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Old Aug 7, 2011, 3:38 PM   #11
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One thing you might notice is some additional flare.

dSLRs use digital image sensors that are more reflective than film, so something that happens on occasion is that some of the light that passes throught the lens reflects off the image sensor back at the lens, and reflects again off the rear-most lens element back at the image sensor. Newer lenses have coatings on that rear-most element that prevent that kind of flare from occuring.

Something else you will definately notice is that most Sony dSLRs (that is, all except the $2,700 A900) have image sensors that are about 1/3 smaller that 35mm film exposures, and so will have a narrower angle of view. For instance, your 35-105 was a moderate wideangle to a short telephoto lens on your 8000i, but on an A55, it will be a normal to a medium telephoto. That means you won't have any wide angle lenses, so you may need to get the kit lens anyway.
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Old Aug 7, 2011, 4:47 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Seand1 View Post
Is there any negative reason why I should not use my old lenses, eg. will the quality/clarity of picture be compromised as opposed to buying the Sony A55 with the Sony lenses? Will quality, speed, focus, exposure, etc, all be identical with both makes of lenses?
Hey Sean.

You have to take each lens on a case by case basis, regardless of brand.

So, no, they're not going to be identical as far as speed, quality, etc., anymore than two different lenses made by Sony are gong to be identical in those areas. If you want to get down to "brass tacks" when comparing lenses, you'd want to evaluate differences in focal range, focus speed, distortion, vignetting, flare resistance, contrast at various focal lengths and apertures, sharpness at various focal lengths and apertures, color, size, weight, ergonomics and more. :-)

You'll find good and not so good lenses made both Sony and Minolta. Don't go by brand. Instead look at how a specific lens model works, and note that any lens tends to be a compromise in one area or another.

If you want to see some reviews from Konica Minolta and Sony dSLR owners to get some opinions about how those lenses "stack up", try the below links for them over at dyxum.com. You'll see links to photos, reviews and more.

The Minolta 35-105mm f/3.5-4.5 tends to get high marks for sharpness, color, contrast and bokeh, even at wider apertures. But, as TCav already pointed out, you'll probably want something starting out wider for use on a dSLR, as sometimes you can't back up far enough to fit what you want to into the frame; and a lens will appear to be longer on a model like the A55. That's because the sensor size in the Sony A55 is smaller than 35mm film. Multiply the focal length by 1.5x to see how they compare to what focal length you'd use on a 35mm camera for the same angle of view. For example, a 100mm lens on the Sony A55 will give you the same angle of view you'd have using a 150mm lens on your Minolta 8000i (100mm x 1.5 = 150mm).

So, when used on a Sony A55, your Minolta 35-105mm would give you the roughly the same angle of view you'd have using a 53-158mm lens on a 35mm camera. Again, just multiply by 1.5x to see how angle of view compares. Basically, most Sony dSLR models (except for the A850 and A900, which use a sensor the same size as 35mm film) use an APS-C size sensor. The smaller the sensor or film size, the narrower the angle of view (more apparent magnification) for the same focal length lens. That's great if you want to bring distant subjects in closer. But, in some conditions you may want something starting out wider than your 35-105mm (as you may not be able to back up far enough to fit what you want into the frame (for example, group photos indoors in closer quarters). So, I'd get a lens starting out wider to go along with your existing lenses should you decide on a Sony dSLR.

The reason you see most "kit" lenses bundled with dSLRs starting out at 18mm, is because most have APS-C size sensors. So, if you got a Sony A55 with the Sony 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 DT SAM lens, it would give you roughly the same angle of view you'd have using a 27-83mm lens on a 35mm camera.

Again, you'll find lots of user reviews for your lenses by KM and Sony dSLR users if you follow the review links from these pages.

Minolta 35-105mm f/3.5-4.5

Minolta 70-210mm f/3.5-4.5
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