Minolta 24-85mm vs. 35-70mm f/4.0

Discussion in 'Minolta' started by badr, May 1, 2004.

  1. badr

    badr Guest

    I need your opinions to choose between these too lenses:
    Minolta 24-85mm vs. 35-70mm f/4.0

    The range of the 35-70 is ok for me.

    badr, May 1, 2004
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  2. badr

    Lewis Lang Guest

    Subject: Minolta 24-85mm vs. 35-70mm f/4.0
    The 24-85 Minolta, though reputed to be very sharp, also has quite evident
    linear distortion (straight lines curve which is bad if you photograph
    buildings or door jambs or anything with straight lines). I would go with the
    35-70/4 unless you shoot alot of nature where straight lines aren't that
    important to you. The 24-50/4 has minimal distortion for a zoom but does not
    get you out to 70mm. If you so desire you could pick up (despite the overlap in
    focal lengths) a 24-50 zoom or a 24mm/2.8 fixed lens to fill out the wide part
    of the focal length spectrum. Another option would be to get a new or used
    24-105 Maxxum D lens (not sure about its distortion) but in either case it
    would give you about everything you want in focal length too but it would be
    significantly more expensive than the 35-70/4 and possibly even than the
    Lewis Lang, May 1, 2004
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  3. Need a little more range? Get the 28-85. It's also extremely sharp, but
    does not sufer from the distortion of the 24-85. Want smaller? Get the
    24-50 f4.

    Mike Lipphardt, May 3, 2004
  4. Yes, nice lens, notwithstanding the silly little hood. I bought one of those
    with my very first Maxxum (in fact THE very first Maxxum, the 7000). Maybe
    should have kept it. But I replaced it with the 28-105 which I really like a
    lot more.

    I've been keeping an occasional eye out for one of those on eBay for a long
    time. I realize they're making 'em again, restyled, but I'd rather have the
    original model to go with my old 70-210/4.

    Neil Harrington, May 4, 2004
  5. What's wrong with that hood? It makes a great, ummmm. I mean it's good
    for, errrr, ummm....

    Hmmm. Point taken. Oh, yeah, it helps protect the front element against
    bangs. Not much else.

    The 28-105 is a sadly forgotten lens. Despite it's lack of reputation and
    relatively poor showing on Photodo, I have outstanding 11x17s from it, which
    show every hair on the models' head, with great color rendition and
    sharpness. I love it. Just goes to show that Photodo results should be
    taken with a large grain of salt.
    You'll never see mine on eBay, that's for sure! :)

    Mike Lipphardt, May 4, 2004
  6. Actually I have always felt that's another perfectly valid function for a
    lens hood (as opposed to the use of a filter "to protect the lens" which is
    one of my occasional rants), but my recollection is that the 28-85 hood was
    so shallow it wouldn't even do much of that.

    Yes, absolutely. I've been more than satisfied with the sharpness and
    overall performance of mine too. As one manufacturer said decades ago,
    camera lenses are made to take photographs with, not to run tests with.
    Photodo's and others' tests do provide some useful information to be sure,
    but I've become increasingly dubious over the years about lens testing in
    general. Especially misguided IMO are the folks who take such tests so
    seriously that they will say Lens X is "better" than Lens Y because Photodo
    gives X a grade of 4.1 but only 3.9 for Y.

    One problem here I think is that the more seriously such tests are taken by
    users, the more temptation for manufacturers to try to make lenses
    specifically to do well on the benchmark instead of for overall real-world

    Neil Harrington, May 4, 2004
  7. badr

    Lewis Lang Guest

    Subject: Re: Minolta 24-85mm vs. 35-70mm f/4.0
    Hi Mike:

    Which would you say is sharper, the 28-105 Maxxum lens or the current 24-105 D
    Maxxum lens? Which has better bokeh at or near wide open at 28mm/50mm/105mm?
    Lewis Lang, May 4, 2004
  8. badr

    Lewis Lang Guest

    Subject: Re: Minolta 24-85mm vs. 35-70mm f/4.0
    Hi Mike:

    What film and under what type of lighting (flash/tungsten/daylight/etc.) and at
    what aperture/shutter speed did you shoot the shot with the 28-105 Maxxum for
    the 11x17" print and is this an inkjet print or a photographic print?

    Lewis Lang, May 4, 2004
  9. 28mm/50mm/105mm?

    I can't help you with that, since I don't have the 24-105. The Minolta
    Users Group thinks highly of it, putting it's sharpness up there with the
    best of Minoltas' lenses, lik the Gs. It apprantly has little distortion as
    well, unlike the 24-85. But that's all hearsay on my part; I've never felt
    the need to buy one.

    As for bokeh, I don't recall any discussions on it, so I can't help you
    there at all. Sorry.

    Mike Lipphardt, May 5, 2004
  10. The film was Fuji Superia 400, flash was Maxxum 5400HS off camera as key
    with a softbox on the head, with the Maxxum 7 on-camera flash acting as
    trigger and fill. Shots were handheld. Focal length probably about 85mm or
    so, aperture IIRC 5.6.

    Prints are inkjet, form a Canon S9000 at 300dpi on Canon paper.

    The model was my stunning redheaded niece. The shots picked up gorgeous
    highlights in her hair.

    Mike Lipphardt, May 5, 2004
  11. badr

    Phil Guest

    Want smaller? Get the
    I have to agree, my 24-50 F4 and 70-210 F4 never leave my side! The
    70-210 receantly broke while I was in Malaysia, everything jammed up
    and I was desperatly scouring ebay for another! Luckily I found a
    little shop in Kuala Lumpur's China Town that fixed it for me,
    apparently just a screw loose. As I dropped it from the top of a bus
    in January and it worked until now, all I can say is that God for
    metal barrels....great stuff.

    Phil, May 5, 2004
  12. badr

    Lewis Lang Guest

    Subject: Re: Minolta 24-85mm vs. 35-70mm f/4.0
    Actually, this sounds like the description/reputation for the 24-50 not the
    24-105. Are you sure you are describing the 24-105 and not the 24-50?
    That's all right, Mike, muchapprecaited anyways.
    Lewis Lang, May 6, 2004
  13. badr

    Lewis Lang Guest

    Subject: Re: Minolta 24-85mm vs. 35-70mm f/4.0
    How was the grain off of the Superia 400 at the 11x17" print size when viewed
    up close at less than a foot (small, large, noticable, not very noticable,
    even, smooth, hardedged, soft edge - in other words, how would you describe the
    grain at that size?)? Does the grain bring attention to itself and/or in anyway
    conflict with/distract from your eye's attention to the small details of the

    How large was th softbox?

    How far (how many stops/what ratio) under the main off camera 5400HS flash was
    your Maxxum 7 camera's built-in flash?

    Lewis Lang, May 6, 2004
  14. The comparison has been made between the 24-105 and 24-50, with the 24-105
    looking pretty good. Again, this is NOT firsthand information - take it for
    what it's worth, the opinions of several folks on the Minolta Mailing List.
    Your mileage may vary. Warrantee void outside the province of northern
    Elbonia. Use with caution. Do not operate heavy machinery while under the
    influence of these opinions..

    Mike Lipphardt, May 6, 2004
  15. The grain is almost unnoticable. It does not conflict at all with the
    It's the Lumiquest clip on jobbie - maybe 8x10 inches.

    Mike Lipphardt, May 6, 2004
  16. badr

    Bill Tuthill Guest


    Seems to me that if you want a high-quality lens for your Minolta,
    the Tamron 28-75/2.8 Di fits the bill better than the Minolta 24-105.
    The Di got much better SQF scores from Pop Photo, and more important,
    got a photozone.de composite score 4.14 versus 3.28 for the Minolta.

    Of course you lose 24-27 and 76-105 focal ranges, but gain speed.
    Bill Tuthill, May 6, 2004
  17. Personally I'd a lot rather have the extra millimeters at both ends which
    would be very useful to me, than the extra speed which generally would not.
    A 28-75 would too often leave me feeling cramped. If I really need lens
    speed I'll take a fast FFL lens over the fastest zoom they make anyway, but
    in these days of very good fast films it usually doesn't seem to be that

    As for high SQF (or other MTF) scores, they are nice, but does anyone ever
    judge photographs by them? That is, does anyone ever look at a prize-winning
    photo and say, "Wow, what great MTF!"?

    Don't misunderstand me, I think lens tests and reviews are useful up to a
    point. I read 'em with interest. I just think it's a mistake to base lens
    buying decisions almost entirely on published test scores, and especially
    "composite" scores such as those at photozone.de which seem pretty
    meaningless to me.

    Neil Harrington, May 6, 2004
  18. badr

    Lewis Lang Guest

    Subject: Re: Minolta 24-85mm vs. 35-70mm f/4.0
    Thanks for the info, Mike.
    Lewis Lang, May 6, 2004
  19. badr

    Lewis Lang Guest

    Subject: Re: Minolta 24-85mm vs. 35-70mm f/4.0
    Lewis Lang, May 6, 2004
  20. badr

    Lewis Lang Guest

    Subject: Re: Minolta 24-85mm vs. 35-70mm f/4.0
    If it (the Tamron) only were a 24-75/2.8....... :-(
    Lewis Lang, May 6, 2004
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