Minolta AF 24-105mm F3.5-4.5 D A-mount lens review by lucas vda

reviewer#1370 date: Nov-1-2006
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.3
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:18-70 kit, 28-200 Tamron, Minolta 50 F1.4, Minolta 70-210 F4, Minolta 35-105, Minolta 35-70
price paid:299 USD new
positive:Much better image quality (wide open) than expected. Overall image quality really superb.
negative:hard to get at the moment (no Sony's yet, and not a lot of eBay offers)
comment:I bought this lens for the convenient range and to take an optical step up from the kit lens. However, IMHO this lens is one of the most underrated Minolta lenses around and seriously underpriced. First of all, the image quality is really superb. It is much sharper wide open than most other zooms I have encountered. And the images have that special Minolta feel that I really like. It is difficult to describe, but it has a pleasant bokeh (with a nice connection between in&out of focus), nice contrast (clear, but not too aggressive) and warm accurate colours.

Finally, for the ones interested in convenience. It is small, the front element does not turn. Autofocus speed is fair (but not the fastest I know). It seems to be quite solid. It is a D-lens.

Anyone considering this lens or a superzoom, I would say : take this one. It is from an image quality point of view in a different league - a 36-157mm range is really quite good. (But than again, I personally am a bit disappointed with superzooms on digital cameras. I feel they are more a compromise than they were with film.)

Anyone who wants to go for absolutely the best available image quality independent of price etc. I would say, buy primes or wait for the Zeiss 24-70mm F2.8 and see how good that lens is (although there is no guarantee that the image quality will be as pleasing , as sharpness is not everything).

Let's hope for us that Sony does not raise the prise for this lens (although the lens is IMO worth much more than the 300 - 450 USD that is being asked for it.

p.s. A last point. If Sony ever comes out with a Full-Frame than this lens will still be superb.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 108
  • sharpness: 4.24
  • color: 4.51
  • build: 4.12
  • distortion: 4.13
  • flare control: 4.24
  • overall: 4.25
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