LensWars: Minolta MD Zoom 24-50mm f/4.0 vs. MD 24mm f/2.8, MD 28mm f/2.8 (5×5), MD 35mm f/2.8, MD 50mm f/1.4
In most of cases a top rated fixed focal lenses are better than zooms, but it isn’t always true, and here is the one of exclusions.
Tested lenses reviews:
Test description: Camera Sony A7II (24mpx, full frame) was fixed on the tripod and managed remotely with computer display as a viewfinder. Targets (buildings) were fixed by gravity power on the distances in more than 200 meters. All shots were made with apertures from fully opened and up to F16. ISO-100. Shutter Speed – depends on light (camera A-mode). SteadyShot – OFF. Focus was manually corrected for each shot to exclude focus-shift.
Finally, pictures were converted from ARW-files in Capture One with default settings (Some single files have a slight light correction, for better visual convenience in comparison), then cropped for 300×200 px elements, combined into diagrams and exported into JPEG-files
- Sunlight has been changed during the session.
- I am just a man, I do not pretend that in all cases my focus settings were absolutely accurate. But I aspired to it.
Focal distance 24mm
When I received the first test results at 24mm I did not believe my eyes. I had to re-do the test again. And the result remained the same as it was.
As proof of the correctness of the tests, I demonstrate both results, they are made with a difference of more than a month. Strangely enough, but the most famous and popular MD 24 / 2.8 loses.
24mm attempt #1
#1 Scene preview (24mm):
#1 Test results (24mm):
24mm attempt #2
#2 Scene preview (24mm):
#2 Test results (24mm):
Focal distance 28mm
Scene preview (28mm):
Test results (28mm):
Focal distance 35mm
Scene preview (35mm):
Test results (35mm):
Focal distance 50mm
Scene preview (50mm):
Test results (50mm):
Firstly, this MD 24-50/4 has really convenient diapason. Secondary – it’s better than MD 24/2.8. And thirdly – zoom is cheaper than set of four primes. On the other hand zoom isn’t so good at 28-35-50mm. Very subjective choice. One point I see – if photographer mostly prefer the 24mm angle view, then it may be better to get MD 24-50/4, because diapason from 25 to 50 mm would be something like a free bonus. Additionally , the sharpness of Zoom on 25-50mm is still really appropriate even for landscapes. So, we see the one another gem of Minolta, and what about me – this lens can compete in fighting for the “Travel King Lens” award.