Outlandish lensesMinolta MD W.ROKKOR 35mm f/1.8

Minolta MD W.ROKKOR 35mm f/1.8 lens mounted on a Sony A7II camera with a K&F Concept adapterHere you can see the Minolta MD W.ROKKOR 35mm f/1.8 lens mounted on a Sony A7II camera with a K&F Concept adapter.

Minolta was one of the 'Big 5' Japanese companies that dominated the film camera world from the 1960s to the 2000s as German rangefinder cameras fell out of favour to be replaced Japanese SLRs. And as one of the Big 5, Minolta made a huge range of lenses for their 'SR' lens mount, including some unique designs. Their 'MD' series of lenses, made from 1977 to 2001, was the last series of lenses with the 'SR' mount and had some particularly interesting designs.

This MD 35mm f/1.8 you can see here is very compact compact be today's standards... it weighs a mere 233 grams and takes compact 49mm filters. As soon as I bought this lens it immediately became a firm favourite you'll find this lens sitting on my Sony A7II more often than any other. It is a fairly rare lens and not particularly cheap (I paid £180 for my copy), but for me the results make it fantastic value for money and well worth looking out for.

I always say that if you're buying a classic manual focus lens in the hope of getting a bargain basement way of beating a modern lens in the sharpness stakes you going to be sorely disappointed. Instead you should be buying a classic lens to get a unique way of rendering a scene that is quite different to the the sharp, but somewhat clinical, rendering a modern lens will typically give you. But this is one of those cases where your getting the best of all worlds: this lens is both beautifully sharp, and, particularly when it come to the bokeh (or out-of-focus parts of the images) quite unique. This is especially so when it comes to close focus images (see the flower photographs below).

Would I recommend this lens as a practical day-to-day alternative a modern autofocus 35mm f/1.8 lens? If you're happy with manual focus... yeah... I think (unusually) I would!

Examples

Minolta MD W.ROKKOR 35mm f/1.8 gallery - Image 1 Minolta MD W.ROKKOR 35mm f/1.8 gallery - Image 2 Minolta MD W.ROKKOR 35mm f/1.8 gallery - Image 3 Minolta MD W.ROKKOR 35mm f/1.8 gallery - Image 4
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