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Kiron/Lester Dine/ Vivitar Series1 105mm f2.5 1:1 macro
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Harold Gough



Joined: 09 Mar 2008
Posts: 5787
Location: Reading, Berkshire, England

PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2013 12:57 pm    Post subject: Kiron/Lester Dine/ Vivitar Series1 105mm f2.5 1:1 macro Reply with quote

This model is reputed to be one of the best macro lenses ever made.

I received my lens last week but the diaphragm seemed stuck open. It has a Canon FD mount, with a fiddly breechlock. Even some matched moves and manipulations with a Tamron Adaptall lens on an FD mount gave full function on my new FD to m4/3 adapter and on my Canaon A1 but nothing with the Kiron.

Anyway, I sent it off to be repaired. The engineer could find no fault and returned it, when I also found full function. It seems I may have an intermittent fault.

I have had time for only some hand-held shots at f8 or f11, shot at 2:1 and cropped to about 3:1:

A mosquito on the inside of a fly-excluding curtain, 1/40 ISO 800:



A Jasmine Flower, 1/125 ISO 800:



Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2013 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have taken a look (in very variable lighting conditions) at the performance of my other macro lenses and have, therefore posted some shots, using similar settings, with the 105mm here:

http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/viewtopic.php?p=126742#126742

Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2013 4:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was concerned that getting this lens less than two weeks before a major trip would leave me a nightmare of calibration the flash. No worries.

I put my T32 on the hotshoe, with plastic diffuser attached. I set the camera to Manual and the flash to Manual. At ISO 100 and f11, I quickly found that at "1:2"* on the lens and GN 16 (half power) on the flash, it was right first time.

This Peyote cactus image is uncropped and given only Auto Contrast in PS and InFocus in Topaz:



This rockery flower at "1:1"* image has been cropped by about 70% (showing FOV ca 4mm wide) and treated as the previous image. It is shown without (left) and with (right) MicroContrast in Topaz DeTail 2:



* The crop factor of x2 doubles these in the image.

I found the working distance of ca 135mm & 240mm denied me some of the lens-supporting options of closer working distance. The inbuilt hood extends by up to 25mm but gives no helpfull resistance to retraction.

As usual, having to remove the VF-2 viewfinder to free up the hot shoe gave focusing difficulties.

Harold
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Last edited by Harold Gough on Sat Apr 13, 2013 7:59 am; edited 2 times in total
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2013 6:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The previous images suggested to me that f16 was required to show the detail and depth I required. (To me, a macro lens which does not perform well at f16 is not much of a macro lens).

The settings were the same as before, at "1:1", but f16 and ISO 200.

The first image in each case is uncropped. All have had contrast optimised in PS and focus in Topaz InFocus. The Feature Contrast option in Topaz DeTail 2 was also used.



Crop, FOV ca 10mm wide:







Crop:



This confirms that the range of magnifications I can cover with one lens, when circumstances disallow using the optimum lens for some ranges, is as I had hoped. More critical comparisons e.g. with my other Kiron lenses reversed, should be done in due course.

Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2013 8:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A note on working distances:

For many years my main macro lens was a Tamron SP 90mm f2.5 macro.

My current (pre-Kiron 105) is an Elmarit 60mm macro 2.8

The Kiron is a 105mm 2.5

At WD 240mm the Tamron gives half life size (full frame)*
At WD 240mm the Kiron gives half life size (full frame)*
At 125mm the Elmarit gives half life size (full frame)*

However, the Tamron and Elmarit are at their closest working distance but the Kiron will focus down to 135mm, where it gives life size (full frame). Thus, it gives twice the magnification of the Elmarit at a similar distance and twice that of the Tamron at around half the distance. So, the Kiron is more verstile than the Elmarit, which out-performs the Tamron.

In addition, I have x1.5 and x2 matched teleconverters for the Kiron and none for the Elmarit.

The Kiron will be the go-to lens (most macro and telephoto) for the coming trip, with the Elmarit and other Kirons as back-up.

*Double for m4/3 crop factor.

Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2013 2:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Returning to the flower last imaged, I set the Kiron to "1:1" and added either a Marumi Achromat +3 or +5. The lens was on f11 and the flash on full manual with the diffuser in place.

The images were given Auto Contrast in PS then Topaz InFocus and Micro Contrast in Topaz Detail 2.

With the +3, uncropped, FOV ca 13mm:



With the +5, uncropped FOV ca 11mm:


Crop, processed after cropping:



The comparison is not quite as I would like, due to the very difficult focusing in bright light with the rear screen. There was also a gusting wind. At least the higher magnification was about spot-on.

The working distances were 85 and 70mm.

I am certainly happy with this option for increasing magnification in the field.

Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2013 8:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I decided to try f16, ISO100 and flash with the Marumi +5 on and the lens on maximium magnification.

Each image has been cropped by about 70%, processed as were the images in previous post.

Anthers (best of several attempts but a bit disappointing):



Stigma:





It is reassuring that the lens performs well at f16. (It has the reputation of not being so good at f5.6 or wider).

Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here are some field subjects, shot in sunlight, hand-held:

http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=20272

http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=20273

Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 2:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is a subject shot in daylight and then with flash:

http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/viewtopic.php?p=128410#128410

The lens appears to be living up to its reputation. I needs to be used on a tripod to really test it but this subject was not very suitable as subject movement was the main issue.

Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2013 4:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is a daylight shot at f32:

http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/viewtopic.php?p=128457#128457

and another

http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=20369

This is the kind of performance I expect from a macro lens and is going to be useful for field shots of hoverflies and suchlike.

Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2013 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just for clarity, my lens is a Vivitar Series 1, but it was made by Kino so I refer to it as that for brevity.

The aperture ring operates in the opposite direction to what is shown here:

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_66quOR2lcqk/S4HClHkzMuI/AAAAAAAAAd8/_0HwUqXEBjY/s1600-h/Vivitar_105mm_layout_NAI.jpg

It is because it has a Canon FD mount and Canon FD lenses have the aperture ring with the widest aperture on the left.

Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 6:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

These are some ants, each feeding on raw suggar crystal, on a brilliant white-painted wall. They were intermediate in size between typical garden ants and European Wood Ants.

The lens was my Kiron 105mm macro and it had the Marumi Achromat +5 attached. The aperture was probably f11, 1/100 & 1/125 at ISO 1600, shade on a bright, sunny day, hand-held.

The images needed a lot of processing, such that the second one has almost a solarized appearence. Anyway, it is clear that the detailed anatomy can be captured.






Harold
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Having converted my RAW files in a different way, I have found some more images which show detail of the ants. All these images are of the dark ants against the brilliant white wall, so there were always going to be limits on the success.

Here is the best one:



More:





Harold
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ChrisR
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PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Harold I may have missed it, but have you checked whether the Tamron was any worse than this or another lens at f/32 (set or effective, eg f/16 at 1:1) ?

I'm not in the regular habit of using an aperture so far into diffraction territory, but sure, sometimes it's appropriate. I don't think I've noticed any lens noticeably worse than another.

(I'm reminded of HLK WHitehouse's collection of stereo photos of bryophytes lodged now a the Museum of Wales, using a specially modified camera working at f/80, and producing very soft pictures.
Tech details here http://www.museumwales.ac.uk/bio/external/bryophyte/)
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chris, I don't think I have used the Tamron 90mm at f32. I would normally use it at f8 or f11. When used with flash and film the normal setup would have a matched TC behind the lens, giving effective apertures of f16 and f22. Less often I might use f16 on the lens, giving effective aperture of f32.

Most of my use of the lens for digital has been without a TC but with the above apertures.

Harold
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