Minolta AF 28-70mm F2.8 G A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 68    << 1 2 3 >>
reviewer#6776 date: Jan-19-2010
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 85 f1.4 G D
Minolta 85mm F1.4 D
Minolta 80-200 f2.8 G apo HS
CZ 24-70 f2.8 SSM
Tamron SPAF 70-200 f2.8 Di LD (IF) macro
Tamron SPAF 17-35 f2.8-4 Di LD (IF)
Sony 70-400mm G 4-5.6 SSM
price paid:$900 AUD used
positive:colours absolutely rock
bokeh supreme
super creamy
good sharpness
focus speed fine on a900
negative:definitely not as sharp as the KM 28-75 f2.8
close focussing distance is poor
comment:This is tough because I really love this lens and the pictures it produces really pop but there are a couple of drawbacks. It is absolutely not as sharp at the centre or edges at full crop on any camera vs the (cheaper KM 28-75 f2.8), CZ 24-70 f2.8, Minolta 80-200 f2.8 G or Tamron 70-200 f2.8 at 70mm f2.8. By f4 there are no differences but at f2.8 it isn't as sharp. I have just had this lens serviced and focus aligned etc so it is in as new condition but still not as sharp. However we are talking at 100% crops with a marginal loss in sharpness (5-10%) at best and at normal shooting it isn't even noticeable. All other ranges and f-stops are better regarding sharpness. The other qualities of this lens balance and make up for this fact with perfect colour reproduction (unlike the KM 28-75 f2.8)....at f2.8 there is some light fall off in the corners but that happens to a similar extent with the KM 28-75 f2.8 and the CZ 24-70 f2.8 on the a900 particularly at 24/28mm f2.8. Overall I love this lens but don't expect it to be pin sharp at 70mm f2.8. **** UPDATE - had the front elements replaced and the lens now performs much much better - must have been something slightly damaged originally.
reviewer#6041 date: Sep-14-2009
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.5
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
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:- Sony Carl Zeiss 16-80mm f/3.5-4.5 Vario-Sonnar T*
- Sony Carl Zeiss 24-70mm f/2.8 Vario-Sonnar T*
- Sigma 24-60mm f/2.8 EX DG
- Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 EX DF
- Minolta 28-135mm f/4-4.5
- Minolta 28mm f/2
- Minolta 50mm f/2.8 Macro RS
price paid:
missing
positive:- sharp right from f/2.8
- excellent bokeh
- built like a tank
- internal zooming
- circular aperture blades
negative:- slow focus speed
- short MFD
- no WA on APS-C
- silly hood
comment:This beauty has a few obvious drawbacks such as relatively slow focusing speed, long minimum focusing distance, 42-105mm equivalent range on APS-C, and the often-criticized silly lens shade.

For me it is still a KEEPER despite all the aforementioned negatives. *IMAGE QUALITY* is the keyword here. Excellent sharpness (right from wide open), pleasing bokeh, and classic Minolta color were what I was looking after, and the G delivers! It definitely produces visibly better images than the two Sigma mid-range zooms (24-60/2.8 & 24-70/2.8) I previously owned. This thing is a great deal at less than half of the CZ 24-70's price.

Sure its focusing speed is on the slow side, but I have used this lens to photograph multiple events and rarely missed any shots if at all. Flare hasn't been an issue as I mostly use this lens indoor or in low-light situations. A Minolta 85/1.4 (original, G, or G D) lens hood makes a good substitute since it doesn't produce any visible vignetting on APS cameras.

Bottom line, if you need 24mm on the wide end, very fast AF speed, and money is not a problem, go for the Zeiss. Otherwise the G deserves some serious thought.

*Update* If only can the 28-70 G focus closer and faster.. Alas, I finally yield to the temptation of CZ 24-70/2.8..
reviewer#5906 date: Aug-25-2009
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:750 EUR
positive:great colours
build quality
great bokeh
internal focus system
focus hold button
filter doesn't rotate while focusing and zooming
negative:
missing
comment:It was my 1st G lens and I think it was great choice, a little bit expensive, but it's worth. Like a tank!
I changed the original circle hood for a hand-made flower-type bayonet hood.
reviewer#5629 date: Jul-2-2009
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 3
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta AF 17 80mm or SONY DT
MInolta AF 50 f1,7
price paid:ebay 700€
positive:Colors absolutly amazing
Big for a standard
negative:Sharpness not the top but...
Hood is not well and with the flare...

comment:An amazing tool for the lanscape my favorite using.The shaprness is not the best(AF50f1,7 is better) but there is a secret for the result of coloration of the pictures.
I will keep this lens on a desert Island to capture my last time...
reviewer#5540 date: Jun-16-2009
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.5
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:A lot of lens - too many to named them.
price paid:USD$750
positive:** Amazing colours
** Excellent robust built
** Amazing Bokeh
** Excellent contrast
negative:** Useless hood
** 72mm filter size
** Performance varies with sample copies
comment:I have used 3 different copies of the minolta 28-70mm G. Bear in mind that this lens is 20+ years old and complex in mechanical design (especially it's internal zooming) Thus, It's hard to get a mint sharp copy. A lot of reviewers bought their lens from ebay and it's could be either a mis-aligned copy or a bad lemon copy. Thus results varies.

If you lay your hands on a good copy that focus accurately, the results can be amazing. Don't expect crystal razor sharp at 70mm F2.8 . It doesn't happen to me on my 3 copies that i've used and owned before.

At 70mm f2.8, the image is slightly soft and low in contrast. At 28mm , 50mm f2.8 , it's magical. Extremely sharp and usable. At any focal length, stopped to f4, it's comparable to minolta prime lens ! .. razor sharp and with amazing bokeh and colours.
reviewer#5077 date: Mar-22-2009
sharpness: 3.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.3
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:700 €
positive:Build quality
Internal zoom (keeps same length while zooming)
negative:Slow AF
Min focus distance too long
Not as sharp as it should for that price
My sample tends to underexpose, especially with alpha 900
Lens hood is a joke
comment:A bit disappointed by this lens. Difficult to get sharp pics.
Underexposure with my sample : needs + 0.3 manual correction.
reviewer#4555 date: Dec-16-2008
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 28-105 F2.8
Tokina 28-70 F2.8
Minolta 28-85 F3.5-4.5
price paid:S$650 used
positive:Build/Solid Weight
Color
Sharpness
negative:Zoom can be a bit slow at times.
comment:I bought this lens from a old timer. Great lens with great colors. The build construction is stunning. Zoom can be a bit slow at times, but overall still okay with me as I used it for in house photography with lights.
reviewer#4507 date: Dec-9-2008
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 24-85 f/3.5-4.5 RS
Minolta 17-35 f/3.5 G
Minolta 70-210 f/3.5-4.5
Minolta 100 f/2.8 macro D
Minolta 50 f/2.8 macro D
Sony 70-200 f/2.8 G SSM
Sony Carl Zeiss 24-70 f/2.8 SSM
price paid:€ 700 (used)
positive:Well build
Good IQ even at f/2.8
Bokeh
Non rotating front element
Internal zooming
Lens case LH-1076 included
negative:Bit heavy
Slow acting focus (just ok on A900)
28mm too long on APS-C.
MFD 0,85 m sometimes too long
Lens hood looks silly
Lens hood inadequate
No ADI

comment:My second G lens. Bought it in LN condition (thanks W).
Build is slightly better than the 17-35 f/3.5 G but still i liked the old Leica lenses with that oil damped feeling even more. Zooming action is less stiff than on my new Sony 70-200 f/2.8 G SSM and the Minolta 100 f/2.8 macro D. I would have liked a stiffer action. It is much better than the loose feel on the 70-210 f/3.5-4.5 (the loosest among my lenses..).

I wanted this lens even with all its shortcomings (like slow focusing, supposedly low contrast) because it is probably the best classic Minolta in this range. At the moment of purchase i was not sure what caused the soft images at f/2.8 others got on the Sony alpha 700; i never had these problems (with the 5D). There was a stirr at the German Sony User Forum about this (reflections on the CMOS, dirty last element?) so I started a thread on this subject on Dyxum, see http://www.dyxum.com/dforum/forum_posts.asp?TID=31054.
This caused a dip in the resale value but this lens seems to have recovered from this since it works excellent on the A850/900 FF's.

After 2009 i found the softness at f/2.8 was a focus issue with the alpha 700. This is bettered with firmware v4. This lens is very slow when it sees low contrast (dark) and is far from the focuspoint. Aside this it is just slow, the 100 macro D is way slower. The IQ sometimes suffers heavily from low contrast, especially outdoors with low sunlight from the side. The short hood can't prevent this. This lens has 2 aperture rings, one of these should prevent flares but obviously can't prevent the effect of sunlight in some cases. I have made a special hood from the Sony CZ 85 f/1.4 and the Minolta 20 f/2.8 hoods. See http://www.dyxum.com/dforum/forum_posts.asp?TID=40247.
This will solve the problem and looks a lot better, i always felt the std hood looked silly. Holding your hand next to the hood solves the problem too in these cases. Shooting straight into the sun doesn't cause any problems by the way.

But when everything is right IQ can be stunning, even wide open. Like the 17-35 f/3.5 G it gives silky, sharp, 3D like images with good bokeh. I have seen not so good bokeh from this lens under some conditions, but this happens rarely. Sharpness is on par with the Sony CZ 24-70 f/2.8 SSM but think the CZ is more universally usuable (ADI, T* coating, better hood - see Kurt Munger's review). The colors of the CZ look too cool for me but this can be pp'd of course. In bright sunlight i now use the Sony VF-72CPAM CPL filter which helps against the problems with low sun.

Update: with the alpha 900 the focus speed is much better but the CZ 85 hood vignettes heavily from 28-35mm. This lens is noticably sharper than the Minolta 17-35 f/3.5 G. The sharpest range is from f/4 to f/7.1 and results at f/5.6 are very good. I never hesitate to use it from f/3.5 - see the example photo's on Dyxum. I also changed the flare control from 5 to 4 as there aren't many flares but contrast suffers with sun from the sides.
reviewer#4422 date: Nov-22-2008
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:24mm 2.8
50mm 1.7
17 - 35mm 2.8 - 4
16mm fisheye
70 - 210mm 4

price paid:800 USD (used)
positive:build,
colour rendition,
weight (its damn heavy)
smooth zoom action
negative:sharp but not amazingly so.
fragile.
stupid dish hood
comment:an absolutly beautiful lens to use. i gave it a 4.5 sharpness rating because its not as sharp wide open as my primes.
Its a perfect all around studio lens. wide enough to shoot small groups, and long enough to make very pretty portraits.
that and the impressive size and weight never fails to impress a client ;)
mine is currently in japan being realigned. inner elements have shifted out of place causing a "double image" in the photo.
i can only hope it comes back to me soon.

i have recieved my copy back from its little realignment in osaka and its like new. as well i have had a chance to test it on the 900, where it absolutly shines.
after getting used to the fact that it feels a bit short at 70mm, it really is nice to use, i just wish that i could figure out how to make a better hood for it.

Update on the hood for this lens. I took a canon petal hood and cut the bottom off and glued that section to the original dish hood. Now it has a perfect petal shaped hood that also mounts properly on the camera.
reviewer#4410 date: Nov-20-2008
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:The only KM/Sony lens you can compare this to is the 24-70CZ. I haven't tested one but I can't decide if it's worth the price difference.
price paid:948 USD
positive:Bokeh
Sharpness
Build
negative:AF is sometimes slow.
comment:I wasn't going to review this lens because so many others already have but after comparing reviews between this lens and the 24-70CZ, I 've decided to stick with this and avoid the expense of the Zeiss. The 28-70G does exactly what it was designed for. I have the 17-35G also so range at the bottom end is not a big problem. I was considering the Zeiss for flash use solely because of the ADI but I do most of my indoor shooting without a flash anyway so have decided to avoid the expense.

Everybody talks about the slow AF which is why I'm pitching in my two cents. It could be faster but every Sunday I shoot my kid's hockey game. Now that's a pretty fast moving subject. He play's inline hockey and the games are indoors. The arena lighting is not great. Sometimes the AF is not fast enough and I get a blurry shot. It only happens when the last shot was long and the next one is short or the other way around. It can get confused with low-contrast backgrounds as well. I think most of the complaints come from APS-C users. When I upgraded from a700 to a900 the power of the a900 AF motor greatly improved the AF performance. After reading what others said about the 24-70CZ bokeh, I think I'm going to stick with this lens. It's the one that stays on my camera all the time. I won't talk about weight. Quality glass = weight. I'm not a proponent of "new, lightweight composite construction" on camera equipment, firearms or any other expensive items. That's marketing department double-talk for PLASTIC! Although it's probably a good lens, I think the price difference makes the Zeiss not worth it. If it's twice the price, it should be twice as good and I have yet to hear anyone say that!
reviewer#4338 date: Nov-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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony 16-105
Sony 18-70
Sony 75-300
price paid:910
positive:+ the G Dreamy-ness (color, bokeh & sharpness)
+ solid construction
negative:- Min Focus Distance
- slow AF
- 72mm filter diameter
comment:When the stars align, this lens is amazing. The IQ leaves me just staring at some of the pics I've managed to snap. The color rendition and bokeh are not matched by any other lens I've tried. The sharpness can be tack sharp, but I sometimes find myself struggling with the min focusing distance.

While I have rated this lens all 5's, the question is...would I actually buy it again, and in all honesty, the answer is 'don't know'. The AF is slow enough to make me second guess the purchase. I struggled to decide between this and the CZ. I ended up settling on the Minolta as I love the pics I've seen, and had been left cold by a lot of the CZ's. Having gotten the lens, I seriously struggle with the min focusing distance. The AF is 'ok' on my A700, but only marginally so. If neither of these matter, you can't go wrong...and at a MUCH better price than the CZ.
reviewer#4191 date: Oct-9-2008
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Canon 24-70 2.8L
price paid:800 GBP used
positive:Colours
Bokeh
Sharpness
Handling/Build
G..G G G G LENS
negative:slight slow focussing
weight (but its a positive also)
comment:I purchased this lens 10 years ago and its one of my favorite lens in my bag. I use this lens for almost every type of photography that I do with is Weddings, Fashion Shoots, Landscape, Portraits & Studio.

Lets get the negatives which I can only say two but really it should be one. Firstly, if your not in shape then your biceps will surely be toned up as this is a heavy lens. You have to remember that this lens was one of the finest film lens you can use on a-mount bodies so the glass is heavy but the quality is produced in the pictures. Secondily, and I would say is the major negative is the slow AF. It doest take a while at times to focus but once again when it does get there the results are worth waiting for.

This lens is also a great mid range zoom lens and the beauty is that is doesn't extend it remainds at the length. I'd say if you are using this lens on a tripod remember to bare in mind the weight of this lens so your tripod is strong enough to take the weight. Thus said I much prefer a heavy lens as you feel you have a quality lens in your hands.

Build is very solid and the colours produced is just amazing. In comparing this lens with my previously owned Canon 24-70 2.8L I would say that I prefer the image quality from this lens. It is much heavier with better bokeh and colours than the Canon. The Canon has a much better lens hood and focussing is quicker.

As yet I haven't tested the new Carl Zeiss replacement lens but at its current price it really needs to be a major step up for me to replace this lens.

Once you use this lens you start to understand why Minolta G lens maintain their value and class. If I was to tell you how many time new users test out this lens and are left speechless afterwards I would be a right man. Most of them have the Sigma version and they are just blow away with the colours produced from this lens.

Zeiss may be the future with the Alpha but I'll hold on to the past with this G lens beauty.
reviewer#4178 date: Oct-5-2008
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:80-200mm 2.8 G HS
18-70mm 4.5-5.6
50mm 1.7
28mm 2.8
price paid:800.- CHF
positive:Very nice colour rendering
G style in 2.8!
Very sharp
negative:28mm is not very wide on crop 1.5x (A700)
Heavy
A bit slow in low light
comment:I've purchased this lens as second hand a few months ago, for just 800.-CHF (around 800USD). This is the lens I was missing for covering wedding, candid portraits and studio. I was quite happy finding it, since it's pretty rare to fall on any G lens second hand at the moment, within a decent budget. Best of it was that the lens was in mint condition, claimed to be never used (owned previously by someone who was passionate about collecting great lenses!)

I've already used the lens on many occasions (2 weddings, studio, outdoor portraits, trip), and I must admit I'm quite impressed. The colour rendering is really great, giving the traditional G look which you can't get with any other low range lenses. The ability to shoot at 2.8 is fantastic, giving very shallow depth of field effect. The sharpness is very very nice, however not as much as the 80-200 2.8 G, which for me is the sharpest ever!

One of the concern I have on the A700 is that 28mm is not necessarily very wide, and you can find yourself a bit too short on the wide end. 24mm could be better, but I'm more talking about the 20 (however, you'd need to make other sacrifice to get that, either weight or quality).

Recently, a screw was free within the zoom barrel, so I had to send it to Sony for repair... still waiting an answer from them, hopefuly it's easy to repair.

Otherwise, I can't wait to get it back repaired, because it gives fantastic portraits, with great proportion at 70mm, and very nice warm colours, while keeping a great exposition on the A700 (very low proportion to highlights).

In few words: if you can find one, you must own it! The Great Minolta G Style, just perfect!

Julien
reviewer#3341 date: Mar-5-2008
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 70-210/4
Minolta 50/1.7
Minolta 70-200/2.8 SSM (D) G
Minolta 85/1.4 G (D)
Minolta 100/2.8 (D) Macro
Minolta 17-35/3.5 G
Minolta 300/4 G
price paid:700 euros
positive:Build
Bokeh
Sharpness
Price
'3D Effect'
negative:MFD
Weight
Hood
Focus Speed
comment:The first 'G' glass that I ever bought and thereby developed an expensive addiction to acquire other such lenses :) I'm a bokeh freak and this zoom lives up to its promise by giving a rich creamy bokeh. It comes close to rivaling the 100 macro in terms of bokeh and that's saying something! It's sharp even wide open and stopped down becomes tack sharp. The sharpness is not in your face but more subtle. Photos from this lens just pop and have that indescribable '3D effect'.

It has internal zoom and the build quality is excellent with an all metal body but which means it also weighs considerably. It also has a special flare cutter aperture which, as the name suggests, works very well in cutting out flare. So even though I don't use the hood (which is useless on APS-C sensors) I never had problems with flare. Distortion is well controlled although at 28mm there does seem to be a tiny amount visible. Colors are rendered beautifully in a subtle and natural way although like most old Minolta G lenses the colors are slightly on the warmer side. But that is a good thing.

The major drawbacks of this lens are its slow focusing speed and high close focus distance. While the slow focusing speed doesn't affect me that much as I mostly use it for static objects but the high MFD is a problem when trying to shoot portraits close up.

But overall I'm very happy with the results I get out of it especially as I bought it for a fraction of the price of the new Sony CZ 24-70/2.8 SSM. I'd love to use it on Sony's FF DSLR and see how it performs on that. If you cannot afford the CZ and love that lovely bokeh that Minolta's lenses are famous for producing then you cannot go wrong with this one.

In the end here are a few sample photos I shot with this lens:

http://visual.arthedains.com/index.php?showimage=647

http://visual.arthedains.com/index.php?showimage=566

http://visual.arthedains.com/index.php?showimage=488

http://visual.arthedains.com/index.php?showimage=627 (film)
reviewer#3331 date: Mar-3-2008
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:Professional build, nice colors, zoom range (esp. on film or ff).
negative:Heavy, focus speed (if it's an issue), supplied lens shade.
comment:I admire the engineering of this lens. It does not seem totally 'sharp' until f4, until then there is a kind of 'glow' or something about the image. Could be used to advantage if desired. There are 2 apertures in the lens, one is used to improve the bokeh I think, maybe like with the STF lens? It's still autofocus though which is nice. The focus is slow but somehow pleasant sounding to me so I don't mind. Images seem to have a 3D appearance with just regular .jpg's out of the camera.
reviewer#3327 date: Mar-2-2008
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:80-200 F2,8 G
135 F1,8 Zeiss
85 F1,4 G
price paid:500 Euro (new)
positive:Very good built
Very good colors
Very good contrast
negative:Minmum distance to high
Slow autofocus
Sharpness not good enough for this expensive lens
comment:The Minolta AF 28-70 F2,8 G is a great lens. B U T: This is a very expensive lens from Minoltas prestigious G-Series. I never used this lens with analog cameras. I read that the results are amazing with analog film. For digital use you will by a good lens. But sharpness is relative. The best sharpness i ever saw is my F1,8 135 Zeiss. Compared to this lens or the 80-200 G from Minolta the 28-70 is to steps behind this lenses.

The autofokus is slow. With the Minolta 7D it was the slowest autofocus of all my lenses. With the Alpha 700 I think the autofocus speed is ok.

Waiting for the new 24-70 F2,8 SSM ZEISS....
reviewer#3321 date: Mar-1-2008
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:my other stuff
price paid:699 Euros (new)
positive:Beautiful colours.
Subtle creamy bokeh.
Build to last.
F2.8 over entire zoom range.
Circular aperture.
negative:Heavy. Zoom range not that handy with crop-factor.
Slow and noisy AF with the 7D
Difficult lens.
Little hood i never use.
comment:This was one of the first G lenses I collected. The crop factor of the 7D and the weight, made this one not my everyday walkabout lens. The 17-35mm is way more convenient for that.
The 28-70mm ,imho, is a bit difficult. And supposedly less sharp than the new CZ SSM version. But, reading the other reviews they are very positive indeed, and nobody complains about any 'unsharpeness'.
Maybe Michael Hohner can test them both? ;-)
My photos with this lens are sometimes bit soft , which I found out, has everything to do with the subject/background contrast and the low lighting. With normal or heavy (sun) light, the results are stunning! The softness is there perhaps @f2.8, but it really gets a lot better from f3.5 and up. Maybe in their wisdom the Minolta engineers designed it as a portrait lens pur sang?
ps. yesterday I used this lens for snapshots and the results are VERY good indeed! Made me realise how under-appreciated this lens in fact is. Snapshots are sharp and contrasty!
reviewer#2915 date: Nov-8-2007
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 28-75 F2.8 D
Minolta 28-135 F4-4.5
Minolta 35-105 F3.5-4.5
price paid:
missing
positive:Sooo sharp!
Sharp at 2.8
Build quality
Bokeh
negative:Noisy autofocus
Slow autofocus
Pretty heavy
MFD
comment:For me, the end result is IQ. This lens has to be one of Minolta's best for mid-range zooms (IQ-wise). Images are sharp with good color and bokeh up to about 50mm. After that they're still sharp, just not as sharp. Carrying around something so heavy is not a problem for me when I want the best IQ.

I use this lens for static, slow moving objects. The AF just isn't fast enough for much else. When I want to shoot candids, I usually grab the 28-75D because AF is very fast, but trade-off is IQ IMO. Also, the MFD of the G could be a problem with close shots.

For portraits with good bokeh and color, I'll grab the G-unit. My copy is good and sharp at 2.8.

Have not had a problem with distortion (but don't shoot wide often), or flare. Will update if these are problems.

EDIT: Distortion is visible at 28mm as well as flare, but flare not so much. Had to downgrade the scores for these two by 1.
reviewer#2627 date: Aug-12-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:28/2
50/1.7
price paid:400 € (LNIB)
positive:extremely sharp
colours
bokeh
negative:slow AF
distortion at WA
comment:I've been so lucky to find it for 400 Euro, in like new conditions with box, papers and hard case!
This lens is amazing, like any G lenses. I already own the 200/2.8 G HS, and I see the same results with this fantastic zoom. Saturation, colours, sharpness and bokeh are simply outstanding.

There are of course some very well known flaws, that don't bother me too much. AF is precise but slow, so I leave the eye-start AF always on and it helps a lot.
The lens is so nice and well built, but the hood is horrible and useless, it doesn't seem to belong to this wonderful piece of photographic equipment.
Compared to the 28/2, there is some visible distortion at WA, but I can live with it (and I can adjust very easily in PP).

Overall it's an excellent lens, highly recommended.
reviewer#2544 date: Jul-14-2007
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:50/1.7, 35/2, KM28-75/2.8, tokina 28-70/2.6-2.8
price paid:3270zł
positive:Color,
Contrast,
Sharpness
negative:2/3 stops darker than primes in this range,
heavy
comment:On 7D super sharp wide open 28..50, very sharp 50..70.
Sharper than 50/1.7 (at f2.8) especially in the corners.

Color saturation is outstanding!

Only problem is this lenses are about 2/3 stops darker than others primes I have in this range. Probably because it is more complex construction - 16 elements vs 6 elements in 50/1.7, so it's like having 28-70/f3.5.

Anyway I'm keeping 35/2, and selling 50/1.7.

Still I love this lenses and can't wait to try on FF...
reviewer#2524 date: Jul-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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:KM 28-75/2.8 (D)
price paid:730€ (used)
positive:Color, resolution, bokeh, handling, built.
negative:None yet
comment:The lens balances well on my 7D+VC, a bit heavy but I like that. The focus is not as fast as the KM 28-75/2.8 (D) but is fast enough for the type of pictures I take with this range. The minimum focus distance makes this lens difficult for close subjects.
The bokeh is better then 28-75/2.8 (D), with smoother transition.

I prefer this lens on film, sharp wide open on all focal range, excellent color tones.
reviewer#2298 date: May-10-2007
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:28mm f2.8 50mm f1.4 24-35 f3.5,4.5,28-135 f4-4.5 (minolta)
price paid:1400 usd
positive:sharp,contrast, trure colour,excellent detail even at wide open,flare cutter,build, front element not rotate(due to uses of cpl)
negative:price, almost impossible to find, slow auto foucs,noisy
comment:this is the lenses if you are qulity concious,as most of the people know this lena have dual aparture, both are higly effective in their work one agaist flare and one against poor boakh,i am used this lens mostly on landscape,mountain photography so high speed autofocus is not my concern,my concern is only qulity, and in quality this is best lens ever made in 35mm lens history.
reviewer#1913 date: Mar-5-2007
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:M 35-105
price paid:600€ (new)
positive:-Sharpness
-bokeh
-contrast
-build
negative:-slow AF
-heavy
comment:It is my most used lens. I bought it in 2006 new.
It is sharp, even wide open. Colors are very good. Bokeh is beautiful. AF is very slow, but with good use, it is no problem. The noise is so loud, everyone is knowing you are taking some pictures.
Flare can be a problem, but I use my hand like an hood.
reviewer#1860 date: Feb-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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 24-105mm
price paid:650 USD (used)
positive:Excellent sharpness and beautiful bokeh. Great contrast and overall performance.
negative:On the slow side for focusing. Minimum focusing distance could be closer.
comment:This is my main lens and it stays on my camera most of the time. I love the picture I get with this lens. It is a little heavy but it feels good in my hands, very well built. The lens hood is a joke, I don't see it having any affect being that it is so short.
reviewer#1831 date: Feb-14-2007
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:SAL18-70 Kit, 50/1.4, Tamron 90/2.8 Macro, Beercan, Sigma 70-200/2.8, Sigma 28/1.8
price paid:USD1200 (new, 1998)
positive:Very good sharpness, contrast and bokeh.
negative:Slow AF
comment:I've had this lens since 1998 and it's one of the main reasons I stuck with the A-mount when going digital last year. It stays on my A-100 more than any other lens. The slow AF doesn't bother me that much. Flare can be a problem and reduces contrast drastically.
reviewer#1830 date: Feb-14-2007
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 24-70 EX DG Macro
price paid:
missing
positive:Sharp even at wide open
Nice Bokeh
Built
negative:Focusing Speed
Minimum Focusing Distance
Hood (pretty useless for an cropped size sensor)
comment:This is one amazing glass. I noticed the difference right away as compared to my Sigma 27-70 EX DG Macro. It's sharp even at wide open and very well built.
Its too bad that the focusing speed is slower than usual and the minimum focusing distance is quite long.
But still i would recommend this lens as one piece of fine glass.

reviewer#1713 date: Jan-28-2007
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
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
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:Sigma 18-50 2.8
Minolta 50 1.4 (RS)
Minolta 80-200 g
Zeiss 24 - 70 2,8
price paid:
missing
positive:Lens that stays most of the time on my camera. Flare control.
negative:Heavy
comment:Heavy but fantastic lens. Beautiful bokeh. You just have so much more detail compared with a sigma 18-50 2.8 DG.
I read focus is slow, which is true, but compared to the newer Sigma 18-50 2.8 DG EX not slower! Sharpness in comparable with the 80-200 G, although a little bit less.
reviewer#1673 date: Jan-19-2007
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:$800 USD
positive:see ratings... all 5
negative:Heavy... but the trade off is build quality.

comment:Excellence in the 5 measurements are expected. But one surprise is that the AF speed of this lens is not slow on my 5D, even in lowlight indoor environment. The focus is very accurate ( no hunt at all, even in low light) and not much slower than the kit lens, which means it's quite fast. Although the AF noise is loud, it did not bother me too much. I just took a few shots indoor tonight and I am very satisfied with the result. Top lens in this range. Buy it if you can. I paid $800 for a copy that is in very good condition...I am extremely happy so far. It worth every penny I spent.
reviewer#1536 date: Dec-12-2006
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:KM 28-75, Tokina 28-70
price paid:500€
positive:Build, feel, IQ, just perfect
negative:AF-speed, close focus 0,85m
comment:Tested this one, KM 28-75 and Tokina 28-70.
Build is top class, image quality exelent, nice bokeh.
This is a heavy lens, I like that.
Firt time I hold it I felt : Yes, this is the way it should be=)
Af is slow, really slow, but spot on.
The supplied hood is a joke, I use a 85/1.4 hood insted.

The KM28-75 is the best alround of the 3, fast AF, light (at cost of build) good close focus.

After the test I sold The Km 28-75 and This one staid=)
reviewer#1504 date: Dec-4-2006
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:M/AF DT 18-70/3.5-5.6 (D)
M/AF 28-85/3.5-4.5 RS
M/AF 28-135/4-4.5
price paid:EUR1090 (2nd h)
positive:Built like a tank
Sharp - but not tack sharp
Colours
Saturation
AF is OK on a700
negative:Weighs like a tank
Shade is a joke
AF is slow on D7D
comment:I have had the pleasure to play around with this magnificent piece of glass for some time now, and it is a love/hate lens - long sought after by afficionados all over the world, sometimes at horrendeous prices. It didn't take long to understand why.

On a APS-C-sensor camera, it falls sligtly short on the wide side, but on a FF-sensor, it really stands out. Primarily it is to be mounted on my Dynax7 as "main prime", on which it performs extremely well. The only disappointment I have found so far, is the rather shallow circular shade, which almost always fails to combat/prevent flare. Shooting straight into the sun is almost impossible.

The lens is capable of delivering sharp and saturated pictures, showing that distinctive "Minolta Oldie" touch. It is not a lightning fast AF performer, but the majority of my subjects are either dead, or moving at very modest speeds, making that drawback easily handled.

It is, by far, the best zoom lens ever built in its range. It would be nice if Carl Zeiss would consider making a lens equaling this jewel - preferably a 24-72/2.8.

UPDATE:
Carl Zeiss did deliver a 24-70/2.8, that outperforms this oldie, but only just. No reason to trade it for a ZA, especially since the ZA solutions adds even more weight.
reviews found: 68    << 1 2 3 >>

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 68
  • sharpness: 4.67
  • color: 5.00
  • build: 4.96
  • distortion: 4.90
  • flare control: 4.28
  • overall: 4.76

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