Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 v. Bower 14mm f/2.8 ?

Started Aug 28, 2010 | Discussions
steveo99
Junior MemberPosts: 34
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Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 v. Bower 14mm f/2.8 ?
Aug 28, 2010

I just noticed this 13mm lens at B&H, which appears to have slightly different specs and price (but virtually the same FF angle of view) than the Bower 14mm, which I believe to be the Samyang. Does anyone know the scoop on this 13?

Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 $449.00
Elements/Groups: 16/13

  1. 113.8° Angle of View

  2. Aspherical Lens / Reduced Flare/Ghosting

  3. Super Spectra Lens Coating

  4. 12" (30.5cm) Minimum Focusing Distance

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/711897-REG/Vivitar_VIV13MMN_Series_1_13mm_f_2_8.html

+++

Bower 14mm f/2.8 $426.00
Elements/Groups: 14/12

  1. 92.5° Angle of View (APS-C)

  2. 114° Angle of View (Full Frame)

  3. 14 Elements/12 Groups Construction

  4. Two Aspherical & Two ED Lens Elements

  5. Close Focusing Down to 11" (0.28 m)

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/698926-REG/Bower_SLY14MMF2_8N_14mm_f_2_8_Ultra_Wide.html

steveo99
Junior MemberPosts: 34
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Re: Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 v. Bower 14mm f/2.8 ?
In reply to steveo99, Aug 30, 2010

Does anyone know about this 13?

Thanks

steveo99 wrote:

I just noticed this 13mm lens at B&H, which appears to have slightly different specs and price (but virtually the same FF angle of view) than the Bower 14mm, which I believe to be the Samyang. Does anyone know the scoop on this 13?

Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 $449.00
Elements/Groups: 16/13

  1. 113.8° Angle of View

  2. Aspherical Lens / Reduced Flare/Ghosting

  3. Super Spectra Lens Coating

  4. 12" (30.5cm) Minimum Focusing Distance

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/711897-REG/Vivitar_VIV13MMN_Series_1_13mm_f_2_8.html

+++

Bower 14mm f/2.8 $426.00
Elements/Groups: 14/12

  1. 92.5° Angle of View (APS-C)

  2. 114° Angle of View (Full Frame)

  3. 14 Elements/12 Groups Construction

  4. Two Aspherical & Two ED Lens Elements

  5. Close Focusing Down to 11" (0.28 m)

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/698926-REG/Bower_SLY14MMF2_8N_14mm_f_2_8_Ultra_Wide.html

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marco1974
Senior MemberPosts: 1,538Gear list
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Re: Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 v. Bower 14mm f/2.8 ?
In reply to steveo99, Aug 30, 2010

They look VERY similar to me. My guess is that it is most probably the very same lens, only marketed differently.

The real focal length is probably somewhere in between (say, 13.5mm), and Vivitar and Bower (and Samyang) made different choices as to what to print on the lens barrel and box The reported angles of view are most likely calculated, rather than measured, so I wouldn't put much faith in those either.

By the way, you might have missed my recent mini-review of the Samyang version: http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat.asp?forum=1030&thread=36169192
It's a GREAT little lens, well worth 2-3 times the retail price, IMHO.

Marco.

 marco1974's gear list:marco1974's gear list
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steveo99
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Re: Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 v. Bower 14mm f/2.8 ?
In reply to marco1974, Aug 30, 2010

Hi Marco-

Thanks for the link to that thread. Glad to hear some good feedback on it. Which brand/version did you buy, just out of curiosity?

I would tend to agree and assume that they are probably the same lens rebranded, BUT the fact that they claim different elements & groups is very puzzling:
Vivitar 13mm: Elements/Groups: 16/13
Bower 14mm: Elements/Groups: 14/12

Anyone else know what's up here?

Thanks-
Steve

marco1974 wrote:

They look VERY similar to me. My guess is that it is most probably the very same lens, only marketed differently.

The real focal length is probably somewhere in between (say, 13.5mm), and Vivitar and Bower (and Samyang) made different choices as to what to print on the lens barrel and box The reported angles of view are most likely calculated, rather than measured, so I wouldn't put much faith in those either.

By the way, you might have missed my recent mini-review of the Samyang version: http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat.asp?forum=1030&thread=36169192
It's a GREAT little lens, well worth 2-3 times the retail price, IMHO.

Marco.

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marco1974
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Re: Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 v. Bower 14mm f/2.8 ?
In reply to steveo99, Aug 31, 2010

Thanks for the link to that thread. Glad to hear some good feedback on it. Which brand/version did you buy, just out of curiosity?

The Samyang UMC version.

I would tend to agree and assume that they are probably the same lens rebranded, BUT the fact that they claim different elements & groups is very puzzling:
Vivitar 13mm: Elements/Groups: 16/13
Bower 14mm: Elements/Groups: 14/12

I hadn't noticed that. I don't know... it may still be possible that it's just a misprint. Otherwise, it might be a variation on the theme by Vivitar (but somehow I doubt it).

Marco.

 marco1974's gear list:marco1974's gear list
Fujifilm X-E1 Fujifilm XF 35mm F1.4 R Fujifilm XF 60mm F2.4 R Macro Fujifilm XF 14mm F2.8 R
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glanglois
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Re: Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 v. Bower 14mm f/2.8 ?
In reply to steveo99, Sep 1, 2010

B&H have noted that the Bower and Vivitar are NOT the same lens. The element/group info on their site is correct.

Some firm (Acme Photo Stuff of China, I suppose) does the manufacturing for multiple brand names and distribution channels. In this case, though, the Vivitar is distinct.

I would like to see some careful reviews, a la photozone. The Samyang seems to suffer some serious distortion for architectural purposes - my application of choice.

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Jon Rty
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Re: Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 v. Bower 14mm f/2.8 ?
In reply to glanglois, Sep 1, 2010

It does, but in today's world a photoshop lens-correction profile is all it takes to get straight lines. You loose a wee bit of resolution and FOV, but the Samyang got both a plenty to begin with, so it shouldn't be a problem.

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steveo99
Junior MemberPosts: 34
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Re: Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 v. Bower 14mm f/2.8 ?
In reply to glanglois, Sep 7, 2010

Has anyone had any experience with the Vivitar 13?

glanglois wrote:

B&H have noted that the Bower and Vivitar are NOT the same lens. The element/group info on their site is correct.

Some firm (Acme Photo Stuff of China, I suppose) does the manufacturing for multiple brand names and distribution channels. In this case, though, the Vivitar is distinct.

I would like to see some careful reviews, a la photozone. The Samyang seems to suffer some serious distortion for architectural purposes - my application of choice.

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ZoneV
Regular MemberPosts: 198
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Re: Vivitar Series 1 13mm f/2.8 v. Bower 14mm f/2.8 ?
In reply to glanglois, Sep 9, 2010

Yes, the distortion of the Samyang 14 mm is awful, some pictures with architecture or sea need correction.
At the moment I use it mostly without correction afterwards.

It would be very interessting, how the Vivitar 13 mm performs!

It looks to me to similar - so I think it is the same as the Samyang. If that Vivitar lens has´t the distortion it would be clear that it is not the same.

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