Showcase Vivitar Series 1 90mm f2.5 Macro

FotoBo

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Bo
This lens was manufactured in 1980's by Tokina for Vivitar. It has its own multi-glass 1:1 adapter (I have the Canon FD mount). It is extremely sharp and has a "cult" following for it's soft creamy bokeh and is known among fans as the "Bokina".
 

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edmsnap

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If you disregard how awkward/heavy it is to carry around on a µ4/3's setup, the is the lens for macro photography. Its bokeh is just unlike anything any other lens has ever done. It melts everything into smooth, perfect, creamy goodness.

A great flickr with stunning examples can be seen here.

Another good group of examples here.

What many forget when talking about this lens is its non-macro shooting. When it was released, all of the photography magazines raved about how it was the sharpest lens that they'd ever seen or tested at any price level. Its colours are bold and alive and its renditions are 3-dimensional and lifelike. It's built like a tank; essentially just a heavy lump of steel and glass. It's my perfect lens. :)

Just another reason why Vivitar has always been my favourite lensmaker :)

Thanks for starting the thread!
 

edmsnap

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Took the Series 1 90mm out for tonight's walk. Left the 1:1 macro converter at home (as you can't shoot anything but close macro when it's on and the mosquitoes are a bit thick for tripod work :tongue:). My snapshots certainly aren't demonstrative of the lens's capabilities, but FotoBo's post seemed like it was getting lonely :smile:

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edmsnap

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Another comparing the bokeh:

f/4:
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f/8:
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addieleman

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Ad
Meh...

Because everyone is raving about this lens, I bought one too half a year ago. I compared it immediately with my Minolta MD Macro 100/4 and found that the Tokina's contrast is markedly lower than the Minolta's. The Tokina's sharpness was indeed excellent, but not better and its bokeh wide-open is indeed very nice; bokeh at smaller apertures around f/8 was equal between the two so as a macro lens there was no point in keeping the Tokina.

Especially the Tokina's lower contrast disappointed me and I resold it within a week.
 

edmsnap

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Technically, it's a Vivitar lens built by Tokina. The Tokina version was a different lens. Sorry you didn't care for yours; it's a great piece of equipment.

The Alberta legislature. Cropped but otherwise untouched:

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mpg01

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Picked up a copy just in time for springtime. Everything they say about this lens appears to be true. Lucky me.
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RDM

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Because everyone is raving about this lens, I bought one too half a year ago. I compared it immediately with my Minolta MD Macro 100/4 and found that the Tokina's contrast is markedly lower than the Minolta's. The Tokina's sharpness was indeed excellent, but not better and its bokeh wide-open is indeed very nice; bokeh at smaller apertures around f/8 was equal between the two so as a macro lens there was no point in keeping the Tokina.

Especially the Tokina's lower contrast disappointed me and I resold it within a week.
This is very true. But the fact that the Minolta lens was only a little better and the Vivitar lens sold for much less made it a more popular choise and added to it's cult status. I unfortunately do not have a copy anymore because someone took it right out of my bag during a photography lab way back when.
 

bassman

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I have the Vivitar Series 1 135/2.3 from my Minolta S-RT-102 days (my first SLR). I just ordered an adaptor to see what it does. While I remember it fondly, I have no real idea if it was any good (or if I was any good, for that matter). But it's worth a few bucks to learn about the lens.
 

Itchybiscuit

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So, the sun shone and I took my 'Bokina' for a walk...

I asked nicely and she said yes. I'm glad she did.
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'Bokina' time...
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Itchybiscuit

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I don't want to hog the image thread for my Bokina but I was in Ayr yesterday and visited Brigadoon.
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piggsy

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RAWs - 0/0/normal/natural processed through oly viewer 3, no PP other than "auto adjust colour" from irfranview on the spider one (was going to shoot a cat some indoors thing, but then thought - geez that's kind of pedestrian for testing this, let's go outside. Literally the first thing I see walking out the back door is a huntsman *noisily* chowing down on ... something, a mole cricket? What a stroke of luck. And then I found pretty much nothing else worth shooting other than just seeing how it looked at 2.5 / stopped down. But anyway.

I was kind of hyped to get this and to get this out of it first go, and, uh, well. The hype is real. Like,

"Anime is real," Barack Obama said in his inauguration speech earlier. "Pokémon are real. Geodude is real, and strong, and he's my friend."

if that was real, that would be how real the hype for this lens is.

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D

Deleted member 29285

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Time to resurrect this thread, especially with the current discussions on legacy macro lenses.
With the macro adapter attached.
This image close to 1:1.
Lens at f5.6.
Flower is about 8mm across.

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Not so impressive until you look at the crop, below, and realise how shallow the depth of field is

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piggsy

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Some older shots with the E-P5

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hawk moth caterpillar by PIG, on Flickr

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sugarbag bee by PIG, on Flickr

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sugarbag bee by PIG, on Flickr

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wasp by PIG, on Flickr

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blue butterfly by PIG, on Flickr

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parasitic wasp by PIG, on Flickr

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tiger moth by PIG, on Flickr

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common aeroplane butterfly by PIG, on Flickr

and some newer ones with the EM-1ii

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crow butterfly on zinnia by PIG, on Flickr

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crow butterfly on gomphrena by PIG, on Flickr

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moth on gomphrena by PIG, on Flickr

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crow butterfly on gomphrena by PIG, on Flickr

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moth on gomphrena by PIG, on Flickr

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crow butterfly on gomphrena by PIG, on Flickr

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crow butterfly on zinnia by PIG, on Flickr
 

RDM

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Time to resurrect this thread, especially with the current discussions on legacy macro lenses.

I am glad you did resurrect this discussion. I never took any Macro Images the my copy of the Vivitar 90mm lens that I use to have, since I did not have the 1:1 adapter. I acquired it to use for B&W portrait shooting for a portrait class I was taking back in 2009. Cosmetically it was pretty ugly with only a couple small, light scratches on the lens. I ended up selling mine in 2010 when I got a deal on a Mint condition Sigma 90mm 2.8 macro lens. Interestingly it was also missing the life size adapter even tho it was sold as Mint in box, but did not have the small Life-Size diopter filter attachment.
I was never very good at finding a good subject for my own Macro photography, so I always enjoy seeing other's work on the subject .
 
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A good lens, but in comparison to my Tokina 90mm f2.5 Macro it is not as sharp - at least my copies. The build quality of the vivitar is better and the bokeh is the same.
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