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Vivitar Series 1 (Version 1 - Kiron 22xxxx) 70-210mm f/3.5

Sharpness 
 8.9
Aberrations 
 7.6
Bokeh 
 8.9
Handling 
 7.6
Value 
 9.4
Reviews Views Date of last review
19 92,973 Fri April 9, 2021
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Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $79.72 8.84
Vivitar Series 1 (Version 1 - Kiron 22xxxx) 70-210mm f/3.5

Vivitar Series 1 (Version 1 - Kiron 22xxxx) 70-210mm f/3.5
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Vivitar Series 1 (Version 1 - Kiron 22xxxx) 70-210mm f/3.5
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Vivitar Series 1 (Version 1 - Kiron 22xxxx) 70-210mm f/3.5
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Description:
The historic and innovative first version of the Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm went on sale in 1974, and was a significant step forward in the capabilities of a third party zoom, especially its close focus mode. Made by Kino Optical (Kiron) - 22xxxx serials. The third number in the serial indicates the year of manufacture: 4=1974, 5=1975, 6= ....0=1980, 1=1981.
Can be found in all the mounts of the era including PK and M42. But this was pre-PKA so doesn't exist in PKA. Replaced c. 1981 by the Tokina made 37xxxx version.
Early versions don't have VMC "Vivitar Multi Coating" on the nameplate, and there were small structural revisions over the production period - see this thread.
This lens camera-wiki page.


Focal Length (mm) 70-210mm
Aperture Maximum 3.5
Aperture range 3.5-22, half clicks.
iris: 6 blades
field of view 43-12deg (full frame ie 35mm)
Optical construction (elements / groups) 15/10
Minimum focus distance- normal: 2m/6.5'
Focus throw: approx 180 deg.
magnification ratio 1:2.2
filter diameter (mm) 67
"length( mm at infinity)" 157.5
maximum diameter (mm) 77.8
"weight (g)" 879

Switching into macro mode - see pic:
  1. Slide the zoom focus ring towards the mount to the 210mm position.
  2. press the selector switch lock button and turn the macro selector switch counter-clockwise.

The macro mode works by:
"...moving elements that change the position of the optical centre of the lens. As you slide the zoom ring away from the camera body (towards the 70mm end of the zoom movement), the lens-to-film (sensor) distance increases allowing you to achieve a higher magnification. As you slide it towards the camera body, the lens-to-film/sensor distance is reduced and the magnification decreased.
For optimum results in macro operation, turn the zoom focus ring to the right so that the macro focus reference mark is opposite the macro index line.
If your picture does not require a fixed magnification, slide the zoom focus ring .. until the subject is in focus. If you wish a larger image size move the camera+lens closer to your subject...
" - user manual.

In effect the macro is at the 70mm focal length. The following table provides magnification information at the various positions along the len barrel and is indexed in terms of the focal length scale for easy reference.

lens set at macro mode: working distance magnification
70mm 77.5mm 1 : 2.2
85mm 210mm 1 : 3.5
105mm 620mm 1 : 6.5
135mm 1.5m 1 : 11

Review and test chart results by Benjamin Govert - Vintage Lens Reviews.
Mount Type: Pentax K
Price History:



Add Review of Vivitar Series 1 (Version 1 - Kiron 22xxxx) 70-210mm f/3.5
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New Member

Registered: March, 2021
Posts: 1
Lens Review Date: April 9, 2021 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: zoom range, aperture, macro, price
Cons: heavy
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 6    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 7    Value: 9   

This first version of Vivitar 70-210mm 3.5 is nicely done, as my unit was made more than fourty years ago! and still work and give good shots in 2021. My unit focus ring is a bit stiff on macro mode on 180-210mm range, the only flaw.

Sharpness is good overall, but a bit soft at f/3.5. It has some ca's and purple fringing on bright focus and a really good bokeh, even if this lens has only six diaphragm blades. There are no significant flares (see the shot), no really need for a hood.





my Vivitar on a D2X (Kiron - serial n 22130402)




F/9.50 and the bokeh is still pleasant





f/6.50 on macro mode





closest 1.7m at 70mm f/3.5





closest 1.7m at 210mm f/3.5, strong CA's on bright lights





The sun in the image, no big deal
   
Forum Member

Registered: July, 2020
Posts: 92
Lens Review Date: August 26, 2020 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $72.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: useful range in a single lens; constant f/3.5; solid build (except for zoom)
Cons: zoom creep very bad at 90-170mm; no hood
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Handling: 5    Value: 8    Camera Used: K1000, LX, PZ-1, K10D, K-3 II; Nikon D800   

I bought this (version 1) lens new in the 1980s to go with my K1000 (my first Pentax camera), and ended up using it later with my LX, PZ-1, and my K10D cameras also (although I haven't used it much if at all with my K10D until now, to check it out again after a long hiatus). I have no idea what I paid for this lens when it was new in the 1980s. [The price listed is for the used AI/F-mount version of this same lens that I bought for my Nikon cameras off eBay; see relevant comments in last paragraph, below.] I did get some good use out of it back in the 1980s and 1990s, so I guess the value was good, but my Vivitar 28-105mm Series 1 lens sat on my camera much more than this one did back in those days when I didn't have much money to buy really good lenses (the 70-210mm lens being too large and heavy to be the default lens on my camera). These Vivitar lenses served good purpose for me, and I took them on trips (only the 28-105mm on trips requiring air travel).

As good tests of sharpness and aberrations, I have photographed interesting structured "wispy" clouds at various focal lengths with this lens on my K10D camera, and have shot the first-quarter moon in twilight from 70 to 210 mm and then adding my Pentax 2X converter for 140-420 mm. The results are extremely good at all focal lengths (including with the 2X converter) wide open. I cannot see color aberrations with this lens like I can with my Pentax 100-300-mm f/4.7-5.6 zoom lens, though the sharpness on the latter is noticeably better (even though the glass is larger on the Vivitar lens). Personally, I'd grade the sharpness as 8.5, but I didn't want to put "8" so I rounded up. Shooting structured clouds and the moon helps to show sharpness and any presence of aberrations or vignetting; I saw no vignetting at any focal length with a bright, uniform sky background.

This is a big, heavy lens. I do lots of shooting on a tripod (especially astrophotography), so that's not a problem for me with this lens. Walking around cities or on hiking trails, it's something I'd pull out just for specific targets, and really more at 210 mm than at shorter focal lengths. If I have 2 or 3 lenses with me and I want to shoot around 70 mm, this won't be the lens. That said, this lens isn't as big as my Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 lens -- which really is a lens that I don't hand-hold much.

As other reviewers have noted, this zoom lens suffers badly from "zoom creep" between 90 and 170 mm focal length when the lens is pointed upwards. But outside of that -- notably at 180-210 mm, my most used range for this lens -- there's no real creep, thank goodness. My handling grade of "5" is for this reason, plus for the fact that exposure is very problematical with this lens on my K10D (I don't remember what it was like on my film cameras, as it's been many years since I've used this on those). Using the "hyper-manual" button on my K10D doesn't get this lens close to the proper exposure with a bright sky. But once you find the right exposure, it's fine. Verdict: this is not a lens to use in a hurry; it's one to use with a lot of time to get the exposure right -- but if you have the time, this lens produces excellent results (as long as you don't have to shoot at 90-170mm outside of level).

I gave the value an "8" rating simply because even old Pentax lenses are better built for Pentax cameras, and the low cost for getting a mint used version for my Nikon cameras is hard to beat (in fact, it's a bit arbitrary, because I could give the value a "9" easily). I put "yes" for recommending the lens simply because I didn't want to say "no", but I'm on the fence on this (I just have little patience for zoom creep in a long telephoto lens where I tend to use tripods a lot and expect the lens to "stay put"); perhaps the later versions of this lens solved the zoom creep, in which case I could emphatically recommend this lens in pristine condition. (If you're not pointing up or down a lot, zoom creep won't matter too much; but I do point up and down a lot.) I did pay $11.75 + tax from B&H to get the Sensei Pro aluminum 67-mm lens hood for this lens because it absolutely needs it; the large objective glass is barely recessed in the lens barrel and needs both protection and shielding from light sources to the sides [and note that I bought a second lens hood for my Nikon AI version of this same lens; see below].

I think that the value of this lens is so good (what you get vs. what you pay) that I bought a mint copy off eBay of this same basic lens for my Nikon cameras (it's for AI F-mount and has the aperture-priority feature, presumably, but the automatic aperture-priority feature doesn't seem to work on my D800). My F-mount copy behaves similarly to my K-mount copy -- very good optics, easy to handle, but the same bad zoom creep (though the zoom function on my F-mount lens is less "loose" than the zoom function on my K-mount lens). I paid only $72 (USD) for my AI/F-mount 70-200mm Vivitar Ser. 1 lens -- incl. tax and shipping, and also including the costs of buying a Sensei metal lens hood and Nikon end cap from B&H and a Ser. 1 metal lens cap off eBay because they weren't included in the sale price of the lens and are necessary. For me, this is a fine value because it covers that range on my Nikon cameras quite adequately with good sharpness when I need it (which isn't all that often because I shoot mainly landscapes and astro with my D800); I'm leaving the serious telephoto lenses to my Pentax cameras (I do have good, fast, wide-angle lenses for my Nikon cameras, including the Tokina AT-X Pro 20-35mm f/2.8 lens that I've also reviewed here at Pentax Forums). One nice thing about my Nikon version of this lens is that it came with a very elegant, black, felt-lined Vivitar-dedicated hard case which holds this lens quite snugly and well; the case has "Vivitar" imprinted on the exterior, and it's really better than any of the dedicated Pentax black hard cases that I have for four of my A- and [K]-series Pentax lenses. My K-mount Vivitar lens came with a soft black case, so I don't know if they were just preferential to Nikon buyers with the hard cases or not.... The third photo below shows the AI/F-mount version of this lens on my D800 camera, with the Sensei Pro metal lens hood screwed on (that I also have for my Pentax/K-mount version of this lens).

Photos of the lens on my camera below; the fourth photo was taken of the moon on 2020 Nov. 3 with the F-mount version on my Nikon D800 camera at 210mm, f/8, 1/1000 sec, ISO 200 on a tripod.







   
Junior Member

Registered: June, 2014
Posts: 47
Lens Review Date: August 10, 2020 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: zoom range, rendering and bokeh, build quality, price
Cons: big and heavy! doesn't fit on Pentax digital cameras, inconvenient macro mode, long minimum focus distance
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 5    Value: 10    Camera Used: Samsung NX30, Pentax Z-1P   

Immediately after receiving this lens I was disappointed: I couldn't mount it on my Pentax K-S1 due to the tall "collar" inside the lens mount. I didn't want to apply excessive force. It fit my old film Pentax Z-1P properly. So the only option for me to use this lens digitally is to mount it on my mirrorless Samsung NX30 through an adapter. I lose Pentax image stabilization but gain automatic stopped down metering and easy focusing through EVF. This bazooka of a lens dwarfs my poor little Samsung, and handling is terrible! Another disappointment: it doesn't focus to infinity at 210mm. Later I found that it's possible... in macro mode. Go figure!

The image quality is pretty good. Sharpness is good across the frame at F5.6 and up. At the long end, the edges are a bit soft. Wide open rendering is nice and soft with that flattering glow now completely eliminated in new optical designs. Great lens for portraits! Chromatic aberrations and purple fringing are moderate and can be corrected. Colour rendition is a bit yellow-greenish and needs some correction. Bokeh is nice and smooth. Minimum focus distance is very long 2 metres! Helps maintain physical distance during the COVID pandemic.

The lens has a macro mode in which focusing is done by sliding the focusing ring back and forward. It is difficult because it isn't smooth and when the lens points down, focus creeps easily. The macro mode is usable but very inconvenient.

I also have the third version of this lens made by Komine (see my full review). It has an excellent macro mode and is sharper in the centre, however the Kiron version has more consistent sharpness across the frame and much less purple fringing. Portraits shot with the Komine lens are too sharp and harsh to my taste. The Kiron is much better in this respect.

I recommend this lens to those who can live with its limitations. It's inexpensive and well worth a try.









Samsung NX30




Pentax Z-1P, Kodak Ultramax 400
   
New Member

Registered: February, 2020
Posts: 2
Lens Review Date: April 11, 2020 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $23.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Sharpness, good bokeh, Very good value for money, good colors
Cons: Heavy, not easy to focus on macro
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 7    Value: 10    Camera Used: K70   

I bought this lens for 20,5 on ebay, after reading the positive comments on the forum. My copy was not very clean, but the optics and mechanics are perfect.
The first disappointment was the screwing of my K70. Impossible without forcing. I even disassembled the fixing ring to see if it had not been reassembled incorrectly. But there was nothing abnormal. The concern is that the stop on the fixing ring is much longer than on recent models. After insisting, I still succeeded ...
I took this lens for the macro. My first shooting session took place in a pretty bush of flowers where bees frolic ... I had been there two days before with a Sigma 105mm macro. Well, the result is more than convincing. The sharpness of the image is very good in macro with a softer bokeh than on Sigma. I will try to show it with two pics.
Then, the handling of the machine is not easy: to focus in macro, at 70mm only, you have to slide the focusing ring along the lens, and this is not done smoothly. In addition, the weight of the lens quickly tires the arm and shoulders. You have to be fast, with the bees!
Then I took a few shots of flowers, and the result seems very good to me too, and it's more relaxing! Beautiful colors.
Finally, I returned to zoom mode, but there I found that at 70 mm the image lacks sharpness, while at 210 mm is much better. Maybe the aperture was too large. I will show one image of pigeons.
The results are positive, especially for the price.

With the Vivitar macro
https://www.amazon.fr/photos/share/trSbWouz3tqBwiHRKx5dPKocTYKZz2MbIATX7Kb0ilj

With the Sigma 105mm

https://www.amazon.fr/photos/share/S5bfit4tXb0X0H5J0wvZJdAtup5wIVmRD6LapkPUcT1



https://www.amazon.fr/photos/share/OSTEnS6QpFkObvfEl2K4FXnQTxAUDFMKqktUhyhWXAW
   
New Member

Registered: July, 2018
Posts: 1
Lens Review Date: July 15, 2018 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $60.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: sharp, optical reach, macro, bokeh
Cons: heavy, heavy, heavy
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Sony A5000, Sony A7, Canon 6D   

It has everything that I need for a telephoto lens. It is very sharp and it has macro function, which works very well if one knows how to use it. The macro function works well by the following the instruction. Basically, one needs to put the focus ring at 210mm end, push the white button, and rotate the ring where the white button is located clockwise. By clockwise rotation, "Macro" will align with the red line, and that's when you can start to enjoy the fantastic macro experience. Telephoto function is excellent too. I used it to picture the moon, and order menu on the wall of a cookie store across the street. The first version is reported to be heaviest among all 70-210 S1 lenses. But it also has the best optical quality and largest magnification (1:2.2). Since the primary use for this lens is not for travel (while you can, I wouldn't carry a 2lb lens when hiking), the weight is totally acceptable.
   
Pentaxian

Registered: May, 2015
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 891
Lens Review Date: June 9, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp, well regarded, has a "macro" and interesting!
Cons: Weight, sloppy zoom action, no "A" setting.
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 7    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-5   

I bought this lens from the usual auction with some trepidation. The seller (a charity) had not posted an image of the lens without caps and just described it as in good condition. A previous purchase of this lens in Canon FD mount with much the same images shown was full of fungus and would not provide any images worth looking at because of the fungus.
What the images did show was a paper band around the zoom/focus ring pointing out how to select macro properly, so I took a chance on it being in good condition.
It turns out to be a later version (s/n 229........) with VMC.

It is in good condition except for the zoom where altering the focal length just feels sloppy to me, sometimes loose, sometimes it grabs.
I have only taken a few images but can see that it is quite sharp but it does exhibit CA at wider apertures.

It is a great buy at this price if you like manual lenses and don't mind green button metering.
Here is an image of it on my K-5, with a hood I added. Check out the paper band on the zoom ring, I would have thought that would have disappeared long ago.
(Taken with a Nikon P&S, apologies for that but it was handy).
   
Site Supporter

Registered: March, 2014
Posts: 1,322

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 8, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $90.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Bright Sharp
Cons: Heavy
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 10    Camera Used: k-30   

Bought this lens off of fleabay . Had to covert it from Minolta to Kmount.But I am glad I did ,this lens is making me a believer in Kino Precision Lenses
   
New Member

Registered: November, 2013
Posts: 8
Lens Review Date: April 5, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $150.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: an excellent lens
Cons: nothing
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 9    Camera Used: mz-5,mz-50,sfx.,z20p etc   

very good contrast, sharpness and color rendition

suitable for macro photos with macro ring, very nice pictures with it.

much less expensive than a 2,8/70-210

nearly no CA's stopped down a few
   
New Member

Registered: September, 2013
Posts: 1
Lens Review Date: September 25, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $45.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Versatility
Cons: Heavy, could stress camera mount.
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

I just want to begin by saying, I despise zoom lenses! That being said, I love this lens.
My journey began with a Pentax 135mm f/3.5. It's a nice lens, but slow. The fastest 135mm I could find was an f/2.8 (maybe I just don't know where to look). However, frustration set in when I discovered that faster doesn't = sharper. I didn't feel like sacrificing sharpness for light.

I came across this lens and was attracted to the fact that it is a 70-210mm with fixed aperture at 3.5 (i liked that it dies not get darker as you zoom in) even though I've heard that the 2.8-4 variable aperture series 3 is sharper. What the hell, I don't like Zoom lenses anyway, and i didn't see a series 3 available. I was also curious to check out the macro on this lens.

I really like it. I've put my Pentax 135mm f/3.5 prime on the shelf. Yes, the prime is lighter and much easier to carry around, but this is much more versatile and I don't really carry my camera around.

Most of my shooting is in a studio or on set, so weight and bulk doesn't bother me. And let's face it, this is mainly an outdoor lens, so even with a 2x-1 teleconverter on it, I get plenty of light in this f/3.5.

When I say versatile, I mean that, between the macro and the 2x-1 teleconverter, I can shoot everything 3" - 300' in front of my lens.

No, I wouldn't carry this lens all by itself. And no, I wouldn't want it to be the only lens in my arsenal (I have Pentax 50mm f/1.4 and Vivitar 28mm f/2.4 as well), but you could.

If you absolutely have to own a Zoom, this one is worth it.
   
Junior Member

Registered: October, 2010
Location: Berlin
Posts: 33
Lens Review Date: March 9, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Colours, Sharpness, constant 3,5
Cons: very heavy
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 7    Value: 9   

This is a nice lens but it is so big and heavy so I don't use it very often. IQ-wise it's pretty good although it's better at the short end and loses a bit near 210mm. Still I like it better than the popular DA 55-300 because it offers better resolution and is quite a bit faster. The macro-capability is a nice feature and actually not as difficult to operate as some people suggest. You just need to pull the zoom all the way back and rotate the switch. The bokeh can get a bit busy but for a zoom it's not bad.

Pit Stop von 1 of them auf Flickr
   
New Member

Registered: January, 2012
Location: France
Posts: 9
Lens Review Date: January 21, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $116.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Possibility macro, good sharpness, excellent color and superb bokeh, quality of construction.
Cons: zoom creep on my copy.
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 10   

I am very pleased with this purchase, the results are very good even wide open. I'm sure the photos would be even better with a lens hood.
   
Veteran Member

Registered: February, 2009
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 3,758
Lens Review Date: March 19, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: sharpness, contrast, bokeh, build quality
Cons: HEAVY

I'm rating this lens 9/10 mostly in terms of IQ vs. price. As far as I'm concerned, the only downsides are size and weight, which, however, don't make it extremely hard to handle.

At first, I was put off by its weight, although I appreciated its IQ and construction from the beginning. It also took me some time to understand how to put it in the very useful Macro mode. Initially, it seemed too difficult to operate, because the lens tends to de-stabilize the camera. I was worried it might put too much pressure on the mount. But then I found a way of using my left hand to support both the lens and the camera while using the other hand for zooming and focusing. By no means a lens for traveling...

This being said, the lens excels in any other respect. I heard other versions are sharper, but I absolutely satisfied with the (exceptional) sharpness of my copy (version 1, made by Kiron). Sharp wide open at all apertures. Haven't noticed any CA. Contrast is superb. Very pleasing bokeh. (Various online comparisons make this version the winner for bokeh--and, for me, whatever superiority in sharpness the other versions have--which isn't apparent in pics posted on flickr--is fully compensated by the quality of the bokeh.) In Macro mode, the bokeh is really nice. The Macro mode is interesting, since it allows a transition from a position permitting focusing at a couple of meters or more to 1:2.2 macro. I suppose it can make an interesting portrait lens in the Macro lens, with some very interesting and pleasing bokeh. I'm going to test it in this capacity very soon.

To sum up: if this were a modern lens with AF--perhaps some 200 grams lighter--it would cost 10-15 times as much. It's so good. (I got mine as part of a deal including many other lenses; but it currently goes for about $60-90.)
   
Junior Member

Registered: August, 2009
Location: Lexington, KY
Posts: 30

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: April 21, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $33.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Constant f/3.5, good IQ, macro, internal zoom/macro, price
Cons: Huge and heavy, focus turns filter mount

Thanks to ebay, I now own 3 of these. The first was a Minolta MC mount that cost $28 including shipping and a bunch of other camera stuff. After being impressed by that copy (despite using it with a glass adapter), I bought the second and third as M42 mounts costing $29 and $41 including shipping. This lens is usually more expensive, so I got more than one M42 so I could pick the best.

Actually, all three lenses are in good shape with fairly clean optics. There was significant surface dirt on two of the three, but they're all clean enough now. Oddly, the cleanest of the three has a stuck-on-Auto Auto/Man switch and the aperture ring works, but is hard to turn; the other two copies are fully functional.

Mechanically, the lens is big, heavy, feels quite solid, and works smoothly. Focus rotates the filter thread (bad for polarizers), but, impressively, zoom and macro functions don't change the length of the lens. The push-pull coarse focus in macro mode takes a little getting used to, but works very well. In fact, that's the case with handling of the lens in general. The weight of the lens actually makes it easy to hand-hold steady, and a tripod mount isn't needed... although this is definitely a lens to which you attach a camera, not the reverse.

The IQ from this lens is quite good. It is a touch soft wide open, and it never gets super crisp at the edges (even for APS-C), but IQ is acceptable or better at all apertures, all focal lengths, and even in macro mode. In fact, IQ seems better at macro than at infinity. All three copies produce very similar IQ. My observations also are consistent with comments here including Modern Photography's test results.

Here are two very simple quick photos showing bokeh at f/3.5:





The first image was shot using a glass adapter with a Minolta mount, the second with a glassless M42. Generally, the out-of-focus image properties of this lens are as complex as its optical formula suggests. However, overall, close focus bokeh are pleasing, as seen above. Unfortunately, at more normal distances point light sources behind the focus point often have bright ring artifacts (things in front of the focus point look better). Without the glass adapter, the M42 versions seem slightly crisper, but the bokeh are certainly no better than with the glass adapter.

In summary, for its time, this really is an outstanding zoom. When I put this lens on an old SLR the view through the viewfinder is impressive. This lens is worthy of its reputation. However, on a DSLR, a lot of modern zooms are competitive with it except for the fast aperture and the excellent macro mode... and then you'd also get autofocus and it would be easier to carry. On the other hand, you can't touch the macro/zoom IQ for less than $150, and a modern lens with this combination of IQ and f/3.5 or better speed is in the $500+ range. I originally rated it an 8, but I now think this performance at a cost under $150 warrants a 9.
   
Inactive Account

Registered: September, 2008
Location: CA
Posts: 14
Lens Review Date: October 23, 2009 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $70.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: F 3.5! fast, Build quality like a tank, Bokeh
Cons: Heavy and Big. No 'A'

If it has a 'A' setting. then I should give it a '10' instead of '9'.
Macro mode enlarges up to 1:2.2 and the image is really good.
Yes. it is very heavy. How much? You may want to have a hand strap.
However, once you take several pictures, it will be just happy and surprise!

With my K10D
   
Site Supporter

Registered: April, 2009
Location: Ontario, California
Posts: 1,708

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: August 1, 2009 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $36.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, warm image tone, fast, can be used for defense
Cons: heavy and large enough to have its own gravitational pull

Yes, it is heavy. Really heavy. And it's big.

But if you can look past those two minor "issues"* it is an unbelievably good lens. I doubt a better zoom in this range can be had for ten times the price I paid. The constant f3.5 is really fast for a zoom in this range as well.

* I don't consider these two items to be issues, but rather inherent side effects of the superior design of this lens.
Add Review of Vivitar Series 1 (Version 1 - Kiron 22xxxx) 70-210mm f/3.5



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