Minolta AF 200mm F2.8 G APO HS A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 81    << 1 2 3 >>
reviewer#7280 date: Apr-12-2010
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:Light compared to a 70-200 zoom
White looks pro
SHARP
great build
negative:none
comment:Buy it.

This is such a good lens. The focus is very fast. There is a mechanical focus limiter so you can set the focus to be between the MFD and 'x', or between 'x' and infinity, where 'x' is any distance you want to set with the silver screw next to the distance window. That's really quite useful. Its also got a focus limiter on the HS variant, not there in the non HS. Theres also a clip down cover for the focus ring. The inbuilt hood doesnt lock in the down position and this gets a lot of mention, but to be honest when the hood is retracted, its not getting used, so that really doesnt matter.

This is the type of lens thats very sharp and very usable from wide open. I use mine with a sony 2x teleconverter and the results are very good from that.

The paint does come off very easily. Since I had mine a big flake of paint came off the side and I'm very careful with it. If you are buying one, dont let paint loss discourage you, it doesnt mean it's been mishandled in any way. Even if you buy one without paint loss I can guarantee that it wont stay that way. It also look kind of retro cool.
reviewer#7083 date: Mar-13-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:Ł730
positive:Sharp
Great colour
Portability
negative:None
comment:Outstanding IQ, with great colour, sharpness and contrast. Portable for a 200mm 2.8. It's just a great, great lens. Can't lock the hood in down position which is a bit odd but who really cares! A great example of just how good some of Minolta's G glass was.
reviewer#6477 date: Nov-27-2009
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Min 70-210 f/4,
Min 80-200 f/2.8 G apo HS
Min 300 f2.8 apo
Min 85mm G
Tamron 180mm macro
price paid:800USD (used)
positive:sharp,
fast,
light,
It is great value for money
negative:the paint peels off
comment:One of the true great lens. My copy looks like it has been dropped many times and still works fantastically. The colours are great. The best lens I have ever owned.

reviewer#6472 date: Nov-27-2009
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Leica R 180 Tele-elmarit 3.4
Canon 300 F 4.0 IS L
price paid:1110 USD
positive:Sharp.
Romantic colors
Excellent size/image ratio
negative:A trivial nit: the lens hood does not lock in unextended position.
AF hunts a little in low light near focus situations.
comment:I switched from Canon 1 DS because of the Zeiss lenses, and because I learned I could remount my Leica R and Contax C/Y Zeiss lenses. I was very pleased with the remounted Leica 180. I then acquired this lens. It is, in my perception, at least equal and probably better than the Leica R, and it has autofocus and is lighter. A real bonus. The images appear to be superior to the Canon 300 F 4.0 IS L, itself no slouch but much bigger. I am curious that Sony has not issued a re-badged version
reviewer#6032 date: Sep-12-2009
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:70-300G
price paid:680 USD
positive:Sharp, sharp, sharp

Pictures just have a special quality

Small and light

Works well with teleconverter
negative:The paint is falling off mine, the lens hood is loose and rattles about when it's in the non extended position.
comment:This is my first G prime and it could be addictive!

The IQ is everything people say about it.

I have been using it with a Kenko Pro 300G 1.4x T/c and cannot decide whether the results beat my 70-300G at 300mm with just a bit of stopping down (f4 reported = 5.6 effective). Sometimes it does, sometimes the 70-300G wins. AF is fine with the 1.4x

I have tried the Kenko Pro 300 DG 2x as well. There is significant softening and it really needs stopping down to f8 (f16 effective) to get acceptable IQ, but in good light it becomes a reasonable 400mm lens. AF is slow with the 2x, and sometimes doesn't get there first time.

The paint is falling off especially on the focus ring cover, but the glass and operation are fine so that should not necessarily be taken as a sign of worn out lens. Mine was cheapish as a result so I am not complaining.

At present with the Kenko 1.4x t/c combo, it is my 'grab it' lens in case anything comes by my living room window.

It's now my favorite lens. Perhaps I should have given it a 4.0 for build, but can't because I can just overlook its shortcomings because of the IQ (and somebody has treated badly for the paint to fall off so much)
reviewer#5992 date: Sep-6-2009
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:cz 24-70, cz 16-35
price paid:euro 800 (used)
positive:very sharp, good vivid color, fast, fast AF (also with 1.4 converter)
negative:manual focus with a lot of play
comment:compared to SSM CZ zooms relatively small, hand held operation up to 1/30 with image stabilization, on the a900 the focus lock on the lens can be reprogrammed to close the aperture to check the depth of field, buildin sunshade is handy but can only be locked in the extracted position (not when retracted). when used with 1.4 converter (old type) fast AF and handholdable. less suitable for manual focus (play between forward/backwards and not very precise)
reviewer#5512 date: Jun-9-2009
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 80-200 f 2,8
Minolta 300 f 2,8_
price paid:800 € (used)
positive:sharp
size (weight & dimensions)
AF speed
negative:hood not locked in idle position
comment:I use this lense with A700 for sport & nature life for 3 months .
Could be used at full aperture with sufficient sharpness .
Very good lens for the optical performances .
Compared to zoom 80-200, the main bonus is the possibility to use teleconverters :With TC x 1,4 and TC x 2 , it is equal to 300 , 420 and 600 mm film size; and can be used at full aperture with TC x 1,4 without loss of sharpness .
Compared to 300 f 2,8 , the main advantage is the weight and size .This lens is very small and ideal for travel.
Robust lens with metal barrel and possibility to do hand focus with smooth focus ring without clearance .
This lens can be highly recommended in despite of his price on the market.I confirm the general opinion that it is one of the best lens made by Minolta .

reviewer#5508 date: Jun-7-2009
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:Ł150.00 S/H
positive:Handling
Image quality
Build quality
negative:Nothing
comment:My favourite lens it's just sublime to use everything about this lens is great I've had now secondhand for three months my best photgraphic buy EVER Ł150.00 There is a little grey button on the side of lens Does anyone know what this if for?
reviewer#5479 date: May-31-2009
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:Minolta 100-400 f/4.5-6.7 APO zoom
price paid:US$1,099 (used, as new)
positive:Light, well balanced, solid build, fast focus, great optics.
negative:Hood does not lock when retracted.
comment:Brilliant lens. Super sharp optics, superb bokeh, very fast to focus, well built, compact, well balanced, pleasure to use. With APSC sensor, effectively 300mm, f/2.8. Great results on my Alpha 700 when used on its own, and also when coupled to the Minolta 2x APO teleconverter II, when it effectively becomes a very reasonably compact 400mm f/5.6 (equivalent 600mm f/5.6) and retains full AF capabiity. One of the best. Highly recommended to all A mount devotees.
reviewer#4869 date: Feb-17-2009
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.9
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:- 35G
- 85G
- 100 macro
- 70-300G
- 70-200G
- bercan
- Minolta 100-300 APO
- 85za, 135za, STF
price paid:1000$ (Like New)
positive:+ Light weight
+ fast focusing
+ useful focus limiter
+ build quality
+ Overall image quality
+ sharpness from wide open
+ Good enouth with original TC14
negative:- Some CA wide open
- Hood cannot be locked when retracted
- Non SSM
- no weather resistant
comment:I think that 200G one of the best Monolta lens ever build. It's better than 35G and 85G. This lens have brilliant sharpness and bokeh from wide open. Light weight, compact, fast AF, all in one. after getting this lens and TC14 i sold beercan and 100-300 APO, such as i don't use them. 200G is true Minolta gem. AF very fast on A700, also fast with TC14. This lens usable on APS-C and FF.
I don't use Minolta G-super tele 300/4, 300/2.8, 400, 600. But only one lens that i want to get in tele is 400G i think it will be perfect combo.

Sold it because on Full Frame cameras 200mm is not very usefull for me and i personally prefer 135za as short tele primes.
reviewer#4796 date: Feb-3-2009
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 70-210/4
Minolta 100-300 APO
Minolta 75-300 II
Minolta 85G
Minolta 50/2.8 macro
Minolta 50/1.7 I
price paid:1000 USD (used)
positive:Outstanding image quality
Outstanding built quality
Low CA
Compact size
Fast AF
Distance limiter
Focus ring protector
negative:Hood does not fix in transport position
comment:Perfet lens, razor sharp even at corners with very good bokeh.
reviewer#4786 date: Feb-1-2009
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:CZ 135 1.8
price paid:Ł550
positive:Lens to perfection
negative:none
comment:I bought this lens used about 3 years ago and still my favourite lens in my collection. I've got the CZ 135/1.8 but there is something with this lens that I really like compared with the CZ, They said the CZ is sharper but over all, I prefer the Minolta 200mm/2.8! If Sony will make this lens again, I will buy it and probably will get 2. If you are serious of investing for a wonderful piece of glass, this is the answer! I remember the first time I tried this lens, i said to myself...Wow, these are sort of pictures I normally see in National Geographic magazines.
reviewer#4780 date: Feb-1-2009
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 100-300 F4
price paid:700 GBP
positive:Sharp and with liquid colors, fast AF, works great with original Minolta TC´s
negative:I Forgot
comment:High resolution in a smal package, even with TC´s gives good results, my favourite lens so far.
reviewer#4777 date: Jan-31-2009
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:- outstanding optical quality
- very sharp, even wide open
- marvellous bokeh
- lightweight
- fast focus
- smooth manual focus control
- limiter & focus hold
- convenient built-in hood
- solid build
negative:- Err...can't think of any weakness
comment:This is one of Minolta's best - if not the best - and among the sharpest 35mm optic ever produced. It is relatively small and light for 200mm, has fast focusing speed and outstanding optical performance. The IQ is simply exceptional at all apertures, colour, contrast and resolution are extremely good, bokeh is very nice and distortion is not visible at all. If you are seriously into the A-mount, then you "need" this lens!
reviewer#4670 date: Jan-11-2009
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:- Sony Carl Zeiss 135mm f/1.8 Sonnar T*
- Minolta 70-210mm f/4 (beercan)
- Sony 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 SSM G
- Minolta 100-300mm f/4.5-5.6 APO
price paid:
missing
positive:- Superb Image Quality
- Superb Built Quality
- Superb AF Speed
- Very sharp wide open
- Amazing Bokeh
- Light & Small
- Build-in Hood
- Ability to pair w/ a Minolta/Sony APO TC
negative:- It's white...
- Hood cannot be locked when retracted.
- Focus ring rotates when AF.
- Only available in 2nd hand market.
comment:This lens is truly a masterpiece produced by Minolta. Side by side all my other glasses are dwarfed by this white baby. What a shame sony doesn't make it anymore!

Image quality is simply *SUPERB* in terms of resolution, color, and bokeh. This piece of work certainly out-resolves my A200's 10MP sensor and its IQ doesn't seem to suffer a bit when shooting wide open. Combining f/2.8 with in-body SSS, you can shoot handheld with this jewel in many less than ideal lighting conditions which f/4.5 or f/5.6 simply can't handle. And thanks to the HS design, AF speed is lightening fast. I probably would have missed catching some wonderful moments, if I took a beercan instead.

All in all, it's near impossible to take bad pictures with a 200/2.8, even with my mediocre skills and an entry level DSLR camera. I can only imagine how wonderfully this lens would work with an A700 or A900.

Built with metal and big chunks of crystal clear APO glasses, 200/2.8 APO HS shows you Minolta's standard for a "G" lens. Yet it only weighs ~800 grams which makes it realistic to shoot handheld all day long. Side by side with its hood fully extended, this lens is slightly shorter than the 70-210mm/f4 (beercan) with hood on.

There are a few minor issues to complain about, after I thought long and hard enough. First it easily attracts attention as a white lens, a black one would be nice and fit better with black camera bodies. Also the hood can only be locked when it's fully extended, but not when retracted. Thirdly the focus ring rotates during AF. But this issue can almost be neglected since Minolta provided a retractable metal cover over the focus ring.

I bought this lens instead of the 70-200mm/f2.8 SSM or 80-200mm/f2.8 G APO HS simply because the prime is lighter, cheaper, and provides (arguably) better IQ. If I own one of the two zooms mentioned above, I'd be using the 200mm end mostly anyways. 200/2.8 turns out to serve me really well, don't think I'll ever sell it...

A side note: IMHO the white paint doesn't come off that easily. The ones with paints peeling off may be abused or heavily used, so try to find a clean copy if you are looking to buy one of these.

2009-05-31, Edit: Now that I have tried this lens combined with a 1.4x Minolta APO Tele Converter (Original Version) on both A200 and A700, I can testify that w/ TC there's no visible IQ degradation even wide open; I haven't detected any focus hunting either, and thanks to 1:1 gearing of the Original Minolta 1.4x TC, AF speed is NOT slowed down a bit. It is a light yet potent combo that gives you a choice between 200mm/f2.8 and 280mm/f4. Highly recommended! This lens certainly outresolves A700's 12MP censor IMHO.

2011-01-04, Edit: This baby shines even more on my A850. IMO it is more versatile on an FF dSLR (where 200mm isn't a very long FL), whereas on APS-C (200*1.5 = 300mm) you really need quite a bit more space to use this lens.
reviewer#4638 date: Jan-7-2009
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:70-210 4.0
70-210 2.8
price paid:350 CAD
positive:Sharp pictures
nice bokeh
negative:
missing
comment:
missing
reviewer#4544 date: Dec-14-2008
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:Minolta AF 135mm 2.8
Beercan
Minolta AF 100mm 2
price paid:Ł650
positive:Tripod not necessary
Fast AF
Great limiter & focus hold
A1 colours, contrast from wide open
Sharp at all all aperturess
negative:Tiny amount of CA f/2.8-4
comment:IQ comparable to 100/2.
Only fly in the ointment is a bit of CA in very high contrast areas gone by f/4. I marked down sharpness half a point because of this.
But IQ is jawdropping regardless.
EDIT:
**The lens has just had the first thorough cleaning in its life and much of the original sharpness has been restored, much less CA after cleaning the elements, so Sharpness score upped from 4.5 to 5, equivalent to 50/3.5 or 100/2 lenses.**
This lens is a very practical proposition compared to 2.8 zooms - light, superfast, accurate, easy to handle. Yes, it loses white paint but so what?
It is very neatly designed and well built and the look, complete with High Speed graphics is very Star Wars. I love this lens, it is now a permanent part of my 35 / 100 / 200 fast prime trio.
Highly recommended and excellent value for money!
reviewer#3909 date: Jul-31-2008
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 80-200/2.8
sony 50.4
cz 16-80
beercan
price paid:$1035
positive:sharp sharp sharp
fast AF
negative:hood spins around when it's not locked into extended position
comment:whatelse can I say more about this awesome lens.. It's almost perfect lens.
Works really well even with APO II 2X teleconverter when stopped down to f/8.
sharp corner to corner and really easy to hand hold.
buy it when you see one!
reviewer#3869 date: Jul-20-2008
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:Sigma 100 - 300 F4 EX DG
Minolta 135 2.8
Minolta 85 1.4 G RS
price paid:600 € used
positive:sharp
small
light
bokeh
very fast AF
accurate AF
prefect travel tele
IF constant length
negative:AF limiter requires practice
comment:The auto focus of this lens is fast.
If you use the focus limiter the AF speed is extremely fast when used on a A700 or A900.
At the same aperture, resolution is the same as for the Sigma 100 - 300 at 200 mm.
F2.8 is sharp but there is a difference to F4
Bokeh is better than Sigma 100 - 300

reviewer#3736 date: Jun-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:
missing
price paid:$1099.00
positive: Razor Razor Sharp
beautiful bokeh
small and lightweight
crop=300/2.8 !!
negative:none
comment:This lens is truly in a class by itself. Razor sharp sharp sharp. Even wide open. Beautiful bokeh. And in such a beautiful little package !!
The crop factor turns this lens into a lightwight 300/2.8 which is so easy to use. Super fast autofocus on my a700.

This is my go to lens when I want killer razor sharp images.
Images from this lens stand out and are distinctive b/c they are so sharp and crisp. This was the one lens I had to have and I paid more for it used than what it sold for new !! But this lens is as close to optical perfection as you can buy and it is worth every penny.

I use it for wildlife/nature/pet photography and you can count the subject's eyelashes...be thankful you shoot A-mount to have the opportunity to use this optical perfection gem.

I also read where a respected German magazine rated this lens as one of the 10 best lenses ever made.
reviewer#3676 date: Jun-5-2008
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:70-210 f/4
75-300 f/4.5-5.6 "BB"
price paid:1350$ (new-)
positive:Build quality
Picture quality
Weight
negative:Paint...
comment:Wow. Wow. Wow.
Three repeating words that lead to my total score for this gem. 5.0
The only thing to criticize if you want to criticize: The paint on the outer lens is falling of the lens with no influence... Why did they save money on the pint? Right, they put the effort in the lens - that's what's amaizing me every time when I look at these pictures. A 100% recommend if you can get one - prices rise every month... get one if you can!
reviewer#3623 date: May-24-2008
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 100-300 f4
Beercan
Big Beercan
Old Minolta 50 macro, f1.4
price paid:60,000 yen/600$
positive:sharper than a critic's tongue...lightweight...AFs like a lazer beam on my a100...Shexy shexy white finish
negative:hard to find, most often expensive when you do find it, generates question: how hard can I depend on a lens that's over 20 years ol'
comment:The only word that comes to me when i look at the shots that I get from this lens is "REMARKABLE!"

I got it here in Japan at a "Furomono-ya", second hand store for 600$, with the full intention of selling it for a profit. But when i took it out to shoot and make sure it was in working order, I was just so amazed by the way it delivered, that I gave up any idea of selling it.

It AFs(at any f stop)(in any light) on my A100, which is a rare thing

The detail is incredible and far surpasses any of the other lenses listed as comparators...Sometimes i think the beercans, especially the big beercan comes close, but then I put the white lens on, shoot, and there is just no way, the cans can come even close to: over-all ease of use, sharpness, and over-all IQ of this ol', "why the paints done rubbed off, and its gottern all pale", white lens.

BUY IT if you need IQ...I would have given it all 5s, BUTT....and its a big BUTT... 5 to me means perfect, and even the lenses I got from the creator ain't poifect!
reviewer#3376 date: Mar-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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 90mm Macro
Minolta 70-210/4

price paid:
missing
positive:Very Sharp
Small and Light
negative:Integrated Hood
Loses Paint Easily
comment:This lens is a gem - It served as my primary lens for a trip to Africa and its combination of light weight plus the 300/2.8 equivalent focal length made for some great shots. This is a lens you can use wide open without any worries about sharpness although when matched with the 2.0x APO TC you need to stop down from f/5.6 to f/8. Focus is decent with the a100 but very fast with the a700 and it is with the a700 that the lens really shines. Highly recommended.
reviewer#3246 date: Feb-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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:425GBP (with case)
positive:+sharp
+small
+light
+compact
+fast af
+accurate af
+beautiful optics; bokeh, contrast, colour - all flawless
negative:-makes your other lenses look poor in comparison
-with a TC you maybe could do with a collar to make it balanced/secure
-relatively expensive i guess, but worth every penny
-af limiter can be tricky to use quickly
-its white, it stands out, when often you dont want to
comment:Tremendous. My first G lens; beyond my expectations, simply outstanding. I only with my skills could bring the best out of ths lens, maybe they will one day...

If you find one at a good price, dont let it go.

Its just everything I ever wanted in a lens; fast aperture, fast focus, plenty of reach, small and light. Perfect package... pocket rocket! Not a lens to be underestimated, its razor sharp wide open.
reviewer#3205 date: Jan-24-2008
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:KM 300 F4 HS APO G
Sony 500 F8 Reflex
Sony 70-200 SSM G
price paid:880€ used
positive:Size,size,size
negative:
missing
comment:Small lens but big performer
It's very handy with 1.5x and2x tc
reviewer#2975 date: Nov-26-2007
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:Beercan
Big Beercan
Min 300/4 G HS
Tokina 80-200/2.8 Pro
price paid:1100 USD (used)
positive:Fast AF
Sharp
Colour
Bokeh
negative:
missing
comment:Fast and accurate AF on both the 5D and the A100. Feels nicely balanced in the hand. Pin point sharpness allows for some aggressive cropping, especially on the A100. Colours are warm and vibrant. Beautiful soft bokeh. In all a lens that's earned the praise that it has garnered.
reviewer#2896 date: Oct-31-2007
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:100-300/4.5-5.6
price paid:725 € used
positive:Sharp!! Compact for a G telelens; Use with TC; Fast focus; 2.8! Bokeh; Can be used handheld, no need to drag tripod along
negative:Clumsy focus limiter
comment:Always wanted a G lens, but not willing to carry a large one while backpacking. With the 1.4xTC this is the only ~300 mm G lens that fits my Lowepro backpack. Maybe I will try to get a 2xTC as well. Another advantage is also that you do not attract so much attention as with a really large G lens (looks too professional and in some places is even unsafe).
What also kept me from buying the G-lens was the price, but with the internet possibilities of today I could find a used one. “Fortunately” my 100-300 failed so I now had the justification to buy the G! And indeed it performs magnificently.
reviewer#2383 date: May-28-2007
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 70-210 f4
Sony 75-300 f4.5-5.6
price paid:1050 USD (used)
positive:Wonderful color and sharpness
Beautiful Bokeh
Image quality, quality, quality
Fast Focus
negative:



Lens hood could be longer


comment:This lens is easy to use hand held. It is capable of producing images of stunning quality. There is a luminescent quality to the image. I also use it with a Minolta APO 2X teleconverter--does hunt a bit with this teleconverter but still produces beautiful image quality. I don't carry it with me all the time because of size.
reviewer#2306 date: May-12-2007
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 100-300 APO (D)
Minolta 80-200 APO f/2.8
Minolta 300 f/4 APO HS
price paid:
missing
positive:Stunning wide open.
Relatively small & lightweight.
negative:Imagine this lens with SSM !
comment:'Simply the best' to quote Tina Turner
Wide open at 2.8 nothing can match it and still out on its own up to f4.
reviewer#2305 date: May-12-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 3
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:* Minolta 300mm f/4 APO G HS
* Sigma 400mm f/5.6 APO
* Minolta 80-200mm f/2.8 APO HS
* Sony 70-200mm SSM
* Minolta 70-210mm f/4 Beercan
* Minolta 100mm f/2
* Minolta 100mm f/2.8 macro
* Minolta 135 f/2.8
price paid:750 Euro
positive:* Colour
* Sharpness
* Contrast
* Size (handheld)
* AF speed
negative:* Flare
* Paint coming of very easily
comment:Is the best lens I have for daily work. PP is hardly neccessery. I think it's awsome!
And with the 10MP of the A100, you can crop like forever! (update, same for the A700 and A850)

I dont miss the tripod mount at all! You just don't need it. I use the body tripodmount. But handheld is also very, very useable

Build is great, but the paint is coming of even when you look at it!!!!

I gave it a 4 for flare (can't give a 4,5 anymore...). It's the only negative thing I noticed... (Huh? Am I the only one? Hood is realy to short! The hood looks bigger than it is, but doesn't come all the way up to front. No dots, or rings on the photo but a sudden lack of contrast when the sun hits the front element)

But above all, this is really, really, really(!) a must have lens for every Minoltian!!

I think it's the best lens around. Update: Just to be shure... I bought a spare...non HS... I can't without this lens. I had to have a spare... before it's too late...
reviews found: 81    << 1 2 3 >>

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 81
  • sharpness: 4.96
  • color: 4.98
  • build: 4.80
  • distortion: 4.95
  • flare control: 4.88
  • overall: 4.91

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