Minolta AF 17-35mm F2.8-4 D A-mount lens review by ab012

reviewer#114 date: Sep-18-2005
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 3
flare control: 3
overall: 3.6
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:KM 28-75 2.8 D
KM 28 2
KM 20 2.8
price paid:
positive:Lovely colours
Fast and sharp at wide end, @ 2.8 is already very good.
negative:Colours different from traditional Minolta lenses.
Distortion at wide end
comment:It is fast (2.8) at wide end where I need it for indoor shots most, although it is only f4 at 35mm.

Sharpness is excellent at the wide end. @17-24mm the central sharpness is already excellent. Stopping down only helps the corners. @ the long end though results will benefit from stopping down.

I quite like the colours this lens produces on the whole - but note that it is a bit different to all my other KM lenses so side by side shots may have this show up.

Little dissappointed with the distortion at 17mm, but for its price (and afterall it is 17mm FF) it is still a good choice IMO. In fact if one compares the measured distortion numbers (eg on popphoto) this lens does MUCH better then a lot of the competition, including the $$$$ offerings from competing brands.

The only issue this lens has is that it tends to be compared with the (very crisp) 28-75 D. If one considers this lens on its own merits however it stands its ground very well.

added Oct 08: FF performance is better (sharper) than I originally expected. Although it is clear that this lens was optimized for APSC (observable by the relative decrease in quality as one exits the APSC zone esp when wide open) but stopped down it is good (the only slight question at the moment is extreme corner performance at 17mm - will report back once i get more in field experience). Be careful of light falloff at 17mm which required stopping down to f8/11 to mostly remove.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 134
  • sharpness: 4.26
  • color: 4.58
  • build: 4.13
  • distortion: 3.74
  • flare control: 3.60
  • overall: 4.06
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