Sony 500mm F4 G SSM A-mount lens review by rajneesh

reviewer#26579 date: May-9-2016
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.1
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 MP24MP24 MP36MP36 MP42MP42 MP
ownership:I have experience with this lens
compared to:Minolta 600 f4 HS
Minolta 400 f4.5 HS
price paid:
positive:Fast and accurate focus
Solid feel though build not comparable to the Minolta 600 f4
negative:Heavy (Comparable Canon with IS is lighter), those 300gms are telling if you have to carry it for long or try to take handheld shots
Quirky hood
And most importantly way too expensive. It's cheaper to jump ship and get fully kitted than buy this lens. Dunno what Sony was thinking when deciding on the pricing. Probably trying to dissuade people from buying the lens
comment:I got an opportunity to try this lens over 2 weeks using it with the 77II and the A99. Good combo with the 77 mark II producing great images but still IMO not the best lenses available to the A mount shooters for the following reasons
1. Its weight means that most people would not be able to carry it all day or use for handheld shots. The Canon 500 with IS is 300gms lighter does pass the muster. You need to carry the beast with a tripod or a monopod. So if you are willing to sacrifice a little bit of focal length and focusing speed the Minolta f4.5 does ensure that you get a shot.
2. The image quality is good but still cannot beat the Minolta 600 f4 (which since you are carrying a tripod) somewhat neautralises the additional weight factor.
3. Sony's pricing ensures that it doesn't feature in most peoples buying list. If Sony wants to push their brand in the highly lucrative Sports and Wildlife market they need to price competitively.
I would buy it if it were 500gms lighter and priced realistically, so currently I would stick to the older Minoltas

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 6
  • sharpness: 4.83
  • color: 4.83
  • build: 4.50
  • distortion: 4.83
  • flare control: 4.83
  • overall: 4.77 - Home of the alpha system photographer
In memory of Cameron Hill - brettania