Minolta AF 35-105mm F3.5-4.5 A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 154    << 1 2 3 4 5 6
reviewer#651 date: Apr-1-2006
sharpness: 5
color: 3
build: 5
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:Sigma 28-75 2.8
Minolta 18-70D
price paid:
missing
positive:-Cheap Lens
-Built like a Tank (suits a 7d very good)
-Good sharpness around f5.6
-Very sharp from f8 and above
-Macro mode usable
negative:-Built like a Tank ;)
-Slow AF
-No Af on Macromode
-Macromode at max focal lenght only 1/4 lifesize
-The range of course
-Mediocre bokeh
comment:I use this lens with my 7d and it performs very well. It's a heavy piece of metal and glas and therefore suits a 7d better than a little 5d. Once used as a kit lens this 3x zoom suffers a bit from the reputation of being a cheap lens with low performance. Well, let me say, it's far far away from that. I wonder about the reputation because i found my copy to be a wonderful lens that i'm very happy with. This is the main reason:
When stopped down it very clearly outperforms my other zooms on that range (Kit 18-70 and Sigma 28-75) and while watching the results 100% full view on screen i can't hardly spot a difference compared to my 50/1.7 and 28/2.8 primes. Therefore my 5point rating for sharpness is directed at stopped down performance. Wide open its much softer and would only get something around 3.5 to 4 points. Anyway, how come this lens is so good and almost nobody knows and speaks about it? Occasionally people are being very happy with this lens and post a bit on forums about it, but most of the time you won't find many information about it. I can't say a thing about the newer version of the 35-105 which is much smaller and lighter, but the old version is definatly a very good piece of glas for a bargain. If you are using a 5D/7D try this one out. Especially when the price is good.

Cons: While the results from this lens are very good the range is not very usefull for indoor(tough you get used to it) but very good for portrait and people photography. If you are used to Primes around 50mm in the good old days you will come quite good along with the range of this lens. Anyway, Range and Weight (full metal) keep it from being used every day. Further downsides: The AF is slow and likes to hunt in low light situations and if you are searching for a perfect creamy bokeh search again. Most negative point i can think of: the minimum focus distance with AF is not very good (around 1.5 meter) and the macro mode, while being fun to use, does only work with MF.

But heck, this lens has an incredible price performance ratio! You can get one of these older 35-105 variants for less then 50$, an all metal lens that delivers very good sharpness on my Dynax 7D. Stop it down further and be surprised how sharp a zoom lens can be. I'm even more surprised about how the minolta communities (from my point of view) don't seem to know or talk a lot about this lens.

It's not the fastest, not the sharpest zoom lens wide open, BUT: on a sunny day, when f8-f11 is possible with good shutter speeds and ISO at 100-200, this lens will become one of your most used buddys on a Minolta DSLR unless you can't handle the range after crop factor. I for myself got used to it and the results are well worth it.
reviewer#591 date: Mar-17-2006
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 35-70 f:4, Sigma 28-70 f:2.8, Sigma 17-70, Kit lens
price paid:
missing
positive:- Good from f:5.6
- Razor sharp between f:8 and f:13
- No distortions at the wide end
negative:- Not THAT sharp wide open (but still better than the 18-70)
cameras
- Large MFD (0,85m!)
comment:(I've reassessed this lens lately, and I've got some new thoughts about it. New and improved review follows.)

This is the kit lens I've got with my Maxxum 8000i. It is a pity that Sony does not build most of their lens like this one: built like a tank with metal mount, and will withstand adverse meteorologic conditions. It was my walk around lens in film days because of its range (which in digital is not that useful as it was with film).

The biggest issue with this lens is really the large MFD (0,85m). Trying to use it at 35mm in APS-C to emulate a "52mm" is somewhat disappointing, since you can't normally get sufficiently close to the subjects as a 35mm lens should permit. And since this lens gets to f:4.5 really fast, you'll have to use slower shutter speeds (or higher ISOs) to compensate for the large MFD.

OTOH, I've found lately this lens a good (not stellar) performer wide open, but with f:5.6 and beyond it really shines on, producing crisp and detailed pictures.

In short, a good performer with an excellent price/performance ratio. If you can get for US$ 100 (or less), it is worth every cent.
reviewer#329 date: Dec-22-2005
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
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:5D kit lens, 50/1.7
price paid:
missing
positive:Macro mode
Price
Build
negative:All metal so it's on the heavy side
Rather slow AF
comment:Built like a tank and has the weight to show for it, unfortunately. It has two main drawbacks, the first being the minimum focus distance of 1,5 meters which is rather limiting indoors. Mine also had a tendency to hunt while focusing. I wouldn't shoot action with this lens but for just about anything else it's a great lens for the price. I got mine for about $100.
reviewer#14 date: Nov-22-2004
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:Minolta 28-85 f3.5-4.5 & Minolta 28-70 f2.8 G
price paid:
missing
positive:Very versatile
Cheap 2nd hand
Image quality is excellent
Well built
negative:No longer in production
comment:This is the lens that stays on my Dynax 7 whenever I go out for a shoot. I bring this lens with a Minolta 20mm f2.8 to UK about 1 year ago and Every shot is pin sharp.

Being quite cheap, and well built, I don't have any worry of using this lens. Macro switch at 105mm is useful for close focus. I love it and have used it extensively with a extension tubes before I got my Minolta 100mm f2.8 Macro.

Very interesting lens indeed. I don't see any distortion and 35mm is ideal focal length for me.

Great lens and highly recommended... buy one if you see it..

reviews found: 154    << 1 2 3 4 5 6

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 154
  • sharpness: 4.78
  • color: 4.88
  • build: 4.87
  • distortion: 4.58
  • flare control: 4.08
  • overall: 4.64

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