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08-16-2011, 09:53 AM   #1
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vivitar 28-210mm version/cost?

So I impulse bought a vivitar 28-210mm 3.5 5.6 with a minolta mount, with the intention of converting it to k mount. I was under the impression long zooms were expensive so I jumped at getting one cheap. Turns out there are many different vivitar 28-210. I'm mostly finding info on autofocus and a lenses (this one is full manual though I don't know if being minolta mount has anything to do with that).

Long story short, if I can get one k mount with a or even auto focus for 20-30$, why waste money and time converting this one (or even maybe stop down metering capabilities from the button). Some seem to go cheap and some seem more expensive ant there seem to be lots of different versions. Does any one know what version this is or what its worth, or quality? It will cost 5-10$ or maybe even a little more on top of what I paid for the lens to convert it.
serial number is just a sticker om the barrel and starts with 0945.

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Last edited by ripit; 06-30-2013 at 07:04 PM.
08-16-2011, 10:40 AM   #2
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no idea on pricing for this one, but aside from the series 1 zooms which are well regarded (and priced like it) most of these older 1 touch zooms go for a song. the longer reaches like this one (as opposed to 70-200/210) are mediocre at best and you can pick up the AF ones pretty cheaply (the only reason I have now 28-200 tamron still is it's not worth selling and it has it's uses being light and sort of disposable)
don't think I'd spend too much converting this unless you want the experience of doing it
as an example the tamron can be had for under a hundred regularly in the AF version (same lens as the FA28-200 Pentax BTW which can also be had pretty cheaply)
08-16-2011, 11:30 AM   #3
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There was an a version in the marketplace for 30$ if it's still available (if its in very good condition like mine that might be better than converting). There is another for more like 80$. Thats what makes me wonder about the value of different versions. For 70$ more than the cost of converting I think I'll stick with the one I got. For 20$ or less and an a version over m42 type operation it's much more tempting. They seem to sell for at least 50$ on ebay (not a lot actually selling for that though).
There is one on ebay that claimed to be series 1 but didn't say it and unless my information is wrong, some later series 1 were not that good, so it's hard to tell what is good/valuable and what is bad or just not valuable?
I would hate to buy one to find out mine is a better version. Maybe I should just convert it and see how good it is (I'm short on parts now and may need to buy some though hence the hesitation).

Last edited by ripit; 08-16-2011 at 11:44 AM.
08-16-2011, 12:07 PM   #4
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Conversion from Minolta MD to Pentax PK: It might be possible with an actual Minolta lens -- I'm waiting to get a cheap one to practice on before I try to mod a good one. I have a cheap Kiron MD lens that's NOT easily modded, although I may have another go at it. With a Viv... I dunno, it *may* be possible, but also may be more trouble than its worth -- unless you want to sacrifice this one as a learning experience.

Long old zooms: I just received an old KA-mount (not KR) Tokina SD 35-200/4-5.6, cost me all of five bucks shipped, and it passed my initial PF test. I haven't had a chance yet to try it otherwise. But it has some strikes against it: floating max aperture, long focal range, age. Your Viv MD looks like a Tamron or maybe Sigma, neither of whom AFAIK weren't renowned for their zooms then. (They've improved!) I'd give yours a go if it was in the neighborhood of US$15-20, but no more than that. A classic Viv Series 1 70-210 is still a steal; shorter S1's are a bit pricier. Decent Sears- or Focal- or Albinar- branded Samyang 80-200's and 70-210's in f/4 are still around US$15 and probably have better IQ than that Viv MD.

My recommendation: Whatever you get, be sure you can either return it, or can absorb the loss. Good luck!

08-16-2011, 12:45 PM   #5
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This one looks easy to mod. The mount is 0.310" thick so I have almost 8mm to play with. I only have to loose 2mm so I'm going to have to find a spacer 6mm thick (minus thickness of mount flange). If the lens extends too far into the camera, a step up ring and rubber washer around the body would easily limit it from going to 28mm (I would only have to loose a few mm). I already have an m42 adapter and step rings that would work perfect. Problem is, I need to quit chopping up my good expensive step rings (I'm impatient) and get cheap step rings off ebay. I also have some canon lenses I could possibly gut for parts (spacer ring). I also did a conversion with a donor mount and find I like it 1000 times better than using an m42 adapter (especially with heavy lenses). I also am thinking about using the back ring from extension tubes for a mount (Maybe thicker, more solid flange?). Thats only 7$ off ebay.

I guess I just need to get some of these parts for the experience (and find more cheap broken lenses for donor mounts).

70-210mm is out of the question, lol. I just got a vivitar series 1 70-210mm 3.5 ver 2 and the conversion went very nice. I uses a donor mount (last one I had) so its nice and solid. I also have 3 auto focus and at least 3 manual focus in that range now (one of the manual focus looks like it may have incredible macro potential but I'm not sure as I just got it.
Likewise I have a decent vivitar 35-70mm 2.8-3.8 and a few 3.5-? auto focus lenses in similar ranges. Getting this one is about getting both ranges in one lens (ok fine, I lied, its about LBA).
Converting it is about saving money (Ok fine, I lied, its also about tearing stuff up, getting creative, and again, LBA!!!!!).
I wish I would have never scored the vivitar 70-210 (15$ shipped in very nice condition and smooth as silk operation). It refueled my LBA and was part of the reason I got the 28-210 on a not well thought out impulse buy.
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