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Re: [OM]Vivtar 19-35mm Series 1 (was zoom for OM-1)

Subject: Re: [OM]Vivtar 19-35mm Series 1 (was zoom for OM-1)
From: The Family <fotolady@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sat, 18 Jul 1998 21:12:34 -0400
>I have been interested in the 19-35 zoom from Vivitar as Oly does not have a
>wide angle zoom (other than the 28-48).  How does it compare to Zuiko primes
>in sharpness and contrast?  Thanks.        >Warren Kato

Hi Warren,

   I like it.  The first test with all new lens is the living room wall...a
16 foot wide loaded bookcase from floor to ceiling and huge windows on each
side.  The multitude of colors, fabrics, and lettering provides the palate
and strong sun from one of the windows adds the flare factor and
contrasting shadows.  This lens is very close to the 35mm f2.8 Ziuko at the
35mm end.  The 28mm test was against our sharpest non-Z prime, a Spectrum 7
28mm f2.8.  One sharp lens and again very close comparison.  At 24mm the
Series 1 was prefered by most family members over our 24mm f2.8 Macro.  All
tests at f8-16, tripod, mirror lock-up, timer, no filters!

The only thing to compare it with wider than 24mm was my wife's 19-35mm
Series 1 on her point and shoot N70.  Yes we have 2 of these lens, one for
N*k*n and the OM.  They are a little different in housing construction
(autofocus on the N-version) but the optics seem identical.  That means
that all the good things you've heard about this lens in the AF world are
applicable in the manual version, IMHO.

About 20 rolls of TMAX 100 and Fuji/Royal Gold 100 have gone through both
lens...most through the OM.  No complaints and a few prints have gone to
20x30" (Grand Canyon and Mabry Mill) and no suprises.  Sharpness and
contrast specifically?  The bookcase shots with all the variations and
irregularities is a tough test but the differences are very hard to find.
I have a shot of the G Canyon that was taken at the same spot as the one
mentioned above with one of the other OMPC's AND the 35mm Zuiko.  I chose
to blow up the Vivitar shot only because of the different filter used at
the time.  A Sky-1a filter will mask most differences between these lens.
In B&W I've not been able to see a difference up to 12x18" prints.  The 2
award winners taken at Columbia University and the Hungarian Bakery last
year were on the Vivitar with a Yellow filter.  Very sharp and excellent
bright to shadow transitions.

When dragging multiple primes around is not ideal (NY Book Country Weekend,
etc.), I can be comfortable with the Series 1.  It took 4-5 rolls of B&W
and color to convince me of it, but it's a close second.  I'd put its
resolution a hair better than the look of the 75-150mm Zuiko if that means
anything to you.

Where do you live?  If you're close you can borrow mine and give it a
whirl.  I would only ask for some of the proceeds from any NY Times front
page compensations you might receive  :)

In the world of absolutes, the prime have an edge.  Jim,  Wilmington, DE

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