Photos By Meta Reviews The Best Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses For Sony Digital Cameras For Beginners

The Best Vintage Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses For Beginners

Inexpensive Digital Camera Lenses – It doesn’t have to cost a fortune when it comes to purchasing Multiple Camera Lenses! Many Digital Photographers don’t know that you can use Inexpensive or Cheap Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses on all Sony Digital Cameras, both Sony A-Mount Digital Cameras and Sony E-Mount Digital Cameras (with E-Mount Adapter).

Vintage Minolta Lenses – All “Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses”, “Minolta AF Lenses”, “Minolta Dyxum Lenses” and “Minolta Alpha Lenses” will work on today’s Sony Digital Cameras, including the Full Frame Sony a99 II Digital Camera. Auto Focusing is performed by a Motor Driven Shaft, which is still present in all Sony A-Mount Cameras and Adapter.

Where To Buy The Best Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses

Vintage Minolta Camera Items For Sale

Vintage Minolta Lens Caps For Sale
Vintage 1985 Minolta Lens Caps For Sale

Vintage 1985 Minolta Lens Caps For Sale – Three Sizes Now Available

Lens Caps are often lost or misplaced. Carry a spare! These Vintage Minolta Lens Caps are used, but in Very Good, Clean Condition. Normal Wear and Tear for 1985 Lens Caps. No Ugly Sticker Marks. Packed in a 3”x3” Zip Lock Bag. Price Includes Free U.S. Shipping.
These are the Original 1985 Minolta AF Lens Caps, with 2 string hooks on either side.
ø49mm Minolta Lens Cap LF-1049 Japan: $19.00 (Only 2 Left)
ø55mm Minolta Lens Cap LF-1055 Japan: $21.00 (Only 10 Left)
ø72mm Minolta Lens Cap LF-1072 Japan: $25.00 (Last 1 Left – Rare Lens Cap)

Only PayPal or U.S. Postal Money Order Accepted. Vintage Minolta Lens Caps Ship U.S.P.S. Priority Mail from Western North Carolina.

Contact Meta to Make a Payment or to Check Availability

The Best Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses – The 1985 Heavy Metal Lenses

Vintage Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses
Meta’s Collection of 1985 Heavy Metal Body Vintage Minolta AF Maxxum Lenses
Left to Right: 35–70mm, 24–50mm, 35–105mm, 100–200mm, Secret Handshake Lens, Beer Can Lens, Big Beer Can Lens and 50mm Prime on Sony a77 II Digital Camera.

Vintage Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses

Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses – Between 1985 and 2006 (before Sony Bought Minolta’s Camera Division), 17 million Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses were manufactured in Japan by Minolta Company Limited, making Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses easy to find in “Mint” or “Like New” Condition, and at affordable prices on amazon.com. Many of these Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses were originally sold with Vintage Minolta Maxxum Film Cameras, such as the Minolta Maxxum 9000 Film Camera (Photo: Left). As you can see, the A-Mount Lens Mounts on the Minolta Film Camera (Photo: Left) and the Sony a77 II Digital Camera (Photo: Below) are identical!

For Close-Up Photography and Macro Photography, many of the Minolta Maxxum AF Zoom Lenses have a Macro Switch or a Macro Mode. The Macro Switch puts the Minolta AF Lens into Macro Mode (Auto Focusing is Disabled by Design).

1985 Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses

1985 Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses – Meta purchased her entire collection of 10 “Mint” and “Like New” 1985 Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses, for about $679 or about the cost of one Brand New Sony Lens! All of her Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses have Minolta Front and Rear Lens Caps, plus the Stock Minolta Lens Hoods!

Many of Meta’s Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses were purchased still attached to Vintage Minolta Film Cameras (which were tossed). This is the best way to buy them cheaply, because the online seller is more focused on their $10 Minolta Film Camera and not on the valuable Vintage Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses that are often attached or bundled.

Meta took this photo of a Red-Tailed Hawk with a Minolta AF Zoom 70–210mm f/4.0 Lens mounted on her Sony a77 II Digital Camera. Not Bad for a 1985 Film Camera Zoom Lens!

Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses have odd number Blade Apertures, which create beautiful sun burst effects. Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses contain a ROM (Read-Only-Memory) Chip that stores data about each lens. This data is used by the Digital Camera to provide access Lens Meta Data, auto focus and automatic exposure. Most Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses use either ø49mm or ø55mm Filters. Only one Minolta AF Lens (The Secret Handshake Lens) uses a ø72mm Filter.

Meta avoids the XI Power Zoom Lenses, which don’t Auto Focus on the Sony Alpha Digital Cameras.

Sony Lens Adapters for Sony E-Mount Cameras

Sony LA-EA4 A-Mount Adapter (Photo: Top Left) is required to mount Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses to Sony E-Mount Digital Cameras. Sony A-Mount Digital Cameras, such as the Sony a65, Sony a68, Sony a77, Sony a77 II, Sony a99 and Sony a99 II, require no adapter!

For Each 1985 Minolta Lens listed below, Meta has included the Minimum Focus Distance (MFD) for each lens (Standard and Macro Mode), which is the distance from the Subject to the Focal Plane Mark Φ on the back of your Sony Digital Camera, and not from the Subject to the Front of the Lens. This information helps for Macro Photography Focusing and Close-up Digital Photography Focusing.

The Famous Minolta Beer Can Lenses
The Two Famous Minolta AF Beer Can Lenses

The Best Minolta Lenses For Sony Digital Cameras

Which Vintage Minolta AF Lenses To Buy – In the early 1990’s, Minolta started producing less expensive lenses, made of cheaper plastic bodies, which were much shorter and lighter. These plastic body lenses can be identified by the wide and smooth silicon focusing ring with large oval indents. The build quality of the 1990’s Plastic Body Lenses wasn’t nearly as good as the Original 1985 Heavy Duty Metal Body Lenses. For this reason, Meta recommends buying the 1985 Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses, such as the Minolta Famous Beer Can Lenses (Photo: Left), which were the Best Minolta Lenses produced.

Note: Not all Minolta Lenses are A-Mount Lenses! Only the “Minolta Maxxum”, “Minolta AF”, “Minolta Dyxum” and “Minolta Alpha” Lenses will fit modern Sony Digital Cameras. Pre-1984 “Rokkor”, “MF”, “MC” and “MD” Minolta Lenses WILL NOT FIT Sony Digital Cameras.

Where To Buy The Best Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses

How to Select and Use Minolta SLR Cameras

How to Select and Use Minolta SLR Cameras

– Carl Shipman

A complete handbook for Minolta Maxxum 5000, Minolta Maxxum 7000, Minolta Maxxum 9000 Film Cameras, Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses, Minolta Maxxum Flash Units, Data Backs and Program Backs, and other system accessories and applications! 160 pages with color and black and white illustrations. This book covers many of the Vintage Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses listed below.

First Edition – 1987
Second Edition – 1989

The Best Minolta Maxxum AF Zoom Lenses for Sony Digital Cameras

Minolta AF Zoom 70–210mm f/4.0 Lens – The Famous “Beer Can Lens”

This is The Famous 1985 Heavy Metal “Beer Can Lens”. Many lighting situations require a Constant Aperture f/4.0 telephoto zoom lens that can isolate specific details from a distance. This big boy was often sold along with the 35–70mm f/4.0 Zoom Lens (Below), to cover the full 35–210mm at a Constant Aperture of f/4.0. These are very easy to find in excellent condition. Heavy for Walk Around Use. Great for Birding and for Close-Up Photography. Amazing Sharp Lens.

Useful Macro Mode at 210mm.
Price Meta Paid Used: $67 Mint Condition.

Lowepro 9 x 16 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specification | Watch a Video Review
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
23° – 8°
1.1 M
f/32
74 x 152 mm
695 g
ø55mm
105–315mm
$245

Minolta AF Zoom 35–70mm f/4.0 Lens – Kit Lens for Minolta Film Cameras

This Constant Aperture f/4.0 zoom lens offers great versatility in a compact, lightweight lens. This zoom lens has become a very popular kit lens since it covers the wide angle to telephoto range used most often. Its responsive, adapting to most hand held situations in an instant. This very popular kit lens was often sold with the 70–210mm f/4.0 Zoom Lens (Above), to cover the full range of 35–210mm at a Constant Aperture of f/4.0. This is one of Meta’s Favorite Light Weight Walk Around Lens. Great for General Walk Around Lens plus Close-Up Photography.

Macro Switch at 70mm.
Price Meta Paid Used: $37.

Lowepro 9 x 9 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specification
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
36° – 34°
1.0 M
f/22
42 x 23 mm
255 g
ø49mm
52–105mm
$194

Minolta AF Zoom 100–200mm f/4.5

For Nature Photographers who regularly work at longer distances, this Constant Aperture f/4.5, 100–200mm range Minolta AF Lens is an excellent choice. This lens extends out when zooming. Sharp Telephoto Lens. Cheaper and lighter alternative to the heavy 70–210mm f/4.0, but without the Macro Mode. Great Minolta Lens for Birding.

No Macro Mode.
Price Meta Paid Used: $45 Mint Condition.


Lowepro 9 x 13 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specification | Watch a Video Review
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
16° – 8°
1.9 M
f/22
70 x 95 mm
375 g
ø49mm
150–300mm
$228
Minolta AF Zoom Maxxum 24-50mm f/4.0
Minolta AF Zoom Maxxum 24–50mm f/4.0

Minolta AF Zoom 24–50mm f/4.0

This Wide Angle Zoom Lens has a Constant Aperture of f/4.0 for Landscape Digital Photography. Fairly Expensive in 1985 dollars.

No Macro Mode.
Price Meta Paid Used: $50.


Lowepro 9 x 9 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specification
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
56° – 32°
0.35 M
f/22
69 x 60 mm
285 g
ø55mm
36–75mm
$436

Minolta AF Zoom 28–135mm f/4.0–4.5 – “The Secret Handshake Lens”

This big and heavy (even heavier than the Beer Can Lens), but tremendously versatile zoom lens lets you move from wide, sweeping effects to much closer details. Many Minolta Photographers referred to this lens as “The Secret Handshake Lens”, based on an urban legend that it was a co-designed by Minolta and Leica. On a Full Frame Sony a99 II Digital Camera, this Minolta AF 28–135mm f/4.0–4.5 is an excellent walk around lenses. Unlike the other Minolta Maxxum AF Lenses, this one has a larger ø72mm front element, with the focusing ring in the rear, which takes getting used to. There was no Stock Lens Hood.

Macro Mode Switch at 28mm.
Aperture Change Point: f/4.0 28–40mm, f/4.5 40–135mm.
Price Meta Paid Used: $155 Mint Condition.

Lowepro 9 x 13 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specification
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
50° –12°
1.5 M / .25 Macro
f/22–f/27
75 x 109 mm
770 g
ø72mm
42–203mm
$525

Minolta AF Zoom 75–300mm f/4.5–5.6 Lens – “Big Beer Can Lens”

The Famous “Big Beer Can Lens” extends almost a foot long with the Lens Hood attached. Versatile 75–300mm zoom lens, f/4.5– 5.6, is ideal for a variety of purposes, from sports action to portraiture, as well as Hummingbirds, Wildlife and Macro Photography.

Macro Mode at 300mm.
Aperture Change Point: f/4.5 75–100mm, f/5.0 100–135mm, f/5.6 135–300mm.
Price Meta Paid Used: $75 Mint Condition.

Lowepro 9 x 16 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specification | Watch a Video Review
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
21° –5°
1.5 M
f/32
74 x 163 mm
865 g
ø55mm
112–450mm
$542

Minolta AF Zoom 28–85mm f/3.5–4.5

This handy mid-range zoom gives you great flexibility in handling a variety of subjects.

Macro Mode Switch at 28mm.
Aperture Change Point: f/3.5 28–35mm, f/4.0 35–60mm, f/4.5 60–85mm.
Price Meta Paid Used: $35 New In Box.





Lowepro 9 x 13 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specification
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
50° –19°
0.8 M / 0.9 Macro
f/22–f/32
69 x 86 mm
490 g
ø55mm
42–128mm
$280

Minolta AF Zoom 35–105mm f/3.5–4.5

Very Popular Compact Lens – Easy to Find.

Useful Macro Mode Switch at 105mm.
Aperture Change Point: f/3.5 35–36mm, f/4.0 36–70mm, f/4.5 70–105mm.
Price Meta Paid Used: $55 Rare Early Crossed XX Version.




Lowepro 9 x 13 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Specification
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
42° –12°
1.4 M / 0.41 Macro
f/22–f/32
68 x 87 mm
495 g
ø55mm
42–128mm
$350

The Best Minolta Maxxum AF Prime Lenses for Sony Digital Cameras

Minolta AF 24mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Prime Lens

Comes with a Small Twist On Tulip Lens Hood and Small Leather Carrying Case. This is Meta’s favorite f/2.8 Wide Angle Prime Lens, which is great for shooting Interior Digital Photography and most of her Landscape Digital Photography.

No Macro Mode.
Price Meta Paid Used: $35 Mint Condition.


Lowepro 9 x 9 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specification
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
56°
0.25 M
f/22
66 x 447 mm
200 g
ø55mm
36mm
$242

Minolta AF 50mm f/1.7 Prime Lens – Very Inexpensive Sharp Kit Lens

This was Meta’s first 1985 Minolta Lens that she paid $25 for. These are very easy to find at affordable prices. This was the Smallest and Lightest Minolta Lens in 1985. Tiny Built-in Useless Lens Hood.

No Macro Mode.
Price Meta Paid Used: $25.



Lowepro 9 x 9 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specifications
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
32°
0.45 M
f/22
66 x 39 mm
195 g
ø49mm
75mm
$74

Minolta AF 50mm f/1.4 Prime Lens – Super Sharp Kit Lens Upgrade

One of the few fast Prime Lenses that can shoot wide open at 1/8,000th of a second. This is Meta’s favorite Super Sharp Prime Lens for shooting Hummingbirds, Fireworks, HDR Sunrises and Sunsets. This lens is very similar to the more popular and less expensive 1985 Minolta AF 50mm f/1.7 Prime Kit Lens, but is getting much harder to find. Tiny Built-in Useless Lens Hood.

No Macro Mode.
Price Meta Paid Used: $160 New in Box.

Lowepro 9 x 9 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specifications
1985 Minolta Owner’s Manual

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Minimum Aperture Size
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
32°
0.45 M
f/22
66 x 39 mm
235 g
ø49mm
75mm
$153

The Best Minolta Maxxum AF Teleconverters for Sony Digital Cameras

Minolta AF 1.4x Tele Converter-II APO

These are less expensive than their equivalent Sony models, but you won’t get auto-focusing on any Sony Lenses (5 pins vs. 8 pins). These aren’t compatible with Sony’s SSM Auto Focusing System, but they do work on Meta’s Sony 70–200 f/2.8, but in Manual Focus Only. Minimum Aperture Size is limited to f/4.0 (Half Stop Light Loss).The Minolta AF II APO have updated gearing for High Speed Focusing. This will Auto Focus on select Minolta Prime Lenses. Comes with a nice leather carrying case.

Price Meta Paid Used: $198 New.

Lowepro 7 x 8 cm Lens Case
Minolta Lens Review | Minolta Lens Specification

Angle of View
for APS-C
Minimum Focus
Distance (MFD)
Maximum Aperture Size Limited To
Lens Dimensions
(Dia x Length)
Lens Weight
Filter Diameter
APS-C
Crop Factor
MSPR
(1985 US Dollars)
N/A
Same as Lens
f/4.0
64 x 20 mm
168 g
N/A

$550

1985 Minolta Maxxum Lenses Owner’s Manuals

Minolta Lens Owners Manuals
Minolta Lens Owners Manuals

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Top Digital Photography Tips and Techniques For Beginners
Digital Photography Tips and Techniques For Beginners

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Photos By Meta

Nature Photographs were shot by North Carolina Nature Photographer Meta Gätschenberger of Photos by Meta, with Sony Lenses and Minolta Lenses.

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