Minolta AF 35mm F2 A-mount lens review by jvandegr

reviewer#10037 date: Mar-19-2012
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:Minolta 35-70mm f/4
Minolta 35-105mm f/3.5 - 4.5 (original)
Minolta 28-70mm f/2.8 G
Minolta 50mm f/1.7
price paid:550 USD (near mint)
positive:Very sharp wide open
Great Minolta color
Light weight
No chromatic aberration
negative:Nothing significant.
comment:Quite an amazing lens, in that it has the ability to gather light and illuminate shadows like only the best lenses can. It is sharp from f/2, especially in the center. Sharpness falls off very slightly toward the edges, and stopping down just a little can help. My good copy of the Minolta 35-70mm f/4 is about 5-10% sharper on the edges at f/5.6, and nearly as sharp in the center. However, the 35mm f/2 has more realistic colors and a much brighter presentation of shadow areas than the 35-70mm f/4. I have yet to find a copy of the Minolta 35-105mm f/3.5 - 4.5 that can rival either of these lenses at 35mm. Compared to the Minolta 28-70mm f/2.8 G, this prime is sharper, especially on the edges, and offers better color rendition. In general, I find its performance similar to that of the Minolta 50mm f/1.7, but sharper wide open.

I have seen no chromatic aberration, no significant field distortion, and I've had no problems with flare because I always use the lens hood. Of course, this hood could be deeper for APS-C, but it's not bad.

Focus speed is very fast, and accuracy is near perfect on my A350 and A580 bodies. Build quality is what you would expect for a 1980's Minolta lens: fantastic. Overall, a wonderful lens that never disappoints.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 53
  • sharpness: 4.93
  • color: 4.98
  • build: 4.70
  • distortion: 4.85
  • flare control: 4.55
  • overall: 4.80
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