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LensWars: Minolta MC W.Rokkor HH 35mm f/1.8 vs. MC W.Rokkor HG 35mm f/2.8 vs MD 35mm f/1.8

Comparison of lenses Minolta MC W.Rokkor HH 35mm f/1.8, Minolta MC W.Rokkor HG 35mm f/2.8, and Minolta New-MD 35mm f/1.8.

A very important test for me personally, and I think for many other photographers – 35mm focal distance is over-demanded and understanding “who’s the best” can help to make a  correct choice of a lens.

The comparison of Minolta New-MD 35mm f/1.8 and Minolta New-MD 35mm f/2.8 has been already published on the site:


So, let’s go to the next stage – comparison of two 35mm MC II Rokkors and then with MD III 35/1.8 in the role of a base-line.

This comparison is correct only for conditions and equipment used for tests. Test results can differ if any element is changed.

Tested lenses reviews:




MC 35mm F/1.8
MC 35mm F/2.8
MD 35mm F/1.8
Serial: 1513420 4589362 8001096
Optical Condition: Good Good Very Good
Mechanical Condition: Good Good Very good
Cosmetic Condition: Average Average Good

Note: “Average” cosmetic condition just means that lenses have many signs of use but nothing serious, all three looks like used tools with an own history of each.

Long distance – sharpness:

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 cut into 300×200 px elements (100% crops), combined into diagrams and exported into JPEG-files.

  • Sunlight has been changed during the session.

Scene preview:


Test results:

Minolta MC W.Rokkor HH 35mm f/1.8 vs Minolta MC W.Rokkor HG 35mm f/2.8:


Minolta New-MD 35mm f/1.8 vs Minolta MC W.Rokkor HG 35mm f/2.8:


A dedicated MCC3518 vs MD3518 comparison.

I’ve repeated the test of this pair a few times because of importance and here are one of the other tries:



‘What does it mean?’ – my conclusion:

Minolta MC W.Rokkor HG 35mm f/2.8 – can’t fight versus another two monsters. It’s a good lens but can give sharpness over the frame on F8+, it means so – nothing special. Nevertheless, I think that this lens can be used in some cases but sharpness isn’t a reason to acquire it.

Minolta MC W.Rokkor HH 35mm f/1.8 – very close by IQ to the latest MD III reincarnation. The same centers and middles positions and a little loose in corners. Not really bad but still noticeable and continuous up to F2.8+. Nevertheless, I think that this is one of the best lenses in the MC II generation.

Minolta MD 35mm f/1.8 – is the winner in this group and got the second-place among any other Minolta 35mm focal distance lenses.



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