Focal Lenght: 90mm
Max Apeture: 2.8
Lens Mount: Canon FD (came in others too)
Min. Focus: 0.35 mm
Filter Size: 49mm
Brand: Komine (28xxxxx)
I have a list of lenses (in my mind) that I keep an constant look out for. Some are ones I’ve read a ton of, others – some I’m just curious about.
I’ve used the Micro-Nikkor 55mm 2.8 as my dedicated macro for a while, but I’ve always found the need for macro rings to achieve higher magnicifaction a bit cumbersone, so a native 1:1 macro lens has always been on my wishlist.
On one of my trips, I saw a small lens, which upon focus grew twice it’s size! I knew it was a macro and hoped for the fabled Tokina made 100/105mm one!
It turned out it was the Vivitar, made by Komine (you can tell by the first two letters of the serial numbers), which is still pretty well regarded.
Photography has been slower this past year, with a ton happening and little time, so I shot with it for around 3 months. Here’s what I found:
This is a very solid metal lens, it has heft, when you extend it to 1:1 magnification it feels like a long telephoto. My copy was generally dirty on purchase, but optics were excellent, without a single blemish. It’s missing the rubber grip, which is a problem with some older Vivitars. It’s completely removed so it doesn’t look/feel that bad and there’s none of that sticky goo left!
There’s a realy long focus throw, almost 3 turns to max magnification, which is good for precise macro focusing.
The front element is recessed, which should in theory help with flare, but I did experience some quite a few times. The filter thread is 62mm which is bigger than any I have, so I had to shade the lens with my hand quite a few times.
One weird thing I noticed is when I tried scanning negatives – there was always flare in the corners. This could be owed to reflections from the Sony a7’s sensor or my scanning setup, as diy lens shade didn’t help a lot.
A generally narrow depth of field and good sharpness overall. Even at 2.8 I’ve not found the results lacking.
Contrast is good, which some chromatic aberrations wide open, but overall it is usable. Stopping down (as with most lenses) improves things drastically.
I usually shot the lens at f4 instead of 2.8, just for that extra kick in sharpness/contrast.
Overall, apart from flaring, I’m happy with this lens and some of the images I got from it are amongst my favourites so far.
If you want a 1:1 magnification macro lens, this is a good pick. Especially for a short telephoto, giving you more breathing room with your subjects so close to the lens.
It’s not the fabled Bokina(Vivitar branded Tokina), but it’s still a solid performer. Not having a cult following and raving fans, means the price is more realistic as well.