Behold the Vivitar 450mm f/4.5 mirror lens

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by Karim Ghantous, Aug 27, 2021.

  1. Introduced in 1983, f/4.5 is fast for any 450 lens. Yet the designers did not stop there. The front element is aspherical, and plastic!! This is one of the few uses of Aspherical lenses in mirror lenses. Apparently it was produced only a year, making it a very rare bird today.​

  2. I've long been a fan of the original Vivitar (no real relation to lenses sold today under that name).
    Here's my own favorite in the mirror lens category
    1 Vivitar-Series-1-600mm-f8-solid-cat-1976-05-MP.jpg

    Somewhere here I did a post on it but I can't locate the address right now.
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  4. In your opinion: if you used a sharp refractive 300mm, would you get equivalent results in terms of detail, or would it be worth deploying the 600mm?

    I have seen very good results from the Tamron 500mm - even in the corners it's fine, and that's at the edge of the image circle. Shooting with smaller sensors should yield very consistent results across the frame:

  5. I remember those solid cats and nearly bought one a while back. The 500/8 and 1000/11 Nikkor sold me on that design and the 500 remains in my bag today. It isn’t the sharpest one I have but it’s pretty good and beats hauling around bigger heavier standard designs. There have been times when I was very glad to have the reach without the weight and bulk. Come to think of it I had an odd brand 300/mirror lens not much bigger than a standard 50mm that was pretty good too. Wish I could find another one.

    Rick H.
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  6. Most refractor 300mm of any quality at all results will probably 'look' better than mirror lenses (if for no other reason than the common, softer contrast of mirror lenses)

    However, catadioptric lenses and refractors all have design differences and vary from one sample to another.

    I personally was very pleased when I finally decided to spend the money (more than lots of 500-600mm mirror lenses) on a Spiratone 300mm catadioptric:
    Spiratone 300mm f/5.6 Mirror Mintel®-S

    That's a sample of one, of course, like most of the rest of my lens adventures.
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