Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
05-20-2008, 12:10 PM   #1
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Central Ohio (formerly SF Bay Area)
Posts: 1,491
eBay find - ATAN Lens - what is it? UPDATE: PHOTOS ADDED FOR CRITIQUE

EDIT: Some photos are now in post #8. Lens performance critique invited:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/253739-post8.html

Every now and then a buyer can get lucky on eBay, even though it's a seller's market most of the time.

Case in point: For just over $50, I recently picked up a Ricoh XR-P 35mm film camera with power winder, Sunpak flash, a perfectly nice camera bag with room for five lenses, and some lenses (this is the good part):
  • A Rikenon 50mm f2.0 lens (I think this was the Ricoh camera's "kit" lens);
  • A Tokina 28-70mm f3.5-4.5 lens;
  • A Vivitar Macro Focusing Teleconverter (the version WITH electrical contacts for metering, woohoo!); and
  • An ATAN 70-210mm f3.5 lens.

All of these lenses are for the Ricoh version of the K mount, but with the exception of the ATAN all fit my K20D just fine. The Ricoh "pin" on all of them is rounded off and doesn't stick, but the ATAN lens has that extended metal flange that keeps the lens from rotating into position. I will subject it to surgery soon enough! Everything appears to be in good condition, with no sign of internal debris, oil, or fungus.

But this leads me to the question -- WHAT IS this ATAN lens? Google doesn't turn up ANYTHING about the lens or the company that makes it. (Magnum Optics and Research Inc. of Denver, Colorado). The manual provides the following details:
  • Made in Japan
  • 70-210mm one-touch zoom
  • f3.5 capability across the entire zoom range
  • Macro to 1:4.5
  • "Precision Multi-Coated"
  • 13 elements, 9 groups
  • 62mm filter thread
  • Automatic aperture for Ricoh ONLY -- sadly, no Pentax contacts, but should be fine as a manual lens.
  • There's no date on the lens or in the manual.

It doesn't really resemble the Vivitar Series 1 or the Tamron having similar specs, and I can't find anything else that matches up. For some reason I suspect it must exist under other names -- it's odd that I can't find A THING about it on the web!

Here are some pictures:





Once I get the flange trimmed down I'll get the lens cleaned up, take some shots, and post a review. Until then, I wonder if anyone knows anything about it!


Last edited by Quicksand; 05-27-2008 at 01:10 PM. Reason: New photos in thread
05-20-2008, 12:41 PM   #2
Veteran Member




Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: NJ
Posts: 525
This lens looks similar to Sears 70-200 f/4 push-pull zoom which is pretty good lens given its constant aperture. The main difference here is the f/3.5 aperture which might indicate better optics.

Myself, I have never heard of Atan brand and I doubt you will find any information about it. The company probably did not even make those. It is most likely rebranded version of Vivitar or Tamron.
05-20-2008, 01:25 PM   #3
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
maxwell1295's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Long Island, New York
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,704
Hmmmmm....

That could be a Vivitar Series 1 lens. There aren't too many zooms in that range with a constant 3.5 aperture.
05-20-2008, 02:23 PM   #4
Veteran Member
ericc's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Western Oklahoma
Posts: 406
It could be a twin for my old (non-series 1) Vivitar 70-210 one-touch zoom, down to the macro ability and the flange. I'm guessing it's a rebadge.

-E

05-20-2008, 02:46 PM   #5
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Central Ohio (formerly SF Bay Area)
Posts: 1,491
Original Poster
Eric, if so, is it a decent lens in your opinion, worth keeping despite its, uh, manual-ness?

I do like the f3.5 aspect of it!
05-21-2008, 09:04 AM   #6
Veteran Member
ericc's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Western Oklahoma
Posts: 406
QuoteOriginally posted by Quicksand Quote
Eric, if so, is it a decent lens in your opinion, worth keeping despite its, uh, manual-ness?

I do like the f3.5 aspect of it!
When it was on my ME Super, I used it quite often and liked the results. I haven't de-flanged it to work on my DSLRs, though.
05-21-2008, 12:49 PM   #7
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
Douglas_of_Sweden's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Stockholm
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 3,353
QuoteOriginally posted by maxwell1295 Quote
Hmmmmm....

That could be a Vivitar Series 1 lens. There aren't too many zooms in that range with a constant 3.5 aperture.
It's close to the Vivitar Series 1 2nd version considering max aperture (3.5), macro (1:4 vs 1:4.5), filter diameter (62 mm). Would be way cool and a real bargain if it was!
Were the Series 1 ever rebadged? Version 2 is supposed to have been made by Tokina.

Vivitar 70-210 Series 1 Macro Zooms - Mark Roberts Photography
05-27-2008, 01:07 PM   #8
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Central Ohio (formerly SF Bay Area)
Posts: 1,491
Original Poster
Photos here - critique invited

First, a few lazy shots from my backyard, all using the ATAN lens at the 210mm end of the zoom range.

Aside from the 100% crops identified below, these are resized jpegs, straight from the camera, no other processing.

Tree


Tree - 100% Crop


^^^ Some purple fringing is visible here.

High Voltage


Red + Green


The following shots are from a local kite show this weekend -- these were taken with the ATAN lens at 210mm plus a Vivitar 2X Macro Focusing Teleconverter . . . so 420mm, I guess, with the lens set to f/5.6 (hence f/11 effective).

T-Bird


T-Bird - 100% Crop


^^^ The ghosting on the blue stars, BTW, is from two layers of kite material -- not an optical effect.

Barbie


Squid


I'll take personal credit for crummy manual focusing and less-than-ideal exposures; don't blame the lens. :-)

But I'd appreciate any comments on lens performance, both for my benefit and for the sake of others who might run across this lens in the future.

08-13-2008, 04:54 PM   #9
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Central Ohio (formerly SF Bay Area)
Posts: 1,491
Original Poster
I'm coming around to the conclusion that this actually is a re-badge of the Vivitar Series 1, second edition (or more accurately, of the Tokina lens that became the Vivitar), as Douglas (and others) above suggested.

My evidence:

(1) Specs are very similar -- f/3.5, 70-210mm, 62mm filter thread, approximate 1:4 macro. Admittedly, there are differences too -- ATAN says 13/9 optical configuration, web page below says 14/10.

(2) It looks an awful lot like the second edition Vivitar lens pictured here:

Vivitar 70-210 Series 1 Macro Zooms - Mark Roberts Photography

And I have spent an irrationally long time squinting at that picture. The barrel markings and details (e.g., grip texture) are not exactly the same. But the zoom operates in the same direction (vs. fourth and fifth editions, which appears to go the other way), most of the markings are similarly placed, and the silhouette of the lens looks pretty much identical.

(3) I weighed my lens on my (admittedly cheapo) digital kitchen scale, and it came in at 708g, which is suspiciously close to the 710g figure noted for the Vivitar.

(4) The serial number on my lens is 84000031, which doesn't mean anything by Vivitar's scheme, but it might suggest a build date in 1984, which is in the Series 1 heyday. Plus I bought it on eBay with a Ricoh XR-P camera, also from the 1984-85 timeframe. (I got the 31st one off the assembly line? Did they only make 40?)

(5) Surprisingly enough, this recent eBay auction cemented it for me:

Pentax 35mm 120-600mm ZOOM - F5.6-8 - eBay (item 160266768065 end time Aug-08-08 12:26:17 PDT)

This auction item -- a lens from ACCESS -- is a dead-ringer for the Vivitar 120-600mm.

It has a different brand name (ACCESS vs. my ATAN), but as you'll see in the first picture on that page, it was sold by Magnum Optics in Denver. My lens came with the original manual, and it too came from Magnum Optics. And if you look further, you'll note that the ACCESS lens has a similarly funky serial number (820052) and suggests the same era. (Geez, 52? Did these guys in Colorado just do this as a hobby?)

(6) Further research on the ACCESS brand name turned this up:

Spring 2008 FD Pictures - Photo.net Canon FD Forum

The last poster on that page (Don Boyd, 5/8/08) describes his ACCESS lens manual, and it's the same as my ATAN manual:

President J.K. Wada, check.
Generic picture of some dude operating a lens coating machine, check.
Description of five lenses in the family, check.

---

Sooooo, that last bit pretty conclusively indicates that ATAN and ACCESS are the same organization, and the relationship between the 120-600mm ACCESS and the corresponding Vivitar seems pretty clear, so there you have it.

If it's not identical to the Vivitar Series 1, second edition, I'm guessing it's a close relative.

Just documenting this for posterity, and in case anyone's interested.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
70-210mm, atan, contacts, f3.5, flange, k-mount, lens, lenses, pentax lens, ricoh, slr lens
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Lens hood like the FA43 -- where to find? rparmar Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 13 04-10-2009 03:08 AM
The things you find on eBay Stevopedia Pentax Film SLR Discussion 16 11-09-2008 10:26 PM
Please help me find this lens!!! Duh_Vinci Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 5 03-04-2008 08:16 PM
Why can't I find any info on this lens? magnum1 Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 3 12-17-2007 04:49 PM
Lens find vinzer Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 0 12-02-2007 08:06 AM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:22 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top