Minolta AF 35-105mm F3.5-4.5 N A-mount lens review by Phil Wood
|Phil Wood#44135 date: Sep-17-2018|
flare control: 4
|ownership:||I own this lens|
|compared to:||Sony 18-70, 18-55, 18-250, 16-50|
Minolta 35-105 (beercan series), 28-105 (xi & not)
|price paid:||GBP 30|
|positive:||Compact, well built, sharp|
|negative:||Range on APS-C, focus hunting on A77|
|comment:||35mm is a pretty good length on APS - for a prime, but it is too long for the wide end of a walk around zoom (like this would be on full frame). |
On my A58 it snaps into focus very nicely, on my A77 it really doesn't perform too well. So I tried an A350 - just as good as the A58. I can't explain this.
Colours are great, a traditional Minolta feel, sharpness is good for a zoom of this era but has been overtaken by modern zooms like the Sony 16-50 and the Tamron 16-300.
Distortion doesn't worry me unless its irregular, it's so easy to correct barrel and pincushion effects in post processing. Flare is not its finest point, avoid pointing too close to the sun or use it as a special effect.
When I get a full frame body I can see myself using this lens as a small walkaround, it really is nicely built in a small package. However, I don't think it will get a lot of use while I remain limited to APS-C.
Update 22-07-2019: I have had a FF body for over six months - but have not used this lens. If I go for a walkabout option it is almost always the Min AF 28-105, occasionally the 24-85. This lens is far from awful, but it just isn't as good as the alternatives on my shelf.
Update 29-12-2019: Took this lens for an walk with my A99ii and quite enjoyed the experience. Focus is snappy, no repeat of the A77 problem, though the soft corners/edges so conveniently cropped out by APS sensors become evident. What did surprise me was some sun-in-frame sunset shots with quite well controlled flare and no ghosts. This lack of ghosting is not what I have come to expect from Minolta lenses!