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Vivitar (Kiron) 20mm f3.8 samples
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 27, 2011 5:45 pm    Post subject: Vivitar (Kiron) 20mm f3.8 samples Reply with quote

I received my copy this week & quite frankly am somewhat disappointed. The lens is in very good condition & looks cool on the G1.




This is my seventh Vivitar & the first I have been disappointed in & it cost the most - $85 including shipping. The first thing I checked for was distortion:


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The distortion is minimal in my opinion but the images are soft, not crisp like my other Vivitars. I took a couple landscapes to see how they looked.


3. Back yard





4. Field next door




Today I took it to town & did some street shooting.


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10. Easy to pick up lens flair, got a hood coming.





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I find it hard to focus precisely due to the huge DoF but that aside, I find the images to all be soft.


PostPosted: Sat Aug 27, 2011 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What aperture were you shooting at? These old ultra wides typically need to be stopped down a lot to perform at the sides and edges. There seems to be a lot of CA present, which is a shame.


PostPosted: Sat Aug 27, 2011 6:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They were shot at the click between f8 & f11.


PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2011 8:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ron, It's very difficult to assess sharpness on shots reduced for display on the forum but, without being able to pixel peep, they don't seem that soft to me. Maybe all my wide angle lenses are cr*p though Smile


PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're certainly diffraction limited at that aperture. You'd probably get sharper results around f4-5.6. It does look very low in contrast, but this can be adjusted very easily.


PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 12:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

flashinm wrote:
You're certainly diffraction limited at that aperture. You'd probably get sharper results around f4-5.6. It does look very low in contrast, but this can be adjusted very easily.


Thanks for that tip, I will try & see.


PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 12:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice results, at least at web sizes!

I know, the 20mm f/3.8's are disappointing when pixel peeping. But those old (!) super wide angles were never designed with resolution in mind. If the Vivitar dissappoints you then you'll equally be disappointed with the 20mm Flektogons. But this is my own opinion, your mileage may vary Smile


PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 6:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I received a hood for it & went back to the farmers market for a second trial of the lens. Shot @ f8 this time.

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I think the hood has helped by reducing the veiling & possibly shooting @ f8 helped as well.


PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 7:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is good one Ron, don't forget this is a 20mm lens under 100 USD , better lenses go around 500 USD, really good one 1000-2000 USD.


PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 9:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd be very happy with that, it's going on my wanted list anyway. Laughing


PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 11:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd be happy with that too, compares favourably to my much more modern Tokina AT-X 3.5/17.




PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 12:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks guys, I am feeling better about it now. I guess my expectations were too high.


PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 5:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It does seem to have enough sharpness and contrast to be passable.

The cost/performance ratio is worse than standard and telephoto lenses, which is disappointing, but the modern, smaller sensor formats are driving those prices?

This lens will come more into its own on a FF camera which will soon be cheaper! I can only see prices going up again then! Unless Samyang keep on establishing new performance levels?

Certainly a good investment, if it displeases, sell at a profit or store for a bigger profit?


PostPosted: Tue Oct 07, 2014 4:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ron, not sure if this is still relevant -- looks like the hood helped on your Vivtar 20mm. I still see CA in the tree leaves. f/8 still may be diffraction limited for such a wide angle lens. Would be interesting to see how it performs at f/5.6


PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

After reading a few threads here surrounding the Vivitar 20mm lenses, I bought one of the Kiron versions cheaply. My word it's fun! Kind of chunky and clunky, but it's amazingly sharp up close and that close focus allows some wild perspective. These are on a Nikon D610.





PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2020 7:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kiron/Kino made some really good lenses at or around this focal length.
20mm at the time was a real challenge to do well, and yours looks quite good
There is also a Vivitar S1 by Kiron/Kino 24-48 that is excellent.
Thanks for sharing
Tom


PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2020 10:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice photos, my experience was very positive too. Loved the sharpness, contrast and colors.