Anyone still using Minolta 600/f4 APO prime?

Started Aug 12, 2011 | Discussions thread
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Amateur Sony Shooter
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Anyone still using Minolta 600/f4 APO prime?
Aug 12, 2011

I like my 70-400G, its sharp, light weight (compare to other big primes) and small enough to handhold. But often I wish I could have longer reach for small birds, or wildlife in greater distance...

I have a opportunity to buy Minolta 600/4 HS APO prime (for about $5000). There are some paint loss here and there but glass is in good condition. This is a big decision I need to make, it's expensive and will exceed my total amateur photographic budget by whopping 50%. For lens I will have very limited usage, and I am not even an advanced amateur yet. My heart is beating fast, my head is worrying my wallet and wife's reaction. So obviously I appreciate any user opinion I can get from you fellow members. Now questions:

1) How is the handling? 600mm offers very narrow viewing angle, how can you find your target. Also, without in-lens OS, 600mm in view finder is very jittery, how could you stay on focus?

2) How often do you use it (to justify your purchase)? When you are getting older (who doesn't), do you still carry it around that much?

3) Although the lens is High Speed but it's crew-driven, so how fast it can track moving subject (BIF) when using AF-C?

4) Any quality/service concern? Glass alignment? Since its focusing gear is 100% mechanical, I hope its serviceable in future.

Lastly, do I really need it? With A77's 24MP sensor, I can crop my 70-400G like never before. Is 600mm prime too crazy? Somebody stop me please...

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