Minolta AF 35-105mm F3.5-4.5 N A-mount lens review by jenik.nk

reviewer#10348 date: Jul-2-2012
sharpness: 3.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.5
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 used to own this lens
compared to:Min 35-70/4
Min 35-105 original
Min 28-105
price paid:1800 CZK
positive:sharpness when stopped down
negative:sharpness wide open
comment:I was a quite disappointed with this lens. I wanted to buy the O version, but I could not find any, so I bought the N version for a good price. I was disappointed by sharpness. It took me some time to find out that sharpness can be very good or excellent if you stop down to 6.3 or higher. At higher f-values this lens produces wondeful images with beautiful Minolta colors.

Its size is great, I liked it for travelling. Build is OK for me, no problem. I haven't noticed any distortion, no problems with flare, but I don't think I have ever shot against the sun with it.

IMHO there is no point comparing its quality to the O version. Maybe we should not use the word "version", because the lenses are different, they are not versions. 35-105 O produces much better shots (sharpness, contrast), but is bigger, has much worse MFD (1500 vs 850 mm), is more expensive and a bit rare.

Finally I was satisfied and liked it, but I realized that when I want to go light, I usually choose 35-70/4 (or even 50/1.4), which is smaller, has fixed f4 aperture and can be used at f4 all the time, so it's finally much brighter. So I sold it, I had four lenses in similar range. Now I have also the fantastic 35-105 O, which has a different use.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 78
  • sharpness: 4.16
  • color: 4.67
  • build: 4.22
  • distortion: 4.29
  • flare control: 4.08
  • overall: 4.28
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