Minolta AF 35-70mm F4 A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 185    << 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 >>
reviewer#8710 date: Feb-27-2011
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:Sony SAL1870
Minolta 70-210 f4
Minolta 50mm f1.4
price paid:$45.00
positive:Sharp
Excellent color capture
Fast focusing
Constant f4
negative:I have no complaints
comment:My walk around, ready for almost anything lens. I did the standard Scotch tape hack on the macro function, close up results are very good. Great Minolta colors. It is consistenly sharp, even with my Kalimar 1.4X TC, when it becomes an 80-150 f5.6 on my Sony A200.
reviewer#8697 date: Feb-25-2011
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:Minolta 28-135 f4-4,5
price paid:€ 60,00 (mint)
positive:Small
Light
Sharp
Fast
Range on Leica format
negative:Range on APS-C format
comment:This is a killer lens on A850/A900 for light travelling. I add a 50/1,7 for low light shots and I am fine.
Range is not that good onto APS-C format unless you don't care about the wide angles.
Small, light, fast AF and extremely sharp even wide open (at least my sample), on A850 outperforms my beloved 28-135 f4-4,5
reviewer#8524 date: Jan-15-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 4
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:50mm F1.7
28-105mm f3.5-4.5
28mm F2.8
price paid:
missing
positive:Very sharp lens, especially stopped down a little.
Small and light to carry around.
Hackable Macro AF mode
negative:Small range
comment:Very sharp little lens that I had foolishly underestimated in the past. Only after I saw some standard test photos of this lens and other famous Minolta lenses do I realise it's capability. It is small and light, so is easy to carry around. On APC-C, the range is about 50-105 which is just nice for portraiture.
reviewer#8484 date: Jan-6-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 3
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:Sony DT 18-70
Minolta 70-210 Beercan
price paid:26,50 EUR (mint)
positive:Sharp from 35 to 70, even in macro mode
Incredibly sharp from F5,6-22
Color
Ok build for me, compact
Macro at 70mm
Fast focusing
F4 at 70mm
negative:Flare
Front element rotates
CA at F4-5,6 in macro mode
Range on APS-C
F4 at 30mm
comment:Hello,
this was my first lens after set Sony 18-70. I grabbed a bargain and bought one in a really minty condition.
I am very sattisfied with this lens. It is a small, old school lens which does not pass to my Sony A200, if I look at the design :-). It is sharp at all of the ranges. Even more sharp if I stop down a little bit. At F4 is really noticeable some CA in macro mode and colour fringing which disappears during stopping down to 5,6+. It has fantastic It is a great macro lens when in use with macro tubes! In normal use there is very big flaring not only from sun but even from lamps. Just the range is little bit weird on APS-C, that's why I still use my bad 18-70 sometimes...
reviewer#8468 date: Jan-1-2011
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 100 - 200mm f4.5
Minolta "Beercan"
Minolta 50mm f1.7
Tamron 28-70 mm f3.5-4.5 Macro
price paid:$20.00 (used)
positive:CHEAP!!!
SHARP
Light weight & small
Well built
negative:Hood inadequate size
comment:This lens, and the 100-200 f4.5 are the "sleepers" of the Minolta AF family. I forget exactly where and when I got it, but I use it and a 100-200mm on Maxxum 7000 bodies for shooting Women's Roller Derby. I've tried it on a Konica Minolta 7D body, and hope to do so much more in the future.
_______________________
EDIT... DEC 2011

I HAVE used it a good bit more now, on 7D and 5D bodies.

This lens has become my primary work horse; it has served me VERY well indeed during Roller Derby season, plus during the protests at the Wisconsin state capitol.

Low temperatures and rain don't faze it in the least; it always delivers for me.

I'm looking for another copy of it so that I'll never be caught without one.
_________________________________

IMHO... this little lens is the natural companion for a Beercan.

SHARP... it's almost as good as my 50mm f 1.7, but with more versatility. Good example of the legendary "Minolta color" rendition.

Compared to my Tamron 28-70 Macro; there IS no comparison! The Tamron, even stopped down, is much softer and shows considerably more distortion toward the edges.

Only downside with this little gem... that hood! It's WAY too small!!!

Mine is now fitted with a Cokin filter rig; no filters, but two of the snap-on hoods attached.

A "must have" Minolta product for every camera bag!
reviewer#8434 date: Dec-21-2010
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 3
flare control: 2
overall: 3.8
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:beercan
24-50
50 1,7
price paid:50 euro
positive:Sharp at 35mm, quite sharp @70mm
small
weight
negative:Flare
Distortion
comment:Very good zoom for the price and sharpsness, but the distortion is annoying in portraiture..
It suffers of flare and hood is insufficient.
reviewer#8432 date: Dec-21-2010
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
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:Min 28-85mm f3.5-4.5
Min 35-105mm f3.5-4.5
Sony 18-55mm
Sony 18-70mm
price paid:£45
positive:Build
Color
Sharp
negative:Small range
comment:My own baby beercan, love it! Good color and build. Small range is inconvenient sometimes but otherwise a fun walkaround lens.
reviewer#8387 date: Dec-10-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 3
flare control: 3
overall: 3.8
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:Minolta zoom xi 100-300
Sony AF DT 18-70 F3.5-5.6 (kit)
Sony AF DT 18-55 F3.5-5.6 (kit)
price paid:Total 750.000 IDR with other items (used)
positive:Build
Sharp!
Concentric Hexagon Bokeh
Minolta Colors
Macro
negative:Slow at low light but that is normal
Concentric Hexagon Bokeh for them who do not like it
comment:I bought this with some items. The previous owner let me bought his lens for 350.000 IDR ONLY if I bought its 400.000 IDR SLR.
Well, it is Sharp and Incredible.

When I was on a plane trip from Jakarta to Lombok, 20 minutes before landing, shoot from the window with Infinite focus and at 100% crop, I realize there is a ship with a Suzuki on board and I can still recognize its logo.

As the bokeh itself, I dunno, just like it. I see many concentric hexagon bokeh before but this one is just beautiful. It may not as smooth as the beercan, but it add rough feeling on my shots.

Let me compare the bokeh with sony's kit lens. Using the kit, the bokeh are small, sharp concentric circle, almost like grain. If the background is far away, its kinda looks like noise.

With this lens with the same distance, the bokeh is more or less half bigger than the kit, heaxagon-like (even if the background object is a ball).

And, well... The macro mode is just SUPERB, well, with only 1:4 magnification, it is clearly produce nice out of focus area, and this is a kit lens for a camera from more than 20 years ago.

About the Legendary Minolta Colors, hmm... This is interesting. A few people will tell you, you can use photoshop for that. Well, let me tell you some stuffs:
- Photoshop is expensive, while at the same time, they will say GIMP is not enough. :D
- If you are going to edit every picture you shoot, then why bother using Alpha? I few pocket cameras, wait, even mobile phone cameras will do. Face it, you are not into photography, yet, if you do.
- It is not easy to produce the artificial Minolta Colors. It is either too zombie-like, or too unrealistic. Thats why I love this blue globe. Think, shoot, then either print it out or upload it while my fellow Canonicus and Nikonian playing with their mouse.
reviewer#8278 date: Nov-21-2010
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 3
distortion: 4
flare control: 3
overall: 3.9
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:sony 50 14, CZ 85 1,4 ,
price paid:60€ used
positive:size , weight , price , fast focus , macro
negative:front cap
comment:great small lens for a walk around and travel , very sharp , lovely colors .

reviewer#8220 date: Nov-9-2010
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:
missing
positive:Optics
Cheap
Color
Macro Mode
Constant F4
AF
Construction
negative:hood
range
comment:
missing
reviewer#8210 date: Nov-8-2010
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
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:Beercan Minolta 70-210mm @70mm
Sony DT 18-70mm F3.5/5.6 (Kit lens)
Sony DT 50mm F1.8 SAM
price paid:$50 each (2 used)
positive:Incredibly Cheap
Sharp from 35 to 70mm
F4 !
Macro capacity
Light
Metal mount
negative:Original hood = useless
Original front cap prevent taking of the hood !
Strange range on DSL-R
Zoom ring a bit narrow
Minimum Focus = 1m
comment:First of all get rid of the original cap ! You can't access the hood whit the cap on it. I exchanged it with my Sony 50mm cap(also 49mm diameter) and it allows you to play with the hood.
Talking about the hood, get rid of the original hood either ! It's too short but I found that another hood will make a great job to prevent flare ! Find a hood from Minolta A 100-200 F4.5, it's exactly the same diameter and clips !
[I didn't check if I get vignetting with such long hood compare to the widest part of the range]

It's not always easy to adjust the zoom ring with my A700. The view finder/built in flash is bit big and the ring is close too close to the body.

When you compare it to the kit lens, it's not even worth it to mention it. It does a fantastic job compare to the 18-70mm... When comparing it to the beercan, things are more complicated : @ 70mm, the beercan is better from F4 to F5.6 then the little minolta is sharper ! [I still have to compare my second copy but it's sharper than the first, so results would be even more difficult to handle for the beercan]
Against the Sony DT 50mm F1.8, my best copy is sharper from F4 to F8 and then they are similar.

To conclude, $50 to play with this lens ! Awesome ! I bought a A700 and I needed a spare lens to let my girlfriend play with my A200. It ended up I bought 2 of them !

Why no one's talking about it ?! Perhaps because the range is weird, I didn't have the opportunity to play with it for an "on field" review but I will soon !
reviewer#8187 date: Nov-5-2010
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:Sony 18-55
Tamron 28-75/2.8
price paid:30€
positive:build
colours
constant F4
compact
negative:wired range on APS-C
comment:Solid lens, don't use it much with the range on APS-C...

Was included with some other Minolta glas. If this lens was a bit wider it would see alot more use on my cameras.
reviewer#8013 date: Sep-23-2010
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:Min 50D and 50/1.7
Min 35/2
Beercan
price paid:usd 40 used
positive:Small size
Reliable focus
Minolta colors
Fixed aperture
negative:none to think of
comment:I found this the perfect street lens for the A100.
reviewer#7877 date: Aug-27-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 3
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.2
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:35-70f3.5-4.5. 24-85 3.5-4.5. 35mm fix.
price paid:55 USD
positive:Small and lightweigth. Good quality picktures even on 24 mpx A900. Cheep and there are lots around.
negative:Week build, do not drop this to the floor!
Just simply broke down as it parted of when using it. Waisted.
comment:This really shines on my A900, on the APS-C 7D it has not so useful range. Sharp all over and is the best alternative for a light lens to carry around.

reviewer#7855 date: Aug-25-2010
sharpness: 3.5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
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 used to own this lens
compared to:When I owned it, the 28-80 II
price paid:USD79.00 (used)
positive:Good flare control on mine, even though I never owned the hood to go along with it.
negative:Somewhat softish, wide open. Not soft, softish.
comment:This lens was leaps and bounds beyond my first zoom. The results wide open had an almost soft focus kind of effect to them; the image was clear, the definition was fine on the edges, it was just not enough that I would say it was "pretty sharp" wide open, if that makes sense to anyone.
reviewer#7686 date: Jul-13-2010
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:28-85
24-70 2.8
100 2.8 mcaro
price paid:
missing
positive:colors
lightweight
macro
negative:some CA at times
comment:For many years my only lens on the film camera. I've gotten some great images with this. Got me into doing some macro, even with it's manual only mode.

If your low on funds and want to learn photography pick up this lens to replace your kit lens. You will get some great shots with this.

It's nice an compact for walking around
reviewer#7666 date: Jul-7-2010
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:18-70.
16-105.
Samyang 85mm.
price paid:
missing
positive:Sharp. Sharp!! SHARP!!
Super cheap.
F4. Not VERY fast but good.
negative:Range.
comment:This is one of the classic Minolta lenses.
Sleeper of a bunch of lenses.
Super sharp at F4 and 70mm.
Zooms tend to have worst performance at the long end wide open, and this one really delivers at that point.
Given the price of the lens (you can get a good copy for less than USD 50), I would recommend that you have one. It really delivers sharp pictures and is worth every penny.
Nice warm colors. Reasonably good for portraits and outdoor shoots when you can use your feet. F4 at 70mm allows for reasonable DOF control.
Kind of limited range, especially on APS and indoors. This is the reason that this lens is not popular and is darned cheap.
This one of the best values in terms of bang-for-the-buck.
reviewer#7662 date: Jul-5-2010
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:$40NZ (used)
positive:Very sharp lens with great colour. Solid build and macro is a bonus.
negative:Bokeh not the smoothest. Macro is manual focus (without the hack).
comment:Got this lens of the internet (used) instead of the Sony kit lens, and I'm glad I did. What a great we lens for the price. It's super sharp - even wide open, and the 52-105mm focal length it equates to on my a200 is great as an all round portrait lens. But I'm even taking some superb landscapes with this gem of a lens at the 35mm end.
Bokeh at the f4 75mm end isn't as smooth and creamy as you'd get from a 135mm prime - but at only $40 whose expecting it to be?
Flare is reported as an issue with this lens, but I have a fairly deep rubber lens hood on mine and don't have too many problems.
For the price, this is an amazing lens. I highly recommend it if the focal length suits you. I'd get another one in a flash!
reviewer#7523 date: Jun-2-2010
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:Sony 18-70mm
Sony 55-200mm (where the focal lengths overlap)
price paid:35 USD (used)
positive:Optics
Cheap
Color
Macro Mode
Constant F4
AF
Construction
negative:None that I can think of!
comment:I use this lens just about all the time. Perfect all around lens. The Macro Mode is great. I don't mind it not being AF. Minolta's optics are always 1st rate and this one is no exception. Typical Minolta colors. The constant F4 no matter where you put the focal length is a BIG plus. So its good in low light. Its not great. The more I use it it might become great. AF is very smooth, pretty quiet and quite fast. Very low light situations it hunts a lot. Mild low light its OK. Flare is very noticeable without a hood. With a hood its a lot better.

Overall a great lens. Metal mount is always a plus in my book. I would like to see Sony make a version of this lens.
reviewer#7473 date: May-25-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 3
distortion: 3
flare control: 2
overall: 3.4
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:Various Minolta, Sony, and Sigma
Various M42
price paid:22 USD
positive:Sharp (on APS-C), small, light, macro makes it versatile
negative:Flare, low contrast, plastic build, long close focus, distortion at 35mm, soft corners on FF
comment:Although my scores for it are low, this is not a bad lens. In many ways, it is actually a better alternative to the 18-70 kit lens. However, IQ-wise, it certainly isn't in the class of the beercan... except in sharpness at f/4.

On the positive side, this lens is very small and light, and the macro mode is useful. IQ is very good at f/4. This is one of the few lenses I have that resolves significantly more on a 14MP than on a 10MP, and it does it even wide open. This isn't a bad walk-around lens for APS-C, and the zoom range is even better suited to full frame... I'm sure this was a truly great kit lens for the film cameras of its day, but FF corners are not up to my A7. Basically, the center is great but IQ falls off badly near FF corners.

However, this lens is built with a bit too much plastic (although it does have a metal mount). My copy came with clean glass and generally looks very good, but it has a chip in the front thread and a slow aperture. It flares VERY easily, yielding moderately low contrast if there is any backlighting. Barrel distortion is visible at 35mm, but not overpowering. Normal close focus isn't very close, while macro gets quite close but is a bit funky to use (I have not modified this lens for autofocus in macro).

Overall, for a sub-$50 lens to take when space is tight, this is a winner -- but it certainly isn't awesome. On FF, it's not even all that good, more like a 3 sharpness. Mine was exceptionally cheap, but I would recommend paying more to get one that doesn't have the condition issues mine has.
reviewer#7441 date: May-18-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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:Sony 18-70 kitlens
Min 50 mm F1.7
Min 28-135
Sig 18-200
Helios M44 58/F2
price paid:25 euro
positive:light
small
sharp as a nife
catches all the colors of a rainbow
cheap !
negative:Flare
minimal focus distance 1 mtr...
comment:Youre Sony Alpha is not complete if you don't have this lens in youre camera bag !

I am slowly building my collection of lenses, this was my first beercan, and now i am "beercanalholic" !
After shooting about 1500 dissapointing pictures with the standard kitlens, i almost wanted to sell the Alpha because every picture had so much noise in the darker areas, but then this little beercan chanced it all!!
(and now i want them all LOL)
reviewer#7339 date: Apr-23-2010
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 3
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 50mm F1.7 (O)
Minolta 28-85mm F3.5-4.5 (O)
Minolta 35-105mm F3.5-4.5 (N)
Sigma 17-70mm F2.8-4.5
Tamron 17-50mm F2.8
price paid:$45CAD
positive:+Great resolution potential
+Classic colours
+Super compact size
+Macro switch! (AF hackable)
+Cheap!
negative:-Vignetting and soft corners on FF
-Long MFD for this range
-Only a 2x zoom
-Filter size and hood too small
-Bokeh circles look weird under portrait distances (like a bullseye)
-OMG Flare!
comment:A fantastic and very underrated little lens. I was surprised how sharp center resolution was. Chromatic aberations are very minimal and are easily correctable in any raw converter. There is some very minor purple fringing at f/4 but disappears at f/5.6. AF minimal focal distance is ridiculous for this range like the rest of Minolta's "Macro switch" zooms.

On crop APS-C: Pretty sharp at f/4, contrast and corners are perfect at f/5.6 (across the zoom range). Vignetting not an issue. Being a small 2x normal-to-short tele zoom (52-105mm equiv), how useful this lens is depends on what you use it for. Good for streeting or a poor-man's macro/closeup lens.

On film & full frame: Corner resolution is quite soft throughout and only reach perfection by f/8-11. Center performance remains consistently good. There is very abrupt vignetting at 35mm. Distortion is a bit pronounced. Focal range is a pretty practical walkaround zoom if you really want to travel lite.
reviewer#7228 date: Apr-1-2010
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
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
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 28-75 F2.8
Minolta 28-135 F4-4.5
Minolta 35-105 F3.5-4.5 Old
Minolta 50 F1.7 RS
Sony 50 F1.4
Minolta 70-210 F4
price paid:GBP 50
positive:+ Very compact almost like 50/1.7
+ Great colour
+ Quite sharp even wide open
+ Useful "macro" switch
+ Very cheap
+ Better MFD (1m) than 35-105 and 28-135 (1.5m)

negative:- Bokeh is poor, not smooth
comment:When I first got my A900, the full frame lenses I had were the 35-70/4, 50/1.7, 100 Macro and 100-300 APO.

I went on a holiday in Sanya, China (tropical beach holiday) and this was my walkaround lens, it practically lived on my camera. It was very convenient to have on the camera for the whole day, as the lens is so short and lightweight.

I rarely use it nowadays, but will probably keep it and sell the 35-105.
reviewer#7054 date: Mar-11-2010
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:Sony 18-70 kit lens
price paid:64 USD (used)
positive:Nice colour.
Pleasant bokeh.
Macro mode for not so serious macro (manual focus only unless hacked).
negative:Long minimum focus distance
comment:The lens feels at home using full frame. Due to its long minimum focus distance, I found it more useful on a full frame.
reviewer#6996 date: Mar-4-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 3
overall: 4.2
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:€ 50
positive:+ build
+ sharpness
+ price
negative:- none
comment:
missing
reviewer#6993 date: Mar-4-2010
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:16-105mm, 55-200mm, 70-300mm,
price paid:65 USD
positive:Sharp, Color, Macro, bokeh, build
negative:Not much
comment:This is a great little lens. I bought it from a member and it is excellent.
I bought it for a macro and did the hack on the switch... which works
perfectly. This lens takes wonderful images and though the Macro is
more of a close up than a 1:1 macro, the captures are very
good and they are sharp especially with a tripod.
If you get the opportunity to pick one of these up you wont regret it.
It may be a short lens, but that's the way it is and if you don't like the length then you wont like the actual lens.
For a lens hood I just picked up an after market plastic & rubber hood on the web.
reviewer#6938 date: Feb-21-2010
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 3
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minoltas
28-135
Beercan
100-200
50 f1.4
50 f1.7
etc
price paid:30US mint
positive:Very sharp
Great macro capability after macro hack
Inexpensive
Great vivid colours
very good wide open
Small and light
negative:No lens hood
comment:Very nice lens. I paid very litle for this mint lens. I was suprised with the sharpness. Way sharper than Min 35-105N especialy wide open. Stepped down it is almost as sharp as my primes. The only lens that is marginally better is 28-135 but at 10x the cost.
Must have lens for Sony owners
reviewer#6912 date: Feb-14-2010
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:Sony 18-70mm
Minolta 35-105mm Macro
price paid:$35
positive:Small
Sharp
Color
Macro
Cheap
Good Build
negative:Limited range
comment:This lens is a must have for anyone who wants an inexpensive little macro zoom lens. It is very sharp and has the true Minolta colors. It is also a very fast focusing lens that I have often used at the racetrack, (whilst standing on the pit wall).
reviewer#6877 date: Feb-6-2010
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 3
overall: 3.8
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:sony 17-70 kit lens
sigma 90mm macro
price paid:40 usd (used
positive:cheap cheap cheap ($40)
sharp at all aperatures and great color. minimal distortion at wide end. metal lens mount.
negative:needs to have expanded zoom range for more versatility. macro switch is necessary for macro shooting. noticeable distortion on wide end.
comment:this lens does take great photos. I use it on my a100 and my 700 bodies. The zoom range is narrow, which kind of cripples its use, creatively speaking. Otherwise, the colors, sharpness and presence that this lens creates works for me. Physically it's the right size and can be nicely used for street photography. this lens is not on par with the sigma 90mm macro-much sharper shots, but dose make me think i should sell the kit lens. Great lens at embarrassingly low cost. I rate it smack dab between the dedicated macro and the kit lens.
reviewer#6816 date: Jan-24-2010
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 3
overall: 4.2
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:kit lens directly
price paid:$50
positive:Very capable
negative:flare?
comment:I've found this to be a great lens on my a200, enjoy its macro function a great deal more than I thought I would.

But as a general purpose lens as well its great, very small and light (nearly as small as my 50mm prime).

I've had it 3 weeks and its only come off my camera once, it continues to suprise me, I haven't found the bokeh to be as bad as some have said. Flare is much more distinct than my other lenses though.

I wish the filter ring was 55mm, but I'm sure the guys at Minolta had other things on their minds in 1985. Good things as well apparently as this is a wonderful piece of kit.

At a good price don't miss out on this one.

Update: Really enjoy this one on FF (A850). Great discreet travel lens if you don't need low light. Great from F8 for landscapes, street shots etc. I've had mine for a few years now but I think they are still cheap. I had another copy I used on my A200 (It was stolen) and apart from the limiting range on APSC I enjoyed it on that body too.
reviews found: 185    << 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 >>

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 185
  • sharpness: 4.50
  • color: 4.78
  • build: 4.50
  • distortion: 4.36
  • flare control: 3.80
  • overall: 4.39

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