Sunday, 23 February 2014

lenses which are gold

Since the late 70's the price of Gold has gone from about US$200 per Oz to about US$1300 per Oz, which many finance people will tell you is not really growth, but a reflection of lack of losses (while the value of money falls)

Such store of value can also exist it seems in the photographic world with some items.

I have a friend and fellow blogger who is also interested in camera gear, and in a recent discussion on his blog discussed the Minolta 250mm f5.6 mirror lens. His words were to the tune of:
It has proven itself for the purpose of its design: small, lightweight, and inexpensive. The inexpensive part does not apply any more because this lens is selling at a few times more than its original price, but it's truly small and light
Which had me curious, I know well the advantage / disadvantage set of the mirror lenses. As the owner of a 'regular optical' legacy FD 200mm f4 lens (which is quite opitcally good btw) I thought I'd dig out the current selling price and found that its gone up like Gold.


To quote form JarJar Binks ... "Exqueeze me!"

Mirror lenses have an optical mirror which is coated in Silver ... but somehow this lens is Gold.

I understand the value of compact, and I also understand the downsides of donught bokeh and no aperture control. I don't know if the advantages are driving this price or if its "Kingdom of Wang" buyers. I understand that my friend picked it up back when the prices were sane ... but at these prices I genuinely expect that owners get more "joy of ownership" than use.

Like the ebay ad says "no signs of use"

I sincerely hope that the 4/3 rumor site is on the money with Olympus bringing out a new and current version. For that should restore some balance to the market.

Meantime I'll keep using my FD200mm as it cost me about $60, and I get to take pictures that I like with it. But be careful in picking your FD200mm because there are substantial differences between the New FD and the old FD editions. The more modern one weighs about half (at 440g) and has much better lens coatings. It also has a built in retractable lens hood and uses a more modern Inner Focusing design. Worth every penny of $56

I sometimes wish I could examine the Minolta and give it a test use, but at the current prices its out of my interest zone.




All taken with the FD200mm f4

1 comment:

Yu-Lin Chan said...

I got lucky and paid under $100. That's how much it's worth used.