Minolta AF 50mm F1.7 RS A-mount lens review by Phil Wood

reviewer#44510 date: May-2-2020
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.7
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 AF 50mm F1.4
Minolta AF 50mm F1.7
Sony AF DT 50 F1.8 SAM
Minolta AF 50 F2.8 Macro
Minolta AF 50 F2.8 Macro RS
Minolta AF 50 F3.5 Macro
price paid:60 GBP
positive:Small, light, sharp, fast (f1.7), solidly built.
negative:Only f1.7, flare/ghostings/coma/CA control is 1980s standard.
comment:I have already reviewed the original non-RS version of this lens in some detail, almost all of which applies to the RS - so I shan't repeat it (see review).

The differences are few - a somewhat better rubber focusing ring, curved aperture blades to smooth off the bokeh (almost undetectably) and, the biggest improvement, the built-in lens hood locks out and stays out. Otherwise they appear to be the same lens.

In my case my originals (I have two copies) both need microfocus adjustment and hence, on bodies without this capability, are soft to the point that the cheap 18-55mm kit zoom is better. My RS is pin sharp, no adjustment needed.

There are lots of 50mm lenses available in A mount, this is not massively better than many of them, but it is a fine lens. It is scarcer than the original and prices are a little higher, in my opinion the locking hood is worth the marginal additional cost.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 104
  • sharpness: 4.52
  • color: 4.72
  • build: 4.24
  • distortion: 4.82
  • flare control: 4.19
  • overall: 4.50
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