Minolta AF 300mm F4 HS APO G A-mount lens review by seagr112

reviewer#2613 date: Aug-8-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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:100-300 APO D
price paid:1200 USD
positive:Outstanding optical performance.
Beautiful build and finish.
Attention to detail (focus hold, limiter, focus ring cover etc.)
negative:It's a big lens.
Hood is a little clumsy to attach.
Drop-in filters impossible to find.
comment:My first G lens and it's a beauty. I'd been obsessed with finding a good 300mm lens that is fast and sharp since a trip to South Africa (safari!) a few years ago. Now that I've finally got it, I'll have to go back! It's a bit of a niche lens - not something you'll use every day, but when you need the reach for wildlife or distant subjects, it is perfect.

Previously, I had the 100-300mm APO D, which was a good lens for it's price but I found it didn't do well on overcast days or in low light. This lens, in an entirely different (and much more expensive) class delivers a much finer image both in sharpness and in bokeh.

It also brings new challenges to the table with it's size and focal length, and the fact that I try more challenging photography with it. (Time to go Orca watching again with this one and see how it performs.) It's nice that I have the option to use it handheld with some care, or attach a monopod to the tripod mount.

If your pocketbook can handle it, and you need (or just 'want':) a near perfect 300mm that you can take with you, this is the ideal lens in my opinion. It's a big improvement over the zooms that cover 300mm, and while it's a bit of a grunt as it is certainly not a small lens, (the f2.8 would be much too heavy to carry everywhere while traveling, and it's even more expensive than the f4) I am more than willing to carry it!

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 36
  • sharpness: 4.85
  • color: 4.86
  • build: 4.75
  • distortion: 4.83
  • flare control: 4.78
  • overall: 4.81
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