Comparing Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm Zooms

v1 from Kiron

Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm f/3.5 from Kiron
  • Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm f/3.5, v1 from Kiron
  • serial number starts with 22
  • best in color and contrast
  • bokeh is very nice, next to Komin and better than Tokina
  • heaviest unfortunately, it is actually not much heavier than Komine copy, but it is bulkier
  • best build quality in construction
  • very inexpensive to get
  • sharpness square evenly with the Komine copy. But I do prefer the Tokina on sharpness when stopped down
  • close up is at 1:2.2 and I think the weight and the bigger size in barrel may hinder the usefulness in close up

v2 from Tokina

Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm f/3.5 from Tokina
  • Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm f/3.5, v2 from Tokina
  • serial number starts with 37
  • best in sharpness when stopped down to f/5.6 and smaller
  • lightest of the three and much usable in walk around
  • does quite poorly in close up with magnification at 1:4, I see ghosting in close up
  • color and contrast are reasonable, but I like the Kiron and Komine copies better for color, contrast and saturation
  • best in focusing ring, maybe my copy with Tokina is newer than the other, the focusing ring in my tokina copy is the best among the three versions that I have tried.
  • very inexpensive to get, a less competed model that should go well in terms of cost and value

v3 from Komine

Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm f/2.8-4.0 from Komine
  • Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm f/2.8-4.0 from Komine
  • 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 quite 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
  • Bokeh is best among the three versions, very close with Kiron copy
  • Some moderate Purple Fringe noted in test shots,
  • 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



Unknown said...

Great reviews, much appreciated for your time in differentiating among these subtle variations

Unknown said...

Nice summary of these... I've had all three at certain points in time, and currently have the Tokina and Komine in PK-mount, and the Kiron in Nikon F-mount. I find the differences incredibly subtle and generally not worth too much fretting over. When I am using a larger manual zom like these however, the most important aspect for me is handling which is why I've always picked the Tokina first and foremost being the lightest and the quickest to zoom and focus.

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