After trying out the first two versions of Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm zooms recommended by Mark Robert, I found a good copy of the 3rd version made by Komine. The komine copy of the vivitar zoom looks so much like the Tokina copy. In appearance, v2 from Tokina and v3 from Komine almost look identical, but there is the red line in lens' front distinguishing it from v1 and v2. I will have a difficult time to decide which one to keep. The Komine copy has the best advantage with 'A' settings and the f/2.8 in the 70mm and it has macro at 1:2.5 magnification ratio.
Product shot in 1:2.5 close up
Impressions & Notes:
The komine v3 copy does much better in close up as I see a lot of ghosting in the 1:4 close up with the Tokina, something noticed by others too when I discussed the lens in forum. I should look for a lens hood for the Series 1 as I do have run into glare in the late afternoon washing out some color in the shots.
- serial number starts with 28
- the only version among the three that has 'A' settings
- weight is middle tier in 860g in between 710g Tokina and the 879g Kiron
- perhaps the barrel are not as big, I feel similar handling to the Tokina
- close up is found pretty decent at 1:2.5
- I still prefer the color and contrast from Kiron but I will give the Komine slightly better than Tokina
- sharpness is middle as 2nd runner after Tokina
- best overall due to the 'A' setting, faster speed in f/2.8 in the shorter end.
- cost more than twice of v1 and v2, recent sale goes about $160 to $180 in both ebay and Marketplace.
- More frequent use of the zoom has shown CA in shots with high contrast area. Not as severe as shown in Tamron 70-300mm Di LD but noticeable.