The 70-300G Successor… and the Power of Photo!

I sold my 70-300 G last week and I was looking at a couple of options for the successor; specifically the Sony or Minolta 135mm f/2.8 [T4.5] STF lens or the Minolta 200mm f/2.8 APO lens, ideally the High Speed version.

The 135 STF came in to play once I realized with the A99 and focus peaking I could handle the fact it was manual focus. It screams to my shooting style and it would appease my need to constantly tinker.

The 200mm f/2.8 is a lens I have desired for a while as it would complement my 85mm lens well and it is famous for delivering wonderful color. It also would return a bit more of the length lost in selling the 70-300G.

I also considered the Sony 70-400G, 70-200 f/2.8 G, and Minolta 300 f/2.8 0r f/4 High Speed APO among others, yet the 135 STF and the 200 f/2.8 have been at the top of my list for a while. Both are found on the used market for anywhere between $900-1200 US and the Sony version of the 135 STF is in the $1300-$1400 range new. The Minolta 200 f/2.8 APO and High Speed APO is long discontinued, as the line was introduced in 1986 and the high speed versions added in 1989.

I have selected a successor and the purchase has been made, in part with proceeds from the 70-300G. The successor? I will post some of the first shots and you will find out in the future….

In other news, a few weeks ago I posted about my perceived process of turning pro, of turning my hobby into a side-business. I found something out regarding one of the photos I would use if I were building a portfolio.

This is the original copy as posted before:

SLT-A77V, 85mm f/1.4 ZA@ f/2.2, ISO 800, 1/80s

Here is an excerpt of an e-mail I received from a work teammate of mine after he sent a notice to our team regarding his impending relocation:

I would like to thank you for the amazing photography! You can truly capture a lot in a photo!

Sending out my relocation announcement made me think… the picture that you took of me at the first 2012 offsite: that was responsible for me meeting the love of my life. Long story short: she saw that picture that you took and that is what  led to us connecting through a remote study course. She tells me many times about how amazing the photo is and how it spoke volume. You really captured so much about me.

Now, I won’t deserve the credit for anything other than nailing my focus and stealing a candid shot, I will say it is one of my top 10-15 shots ever. I wouldn’t change a thing, other than the color balance… Looking back at it, I really framed the shot well and the aperture was open enough to get the right blur in the background but retain enough detail.

Incidentally, I had edited the shot since posting about it in late October, with the newly-found A77 color profiles.

Here is the result:


I think the color profile, paired with a white balance adjustment, did well. However, I wouldn’t go back and time and post the shot differently as I don’t want to tempt fate! I will say, I met my wife under somewhat similar circumstances so I wonder if forces greater than those ever imagined to be contained in a photo are involved.


6 comments on “The 70-300G Successor… and the Power of Photo!

  1. Gene says:

    You might consider the Sigma 70-200mm EX. I’ve used this one quite a bit and love it. Even used it with extension tubes as a macro.
    I have not used the other ones you mention so it’s hard to make a direct comparison. Then again, we live reasonably close, maybe you could put it on your camera for an hour or so?

    • Dirty! I should have thought about that before dropping a ton of dough into the lens I did buy. Did you have to send the Sigma in to get rechipped?

      I’ll tell you what, I’ll still take you up on the offer soon and I’ll bring my new toy with me. I am curious to see how the Sigma looks.

  2. cbsva says:

    Your image of your teammate is very expressive indeed!

    The original version contained too much magenta, as you realized correctly, after the correction the skin tones seem much better, but there is too much cyan now – especially in the shadows (look under his left eye). That was a bit too much correction IMHO.
    It is a bit difficult here, because the scene seems to contain some twilight.
    In his left eye you find a wonderful point to put in the color temperature pipette….;-)

    Now I’m just curious which lens you choose…;-)

    • I just can’t get the color 100% right… There is daylight coming from one window, and odd lights coming from somewhere else… I’ll get it right eventually. The color profile helped, though.

  3. […] other news, I bit the bullet and submitted another photo to A couple months back I wrote about Ryan, a co-worker of mine. Last week our team of geographically distributed misfits met in Seattle as we do twice a year. I […]

  4. […] few months back I posted about wanting either the Minolta 200mm f/2.8 or the Sony or Minolta 135mm f/2.8 [T4.5] STF …. I opted for the Minolta 200mm f/2.8 High Speed APO G lens with no […]

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