Left to right:
Vivitar Series 1 (Kiron model), f/3.5
Vivitar Series 1 (Tokina model), f/3.5
Vivitar Series 1 (Komine model), f/2.8-4
Kiron 70-210. f/4 with Zoom-lock
Regarding Viv S-1 glass. There are numerous (8) Series 1, 70-210 lenses. However, for the sake of discussion, we will deal with the first three. The following editions are nothing to seriously consider, so we will concentrate on the first three editions, which are the good one's. The 4th & 5th editions are also 2.8-4 variable aperture model's, but lacking in construction quality (Cosina built). Due to the fact that the third one is a variable aperture lens, (2.8-4) it will be somewhat sharper than a fixed aperture lenses. It is much easier to design and build a quality variable aperture lens.
The first edition was designed by Vivitar (Ellis Betensky of NASA Optics fame), had a hand in it, and it was built by Kiron. (67mm filter) It is a professional caliber lens, with a 1:2 macro feature built into it. It was the first zoom, designed with the aid of computers, that truly rivaled the OEM lenses of the time. That was in "76."
The second edition (my personal favorite) was built by Tokina, per, Vivitars specs. It too, is a fixed 3.5 aperture, but smaller, lighter and sharper. (62mm filter size). I really like it because of the fixed 3.5 aperture which is nice for focusing in dim light and long range flash work. However, not a true macro, 1:4 life size.
The third edition was made by Komine, and like the first two, is very well built. It is a 2.8-4 variable aperture lens, and the sharpest of the bunch. It has 1:2.5 life size macro from 100-210mm's, with a working distance of about two feet. Which can be quite useful. Can you see a discernible difference in slides taken with either one of them? No! Don't get caught up in bench tests. Any of the first three editions will give you professional-publishable images. I really like this lens, and over time, has become my favorite of the line.
Personally, I recommend the second or third edition of the line. I have and use all three of the first editions, and can highly recommend any one of them. Superb optics and construction.
Also, the Kiron 70-210 f/4, is a splendid performer.
QLP (Kiron Kid & MrVivSeries1)