KONICAMINOLTA DiMAGE A2
This was recorded using KONICA MINOLTA DiMAGE A2 digital cameras.
I captured this camera at a New Year’s junk market at a certain camera shop, where it was sold for four-figure yen. This camera was a 2/3-inch sensor, lens-integrated digital camera priced at 140,000 yen at the time of its initial release. At the same time, digital cameras with interchangeable lens APS-C size sensor such as the α7Digital were released at slightly higher prices, and the camera was being pushed into a difficult situation in terms of sales.
The reason why this camera was junked was that the EVF was malfunctioning. When I searched for information on the web, I found many similar EVF-related problems, and it seems to be a characteristic of this model that the 922,000-pixel EVF, which it boasts of, deteriorates over time.
The successor, the DiMAGE A200, released nine months later, had an EVF that regressed to the same specifications as the DiMAGE A1, perhaps to cut costs, which suggests that the A2’s EVF was the most advanced and expensive at the time.
The 28mm wide-angle lens (7.2mm) has a barrel distortion of about 4% when shooting distant scenery in raw mode, and the distortion is noticeable when shooting buildings, so correction is necessary during development. The 50mm-200mm (13mm-50mm), which is not used very often, has a clean image without distortion.
The construction of the lens has the same design as that of the MINOLTA SLR lenses, including the gold lines, which I like very much.
The AF speed is slow, and at night or with hard-to-detect subjects, the AF focus mark lights up and the shutter is released even if the subject is not in focus. 130,000-pixel rear LCD makes it difficult to determine the state of focus, and the problem would be reduced if a 920,000-pixel EVF were available, but as mentioned above, the one on hand has a dead EVF. The EVF is dead.
The image rendition under sunny conditions is mostly fine, but due to the small sensor size, there are times when white skipping, blacking out, and noise in dark areas are a concern.
The CCD image stabilization system, AntiShake, provides an initial 3-step correction, so overconfidence will result in blurry photos.
The accessory shoe is MINOLTA’s original shape, so if you are looking for a flash, you will need to find one made by MINOLTA.
The recording media is Compact Flash with firmware 1.1.3j or later, which allows the use of media larger than 4 GB. If you use 8GB media, you can take about 600 pictures in raw only, but the camera’s counter will not go beyond 352 pictures.
The battery is the same lithium-ion NP-400 battery used in the α7D and other cameras, and it is also readily available in the SIGMA SD14, PENTAX K20D, and various other models that use the same shape of battery. The battery was able to take about 150 shots with a slightly worn-out battery, so photographers who take a lot of pictures will probably need a spare.
As for the firmware, the one I own seems to be the last version with firmware 1.1.4j, but as of January 2023, the website of KENKO TOKINA, which took over maintenance, seems to have deleted all information on KONICA MINOLTA products, and firmware can no longer be obtained. It is no longer possible to obtain firmware or other information.
The firmware information for Dimage A2 is still available at KONICA MINOLTA EUROPE, although it is written in English and may not be applicable if it is region-controlled.
I hope Japanese manufacturers will also keep information on their old products as much as possible. The possibility that your product is still in use is not zero.
After purchasing the camera, I obtained the optional lens converters, a tele-converter (AWT-100) and a wide-converter (ACT-100).
Although these camera options are nearly 20 years old, I was able to find them on Yahoo Auctions and Mercari for a few thousand yen. The camera I got had some scratches on the exterior and some wiping on the lens, but they were not in a condition that would affect the quality of the pictures.
Both of them are huge converters that change the impression of the camera when attached to the camera.
The wide-converter increases the angle of view by 0.8x, making the lens 28*0.8=22.4mm wide-angle, but the distortion, which was 4% at 28mm, is now 8%. The note on the wide-converter states that the focal length of the lens should be fixed at the 28mm position with the macro switch turned on, so when this is attached, the camera becomes a 22.4mm single focal length lens camera. This is a fun wide-angle lens, although the amplification of distortion is a concern.
There is a note that the teleconverter should only be used at the telephoto end, but when I dared to zoom with the tele-converter attached, I could see a large kick at focal lengths from 42mm to 150mm (35mm equivalent, actual focal lengths from 28mm to 100mm). When zooming, I turned the zoom ring while supporting the tele-converter. Even so, it is a little scary to shoot outdoors with the tele-converter, which is heavier than a wide-converter, attached when the lens is extended (at the 200mm focal length position).
I felt that the lens barrel might break if I did not support the tele-converter at all times.
The tele-converter and wide-angle converter were sold at the regular price with a price tag of 49,800 yen. If purchased with the camera as a set, the price should be close to 200,000 yen even if you include about two discounts. Those who purchased the camera at the time of its release must have been either hobbyists who fell in love with the system and took the plunge, or rich people.
The lens converter is a screw-in type with a diameter of 49mm, so it can be used with other lenses, but the performance is not that high, so there is no need to do so.
If this body had been equipped with a 1-inch or larger sensor, the camera’s position might have been different, but I feel that the Sony RX100 series, LEICA V-LUX, and others in the direct line have taken over this ideal form, and I think that what this camera was aiming for was not so bad.
Digital camera with integrated lens featuring 8-megapixel CCD and 922,000-pixel EVF
Flower-shaped lens hood included
Both EVF and rear LCD are tiltable
|Item||DiMARGE A1||DiMARGE A2||DiMARGE A200|
|Camera Effective Pixels||5 megapixels||8 megapixels||←|
|focal length (distance)||7.2〜50.8mm F2.8〜3.2 |
|Lens configuration||16elements 13group||←||←|
|image sensor||2/3 sensor||←||←|
|back LCD||1.8 inch|
|Dimensions (mm)||Width x Height x Depth|
117 × 85 × 113.5
|←||Width x Height x Depth|
114 × 80 × 115
|Approx. 560||Approx. 565||Approx. 505|
|Release year||Sep. 2003||Feb. 2004||Nov. 2004|
|Tele-converter ACT-100||Wide-converter AWT-100|
|Lens configuration||5elements 3group||3elements 3group|
|converter magnification||x 1.5||x 0.8|
|Composite Focal Length||76.2mm (35mm film equivalent: approx. 300mm)||5.8mm (35mm film equivalent: approx. 22mm)|
|Supported models||DiMAGE 7i/7Hi/A1/A2||←|
|Note||Use at the telephoto end of the body lens||Use at the wide end of the body lens|
- Tele-converter ACT-100
- Wide-converter AWT-100
- DiMAGE A1 KONICA MINOLTA News release
- DiMAGE A2 KONICA MINOLTA News release
- DiMAGE A200 KONICA MINOLTA News release
- Pc-watch DiMAGE A1 article
- Pc-watch DiMAGE A2 article
- Pc-watch DiMAGE A200 article