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Minolta colours?

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mikey2000 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote mikey2000 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Minolta colours?
    Posted: 19 August 2009 at 22:05
I've read lots of posts referring to the legendary "Minolta Colours" but I'm never exactly clear about what this precisely means.

Do the lenses add a subtle colour cast by virtue of the particular glass chemistry or lens coatings?
Do Sony lenses have a similar coating or glass? (Does my Sony 50/1.4 qualify as having Minolta colours?)
Is the great colour matched with compromises such as increased CA or something?
Are the effects dramatic or would a few kelvins on the whitebalance overpower the lens contribution?

I would be quite interested to see two shots taken with equivalent lenses, one Minolta and one Brand X, taken in identical light, manual WB etc so I can see for myself and finally understand.

Cheers,
Looking forward to hearing more about this....
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natamambo View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote natamambo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 02:39
It's all about richness and vibrancy. Very hard to explain unless you manage to get an identical shot with and without a Minolta lens. The "minolta colours" are warmer and deeper somehow, without being forced, false or over cooked.

Even within Minolta lenses some exhibit "it" better than others, the 24-105 is a little colder than the 28-135 for example but still richer than the Canon 24-105 IMO.

Some say it's at the cost of sharpness, but I don't know the slight softness is that evident until you get really large prints (or pixel peep).

Edited by natamambo - 20 August 2009 at 02:39
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ricardovaste Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 09:15
Does everyone actually love the 'Minolta colours'? I know I don't. A lot of the time with landscapes and especially portraits I have to desaturate because they're just too rich for my taste a lot of the time. But I'd prefer it that way - easier to remove a bit of colour than add some. When you get the right subject with the right balance of colours, it works well, but I don't find that happens frequently for me.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote polyglot Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 09:25
The Minolta AF lenses (at least the original series, probably most of the RS ones too but I don't know) had coatings adjusted for identical colour transmission through the whole lens range, so if you wanted to have matching prints/slides on the same film using multiple lenses, you didn't need to measure each lens and add correcting filter packs to them. This means that in some cases, the anti-reflective coatings are not as effective as they might have otherwise been, so there can be a slight loss of contrast.

Beyond that, the Minolta and (to a perhaps lesser extent) Sony DSLRs tend to have pretty strong Bayer masks, which means they are good at separating similar hues and will score well on a colour-accuracy test. The drawback is poorer sensitivity compared to both Canon and Nikon that use weaker Bayer filters - they get less noise at high ISO, we get better colour accuracy at low ISO.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote wetapunga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 09:27
Go the low ISO shots
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Minoltista Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 09:29
I definitely love the faboulus 'Minolta colours'.
And the Zeiss 24-70 F2.8 I have doesn't reproduce the colours like the minolta lens I have.

Minolta still misses to me.

Ciao,
MP
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Remko View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Remko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 20:11
I also love the Minolta colours, not just from the AF-system, but from the Rokkor-systems as well.
Just beautifull!!!
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Post Options Post Options   Quote aarif Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 20:40
yes Minolta colors so pleasing
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Post Options Post Options   Quote algernon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 21:05
Yes, +1 to what polyglot said and this is an important thing: color matching across a lens range. I'm always very pleased when I switch from the 35-70/4 to the beercan and cannot see any color shift in my pictures
I wonder if someone still does color matching nowadays...

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Edited by algernon - 20 August 2009 at 21:06

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Post Options Post Options   Quote alpha_in_exile Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 21:44
I've been tempted to a side-by-side with my KM 18-70 kit lens and my Min(O) 24/2.8. The colors probably aren't all that different with the 18-70 (given the heritage), but I think I've seen some difference. The 24/2.8 seems to match the beercan better than the kit lens, anyway. A better comparison would be a Sigma lens, or better still a CZ.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Heyckendorff Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 22:09
I have never compared Minolta lens photographs to e.g Canon or Nikon so I would┤nt be able to tell if there┤s a difference.
But I┤ve heard about those legendary Minolta colours as well. What I wonder is, if it┤s generally acknowledged, also by e.g. Canon and Nikon users, that Minolta lenses has those legendary colours?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Remko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 22:43
Nikon/Canon users go for absolute sharpness...

I don't mind less sharpness, if I get those brilliant colors instead!
One can see already the difference while comparing to most Sigma lenses, of which the colors are flat. I have seen only a few Sigma lenses that can match a bit with the Minolta colours

18-70 kitlens performs a bit less than legendary, but still much better than sigma.

By the way, Minolta has never been acknowledged by canon/nikon users, so why generally? Minolta has always been first with most inventions which we nowadays call common. Just a bit of a weird dwarf...
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Post Options Post Options   Quote 6tyNine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 23:02
in terms of the colour matching theory, can anyone say for certain that canon, nikon, sigma or tamron lenses produce different colours within the same brand?


I think Minolta colours are best displayed with the G lenses. My 35G, 85G and 200G all have consistent muted contrast and saturation and warm, rich & vivid colour, smooth tones and creamy bokeh. They're a step above my 20/2.8, 24/2.8, 28/2.0 which are all pretty consistent among themselves and my 50/2.8 which has pretty cold colour and harsh contrast all in itself.

the differences don't always show up though.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Morten Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 August 2009 at 23:09
odd - I thought it was the camera that produce the colours (and Sony seem to be quite boosted in other electronic products such as televisions and professional video cameras). A minor difference in the glass would imo be lost in a "vivid" image. I think I would go for sharpness and add colour if needed. And I don't understand how the same F on canikon and minolta can produce less or more iso-noise?
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