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Prime versus Zoom lenses



I'm somewhat new to photography. I have bought into Minolta so far. I have the Maxxum 5 with the 28-80 D and 75-300 D. I am finding that the pictures with the 75-300 lens are just slightly blurred around the edges of the subject. I get very crisp contrast around the subject with my p&s digital camera and I am wondering if it is the lens of my M5. I compared the photos my wife had done by a professional friend, who is a Nikon 35mm fan, and his photos with his zoom lenses were much more crisp.

1. Has anyone had the same experience?

2. Is it the Lens? ...The focusing system?

3. Do prime lenses in general eliminate such problems? I would consider the 50/1.8 or the 85/1.4 D.



That is most probably due to camera shake. Any quality difference between the lenses is not likely to be visible to the naked eye.

The rule of thumb is that the lowest shutter speed is the reciprocal of the focal length. That is, if you are using the lens at 300mm, the lowest shutter speed you can use without visible camera shake is 1/300 of a second, and for 75mm it's 1/75 of a second, etc.

It is also not likely to be due to the camera body because you have no such problem with the 28-80.

Try using your lens on a tripod and see if it still gives a blurred picture.

The blur may also be due to subject shake. For ex&le if your subject is a tree, the leaves may be moved by the wind, etc.

I would suggest that you use a tripod and photograph a non-moving subject. For best results use a cable release and wait until the tripod is completely still. If the resultant picture is still blurred, then I would say it's a defective lens and you can try taking the lens back to your dealer for repair or replacement. Don't forget to bring your test photo with you.

Good luck!

Nee Sung


Thanks, I had the same thought after reading some online discussions. I was on the beach on a sunny day, and I was using ISO 400 film while taking picutures of my family. I remember the Shutter speed was 1/500 and occasionally dropped to 1/250.

I know about the focal length and shutter speed rule of thumb, so I kept the focal length down below 200. Though I figure it was close enough at times, there was probably still some camera shake.

The scenario was more spontaneous pictures while having fun at the beach. The tripod was not a good option. I think I am going to stick to the 28-80 D lens, I will get a 50/1.7 and it should no longer be an issue. Again thanks.


(Ironically the nickname has nothing to do with photography)



You mentioned the 85mm 1.4D. Just my two cents, but it's a great lens! It's a little pricey, and the AF is a bit slow since there is so much glass to move, but the quality is great and the "boke" is incredible! Not recommended for action shots, but it makes an amazing portrait lens. I've also enjoyed shooting flowers with it.


New Member
Shaky,it is of course possible that your pictures are slightly blurred due to move of the subject.
But take your mind that zoom 75-300 has a soft performation on its longer end. That is visible from 200 to 300mm. To avoid to that you consider about Minolta 100-300 APO.
Have "good light" František


The 1,7 50mm is very cheap 80 Dollar 4 a new one (original Minolta lense) by B&H in bigaple. Its a boring angle but you will get always much better pictures than with a 24-100 zoom.
This lens comes for free with the Maxxum 7. some spezial offer by dealers.