Minolta AF 85mm F1.4 G RS A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 50    << 1 2
reviewer#3834 date: Jul-10-2008
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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:M 35/2.8 O, M 24/2.8 O, M 135/2.8.
price paid:725 euro used
positive:Tele/Bokeh, build, sharp, colors.
negative:AF not very fast, but not to slow.
comment:Nice FOV on crop, even better on Full frame.
Teams up with M 35/2 O to form my Prime pair.
reviewer#3786 date: Jul-2-2008
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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:100 2.0
135 1.8 CZ
135 2.8
200 2.8
price paid:700 Euro
positive:- Sharpness
- Colours
- Built
- Bokeh, bokeh, bokeh
- And bokeh..
negative:- the focusring is turning when focussing.
comment:I own this for a few months now. It became my favourite lens for portraits. Before I had this one I used the 135 2.8 for portraits. The 100 2.0 is useable too, but only for young people :-). Way too sharp..

Paid a lot (but it was (is) still as new). Didn't hesitate. This is one of my best lenses. Love the bokeh!!! Not as sharp as the 100 2.0 but for portraits is great! And I love to play with the narrow DOF.

The only negative thing is that I can't hold the lens as I would like. The focusring is in the way and turning when focussing. I get used to it, but the first time I use it again, I am always remembered to get another 'grip'.
reviewer#3290 date: Feb-19-2008
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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 50 1.7, Sigma 50 2.8 macro, Sigma 105 2.8 macro
price paid:500 € Ebay
positive:Impressive:
bokeh
colors
build quality
sharpness
negative:It's not silent
comment:If you do portraits you have to have a 85 1.4 G !

The lens is a reason to stay with the A-mount.
It fits perfectly to the A900 and A700
reviewer#3146 date: Jan-7-2008
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.9
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:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:- fantastic bokeh and colors
- very good build quality
- sharp
negative:maybe a little bit too long minimal focusing distance
comment:Of course, one of the best Minolta lenses, if not the best.
It is expensive, but good lenses are expensive.

very good solid metal construction - unfortunately I dropped it on tiled floor (almost got an heart attack then, good that we have an ambulance station very close ;)) ) and only damage was little dent on filter mount.

also this lens has a very good look on camera - with so big front element you look like professional, even if you aren`t :))
reviewer#3140 date: Jan-6-2008
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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:SOny AF 100 F2.8 Macro
price paid:
missing
positive:- Sharp
- Bokeh is incredible
- Colors
negative:I don't like the noise when it is focusing
comment:This is almost a perfect lens to me. I like it a lot for taking portraiture works. Agree with some reviewers, there is magic in this lens looking at the pics. Very beautiful bokeh too!
reviewer#3021 date: Dec-2-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
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:
missing
price paid:800 Euros
positive:Sharp
Great Collors
Great Bokeh
Sometimes too good to be true Feels like a tank on my 7d
Looks more than beautifull on every body it stays
negative:Like most of my Minolta primes dust is all around.
Some CA
Hard to find
comment:I really love the lens.Portaiture neveer seemed better and I think will never be if using another lens than this.
Too bad about it's flaws. Pretty much dust and other particles go inside, just like my macro 100 2.8 D.
I'm begining to belive this is a flaw of the brand. Really wonder if Sony or CZ remediated the problem.
That's why I gave the build a 4 only because I belive this is a build flaw.

It woths every penny spent on it.
Sometimes I just keep staring at it.
reviewer#3007 date: Nov-30-2007
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:AF100/2.8 macro, AF 50/2.8 macro, AF APO 400/4.5
price paid:490 Euro
positive:Very nice bokeh, very very nice !! (Minolta own) color rendition, combines well with the A700, be it the focal length then is 135mm and a bit long for most portrait etc. purposes. Sharpness is very good, though I find it a bit less sharp than the AF100/2.8 macro under optimal conditions (i.e. at f/5.6 for instance)
negative:Nothing negative really, sharpness wide open is not totally overwhelming, I always use it one stop down, which very significantly improves the resolution and contrast. One stop down is generally not a problem, as on my A700 it is equivalent to 135 mm and for DOF to be as required stopping down is often necessary. Focus wide open is not always spot on (possibly some back focus issues with A700 to be checked in the coming weeks).
comment:Can't wait to see this lens combined with FF, where it actually belongs.
It is expensive and rare, yet it fully deserves its "jewel" status.
reviewer#2917 date: Nov-9-2007
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.9
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:100mm 2.8 macro
50mm 1.4
24mm 2.8
price paid:1050 USD
positive:Makes photography exciting day or night
Wow! what a hunk of glass
Color Prints are superb
negative:Not easy to master
Unimpressive auto focus
comment: An amazing portrait lens first an foremost. I must disagree about some reviews regarding sharpness. I feel it is a bit less sharp than my 100mm 2.8

Color Bokoh and truly amazing prints it produces hung on my wall make my other prints look bad.Justly deserving the reputation it has. If you can afford this lens and like Portraits weddings or playing with shallow depth of field you will have great fun with this one.
reviewer#2706 date: Sep-7-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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:16mm, 20mm, 35mmG, 135mmSTF, 17-35mmG, 28-105mm, 28-70mmG, 70-200mmG, macro1-3x, 200mmAPO-G
price paid:850 Euries
positive:Brisk, extremely sharp, light, fast AF, f1.4, superb bokek, perhaps only second to the 135mmSTF
negative:Niente
comment:Next to the 70-200mm this is my favourite lens. It makes the 7D so fast! Even if you just take snapshots you'll get awesome results. Yes, it produces VERY sharp photos, I can't wait to put it on the a700. ;-) Even more importantly imho are the characteristic 'Minolta' colour and great quality of the unsharpeness.
If you make bad photos with this lens, it is really you. :-)

Examples
http://www.flickr.com/photos/wrvanstraalen/253585166/

or

http://www.flickr.com/photos/wrvanstraalen/268043938/
reviewer#2328 date: May-19-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.8
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:50mm f1.4
90mm f2.8 Tamron macro.
100mm f2.0
135mm f2.8
price paid:$800AUD (used)
positive:Build quality, sharpness, OOF areas.
negative:Manual focus, extending front element when focusing.
comment:I purchased this lens for use on my Dynax 9 because of its reputation, which is justly deserves.
As a portrait lens it is brilliant. Shooting on plane at f1.4 the DOF is tiny and the OOF areas are beyond critism but ... on the 7D the lens becomes about 135mm which is a very 'in between' length.
To get critical focus spot on you need to MF and the MF ring while being big enough and ruberized needs to be dampened like the new Zeiss offering.
The weight of all that glass when the lens is pointed at the groung in MF will cause the focus to creep a little under the strain.
This is a specialist lens meant for portraiture on a FF body and at this task, it excells.
reviewer#1932 date: Mar-8-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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 28-85 f3.5-4.5
Minolta 28-70 f2.8 G
Sigma 70-300 F4-5.6 DG Macro
price paid:
missing
positive:
missing
negative:
missing
comment:I haven´t tried the 100mm f2.8 yet but I really love this lens so far, my first choice outdoor if I don´t need a wider lens. Very nice sharpness and bokeh. Sure, AF could have been faster but it was faster than I expected after all complains about its slowness in several reviews. Heavy (but not too heavy) and good build.
reviewer#1868 date: Feb-22-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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:50/1.4, 28-75/2.8, 17-50/2.8
price paid:1000 USD (used)
positive:Excellent sharpness, bokeh, solid construction
negative:front cap
focus hunting at low light
price for used go high
comment:Excellent hi-quality portrait lens. I use it both on Sony DSLR-A100 and Minolta Dynax 7 film body. Sharpness is high even at wide open F/1.4, which allows to create romatnic portraits with very shallow depth of field.
Lens is heavy, solid and built like a tank. It has full metal body. It is a pleasure to use it, and I try to shoot with it more often.
Negative is front cap design - it is impossible to use cap with lens hood attached, neither detach the hood when cap is on.
At low light conditions, it tend to hunt. Focusing is worse in Sony Alpha, much better in Dynax 7. Comparing to other my lenses, 50/1.4 focuses faster and quieter.
Also, since these type of lens is no longer manufactured and new Zeiss Planar 85ZA costs around 1300$, prices for used glass go very high... I bought this one from ebay, and it isn't too rare to ask 900-1000$ for lens like this.
reviewer#1330 date: Oct-17-2006
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:M/AF 50/1.4 RS
price paid:EUR 600 (2nd h)
positive:Sharpness
Build quality
Bokeh
negative:Not razor sharp
1.5 crop on D7D makes it a 129 eq.
Round shade - would prefer petal
comment:On a film body it is amazing, on APS-C, a bit longish, but never the less, a better choice than to go 50/1.4 ( eq. 76 mm ). Had one on my 7000i and reacquired one a few months ago, with loss. WILL NEVER LET THIS JEWEL GO AGAIN.
reviewer#1186 date: Sep-14-2006
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.9
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:Minolta 50 F1.7
price paid:600 usd used
positive:Sharp.. Affordable.. Tough as a Tank..
negative:Not a negative on the Lens.. DOF at 1.4 razor thin. You have to adjust your focus a bit..
comment:Solid and feels good when you work with it. Balances well on my Maxxum 9. Use for portraits and low light Candids. Colours and sharpnes never lacking. Yea... Seems like there is a "Magick" about it..
reviewer#1098 date: Aug-19-2006
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.9
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:135 STF
KM 28-75 2.8 D
price paid:
missing
positive:Sharpness
Bookeh
Color rendition
build
contrast
FF compatible for future
negative:hood
af speed
weight
comment:This lens is razor sharp. The 135 STF is a bit better, but is only MF. Everytime I use my 28-75 D, a lens I truely like and put the 85 on after this, I'm stunned with the results of the last one. This one is definetly my favourite portrait lens, though on the 7D the focal length is extended to 125mm.
This lens is heavy, on the other hand, it makes it feel like a tank and sturdy on the 7D. The body is full metal.
AF speed could be quicker, but for general purpose and portraits, it's sufficient.
See also other comments.
reviewer#998 date: Jul-8-2006
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:Stunning sharpness that balances well with a liquid-like bokeh.
negative:A bit heavy (physically and financially), a bit slow in focussing (not meant for fast-moving subjects)
comment:If you're a portrait photographer, then this will definitely be your 1st lens choice. Skin-tones at its best, sharpness that balances well with blurriness, you'll be amazed how you can play around with DOF using this lens. I even tried mine with a 2x teleconverter and it doesn't seem to loose any of its crispy sharpness and silky-smooth bokeh. Get one while you can!
reviewer#897 date: Jun-8-2006
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.4
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:
missing
negative:
missing
comment:[Note: Performance judged on usage with a full frame camera]

This is my portrait lens. It's performance is very good from f:2.8 and up. I think it's sharpness is a bit overrated (no doubt it is a very good lens though). f:1.4 is perfect for low light candids/social events. Yes, its bokeh is very pleasant. I don't find in this lens the magic some think it has, but for me it is a very sturdy tool that delivers consistently and very efficiently what I am asking from it.
reviewer#699 date: Apr-20-2006
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:50 1.7; 28-75 2.8D; 100 2.8 Macro
price paid:
missing
positive:Very, very sharp; very fast; fabulous colour rendition.
negative:As has been noted by other reviewers it can hunt a bit sometimes, just like macro lenses do at times - at least on 5d and 7d - but not that often. The other "negative"? Very sharp! See below.
comment:Wow, is this thing sharp! Count the bristles, wrinkles, spots and any dermatalogical imperfections on the faces when you shoot the portraits! That can obviously be a negative depending on what you want to shoot. This is without a doubt the sharpest lens I have and I doubt I'll ever part with it for as long as I have a working Minolta AF! Some lenses are "diplomatic" in what they represent, as in soft focussing reality out of an image and making plain subjects look better than they really are. This baby does not do that by default, as indicated above. The beautiful will probably look very beautiful, the imperfect (ie the rest of us!) will look, frankly, distinctly imperfect and VERY REAL! Check out Aarif's stuff from India with this one if in doubt. Wonderful. I don't do shots of models in studios, in fact I don't really do people much at all, but this does the people shots I want (i.e. utterly real) and also gives me F1.4-F22 and a killer-sharp lens.
Hunt it down and enjoy it - I doubt if you'll feel like selling it on either! I have also enjoyed using it as a natural-light street lens recently, giving me some nice low-light candids.
reviewer#686 date: Apr-15-2006
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
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 100/2.8mm varisoft
Canon 85/1.2
price paid:
missing
positive:Everything here at the rating, a legendary lens
negative:Hunting on 7D and 5d
comment:Crippled AF on 7D but a very pleasant lens on A700. Undoubtedly Minolta's landmark lens
reviewer#411 date: Jan-16-2006
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:Minolta 80-200/2.8 APO
price paid:
missing
positive:Nice bokeh
Super sharp
Good Color renditions
Lowest price G lens
negative:Focus may hunt in low contrast area
Long Minimum focus distance
No petal hood
Lens cap can not be remove with hood is on
comment:If you do alot of portraits it will be your first choice, since 80-200G, 70-200G SSM, 100 macro, 135STF are all more expensiver than the 85/1.4G. And for that kind of sharpness and bokeh, only the 135STF and 100macro can beat this lens.

Believe me or not, someone told me that, some other brand users, they swith to (K)Minolta because of this lens!

Of cause every lens do have it's weekness, so do this one. Some how this lens seems not very compatible to our digital camera, it hunt quit alot in low contrast scenic. Which force you to DMF or MF to override the AF system abd which lead us to another problems. At f/1.4, the DOF is so narrow, you may need to consider changing the focus screen to M or ML for better focusing (oh which is also better to your eyes health |o|)

If the lens have a shorter minimum focus distance, i will truly fall in love with this lens, and never took it off my camera body!!

BEWARE!! After you tried this lens, it will put all your mid to upper range lenses in shame. You will start to search ebay for all the G lens, and start looking at Lecia lenses! Watch out!
reviews found: 50    << 1 2

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 50
  • sharpness: 4.80
  • color: 4.96
  • build: 4.92
  • distortion: 4.94
  • flare control: 4.60
  • overall: 4.84

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