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10-25-2010, 09:25 AM   #1
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Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm f3.5 Macro Focusing Auto Zoom VMC-First Edition_TEST SHOTS

I'm sure this would be of some help for people who are looking for shots taken with this lens since Pentax Forums usually rank #1 in search results. My thoughts aren't fully formed on this lens yet but the image quality and specifications are impressive to say the least.





QuoteQuote:
The first edition was designed by Vivitar (Ellis Betensky of NASA Optics fame), had a hand in it, and it was built by Kiron. (67mm filter) It is a professional caliber lens, with a 1:2 macro feature built into it. It was the first zoom, designed with the aid of computers, that truly rivaled the OEM lenses of the time. That was in "76."
Source:
Vivitar Series 1, 70-210mm/3.5 Kiron - FM Forums

The first 4 images were taken at f3.5 (ISO200). The rest were taken at f5.6 to f8(ISO800-1600). The Pentax K-x was hand held on a bright, cloudy day. RAWs were output in Lightroom with only exposure and color balance adjustments. No contrast/saturation adjustments were applied in PP.

















10-25-2010, 02:06 PM   #2
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A very nice lens in the ~$100 range. I use mine for most of my mid to long telephoto shots. The biggest disadvantages of the lens on most digital bodies is the lack of an A setting for aperture control through the body and the inability to transmit focal length data for the camera's shake reduction system.

This set has most of the samples I've posted online from my copy: Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm f/3.5 Version One - a set on Flickr
10-25-2010, 10:12 PM   #3
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This lens has been lately my only zoom in ~70-200 range and I too like it a lot. There is some pf in high contrast scenes at f3.5-4 but at 5.6 and smaller it works very well. The close focusing is a bit awkward with the macro switch. Sometimes I forget I'm in macro mode and try to focus on something further away.
05-12-2011, 10:24 PM   #4
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I realize this thread is a bit old, but I am currently looking at this lens and am very interested. Aside from the M42 mount, will the lens require any modification to use with my K-X?

Thanks in advance!

05-13-2011, 12:57 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by shinjitsu Quote
Aside from the M42 mount, will the lens require any modification to use with my K-X?
It should work just fine. Are you familiar with screwmount lenses? If not, be aware of the A/M switch near the base. Using this lens on a DSLR, you'll want to keep the switch on M (manual). If it's on A (auto) the aperture will stay wide open even when you turn the aperture ring. More info here https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-beginners-corner-q/110658-using-ma...x-dslrs-f.html

I have the m42 version of this lens, and it gives good results on my K10D. But, when I first got my lens, I had trouble figuring out how to get it into the "macro" setting. If you have trouble too, ask for help here before forcing anything on the lens.

And, if you can't examine the lens, be aware it's big and hefty. On a tripod it'll be very nose heavy. My copy has no zoom creep, but that could be an issue, too.

I hope I'm not telling you things you already know...

Good luck,
Tim
05-13-2011, 10:34 PM - 1 Like   #6
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That looks like a very nice lens!

Just in case you're wondering about what focal length to input to the camera (assuming you have SR switched on), I would say the following:

For general use, the best compromise setting, which would enable you to have a decent amount (or better!) of SR at any zoom setting, would be 100mm.

If you want maximum SR, you have to match the value you input to the actual focal length in use. This can be awkward, but the thing to avoid is to zoom out to a short FL when you've given a high value to the camera. (If you were to set the value to 200mm, and shoot at 70mm, you'd end up nearly doubling the shake you'd get with SR off!)
05-14-2011, 06:27 PM   #7
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@all_thumbs: thank you very much for all of your help. I was just a bit weary because I had purchased a k mount lens that I was fairly certain would fit, only to find that I have wasted my money. I will be sent pictures tomorrow and go to purchase it Monday if everything looks good. Just in time for my trip, I'm so excited!
05-14-2011, 07:01 PM   #8
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You're welcome, Shinjitsu. If you're preparing for travel, you already have enough to think about. But, if you need it, here's some very helpful information about buying used lenses (thanks to RioRico): https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-lens-articles/59245-pawnshop-lense...ers-guide.html

Re Shake Reduction - That's good advice from m42man. I often wonder myself what value to enter with zooms.

Best wishes,
Tim


Last edited by .a.t.; 05-15-2011 at 10:58 AM. Reason: credit where it's due
06-19-2011, 08:58 AM   #9
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I picked one up today, in excellent condition, for 8 GBP, I am a happy bunny. A quick test tells me this will be a well used lens.
06-19-2011, 10:51 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by all thumbs Quote
...Re Shake Reduction - That's good advice from m42man. I often wonder myself what value to enter with zooms...
If you have several zooms, you may need the info to enable you to choose the best FL to input to the camera. Here's the formula:

FL value = 2*H*L/(H+L)

where H is the max FL of the zoom, L the min FL.

Assuming the calculated value isn't one of those offered by the camera, it's usually better to choose the nearest FL lower than calculated, unless there's a much closer value higher.
06-19-2011, 11:11 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lloydy Quote
I picked one up today, in excellent condition, for 8 GBP, I am a happy bunny. A quick test tells me this will be a well used lens.
Wow, that IS cheap, sounds like a car boot bargain. They were very expensive in their day - I seem to remember those lenses costing 140, but I may be a few pounds out here. Anyway, if you allow for inflation plus a bit more to allow for wages growth, you could be talking 700 pounds in today's money. To further put it into perspective, I think I can remember some more prices from about 1980:

M 28/2.8: 60
M 75-150/4: 75
M 80-200/4.5: 110
Tak (Bayonet) 135/2.5: 30
M 135/3.5: 45-50
MX (black) + M50/1.7: 115
K1000 body: 55
Canon A1 + 50/1.8: 210
Hoya HMC 49mm skylight filter: 5

Considering the capabilities of modern DSLRs and lenses, I reckon we're doing pretty well nowadays (just wish the build quality and QC on modern lenses could match the old ones' though).
06-20-2011, 01:10 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by m42man Quote
If you have several zooms, you may need the info to enable you to choose the best FL to input to the camera. Here's the formula:

FL value = 2*H*L/(H+L)

where H is the max FL of the zoom, L the min FL.

Assuming the calculated value isn't one of those offered by the camera, it's usually better to choose the nearest FL lower than calculated, unless there's a much closer value higher.
This formula, I don't doubt the efficacy of it since I cannot offer anything to counter, but isn't it a bit simplistic? It doesn't take into account for the lens' physical size and weight. Here are two Tamron MF zoom sitting at the opposite ends of the Adaptall-2 lens line up. Tamron 159A, 70~210/4~5.6 and Tamron SP 30A, 80-200/2.8. The 159A weighs 353g and 30A weighs 1359g, nearly four times as much. According to the formula, the FL value would be 115mm for either of these lenses, this value might be sufficient for the former, but for the latter?

As I've said, I don't know enough about the subject to make an intelligent argument to counter the formula, but in my uninformed opinion this formula is incomplete.

Thanks,
06-20-2011, 01:36 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by excanonfd Quote
This formula, I don't doubt the efficacy of it since I cannot offer anything to counter, but isn't it a bit simplistic? It doesn't take into account for the lens' physical size and weight. Here are two Tamron MF zoom sitting at the opposite ends of the Adaptall-2 lens line up. Tamron 159A, 70~210/4~5.6 and Tamron SP 30A, 80-200/2.8. The 159A weighs 353g and 30A weighs 1359g, nearly four times as much. According to the formula, the FL value would be 115mm for either of these lenses, this value might be sufficient for the former, but for the latter?

As I've said, I don't know enough about the subject to make an intelligent argument to counter the formula, but in my uninformed opinion this formula is incomplete.

Thanks,
Hi, excanonfd! Well, the SR system is a bit of a mystery to many people (and I myself learned something new - to me - just recently), and it's not something that's explained anywhere in any great detail.

However, here's broadly how it works:

There are sensors in the camera which measure the amount of shake (actually rotational accelerations in up to 3 axes - pitch, yaw, and roll in the case of the K5/7). These accelerations need to be examined by the camera in order for it to determine velocities.

When it has the correct velocity info, then it has the ability to make the camera image sensor move at just the right velocity so that the movement of the lens's projected image is exactly tracked. But, in order for it to do this, it needs to know one more thing: the focal length of the lens. That's why it prompts the user for this info when it doesn't recognise the lens.

Note that all of this has nothing to do with the mass of the lens; a heavier lens might damp out shake, or it may induce it, but it doesn't matter - the camera just measures it and takes the steps necessary to compensate. If it knows the lens's FL that is...
06-20-2011, 01:42 AM   #14
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Just a bit more background to this:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-dslr-discussion/132496-shake-reduc...ll-time-2.html
06-20-2011, 01:24 PM   #15
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Considering the quality of this lens ( note I have owned it since 1981) I am always surprised at the low value it commands used. I have ultimately replaced mine with the first generation Sigma APO 70-200/2.8

It seems that history will repeat itself with the sigma. The first version was the best
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