Can Sony 18-55mm SAM lens do macro?


Recently I bought Sony 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 SAM lens also known as new kit lens. It has quite nice minimum focus distance of 250mm so its comparable to 303mm of Minolta 35-70mm F4 lens in macro mode. Being curious how it will perform on close-ups I took it to my garden.

First of all, what about bokeh?


SONY DSLR-A700, Sony 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 SAM
1/160 sec, f/5.6, ISO 200, 50 mm (75 mm equivalent)

Obviously as you can see there is no way to get shallow depth of field and background still has some possibly distracting details. However sometimes we want these details to be visible:


SONY DSLR-A700, Sony 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 SAM
1/200 sec, f/5.6, ISO 200, 55 mm (82 mm equivalent)

Sharpness is good, way better than in old kit. Colors are better too. Lens seems to perform well and is excellent companion to 55-200mm (Tamron or Sony) for lightweight travelling. If I’d have to choose between new kit and old used Minolta 35-70mm F4 I’d definitely choose kit. Why?

  • we are getting new lens with warranty (instead of 25 years old one)
  • it seems to be sharper, especially in corners
  • focal range is way more usefull (wide angle)
  • internal focusing (SAM) performs better than in-body screwdriver
  • its cheaper :-)

There is only one thing at which all old Minolta lenses are better (at least for me) – they generate images with most pleasing colors. Of course this can be achieved during post processing as well.

To sum all things up one more shot from Sony 18-55mm kit. In my opinion its definitely worth every penny you are going to spent on it especially if your budget is tight.


SONY DSLR-A700, Sony 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 SAM
1/250 sec, f/5.6, ISO 200, 55 mm (82 mm equivalent)