Minolta AF 80-200mm F2.8 HS APO G A-mount lens review by RichardGG24

reviewer#45606 date: Oct-24-2020
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:Tamron 150-600 f5-6.3 G2
Minolta 70-200 f2.8
Minolta 70-210 f4
price paid:420USD (used)
positive:build like a tank
very sharp
fast auto-focus
somewhat compact but heavy
easy to find on eBay
great value
common filter size
negative:violent focus action (to be expected for screw drive motor)
average flare control
paint quality
not weather sealed
comment:got my copy from a Japanese seller on eBay, for about 460 after shipping and tax.
IMO, this is the best "value" high-end zoom tele lens for the A mount platform, you can find a pristine copy on eBay for about $500 before tax and shipping (as of Oct 2020).

Optically, it is pretty much on par with the sony/minolta 70-200 f2.8, very sharp even at wide open, but flare control is only okay-ish. On the other hand, the screw drive AF motor in this lens is significantly louder and more violent, but considering the much lower price, I can certainly live with that. This is no doubt the perfect substitute for those who don't want to shill out 1000USD+ for a decent copy of sony/minolta 70-200 f2.8.

It isn't exactly fair to compare this with the good ole beercan (minolta 70-210 f4), nor the much newer Tamron 150 600 G2. But since I have both of them, I'll do a quick comparison anyway.
This lens is wayyyyyy better than the beercan pretty much in every way imaginable, of course except its size, weight and price.
Comparing to the Tamron, which is an amazing lens in its own right. This lens is faster and about as sharp. But keep in mind, that Tamron also has significantly longer focal length, and better flare control.

If you ever come across a good copy of this lens, definitely pick it up, this is indeed a hell of a lens, for its price, you just can't beat its optical performance.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 98
  • sharpness: 4.88
  • color: 4.97
  • build: 4.94
  • distortion: 4.93
  • flare control: 4.76
  • overall: 4.89
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