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Vivitar Series 1 in comparison
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bob955i



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

iangreenhalgh1 wrote:
bob955i wrote:
Not disputing that you've had a bad experience with Vivitar and yes by all means share the pain but my point was that it could easily have been with almost any other manufacturer, even high-end ones.


Well, with other makers who I've sampled, the bad ones are merely mediocre, with Vivitar, the bad ones are unusable junk, surely it is important to know this?

I would suggest to anyone that they try to test a Vivitar lens before buying or only purchase from someone reputable who you can trust to have tested it and not sell you a piece of junk.


Ummm, I'm not disagreeing with you Ian... Laughing
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Excalibur



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

H'mmm people forget that old lenses were made for film cameras....well I have many ordinary Vivitars (no series one) and would rate the worst that I own as "good" for resolution.
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Canon A1, AV1, T70 & T90, Contax 139, Fuji STX-2, Konica Autoreflex TC, FS-1, FT-1 & C35, Minolta X-700, X-300, SRT101b and AFZ, Nikon L35ad, RF2, EM, N2000 and F401, F90X, Olympus Om20 & OM2, Pentax S3, Praktica MTL3, TL 5B, & BC1, , Ricoh KR10super, Yashica T5D, Bronica Etrs, Mamiya RB67 pro AND drum roll:- a Sony DSC-P92
.........past gear Tele Rolleiflex and Rollei SL66.
Many lenses from crap to excellent.
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iangreenhalgh1



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 11:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think I was unlucky with mine, sadly.
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Boomer Depp



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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

woodrim wrote:


Well put...love it!
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iangreenhalgh1



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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 7:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't, pretty rude actually.
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woodrim



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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 8:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ian: My apologies, sort of. Let me first say that if I properly understood something that Attila said in another post, then I have the utmost respect for you on a personal level. My frustration came from trying to help you through your evaluation of the Series 1 135mm lens. I made some recommendations that apparently fell on deaf ears. No, I am not convinced that the lens you had was defective at all. I wish you could have handed it over to Lloydy (is that who it was?) who took your mediocre 28mm CLOSE FOCUS and achieved brilliant results. And that was another frustrating experience getting you to understand that the Close Focus was part of the proper name, not just a function of focus, and was different from the other 28mm Vivitars.

The Series 1 135mm is far from perfect, but when used properly considering its strengths and weaknesses, it will provide outstanding results. Your test shots, including the one you posted a few up from here, were designed to demonstrate the lens' weak points. I can assure you that I can also produce an equally poor picture from my version. In fact, I did - plenty of times - before I learned how to use it. I don't expect all lenses to perform the same in all circumstances, and I don't rate them exclusively on wide open performance.

I'll stop here for fear of further concussion, but I'm perfectly willing to explain more about your testing issues if you're open to listening.
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Boomer Depp



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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

woodrim wrote:
Ian: My apologies, sort of. Let me first say that if I properly understood something that Attila said in another post, then I have the utmost respect for you on a personal level. My frustration came from trying to help you through your evaluation of the Series 1 135mm lens. I made some recommendations that apparently fell on deaf ears. No, I am not convinced that the lens you had was defective at all. I wish you could have handed it over to Lloydy (is that who it was?) who took your mediocre 28mm CLOSE FOCUS and achieved brilliant results. And that was another frustrating experience getting you to understand that the Close Focus was part of the proper name, not just a function of focus, and was different from the other 28mm Vivitars.

The Series 1 135mm is far from perfect, but when used properly considering its strengths and weaknesses, it will provide outstanding results. Your test shots, including the one you posted a few up from here, were designed to demonstrate the lens' weak points. I can assure you that I can also produce an equally poor picture from my version. In fact, I did - plenty of times - before I learned how to use it. I don't expect all lenses to perform the same in all circumstances, and I don't rate them exclusively on wide open performance.

I'll stop here for fear of further concussion, but I'm perfectly willing to explain more about your testing issues if you're open to listening.
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Hello Boomer, nice to see you back again.


Thanks Woodrim!

I'd have to agree with your assessment,too Woodrim.

Also,compared to some of my exceptional quality glass,Vivitar did have some lenses that are still quite viable and just as capable of making great shots.
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Last edited by Boomer Depp on Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:51 am; edited 1 time in total
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Boomer Depp



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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

iangreenhalgh1 wrote:
I don't, pretty rude actually.


Woodrim was making light at the irony of debating the issue....and I had to agree...and I'm sure he wasn't implying offense at all.
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iangreenhalgh1



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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry for taking offence.

I don't agree that the 135mm lens I had was tested by me to emphasise it's weaknesses, I used it more times than the samples I posted and it was incapable of producing a sharp image without horrid CA, I can't accept this was my fault as I have used at least 15 other 135mm lenses and never had similar issues.

I just had an awful copy, I think it's good to recognise that awful copies exist and I would recommend someone to test a copy of this lens before handing over money for it, just in case it's as bad as the one I had.

Same with the 3.5/70-210, Lloydy has a good copy, I had a bad copy. Mine was absolutely mint, like it had never been used, and I suspect that was because the owner tried it once, discovered it sucked and never used it again.

On the two 28s I had, they were identical apart from one said CF and the other didn't, they had similar serial numbers and had the same close focussing distance, so I reckon the only difference was the lettering. The copy I gave to Lloydy didn't do well on my NEX, it had lower contrast and washed out colours, sharpness was alright though. It performed differently for Lloydy, why that is I don't know, but I had a similar experience with another lens which sucked on the NEX but did fine on my friend's EOS 400D. The other copy I had of the 28 was just a dog on the NEX, I didn't try it on another camera.

I'm not disputing there are very good copies of the Vivitars, but I do believe there are issues with QC and therefore some bad copies too.
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Orio




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In the late 60s-early 70s a real fashion for super fast lenses boomed. All the manufacturers jumped on the bandwagon
and released very fast lenses, especially tele. But unfortunately, many did only because a very fast lens would sell more,
while a slower lens would remain on the shop shelves. For this reason, lenses were released that were practically unuseable
wide open - the fast aperture was there as a marketing call, not much differently from the number of pixels in a digital camera today.
Buyers must be aware that in order to be sure to get a very fast lens that is also useable wide open, they'd better stay with the consolidated
brands: Leica, Zeiss, Nikon, Canon, Olympus, Pentax, Minolta (and maybe a few others I forget now).
These brands had a reputation that they could not afford to waste with unadequate products.
On the other hand, brands like Sigma, Tamron, Vivitar, Soligor, and the likes, were already known for providing low cost alternatives to the top brand lenses,
and they kept doing that with the super fast lenses too. This does not mean that every super fast lens they released is crap,
but it surely means that the risk of getting a poor super fast lens exists. So buyer should document himself very well, read reviews,
browse for forum opinions, before buying a super fast lens from a third party company.
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iangreenhalgh1



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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the Vivitar 2.3/135 was designed as an answer to the super fast but crap 135mms that appeared earlier.

Clearly many people have great copies of it, so my experience isn't indicative of the possibilities with this lens, provided you get a good copy.

Mine was absolutely mint so I do wonder if it was used once or twice then never used again.

Maybe I got a 'Friday' lens?
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Orio




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I tried shortly a Vivitar 2.3/135 and wide open it behaved like yours: soft and plenty of CA.

I think the wisest way to use such a lens is to take advantage of the fast aperture for critical focusing, then stop it down for shooting.
Provided, of course, that it doesn't focus-shift too much. But f/2.3 is not that fast to be a likely focus shifter.
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iangreenhalgh1



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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Orio wrote:
I tried shortly a Vivitar 2.3/135 and wide open it behaved like yours: soft and plenty of CA.

I think the wisest way to use such a lens is to take advantage of the fast aperture for critical focusing, then stop it down for shooting.
Provided, of course, that it doesn't focus-shift too much. But f/2.3 is not that fast to be a likely focus shifter.


Ooh, that's interesting. I wonder why some people are getting great results with it? I thought it was copy variation, maybe I'm wrong.
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Orio




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Copy variation is a likely factor in budget lenses, but I don't think so it's possible that the same lens design can range from excellent to crappy.
Most CA is removable in postwork, there are techniques for improving the apparent image quality, especially at web sizes...
so it's possible that the photos that you saw did speak more of the photographer's competence with photoshop than of the lens' quality.
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iangreenhalgh1



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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Orio wrote:
Copy variation is a likely factor in budget lenses, but I don't think so it's possible that the same lens design can range from excellent to crappy.
Most CA is removable in postwork, there are techniques for improving the apparent image quality, especially at web sizes...
so it's possible that the photos that you saw did speak more of the photographer's competence with photoshop than of the lens' quality.


Aah. right, thanks for input. I was contending that copy variation with these Vivitars must be a lot greater than I've seen with others as that would explain why my results were awful and others were good, hence I warned about trying before buying to avoid bad ones.

I could be completely wrong, it happens.
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