Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2000/08/22

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Subject: Re: [Leica] Why Minolta?
From: "Dan Post" <>
Date: Tue, 22 Aug 2000 10:20:22 -0700
References: <006f01c00bec$5ac7ba00$c0dffea9@d2p8j6> <>

I thinkthe question is a bit more involved than a simple "no'- just in my
opinion. Not wanting to start a flame war, I will say that in part I agree
with you. MInolta chooses to sell to a much broader market. They make and
sell lenses that are servicable to a large portion of the market, and while
they are probably indistinguishable from the issue from Canon, Nikon, and
Pentax, they serve the purpose for which they were designed- and built.
I am sure that when they make the lenses for Leica- and I have had a couple
of them, that the materials, and quality control standards are those of
Leicas, and that Minolta 'raises the bar' so to speak, higher than they do
for their own products. They also have to charge more. I am  sure that many
of the modern lens makers- from Cosina, to whatever, could and would make
lenses of the same quality as Leica if the market would support it, but
Leica has firmly entrenched itself in the 'quality' high end lens market,
and it would be quite costly, and probably not cost effective for say,
Cosina, to make its lenses to Leica standards. They are satisfied, for
example to have a 'runner up' status, and sell a lot of their Heliars and
Skopars at a lower price- all the while knowing they don't quite match
Leica's quality, but being good enough to draw the audiance they do attract!
I see a Hologon on sale for $8000, and while it might be what a narrow
market will buy, I can see that Cosina with a $400 Heliar will make a lot
more money, and sell many more lenses at that price. It goes without saying
that they probably could copy the Hologon, and make it to the same standards
as Zeiss, but then, they would be competing with Zeiss head on and would
likely sell very few lenses. In a way- they 'Know Their Place'! And they
continue to sell relatively large numbers of Heliars to the Hoi-polloi like
myself, because with it gets down to an 8x10, or a web photo- the difference
between the $8000 lens and the $400 lens is not all that apparent.
Sure, I appreciate a fine single malt (trying to stay on topic here!!!) but
there are time, like when I have a taste for a Scotch Collins ( Oh, I can
hear the moans!), or as we call it here- a pink lemonade- that I use a
blend. It'
s cheaper, and serves the purpose as well or better than mixing a single
malt (Heresy- burn him! burn him!)
So- In short.... Minolta probably COULD build a lens of Leica calibre, but
NO they don't, since it wouldn't be practical for the vast majority of their
Dan ( Humming "If I Only Had a Brain" while I type!) Post
 > > Does Minolta match the high optical knowledge and quality of Leica?
> No. 'Nuff said.
> Axel

Replies: Reply from Axel Schwieker <> (Re: [Leica] Why Minolta?)
Reply from Dan Cardish <> (Re: [Leica] Why Minolta?)
Reply from Dan Cardish <> (Re: [Leica] Why Minolta?)
Reply from "Joe B." <> (Re: [Leica] Why Minolta?)
In reply to: Message from "Terry Sham" <> ([Leica] Why Minolta?)
Message from Axel Schwieker <> (Re: [Leica] Why Minolta?)