Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

Started Feb 4, 2006 | Discussions
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shane gerrish
shane gerrish Veteran Member • Posts: 5,961
Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

are these any good ?
looks like a manual lens but the f2.8 is interesting.
--
Aussie Ds user in the advanced stages of LBA
A macro says a million words !

LuzArt Veteran Member • Posts: 6,643
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

Hi Shane,

I haven't heard about this lens in particular, but i have heard that Series 1 Vivitar's are not to be sneezed at.

Ben
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'There's gotta be record of you someplace' - Mark Knopfler

 LuzArt's gear list:LuzArt's gear list
Nikon D700 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II Nikon AF-S Teleconverter TC-20E III Tamron AF 28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF) +2 more
frank
frank Veteran Member • Posts: 6,961
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

Well, there are several Vivitar 70-210 series 1 lenses. And there are two version at F2.8-4. Don't know which one you are looking at. If it's the old f2.8-4 version made by Komine, it's quite good optically. If it's the newer A version with 58mm front thread size, that's a dog.

You can find some of the Vivitar S1 lens info here:
http://medfmt.8k.com/third/cult.html#vivitar

Cheers,
--
Frank
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 frank's gear list:frank's gear list
Fujifilm XF1 Pentax K-3 Pentax smc FA 31mm F1.8 AL Limited Pentax smc FA 43mm F1.9 Limited Pentax smc FA 77mm 1.8 Limited +1 more
In-camera Regular Member • Posts: 142
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

I believe that in its day this was considered to be the best in its class and was highly desirable. I don't know how it compares with a modern design, though.
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shane gerrish
shane gerrish OP Veteran Member • Posts: 5,961
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

on photodo its rated at 3 and my pentax F70-210 is rated at 3.4
--
Aussie Ds user in the advanced stages of LBA
A macro says a million words !

noisynoodle Contributing Member • Posts: 528
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

Old manal Series 1s tend to be good, more modern ones and the recent AF ones, not so good....trading on past glory. The original S1 lenses were designed to be a high class option from Vivitar and there are some nice lenses with great optics and build quality. You do have to be careful tough as many believe all S1s are that sort of quality and will advertise them as such even when they're "dogs". The 2.8-4 70-210 is a very good lens and is the best of the S1 70-210s. (I have one). It's a push-pull one touch type zoom though so can take a bit of getting used to
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frank
frank Veteran Member • Posts: 6,961
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

noisynoodle wrote:

Old manal Series 1s tend to be good, more modern ones and the
recent AF ones, not so good....trading on past glory. The original
S1 lenses were designed to be a high class option from Vivitar and
there are some nice lenses with great optics and build quality. You
do have to be careful tough as many believe all S1s are that sort
of quality and will advertise them as such even when they're
"dogs". The 2.8-4 70-210 is a very good lens and is the best of the
S1 70-210s. (I have one). It's a push-pull one touch type zoom
though so can take a bit of getting used to
--
http://www.pbase.com/noisynoodle

The older version F2.8-4 is really good, probably the best out of the three old versions.

But be aware that there is a much newer version F2.8-4 Vivitar 70-210 too:

This one is a lousy Vivtar S1 lens. It's plastic body, not that good optically either. Better stay away from it.

Cheers.
--
Frank
GMT+8hours
http://www.weisphoto.com/

 frank's gear list:frank's gear list
Fujifilm XF1 Pentax K-3 Pentax smc FA 31mm F1.8 AL Limited Pentax smc FA 43mm F1.9 Limited Pentax smc FA 77mm 1.8 Limited +1 more
noisynoodle Contributing Member • Posts: 528
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

frank wrote:

noisynoodle wrote:

Old manal Series 1s tend to be good, more modern ones and the
recent AF ones, not so good....trading on past glory. The original
S1 lenses were designed to be a high class option from Vivitar and
there are some nice lenses with great optics and build quality. You
do have to be careful tough as many believe all S1s are that sort
of quality and will advertise them as such even when they're
"dogs". The 2.8-4 70-210 is a very good lens and is the best of the
S1 70-210s. (I have one). It's a push-pull one touch type zoom
though so can take a bit of getting used to
--
http://www.pbase.com/noisynoodle

The older version F2.8-4 is really good, probably the best out of
the three old versions.

But be aware that there is a much newer version F2.8-4 Vivitar
70-210 too:

that

good optically either. Better stay away from it.

Cheers.
--
Frank
GMT+8hours
http://www.weisphoto.com/

Yes, Frank, you're quite right. I wasn't perhaps as clear as I meant to be. The old S1s were good, more modern ones (both AF and manual) were not so good - some truly awful, but when I said the 2.8-4 was the best of the 70-210s I was referring only to the old ones. As you say, the later verson was pretty dreadful, but its plastic build gives it away. The decent ones are metal, very heavy and built like tanks!! Thanks for clarifying.
--
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fwcetus
fwcetus Senior Member • Posts: 1,509
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

are these any good ?
looks like a manual lens but the f2.8 is interesting.

Well, yes and no - it depends on which one it is:

The first (on the left) 70-210/3.5 is a classic. The second 70-210/3.5 was even better optically, while the third (middle), the first of the 70-210/2.8-4's, got even better. The fourth and fifth, also 70-210/2.8-4's, seem to be not as good (Vivitar may have been resting on its laurels, it would seem), although the fifth (the Q-DOS anaglyphic 3-D version) at least is interesting.

Mark Roberts has a very good summary of the differences (using one of my photos) at http://www.robertstech.com/vivitar.htm .

-- hide signature --

Fred

shane gerrish
shane gerrish OP Veteran Member • Posts: 5,961
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

so the square patterned grip 2.8-4 is the best of the bunch then.

looks like the late model ones have a different optical formula as the smallest end of the zoom range is to the outside by the looks of it.

thanks for the pic
--
Aussie Ds user in the advanced stages of LBA
A macro says a million words !

fwcetus
fwcetus Senior Member • Posts: 1,509
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

so the square patterned grip 2.8-4 is the best of the bunch then.

Yes.

looks like the late model ones have a different optical formula as
the smallest end of the zoom range is to the outside by the looks
of it.

Yes - for the first three versions, you push the focus/zoom ring away to go to 70mm and put it towards you for 210mm - on the fourth and fift, it's the other way around (which is quite visible just from a glance at the DOF scale flaring curves).

I'm most used to the earlier style (most of the "one-touch" zooms that I've ever owned work that way). The newer style seems backwards to me (although it only takes a second or two to get used to it in practice), but I'm willing to "tolerate" it in order to play with the Q-DOS 3-D version on occasion - {g}.

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Fred

fwcetus
fwcetus Senior Member • Posts: 1,509
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

looks like the late model ones have a different optical formula as
the smallest end of the zoom range is to the outside by the looks
of it.

Yes - for the first three versions, you push the focus/zoom ring
away to go to 70mm and put it towards you for 210mm - on the fourth
and fift, it's the other way around (which is quite visible just
from a glance at the DOF scale flaring curves).

[here are the lenses at 70mm FL]

[and here are the lenses at 210mm FL]

-- hide signature --

Fred

Don Allison Veteran Member • Posts: 6,163
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

Stay away from anyting with a 09 to start the serial number on the Series 1. These are the dogs referred to above. The earlier 2.8-4 was and is a superb lens. I used one years ago and it compares favorably with my A-70-210 SMC version...well, almost as sharp. Don
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derbunk Forum Member • Posts: 54
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

fwcetus wrote:

so the square patterned grip 2.8-4 is the best of the bunch then.

Yes.

Also, this one has the "A" setting on the aperture ring, so all of the auto exposure features of the camera work. The 1st and 2nd generations were manual exposure.

Lou

fwcetus
fwcetus Senior Member • Posts: 1,509
Re: Vivitar 70-210 f2.8-4 series 1

so the square patterned grip 2.8-4 is the best of the bunch then.

Yes.

Also, this one has the "A" setting on the aperture ring, so all of
the auto exposure features of the camera work. The 1st and 2nd
generations were manual exposure.

Well, actually, I think that the first VS1 70-210/2.8-4 sometimes has the A functionality and sometimes it doesn't. It was built during those years (early to mid 1980's, I'd say), that Pentax came out with the Super Program/A, and the Pentax Ka-mount arrived on the scene. The older samples of this version are "just" K-mount lenses, while the later samples are Ka's.

It's similar to the manual focus Tokina AT-X 80-200/2.8 (and, undoubtedly, many other lenses of that time) - some are K-mounts and some are Ka-mounts.

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Fred

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