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New Minolta Lenses



Okay, what's the deal with the new SSM lenses that Minolta is apparently supposed to be releasing? Are they available in Japan yet? Which ones will they be? I've heard the 80-200 f2.8, the 28-70 f2.8, and the 300 f2.8 are candidates.

Does anyone have any credible info about these? Will they be announced/released at the PMA in march? Just curious!

Thanks for any info.



Minolta setting new standards with the new Minolta AF 70-200mm f/2.8 Apo G(D)SSM lens.
Minolta's new SSM lenses employ new supersonic-wave motor technology for quiet,
smooth AF operation, enhancing the performance of Minolta SLR cameras from the Dynax 7 onwards.
The AF 70-200mm f/2.8 Apo G(D)SSM uses nineteen finely crafted elements, including four AD
(anomalous dispersion) lenses, to virtually eliminate aberrations and curvature of field.
A circular aperture keeps the defocused image of point light sources outside the depth of field
round between f/2.8 and f/5.6.
Comparable to significantly few f/2.8 zoom lenses,the new AF zoom has the shortest minimum focus distance in its class.
Two DMF (Direct Manual Focus) modes exercise exacting control over the AF system.
Standard DMF allows the photographer to fine tune the focus once the AF system has optically locked onto the subject.
Full-time DMF enables the photographer to access manual focus control at anytime by simply turning the focusing ring.
A focus-range limiter reduces auto-focusing time. The Minolta AF 70 - 200mm f/2.8 Apo G(D)SSM lens has a preset range
function between infinity and 3m.
The entire lens is seated in a rigid mounting collar, enabling the lens to be attached to a camera support.
Two new apochromatic teleconverters have been designed for AF 1.4X Tele Converter Apo (D) and AF 2X Tele Converter Apo(D).
These simple accessories increase the power of the lens while allowing the use of the automatic camera and lens systems.
Using the 1.4X teleconverter creates the equivalent of a 98 - 280mm f/4.0 lens,
and the 2X converter transforms the lens into an amazing 140 - 400mm f/5.6 telephoto zoom,
fast enough to handhold with ISO100 film in broad daylight.


This is good news. Curious to know more, I checked out Minolta's photo products web site. The USA site reveals nothing, but Minolta Canada lists the 70-200mm F2.8 and the 300mm F2.8 ! No prices were given, alas.


... there is an artivcle in chasseur dimage about the new lenses:

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All features seem to be compatible only from maxxum dynax 7 on and upwards.


Thanks for the link, Dirk. (And thanks are also due for Babelfish, which translated that page into English for me!)


***Aperture closing mechanism on SSM lens***

I love Minolta’s and I if have to note one tradeoff you have to pay if you are stuck with the brand, it will be the fact that the mechanical aperture mechanism is quite noisy. Even on a rugged body like the 9, dof preview or making a picture is noisy because of the way the lens aperture is closed. This sound is not made by the lens; if you try to stop down a full open lens, the sound is still the same: ‘noisy’.

To come to my question, will the ssm lens have advantages on this effect? Is the aperture mechanism on the ssm lens electronic and so silent? There are no proper detailed pictures of the lens that can make clear how the new technology is driven. It seems very weird to me Minolta is not shouting the way their new products are going to work. Everybody seems to be interested in ssm and nobody exactly knows what for ex&le an 9 update will really mean.

Another ex&le of the unnecessary secrets of Minolta, there must be a reason Minolta did not implement image stabilization in their new lenses. Before release of the ssm lens, nobody was expecting something so they could have designed a longer time. Would it be money? There are things happening in silence that could be spoken of in their advantage. Eg: why did their ssm 28-70 disappear form all pictures and Minolta website pages? What’s going on, I like that lens! There is a lot going on we want to know. If Minolta would ever come with a digital 9, telling so would keep a dozen of people waiting with their Minolta glass. Now we do not have any clue of what we can expect. Will Minolta know themselves what their role in the near future will be in digital SLR?

Marijn Engels, the Netherlands.


I subscribe to Marijn's comments: I have a lot of expensive and high quality Minolta lenses. They are excellent (although a bit less than the Zeiss G lenses I have on my Contax G2). I use them for bird and wildlife photography. I am prepared to wait for a high-end digital body (eg digital 9)from Minolta with the same AF bajonet as all my AF lenses, but . . . .
Despite many questions to all sort of Minolta authorities I have not received an answer. Minolta would be much better served explaining a bit of their product development roadmap to their customers and in this way trying to retain their anxious customers, while they lag the technology developments of Nikon, Canon and even Contax and Kodak. It even seems that Olympus will launch a 2/3 inch CCD based digital high end SLR and also outpaces Minolta. They want to contend in the SLR market or not??

Peter, The Netherlands.


On a different site: photozone.de, Michael H. repied:

The reason is that the aperture lever is mechanically linked to the mirror. So what you hear is the mirror flipping up and down. This is no longer the case with the 7. DOF preview is very quiet with the 7. Furthermore, you can now change aperture while DOF preview is active. The aperture will then open up or close down instantly, and you don't have to release and re-press the DOF preview button.

I am confused now, and I wrote:

That sounds interesting. You will probably be right, but after your reply I tried my 9xi to find out about the mirror flip. I pressed the dof button on a wide open lens and the mirror did not flip up, aperture was not effected yet there was the annoying ‘click’ sound.
If you are right, that means the mirror is called by some mechanism, but is not flipped up. The call of the mirror flip mechanism that according to your story includes the aperture stopper is what makes the sound. Do I understand your story correctly?
By the way: very good to know the 7 is more silent and smarter constructed. Yet I am still curious if the SSM lens will be stopped down electronically or mechanically. Got any ideas?
I was playing with my 9xi and found out you can dof preview the body without lens. (I have probably disabled the lens check at the moment) If you press down the dof button for a while, it is easy to see the mirror remains in place and the rotation of the mechanism that pushes the lens aperture open. If it is not the aperture ring that is noisy, what is going on in all those Minolta bodies and what is different in the 7 that makes it more silent?
Who helps me out?


Will this SSM Lens go on the Market ? In my opinion this two Lenses with SSM wich some dealers are already selling are too expensive compared to Canon and Nikon Equipment. The 2,8 300m G Lens with SSM but without IS cost around US$6000.-

And Minolta still dont have the Digital SLR with 11Megapix. resulution.