the fence about getting the nikkor 10.5 or the Tokina 11-16 2.8.
You might also consider the Samyang 8mm fullframe fisheye (aka Polar, Vivitar, Falcon, Rokinon, Bower ...). It's very reasonably priced and has just enough overlap (10%) to manage 360 panoramas in 4 shots.
I am Nikonian and do not have a Tokina 10-17mm. Trying to stay up to date, I have seen a lot of comments of canon users about the Tokina. Conclusion, very good at zoom 10.
Samyang is totally manual. 8mm, most use the 8mm instead of 14mm, seems optically to be very good, comes with a special FOV and the lens seems to be closer to 9mm. But totally manual, this means you do not get any information about shutter speed. Being not experienced this might take you a lot of tests.
My conclusion, before I would buy another lens I would try to get the one I already own - which is a good lens - to work. This means you know your settings.