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Minolta MD 100-300 f 5.6

Len Marriott , Jun 22, 2003; 07:43 p.m.

I own a Minolta MD 100-300mm f 5.6 zoom. It has f stops from 5.6 to 32 plus the lug allowing it to work on Program (X-700). I've always assumed it was a constant f stop throughout the zoom range as nothing on it indicates that it is a 5.6 - 6.3.(even metering while zooming produces no noticeable change on my in-camera readout) I've recently seen advertised used lenses that indicate they are variable f stop (5.6 - 6.3). Can anyone confirm that there are actually two different versions of this lens? I'm quite satisfied with the quality of mine but would be interested to hear about your experiences with it/them. One source claims the non-variable lens to be 'rare'. (not to be confused with higher quality) Best, LM.


Frank Mueller , Jun 22, 2003; 09:26 p.m.

The following site lists all Minolta manual focus lenses:


and this is the relevant page with the zoom lenses:


It confirms that there are indeed two MD 100-300mm lenses, one with a fixed maximum aperture of 5.6 and one with a variable maximum aperture of 5.6-6.7. The optical construction appears to be quite different with 13 elements in 10 groups versus 10 elements in 8 groups, respectively.

Unfortunately I have never had a chance to use either of them, and I would say both of them are at least uncommon.

BTW - for this range of focal length I am using a Tokina 100-300mm f/5. It is an older lens of the MC era, ie without the MD lug to fully support the S-mode of XD series cameras and the P-mode of the X-700, but it is of solid construction, has a rotating tripod mount, and is a very solid performer optically - maybe not quite as good as my MD 75-200mm f/4.5, but the latter is an extraordinary lens by any standard. What I am trying to say is that the claim on the above web site that the Minolta MD 100-300mm f/5.6 was made by Tokina is not necessarily derogatory.

Len Marriott , Jun 23, 2003; 07:32 a.m.

Frank, Many thanks. This info clears up my confusion nicely. I have searched other sites to no avail. I'd still be interested to share experiences with it if anyone else is interested. Best, LM.

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