Minolta AF 70-210mm F4 (beercan) A-mount lens review by paulofessel

reviewer#2643 date: Aug-20-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
overall: 4.6
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:Sigma 100-300 f:4.5-6.7
price paid:200 USD (mint)
positive:- Constant aperture
- Sharp wide open
- Great bokeh and colors
- Not expensive
negative:- Excessive CA
- Size
- Weight
comment:What else to say, this is the famous beercan. It has a range that matches perfectly to Sigma 17-70 or even the kit lens. It is sharp wide open througout its entire range, and has great color rendition and bokeh.

However, you may have lots of CA, particularly at 210mm when you shoot high-contrast subjects in color (mine has) which are really difficult to get rid of. Also, its size and weight don't make this a "discreet" lens in no account - if you paint it white you'll be taken as pro-photographer, no doubt about it.

Anyway, this is a great lens for the money in any way. Think about it: Canon has 70-200 f:4 L, which is much like the Minolta version, costs around US$ 600.00 and has no image stabilization; on the 5D/7D/Alpha you spend like 1/3 of the money, have the same coverage AND still have AS/SSS for stabilizing the lens - something the Canon version does not have.

If you don't have neither the money or the access to the more expensive 80-200 f:2.8 G or the 70-200 f:2.8 G SSM, go for it. You won't be disappointed.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 397
  • sharpness: 4.49
  • color: 4.78
  • build: 4.84
  • distortion: 4.56
  • flare control: 3.98
  • overall: 4.53
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