Minolta MD 300mm 1:4.5 – review

Published by Tony on

Minolta MD 300mm 1:4.5 – vintage manual lens test and review

  • Official classification: New-MD
  • Collector’s classification: MD III

The only 300mm lens in the New-MD line. It has been built by a classic approach to the optical design. Test results say that it was the right decision – no weakness was found.

Minolta MD 300mm 1:4.5 + X700

Minolta MD 300mm 1:4.5 (MD III, New-MD) specifications

minolta.eazypix.de index229
Name engraved on the lensMD
f[mm]300
A max [1/f]4.5
A min[1/f]32
Lens design [el.]7
Lens design [gr.]6
Filter thread Ø front(rear)[mm]72
Lens Shadebuilt-in
closefocus[m/ft]42646
Dimension Ø x length [mm]77.5×177.5
Weight[g]705
Year1981
StyleMD III
Code No. (ROKKOR-X) or Order No.581-808

More data

Floating elementsNO (full support by autofocused adapters)
Aperture blades number6
Confidence in the test results of reviewed copiesHigh
Reviewed lens SN:8005219

Minolta MD 300mm 1:4.5 exterior

Minolta MD 300mm 1:4.5 mounted on Minolta X-700

This is a very suitable set – the camera and lens have the same design (1981 release)

Full box set:

Minolta MD 300mm 1:4.5 sharpness

Сlose-distance resolution test, minimal distance

Testing methods description

  • Target: 10-15 cm picture, printed on glossy photo paper
  • Distance:10% longer than minimal focus distance marked on the lens
  • Camera: Sony A7II (24mpx, full-frame, tripod, remote control). M-mode, ISO fixed, WB fixed, SteadyShot – OFF.
  • The test was repeated for every F-stop on every focus position with manual focus adjustment for each shot. That is to avoid the effect of field curvature.
  • RAW processing: Capture One, default settings. All quality settings – 100%. Crops – 300×200 px

Scene preview

Test results (selected version, easy to compare – 4 positions)

Test results (full version – all 9 positions)

Long-distance resolution test

Testing methods description

  • Target: cityscape
  • Distance: > 200 meters to center focus point
  • Camera: Sony A7II (24mpx, full-frame, tripod, remote control). M-mode, ISO fixed, WB fixed, SteadyShot – OFF. The focus point is on the center only.
  • RAW processing: Capture One, default settings. All quality settings – 100%. Crops – 300×200 px

Scene preview

Test results

Minolta MD 300mm 1:4.5 aberrations

Vignetting

Geometric distortion

This lens doesn’t have a visible geometric distortion. No tests needed.

Coma aberrations

This lens doesn’t have a noticeable coma. No tests needed.

Chromatic aberrations

Short-distance bokeh

Test conditions: lens was focused on minimal distance 3m, plants are in 5m distance from the camera

Long-distance bokeh

Test conditions: the lens was focused on half distance on the scale (7m), buildings are on “infinity”-distance. This is a rare case for real photography but demonstrates the maximum possible level of blur

Light bubbles bokeh

Test conditions: lens was focused on minimal distance + 10% of scale (about 3.5m), diodes were fixed in 5m distance

Minolta MD 300mm 1:4.5 (or Minolta MD 300mm F/4.5, New-MD, MD III design) – overall conclusion

Firstly, as it displayed by tests, this lens is sharp – it has no big difference in resolution in the center and in corners and ready for work even if aperture has been fully opened – F4.5. Secondly, it is able to hide any background totally in an absolutely smooth bokeh. Aberrations are presented of course, but nothing serious. Usually, the long lenses aren’t very convenient, but this New-MD version is thin and lightweight enough to use it in walks in parks around. The build-in lens-hood is presented, but the lens’s fire-resistance is fine too. Average today’s prices look very reasonable for so technically advanced lens. So, yes, it can be recommended without doubts.


1 Comment

wswe · 2018-09-14 at 23:30

nice review

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