The lure of the legacy . . .

. . . glass, that is.

Most often I see it described as glass with character as opposed to a look that’s more “modern,” or “clinical.” While choice of descriptives may differ, photographers who are aware of the differences likely see pretty much the same things in either type of glass.

Much as I love modern sharpness, it’s really that “character” glass that produces the shots that get my attention. Having been through many of the R-mount lenses over the years, like sirens they continue to call in spite of their heavier weight when compared to their M cousins.

When I first started using R glass around twelve years ago, the line was only a few years past discontinuation. It was easy to find modestly priced lenses in near mint condition. Twelve years have taken a toll, though, as many of the lenses have not only changed hands more than once, but also may have had mounts changed and other modifications made, not always by the most qualified individuals.

As prices have risen and risks of ending up with a lemon have increased, companies like Cosina have increased quality and brought prices down on the more “clinical, modern” glass. So which to choose nowadays? Dunno, but if it’s the legacy glass, just choose carefully!

al SL2/Voigtlander 35mm f1.2 Aspherical III