Vivitar 135mm 2.8 Legacy Lens on a6300 for JiuJitsu tournament?

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DaFireMedic Senior Member • Posts: 1,049
Vivitar 135mm 2.8 Legacy Lens on a6300 for JiuJitsu tournament?

One of the things that initially drew me to the Nex-5r a few years ago (besides the tiny form factor and light weight) was the ability to adapt legacy lenses and get decent quality optics without committing too far into what can be a very expensive hobby. I ended up buying several Canon FD mount legacy lenses on ebay and in pawn shops in order to gather a collection for various uses. After picking up a Canon 50mm 1.8, then a 50mm 1.4, I looked for a fast telephoto. In researching, people were giving favorable reviews to the Vivitar 135mm 2.8, so I put in some bids and nabbed one for around $30 on eBay. Over the next couple years I moved on the the a6300 and AF lenses, but still like to practice with MF lenses for fun and to build that area of my skills.

With the World Brazilian JiuJitsu Championships to shoot tomorrow (my son is competing, I'm not a pro photog and am not getting paid) and realizing that they may not allow me to bring in the 70-200 2.8 (grrrrr.....), I pulled out the Vivitar to practice with it and see if I felt like it was good enough to use in case I needed more reach than the 50mm 1.8. I took a few shots in the backyard, imported them into Capture One and I think they turned out pretty sharp. I shot RAW and didn't add any sharpening in post as I wanted opinions on the sharpness out of camera, as well as the overall IQ. The only things I added in Capture One were some curves to bump the contrast and some highlights adjustments. Also, first picture is cropped quite a bit as I took it from a distance.

I'm a little concerned about using this with MF for a JiuJitsu tournament as while the overall distances usually don't change too quickly once the action hits the ground, it does change, and the competitors spin, twist, and change positions constantly. The DOF on this lens at 2.8 is somewhat shallow, requiring me to have good timing to nail focus accurately. I practice JiuJitsu as well, am very familiar with it and what to anticipate, so at least I have that advantage. I'll be testing it on some earlier matches to see how I do with it and just stick with the 50mm 1.8 and crop (if need be) if it looks like I'm just not nailing it.

Note: These are only test images, and were not shot with composition or artistic style in mind.

Opinions on lens's image quality, or advice on shooting the tournament?

Edit: After posting, I notice that the EXIF info says they are from the Tamron 70-200 2.8. I'm not sure why it says that, but these were shot with the Vivitar 135mm 2.8 using a "dumb" FD to e-mount adapter.

Vivitar 135mm 2.8 F/7

Vivitar 135mm 2.8 F/7

Vivitar 135mm 2.8 F/2.8

 DaFireMedic's gear list:DaFireMedic's gear list
Sony a6300 Sony a7 III Tamron SP 70-200mm F/2.8 Di VC USD Sony FE 85mm F1.8 Tamron 28-75mm F2.8 III
NEX5R Sony a6300
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