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

reviewer#4607 date: Jan-1-2009
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 3
flare control: 3
overall: 4
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:-Kit zoom 75-300
-Sony 70-200G
-Sony 500 F/8
price paid:0 €
positive:-Amazing Build, even more amazing simple design.
-Color Rendition.
-Peter Ganzel's guide will guide you through solving most of the problems you could find with this lens.
negative:-Flare Control.
-AF Speed.
-Chromatic Aberration.
-Rising Prices.
comment:I was given this lens for free, and I had the chance to try it, dismantle, fix and try it again before selling it for 270 euros (w00t!).

The quality of the build is out of the question seeing as how this lens seems to resist the past of time pretty well. It does feel solid in your hand, and not too heavy on the camera.

My sample had a bit stiff focusing ring at first, as well as some AF problems. However, there are several resources online where one can find a DIY solution for the more recurrent issues.

The best point in favor of this lens, price aside, is the color rendition. The tones tend towards the warmer end of the spectrum and that shows on the pictures, of course. They have what's often defined as the "minolta color" in them, which is a nice balance between color, contrast and tone.

The problems of this lens come from the obvious. The lens' coatings of the sample I tried seemed to do extremely poorly when trying to fight CA and flare; with or without the hood on, stopped down or not. I guess 23 years weight a bit on a lens.

That being said, the lens offers a lot for the price you may pay for it. I wouldn't call it "perfect" by any means, but if you look for a budget friendly zoom you may want to consider this one.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 396
  • sharpness: 4.49
  • color: 4.78
  • build: 4.84
  • distortion: 4.56
  • flare control: 3.98
  • overall: 4.53
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