Minolta 18-70 digital lens

Discussion in 'Minolta' started by Jasen, Oct 9, 2005.

  1. Jasen

    Jasen Guest

    Just after other opinions to get a balanced view on the new-ish minolta
    digital 18-70mm lens that comes with the 5D (I am buying the 7D this week).
    Apparently it is a little on the soft side. Does anyone have any comments
    on this and why it may not be a great idea to get it or is it really not too
    much of a big deal? Other lens options are outside of my budget for the
    time being as they would probably be twice the price of $AU 169 that I was
    quoted by Photocontinental.
    cheers
    Jasen
     
    Jasen, Oct 9, 2005
    #1
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  2. Jasen

    NikonF4 Guest


    I can get you a very nice second hand Tokina 19-35 f3.5~4.5. Nothing
    soft about that lens. $200 plus COD to anywhere in Auztralia you want.
     
    NikonF4, Oct 9, 2005
    #2
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  3. Jasen

    Jasen Guest

    no thanks, I need a wider range zoom, but yes, it is sharp from what I've
    heard.
     
    Jasen, Oct 9, 2005
    #3
  4. Jasen

    Rich Guest

    Tamron 18-200? A little slow, but good value.
    -Rich
     
    Rich, Oct 9, 2005
    #4
  5. Jasen

    info Guest

    I bought the 5d a couple of weeks ago and it came with a 18-70
    "digital" lens. In my experience, it's a bit soft ideed. Apart from
    that I think it's fine. I bought a 50 mm F1.7 and that's perfectly
    sharp, and so is my old 70-210 F4. Maybe an older Minolta zoom lens
    would be an idea?
     
    info, Oct 9, 2005
    #5
  6. Jasen

    Rich Guest

    Does Minolta only make economy-grade digital lenses or do they have
    a better series?
    -Rich
     
    Rich, Oct 10, 2005
    #6
  7. Jasen

    info Guest

    Konica Minolta only made 3 "digital" lenses so far: the 18-35, the
    18-70 and the 18-200. The new 18-35 is not an economy-grade lens, I
    think. A new digital 35 mm lens is coming.

    Another option is the Sigma digital line. I have read that the Sigma
    18-125 is a good walk around lens, a bit better than their 18-200.

    I'm not going to buy any of those. I think the digital lens thing is a
    marketing trick. I tried a lot of lenses on my 5d and I didn't see any
    specific advantage in the 18-70 digital one. Good "normal" lenses give
    much better results than cheap "digital" ones. Until now, I never
    noticed any of the problems that the digital lenses are supposed to
    "solve".

    Besides, in 5 years from now my 5d body will be outdated; sooner or
    later I will buy a new digital body. I read somewhere that Konica
    Minolta is going to work together with Sony on new dslr's. Sony is
    going to make the CCD's and the cameras will have a Minolta mount. So,
    my next dslr will probably have a CCD with the size of a 35 mm film.
    This generation digital lenses only works with the smaller CCD which
    is in the 5d and the 7d, so when I would buy the new body I would have
    to start all over if I would have those lenses. I rather invest in
    lenses that I can use in my next camera as well, especially if they
    are better lenses in the first place.

    So I bought the Minolta 24-105 a few days ago (second hand), and I'm
    very happy now. I tried the 24-85 as well but that one was not much
    better than the digital 17-70.
     
    info, Oct 11, 2005
    #7
  8. Jasen

    Jasen Guest

    Sounds like a fair reasoning. I have decided not to buy the digital lens
    and get something that I can use on both my film and the digital at the wide
    angle end. I might have to spend bigger than I thought though. Oh well.
    That's what overtime is for?
     
    Jasen, Oct 11, 2005
    #8
  9. Jasen

    info Guest

    Good choice. I'm also keeping my old Minolta 7000 and now I can use
    all the lenses on both cameras. Once you have something to start with,
    you can also look for second hand lenses, in stores and on ebay. Good
    luck!
     
    info, Oct 11, 2005
    #9
  10. Jasen

    Jasen Guest

    I also think, and have heard somewhere too, that landscapes look a bit
    better from film at the wide end anyway compared with current consumer
    digital SLRs' at around 6 to 8MP, but I am willing to give it a try anyway.
    I have a basic fixed 24mm sigma wide angle lens (crap at the edges mind you
    at f2.8) that will do for now to try out on the 7D (which I get
    tomorrow....damn excited!). Got a nice 1 GB Kingston Pro 66x CF card coming
    to me also from an Ebay auction for 83 bucks Aussie, not a bad buy. They
    will get cheaper too....will probably have to go a 2GB if I go nuts with the
    pics........tell me, do I sound obsessed!!!?
    cheers
    Jasen
     
    Jasen, Oct 11, 2005
    #10
  11. What's a 7D ?
     
    David Springthorpe, Oct 12, 2005
    #11
  12. Jasen

    Jasen Guest

    konica minolta 7D digital SLR.
     
    Jasen, Oct 12, 2005
    #12
  13. Jasen

    info Guest

    Yes, I think the wide end presents a bit of a problem with this
    generation of dslr's... as you know, a 24 mm will work as a 36 mm on
    the 7d. The good news is that it will simply cropp away the edges at
    which your Sigma is at it's worst :)

    I have read somewhere that one possible solution is to buy a fish eye
    extreme wide angle lens (I think Minolta makes a good one) and
    "de-fish" it with Photoshop or another program that provides that kind
    of functionality. He added some examples and they looked quite
    convincing. Minolta's 20 mm is also good but it's expensive.
    You do, with good reason :) I'm still pretty much exited with my 5d
    and I have to stop myself from running around and buying lenses and
    memory cards like crazy.

    With my 1 gb card I can take eightysomething pictures when I shoot in
    RAW and JPG at the same time (which I think is most convenient).
    That's not so much, especially when I would go on holiday. I hope the
    4 gb cards will become affordable soon. Or I would have to take some
    kind of storage device...
     
    info, Oct 12, 2005
    #13
  14. Jasen

    Jasen Guest

    Yes, I am obsessed, aren't I! Was up 'til midnight testing out the damn
    thing, and found out my old 5200i flash isn't fully compatible.....the store
    assistant told me it was ok. It does flash but it grossly over exposes a
    1/1 power level, so have to change the power levels to suit the distance and
    ISO setting. Might have to find a cheap second hand 5600HS(D) to replace it
    down the line when I get fed up with getting it wrong all the
    time....luckily I can check the exposure is ok immediately afterwards on the
    screen. The 5600 is $500 or so, new.

    Couldn't wait for my 1gig card to arrive so I went out and bought a cheap
    nasty 512mb card to suffice while I wait. Help me!!

    My lenses do very well on it. Even the junky Sigma 24mm. I tried out my
    400mm Tokina fixed lens with anti-shake on and no tripod......VERY
    impressed. Not 100% sharp, but the image in the viewfinder was jumping
    about that severely that I was not surprised in the least that there was a
    hint of softness about the image. Incredible stuff at effectively 600mm in
    low light too. Shutter speed was only about 1/125th sec.

    I've tried shooting raw but not sure how you get it converted yet. Have to
    load up Dimage viewer but I've so many image manipulation programs that it
    would just add to the list. Tried to open a file in Photoshop CS but it
    didn't like it even though it seems to have it as the file type in the list
    that can be opened....I'll figure it out later unless anyone has any clues.

    Oh well, back to the learning curve........now, where's that beautiful
    camera!

    Jasen
     
    Jasen, Oct 13, 2005
    #14
  15. Jasen

    info Guest

    Some thoughts:

    I would be surprised if you didn't get any software with the camera
    that can read and convert 7d raw files...

    I read somewhere that the jpg's converted by Dimage Viewer are
    generally not as good as the ones produced by the camera itself. Maybe
    that's why they don't ship it with the 5d and provide it with Dimage
    Master Light instead.

    Doesn't Photoshop have a plugin yet for the 7d?

    RawShooter by www.pixmantec.com can convert 7d raw images. It's free
    (after you register) and I think it's a good program.

    My camera came with Dimage Master Light, that does the job well enough
    although the program itself isn't great. Usually I convert it to TIFF
    and continue working in PSP. I don't know if DML can read 7d raw
    images.

    There is a plugin for IrfanView so I can also convert raw to jpg with
    IrfanView now. However, the colors of the jpg's it produced are
    completely different from the jpg's I shot simultaneously with the
    camera. It's very greyish and I don't like it.
     
    info, Oct 13, 2005
    #15
  16. Jasen

    Jasen Guest

    Sorry, forgot to do a follow-up post. Worked it all out. I needed the new
    version of the camera raw plug-in for photoshop that included my camera.
    Dimage viewer is a bit crappy and PS works so much better. You'd think for
    the amount of dough you shell out for this that they'd simply give Dimage
    Master to you. One thing I have noticed though is, in Photoshop, when I go
    to save the RAW image as something else, I only get a few choices (about 5
    or 6 formats including TIFF), jpeg format among others isn't one of them.
    Any ideas why? When I work with the TIFF file, a lot of the effects are
    blanked out, I seem to only get functions like sharpen and a handful of
    others.....why? No doubt I'll work it out, but it does baffle me now.
    Jasen
     
    Jasen, Oct 13, 2005
    #16
  17. Jasen

    Jasen Guest

    It's because JPEG's are only 8 bits per channel, not 16. That's why!
    .......see I'm smart mum!
    So I just select the 8 bpc mode and all is just dandy!
    Mate, the things you have to learn when changing to digital photography!!!
    sheeez!

    Jasen
     
    Jasen, Oct 13, 2005
    #17
  18. Another solution is to shoot multiple shots and stitch them. For many
    landscapes, things are static enough for this to be a good solution.
    For more active subjects, not so useful! But when it works, it solves
    the angle of view *and* the resolution issues simultaneously, which is
    elegant.
     
    David Dyer-Bennet, Oct 13, 2005
    #18
  19. Jasen

    Jasen Guest

    I will have to try that in Photoshop, or what other software can you use?
    Is it possible to do that manually by layers?
     
    Jasen, Oct 15, 2005
    #19
  20. Jasen

    Mike Warren Guest

    Try Autostitch. It's free, easy to use and quite good for
    somthing totally automatic.

    http://www.cs.ubc.ca/~mbrown/autostitch/autostitch.html

    -Mike
     
    Mike Warren, Oct 15, 2005
    #20
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