Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1999/12/01

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Subject: [Leica] Those nasty collectors...
From: Mike Johnston <>
Date: Wed, 01 Dec 1999 17:13:15 +0000

>>>Marc, lets take a 50mm Summicron M for example.  In 1985 this lens
selling NEW for 320.00.  That same lens is currently nearly 600.00 in

Uh, correct my arithmetic (please), but does't $320 x 4% inflation for
14 years compounded annually equal almost exactly $600? All that means
is that it hasn't lost any value, not that the price has gone nuts.

One of the advantages of many top-quality products is that they tend to
retain resale value or even appreciate in value. My grandmather, who
lived to age 91 (1902-1993), was probably highly unusual in that in his
whole life he never bought an automobile that didn't appreciate in
value. He bought the best and then kept each car for 20 years or more,
and sure enough by the time he got rid of each, they were always worth
more than he'd paid for them. He died with a 1955 Lincoln Continental
and a 1969 Mercedes-Benz 6.9 in his garage, and both fetched more than
he'd paid for them--the Mercedes barely, the Lincoln by quite some.

Not adjusted for inflation, but still.

And what did a Nikon or Canon or Pentax medium-speed (f/2, f/1.8, f/1.7)
50mm lens go for in 1985? I'm betting it was a good deal less than $320.

Also, I doubt anybody who would claim to be a "collector" would be
buying a 1985 50mm Summicron-M. That's still user territory, for sure.
Heck, it's the current design.

- --Mike