- Browse Reviews:
Konica Minolta 500mm f/8 for Minolta Maxxum 35mm Primes
This ultra-telephoto is incredibly compact and lightweight. Using an advanced reflex design, Phoenix has created a mirror lens that is ideally suited for wildlife and sports photography. It has a fixed aperture of f8. It comes complete with a soft pouch and three (3) rear mounted, 30.5mm filters, (ND-2X, ND-4X & Skylight). Simple T-mount adapters screw on the lens to fit almost any camera.
Submitted by benbois a Intermediate
Date Reviewed: February 20, 2009
First of all- where did you get the MSRP of $138?? I'd buy any of these lenses at that price! What a baragin compared the $450 I paid on eBay for a like new model. Sony's re-tagged version sell for $700 or more. This is a nice buy for $550 or less. And, you will find, these lenses are most always only lightly used. People buy them on a "Long Lens Whim", only to find them too demanding and hard to master. So a used 500mm f8 is most often like new. Mine was unmarked and probably 15-20 years old. Did I mention that this is the Only 500mm reflex lens that is "auto-focus"? Yeah, and it's pretty good at it, too.
Anyways, to the lens. It's weight is not so much as to make it a tripod only lens. I have often used it, handheld successfully. Of course you will want a clear sky and preferably 1/500 shutter (or more).
It's a sharp lens, subject to the holder and shutter speed. You will get lots of "bokeh"- sometimes more than you want. Great care Must ve taken when focusing. This lens, by its nature, lends itself to projects that are rarely rushed. So a photog can take his time, with a tri-pod, and shoot away.
After "infinity", and I've not determined that exact distance, you can leave it all to the lens and hope for the best. Try to use a tri-pod when possible. The lens comes with 2 internal filters, filters that must be used in lieu of aperture adjusyments due to this lens' constant "f8". One is a clear, UV type; while the other is an ND 4, necessary for bright conditions. On partly cloudy to overcast days- and only with a tripod then- use the UV flter. Otherwise the only control you have is the shutter which really should be used at least 1/100, off a tripod.
I've found the bokeh t be somewhat hit and miss. Sometimes quite attractive,with a controlled blur- but othertimes will show the "doughnut" or other unseemly cloudyness.
I always bracket shots between me and infinity. And perhaps slightly change focus and bracket again. 3 shot brackets.
Tis is a "specialty" type lens, but can be used much more often than it commonly is. Don't be afraid of it. How else can you get that "close-up" of an American Bison showing steam from its nostrils and frost on its hide? On my APS-C sensored Sony a700, I appreciate the 750mm 35mm equivalent.
Anyways, I recommend this lens to any of you not afraid to be different. After getting out of the car, take the time to set up the tri-pod. Maybe even move away from the road. And the lens isn't heavy- surprisingly- I won't look it up but I think around 1.5 pounds. Comes with a rather massice, well padded leather carrying case- but will not fit in any but the largest camera bags- I've never carried it in mine! But it's safe, on the backseat or floor of the car in its very well constructed case. I keep it in a daypack, along with my lunch and jacket.
Duration Product Used: 21+ years
Price Paid: $450.00
Purchased At: eBay
Similar Products Used: Tokina 500 f8 Manual focus for Minolta MC/MD mount
Type of photography: Outdoor
Check out our holiday gift suggestions for these categories!
See All Holiday Gift Guide coverage - Click Here »