Sunday morning with a Vivitar Zoom


I woke up on Sunday to the warm sound of bees humming…. well actually I woke to the sound of my two-year-old telling us she needed to potty but that’s not so romantic a start to my post 🙂

Anyway, I stepped out of my front door and the only sound I could hear was the bees humming in the fruitless pair tree that decorates our sidewalk (well I could also hear the distance drone of the freeway too but again lets keep with the romantic mood).

This time of year gives us the brief wave of blossom on the trees that line our street and the bees take advantage of this bounty… standing under the tree you are truly overwhelmed by the sound of humming from countless bees (and no doubt other insects).

I thought it a good opportunity to try out a Vivitar 80-200mm zoom on my micro-four-thirds (MFT) Olympus. This is the third zoom lens I have had in this 60/80-200 range in recent years; firstly another Vivitar with an OM mount that was decent enough but I replaced with an Olympus equivalent hoping for better results (and a wider maximum aperture). Unfortunately the Olympus isn’t the improvement I had hoped for so have been thinking about what to try next. This Vivitar with an M42 mount was languishing in a box of random camera accessories that I had purchased as a job lot a few months ago that I was getting around to selling. I’d not really considered using it as it was the same (I thought) as the previous one but with an M42 mount. I didn’t have an M42 adapter either, so that didn’t help.

Then I was listening to Mike Eckman’s Camerosity podcast and the subject of Vivitar zoom lenses came up. I kinda knew the Vivitar didn’t really make much of what has their brand on but I didn’t realize that many companies made the same zoom lenses for them and that you could work out who from the serial number. I also learned that some were better than others due to this varying supply chain. Like the one discussed in the show mine had a serial number that meant it was made by Komine and that is perceived to be one of the better one’s. So I figured perhaps the investment of $15 in an adapter was worth it to give this lens a try. The adapter arrived just a few days ago, so Sunday morning blossoms and bees was a perfect first test.

Initial thoughts are good for this effectively free lens and maybe it will be a keeper, I need to try a few more challenging subjects for it, but at the moment I am very encouraged by the contrast which the other two lacked.

Images here are JPEGs straight out of the camera

Categories: Olympus Pen-F DigitalTags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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Maria Vincent Robinson

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