Home
SearchSearch MemberlistMemberlist RegisterRegister ProfileProfile Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages Log inLog in

Minolta AF lenses recommendation needed
View previous topic :: View next topic  


PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 6:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're drifting towards the dark side of the force, boys ! Laughing


PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Teo wrote:
You're drifting towards the dark side of the force, boys ! Laughing


"drifting" ? more like white water rafting.... Laughing


PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 7:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lloydy wrote:
I'll watch this thread with interest, I have a few Minolta AF lenses but no adapter to the Sony - I fully intend to get one though.

I've picked up with film bodies - 50 / 1.7 the 35-70 / 4 Macro and the legendary AF 500 / 8 mirror lens. The reputation of all three lenses is good, and I wonder if they share the optics with the previous MF versions - the 500 almost certainly does.

Ian has been using some AF Minolta lenses on his Sony DSLR recently, and he's been very keen on them.

I'm wondering whether to get the adapter that has the AF function or the cheaper one? Still undecided. Question


I've got the cheaper one Dave if you want to have a play with it on your A6000. I sold my AF lenses and don't intend getting more any soon. PM your address (again) and I'll post it.


PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2014 6:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Phil, I got it today but haven't tried it out yet. Very Happy


PostPosted: Wed Dec 24, 2014 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks everyone for your recommendations and nice photos.
Teo wrote:
I was also interessed some time ago ,thinking about one of the latest Alpha dslr especially with a 35/1,8
By the way , how is the LA E A 4 adapter ?


My LA-EA4 adapter has just arrived yesterday. It was quite cheap compared to its usual price. I payed for it, new in box, "just" 240$ with free shipping from Hong Kong. The customs officer made me another nice surprise and, considering it's Christmas, didn't charged me any tax - a Christmas gift from him, he said.
Considering that the minimal price of this adapter is here, in Romania, 1600 lei (=437$) I can consider mine a bargain.

My first impression is very positive. The auto-focus is quite rapid and accurate with my 2 Minolta AF lenses - the 50/1.4 prime and the 35-70/4 zoom. From the beginning I realized that the best habit for me is the central spot focusing. The other modes are not so easyly controllable.
The added weight is not so much and its size is acceptable. In fact with this adapter is quite convenient to handle the camera not by its grip but by the adapter and lens. At least for me that is very comfortable.
I can't say how much is the loss in IQ because of the translucent mirror as I don't have an adapter without mirror to make a comparison. But my 2 lenses are quite (to very) sharp in spite of the mirror. So far I'm content with the setup.

Its main draw-back is, for me at least, the fact that I can't control the DOF. It can be a draw-back of the design or, probably, my ignorance. I couldn't find a way to preview the DOF on my NEX-7. Does any of you know how this could be done?


PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 6:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Based on your recommendations and on the dyxum reviews and sample photos I've just acquired today 3 new (to me) old Minolta AF lenses:
- the unanimously recommended 35-105 zoom with macro switch (first generation) for 102.50$ + 25$ shipping, from Japan;
- the "secret handshake" 28-135 zoom for 112 EURO shipped, from Italy;
- the 100-300 APO D zoom locally for a little more than 100 EURO.
All of them were described as "excellent+" or " perfect glass".

Instead of the 28-135 and 35-105 zooms I could get, adding some money to the budget, the 16-80 Zeiss Vario-Sonnar (in an used condition, of course), but I finally preferred the Minolta colors to the Zeiss somehow "aseptic" clarity. I hope I won't regret it.
What is your opinion: was I wrong? Is the Zeiss zoom so much better than the Minolta ones I got?


PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dan_ wrote:

- the "secret handshake" 28-135 zoom for 112 EURO shipped, from Italy;
- the 100-300 APO D zoom locally for a little more than 100 EURO.


there you got some really good deals


dan_ wrote:

Is the Zeiss zoom so much better than the Minolta ones I got?


nope.. the Vario Sonnar 2.8/24-70mm ZA SSM would be better, but this will cost "a bit" more Wink


PostPosted: Mon Jan 12, 2015 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That`s a very good price for the handshake. Some alpha glass has come down in the last year it would have been double that not so long ago, I`ve read it`s sensitive to bumps and bangs though so check it thoroughly.

The 100mm 2.8 macro can be had for under 200 now which is a steal IMO especially as it`s one third of the 100mm f2 price. It`s very difficult to take a bad shot with that lens even in poorer light. I also have the 135mm 2.8 "pocket rocket" and size to performance ratio is superb so much so I can`t bear to let it go since acquiring the CZ 135mm 1.8 ZA a year ago.

I`ve had various copies of the 50mm 1.7 none of them poor. The 35-105mm original is a great walkabout zoom and I have a fungused battered copy of the 24-85mm which is unsellable/unfixable but still takes lovely shots in dirty conditions, something about the colours in this one I prefer to even to the 35-105mm but not sharpness and there is vignetting and distortion at the wide end on FF.

As mentioned the 100-200mm is a very good lens and cheap too but quite specialised in terms of it being the ideal trackside lens but not much else. I`ve shot two charity games at Celtic Park without attracting any attention from two rows back, bigger lenses tend to have stewards asking questions!

I had the cheap Sigma 24mm 2.8 AF for a while which was very sharp but I wasn`t fond of the colour rendition.

The 35mm 1.8 DT SAM is really a "no brainer" at the price, the only APSC lens I genuinely missed when going FF.

I`ve been stalking a 28mm f2 for a while and hope to get one this year coming as they have also reduced in price.


PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2015 4:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Macca wrote:


The 35mm 1.8 DT SAM is really a "no brainer" at the price, the only APSC lens I genuinely missed when going FF.


+1


PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2015 8:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Before buying my 5D i was a happy Sony DSLR user as well, and combined them with "old" Minolta AF mount lenses.

Besides all the earlier mentioned classic Minolta glass i always loved the Sigma 28mm f/1.8 and the Sigma 75-200mm f/2.8-3.5 zoom. These 2 can be found for reasonable money. They're still in my collection, i use them occassionally an a film body.


PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2015 6:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Macca wrote:
The 100mm 2.8 macro can be had for under 200 now which is a steal IMO especially as it`s one third of the 100mm f2 price.


not really one third Wink

Click here to see on Ebay


PostPosted: Sat Jan 17, 2015 12:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks a lot Macca for sharing part of your experience with the Minolta AF and Alpha lenses.
The 100mm/2.8 macro and the 35mm/1.8 DT SAM are on my list now. The 135mm "pocket rocket" looks interesting, too.

You are right TrueLoveOne, Sigma lenses are an alternative to be considered - high quality optics at reasonable prices. I already have the "Art" trio lenses for NEX -19/30/60 mm and I'm very satisfied with them.

The "handshake" has arrived for few days by now. It is in perfect shape but I've been quite ill this week (some flu virus) and couldn't proper test it - just some shots on the window and indoors. Nevertheless, I am REALLY impressed by this lens so far. Very good and usable even wide opened and matching the sharpness of good primes in the 5.6-11 interval at all focal lengths with a very good CA control. Quite impressive for a non-G zoom lens!
But, because of the MFD of 1.5 meters and because of its weight, IMO it is not so well suited as an walk around zoom. I'd say it's more a kind of a landscape/scenery/bigger-objects HQ zoom with limited portrait and close-up capabilities. Nevertheless, an outstanding one - I'm glad I've got it.


PostPosted: Sat Jan 17, 2015 9:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dan_ wrote:
Quite impressive for a non-G zoom lens!


it was priced like a "G" lens.. if you're already impressed, wait for good light and you will be shocked how good it really is. The Minolta AF 2.8/28-70 G looked bad compared with it and that's not a bad lens. Wink


PostPosted: Thu Jan 22, 2015 2:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tedat wrote:
Macca wrote:
The 100mm 2.8 macro can be had for under 200 now which is a steal IMO especially as it`s one third of the 100mm f2 price.


not really one third Wink

Click here to see on Ebay


They`re pretty rare in auction, they`ve been going for between 500-600 gbp lately. I watched that one with interest but was unsure of the condition and the amount of bidders would have put me off! Any cash I have just now is going towards an A7 mark2...


PostPosted: Fri Jan 30, 2015 7:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had a Beercan once and it was quite soft at f/4 beyond 150mm and rather so at 210mm. Still sharpened up considerably one and two stops down. It's funny how I never grew attracted to that long-end-wide-open-softness when the MD 50 1,2 I have as well as the MC 58 1,4 with an rj lens turbo are certainly not sharp wide open either but I just love them and the images they produce.

Had a Mino 100 / 2 and while its AF is as slow and noisy as the Sigma 17-70 original version's, the (thin) metal focus ring is dampened just right and very nice to use. It's also sharp wide open. (I would prefer it to the 100 2,8 macro for portraits and general tele, but since I shoot more bugs I dare say the best photos I've taken so far have been with the 100 2,8 macro)

Before my a77 was lifted I loved the DT 35 1,8. It was the only fast prime that phase AF:ed correctly 99% of the time. Still use it with an LA-EA2 but half the time it misses the mark now and that manual focus feel is ..not optimal. Still, it's a nice focal length for crop and it is sharp in the center wide open: its optics very good.

Had a 200 2,8 HS too and optically it is great, really great. The AF accuracy was so so, kind of like what K Munger says about the 300 4. I have the 300 2,8 and it is..well, at f/4 like the Beercan at 210 at f/8 and the 200 2,8 at 2,8.


PostPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2015 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I bought a used 35-105mm AF zoom many years ago for my 8000i. It's in constant use (imo, better than the earlier beercan). The standard 1.7/50mm. is also greatly under-rated and is available very cheaply . Also have a Sigma 75-300 APO (push/pull), only lens ah've ever bought new (excepting my Zenit EM's kit 44M). It was very expensive, relatively speaking, back then -but again, been in constant use for 30+ years, so certainly have my moneys worth. Cool


PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2015 10:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dan,

Just found this thread and I am curious to know where you ended up so far in building up your Minolta AF lens family.
As I have several Minolta AF lenses I could also eventually help you, if further assistance is needed at all.

Currently on hand (all original Minolta AF):
20mm/2.8, 24mm/2.8, 28mm/2.8, 35mm/2, 50mm/1,4, 50mm/3.5 macro, 85mm/1.4, 80-200mm/2.8 HS-APO and 300mm/4 HS-APO.
Besides that some different but also original Minolta "normal" zoom lenses like the already mentioned ones in this thread. I think 4 different ones. I don't actually use them on a frequent basis. For budgetary reasons the only non-Minolta lens I have in the AF system is the Tamron 90mm/2.8 macro lens as the 100mm original macro lens would have been more than double in price but not double in quality and I have this lens anyway in the MF version which is easily usable also on AF.
However, I am using these lenses mainly on my Sony A850 FF SLR.
My collection of Minolta MF lenses is more extensive as I'm in this system since the 1980's. But those lenses are not really usable on my A850 except where it makes sense to use a MF lens in connection with the good old Minolta M/A-Converter on the AF body (RF Rokkor 500mm/8 or a MF makro lens for instance). For macro purposes also a glass-less adapter from Minolta MF to AF makes sense (for old bellows and lenses). Such an adapter is very cheap available from China and good enough.
But I must say that I don't miss anything so far as I am using this equipment rather on special occasions when I am looking for best quality and not for every day use like my Ricoh GXR and the other smaller cameras (APS-C and MFT). They are far more convenient to carry around, especially in connection with the small RF-lenses from CV or Leica. So far I didn't make my mind up if a move to the A7 family would be worthwhile in favor of the usage of the Minolta MF lenses on FF.

If you don't know it already, this very comprehensive list of all Minolta/Sony AF lenses in existence may be helpful for you as a source of additional information: http://www.mhohner.de/sony-minolta/lenses.php

Regards


PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2015 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well Thomas, till now my Minolta AF lens family only has 5 members :

- 50mm f/1.4 - the only Minolta AF prime I have so far; a very nice and sharp lens beginning with f/2 but a little soft at f/1.4. The AF is fairly good and snappy now on my LA-EA4 but it needed an extensive in-camera AF micro-adjustment. A nice portrait lens on APS-C.
- 28-135 f/4-4.5 "the secret handshake" - very nice and sharp zoom in all its range with lovely colors and fairly nice bokeh, just up to its reputation. It has the most snappy and accurate AF of all my Minolta AF lenses. Although a little heavy it is the one I like to take with me and I love the most.
- 35-105 f/3.5-4.5, the good old macro one - just as good as "the handshake" and, probably, even a hair sharper. It's less heavy and easier to use than "the handshake". Even this zoom has a less extensive range than "the handshake" I'll keep them both.
- 35-70 f/4 "the little beercan" - good and sharp little zoom but not up to the 2 zooms mentioned above. I'll probably sell it.
- 100-300 f/4.5-5.6 APO-D - good zoom but not as sharp in the 100-200 range as my Sony 55-210. I'll probably sell it and look for something else in this range.

- In addition to the LA-EA4 adapter I bought a non-AF, cheaper adapter, as well, just to see how much the translucent mirror of the LA-EA4 affects the IQ. Well, I can't see any noticeable difference in IQ with any lens between the 2 adapters.

My intention now is to add some high quality G lenses to my Minolta AF family of lenses. I'm looking at 85mm f/1.4, 100mm f/2.8 soft focus and 80-200mm f/2.8 G lenses. They are more expensive and getting them will be a more timely process, but I'm not in a hurry.
As I already have the 19mm, 30mm and 60mm f/2.8 Sigma Art lenses and the 18-55 and 55-210 Sony zooms I'm trying to reduce my GAS and only get Minolta AF / Sony Alpha lenses that could mean a noticeable improvement in IQ compared to my existing APS-C E-mount AF setup.
As wide angle lenses I prefer the manual focus ones and, as the LA-EA4 doesn't have a DOF preview, using Minolta AF / Sony Alpha wide lenses on E-mount with LA-EA4 is, IMO, not a very good option. They are more useful with the cheaper, manual focus, adapter but in this case the Zeiss and Leica glass is more appealing to me.
Not easy to resist the GAS, of course Smile

How sharp is the 85/1.4 wide opened and how snappy and effective is its AF? I've recently acquired the Samyang 85/1.4, which is quite sharp wide opened, but having AF on a lens with such a little DOF would be a big plus for me.
How usable (sharp enough for bigger enlargements) is, considering your experience with it, the 80-200 G zoom at F/2.8? I'm asking because the example images I could find on internet were not very conclusive for me.
Thanks in advance, Thomas.


PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2015 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dan, since i gave you my advice, i acquired two extraordinary lenses, the 135F2.8 and the 100mm F2
The 100mm F2 is absolutely amazing, that lens is now always on the camera for portraits.
It will be a cold day in hell before i lose that lens.


PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2015 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

eddieitman wrote:
It will be a cold day in hell before i lose that lens.

Very Happy
Thanks for the hint, Eddie. I'll look for the 100mm f/2. It would be very helpful if you could share some higher resolution sample images taken with it.


PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2015 11:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dan,

Out of the list of your zooms I have only the 35-105. Honestly, I didn't try it out myself. It was on a camera which I've bought. So I use it mainly as a camera cap. However, according to some Minolta forums it is one of the best zooms, rated average 9 out of 10 possible points.

Well the 85/1.4 is considered as one of the best 85mm lenses ever and one of the best Minolta lenses at all. I am very happy with mine. Unfortunately the price is alike. There is no bargain whatsoever. Presently a first generation one is offered for 800 Euros. It seems to be rather unlikely that the prices will come down.

The second lens on your wish list, the 100/2.8 soft focus was never of any interest for me. In the old days people used to take UV-filters and put some "Vaseline" on it to achieve similar effects. Nowadays it's very easy to do that in programs like Photoshop. So I see no need for a soft lens.

The 80-200/2.8 APO G/HS is a heavy beast. For that reason I do not use it very often. However, also this lens is considered to be "state of the art" among all zooms in this range. Minolta was always very famous in this class. That may be the reason why Leitz didn't produce their own but only relabeled the old Minolta one and sold it as Leica lens. Also the "normal" old 70-210/4 is not bad either and may be a reasonable alternative, as the 2.8 APO's will never go for little money. Finally the 80-200/2.8 makes the 100/2.8 somehow unnecessary.

Maybe the 24/2.8 would be a nice addition to your selection. This 24mm lens is considered to be one of the best 24mm lenses ever built and the formula reaches back to the Minolta/Leica cooperation, when Minolta also built this lens for Leitz; i.e. the Leica-R lens was made by Minolta. Interestingly it's not that expensive (from 150 up to 250 Euros presently available).

Also the 16mm lens is legendary. However, I don't have it either because I don't like fish eyes in general. But it's the same story as for the 24mm lens. For the absolute rare occasion, when I would need such a lens, I've simply added the Russion Zenitar 16/2.8 to my collection. It's also able to produce pictures.

Finally it never was and will never be a failure to invest in Minolta prime lenses. They deliver in general excellent quality, besides some cheap zooms which haven't been produced by Minolta anyway but mostly by Tamron. There are really some crap ones around.

Luckily I have additionally a very broad selection of Minolta MF lenses which are all usable on my other cameras and of course FF on Film. Wink

Your questions: I consider the sharpness on either lenses wide open as more than sufficient. I will do some examples for you and post it here if you do not require them instantly....
From the handling point of view I do not remember any drawbacks. But I'll re-check that also specifically when I do the samples.

Cheers


PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2015 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dan_ wrote:

How sharp is the 85/1.4 wide opened and how snappy and effective is its AF? I've recently acquired the Samyang 85/1.4, which is quite sharp wide opened, but having AF on a lens with such a little DOF would be a big plus for me.
How usable (sharp enough for bigger enlargements) is, considering your experience with it, the 80-200 G zoom at F/2.8? I'm asking because the example images I could find on internet were not very conclusive for me.



The 1.4/85G is probably sharp wide open as the Samyang, I like the bokeh and colors from the Minolta much more but this may be just a personal preference. However.. the lens I use a lot more is the mentioned 2/100mm. This one is incredible sharp.. at 2.8 sharper the the AF 2.8/100 Macro wide open.

The 80-200 G is a great lens and very usable wide open (also for large prints), for me it's just to heavy for a small body like NEX or A7 and that's why I prefer the AF 2.8/200 HS G. This prime is as sharp as the 2/100 wide open and just the half of size and weight compared to the zoom. Could be even cheaper, at least mine was. In addition you could get a Minolta AF 4.5/100-200 which is cheap, tiny and a really great performer.


PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2015 10:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks a lot Jan, you've been very helpful.


PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2015 11:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here are a couple of images from the 100mm F2, 1st one F3.2 No flash I think and 2nd one F2.8
taken on A700 not the newest sensor in the world, but you get an idea for what the 100/2 does
Click on the images to show full size, can you count eyelashes





Here are a couple of images from the 100mm F2, 1st one F3.2 No flash I think and 2nd one F2.8
taken on A700 not the newest sensor in the world, but you get an idea for what the 100/2 does


PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2015 7:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A few portraits with the Minolta AF 2.8/200 HS-APO G and A7 + LA-EA4. This combination works really good and pretty fast..







(first one taken at f2.8 and the others at f3.5)