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View Poll Results: Who has made the best lenses?
USA 43.96%
FSU (Former Soviet Union states) 21.98%
UK   00%
Germany (within any borders) 6362.38%
France 21.98%
Italy 10.99%
Switzerland 10.99%
Czech/Slovak Republics   00%
Hungary   00%
Japan 2120.79%
China (mainland) 10.99%
China (offshore)   00%
VietNam 10.99%
Canada   00%
Brazil 10.99%
Israel   00%
Australia 10.99%
Eire 21.98%
Netherlands   00%
Other 10.99%
Voters: 101. You may not vote on this poll

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03-18-2011, 12:34 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote
to each his own. basically anywhere from Germany, Japan, Canada, Russia would be good. although I don't think that Russia would count since I would think that their lenses are knock-off German design lenses.
Well, yes, but the question was "Who has made the best lenses", which is not necessarily the same thing as "Who has designed the best lenses". You can design a great lens, without the ability to make it to the design, and vice versa, of course.

03-18-2011, 01:12 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by RobA_Oz Quote
Well, yes, but the question was "Who has made the best lenses", which is not necessarily the same thing as "Who has designed the best lenses". You can design a great lens, without the ability to make it to the design, and vice versa, of course.
if that were the case, it would still be the same countries that I mentioned.
03-18-2011, 03:26 PM   #18
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Do Zeiss lenses made by Cosina count for Germany or for Japan?

And while Russian lenses were usually based on Zeiss designs, some are not - Tair 11 seems to be a Russian design.
03-19-2011, 03:35 AM   #19
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I went for Germany. Historicaly speaking, Carl Zeiss was delivering optics for German army and navy when Japan was importing everything from UK (that's turn of 19/20 centuries). German optics were always well regarded, regardless their purpose. Just look at the list of companies and it's quite clear IMO

03-19-2011, 04:12 AM   #20
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I'll go with France ( a bit of patriotism sometimes...)!
03-19-2011, 11:56 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Zav Quote
I'll go with France ( a bit of patriotism sometimes...)!
Angenieux ?
03-19-2011, 12:32 PM   #22
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My choice: USA. Ektars, yes, but also Perkin-Elmer and other suppliers of satellite lenses that can watch you pick your nose from several hundred miles up.
03-19-2011, 12:50 PM   #23
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I've got German and Japanese made lenses. Both are excellent and at the top. A coin toss.

03-19-2011, 01:06 PM   #24
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No one is thinking large enough




5000mm f/3.3 mirror lens

Hale telescope - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
03-20-2011, 10:06 PM   #25
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What lenses are made in Brazil, or Eire? They have votes!?
03-21-2011, 04:58 AM   #26
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If you mean historically then the answer has to be Italy, Venice basically defined how to make lenses... It's a moot point.

If you mean photographic glass, then the story is different, Germany and Japan probably coming first. But if you include specialty lenses, then the best products (for defence and security, for instance) come from North America, especially the Rochester and Ottawa areas.

Maybe I just know too much about lenses to give you the answer you look for.
03-21-2011, 09:50 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by bdery Quote
If you mean historically then the answer has to be Italy, Venice basically defined how to make lenses... It's a moot point.
I thought the first guilds of lensmakers were Flemish, but I could be wrong.

QuoteQuote:
Maybe I just know too much about lenses to give you the answer you look for.
No, this is *exactly* the kind of answer I'm looking for. This poll is about perception, not reality. How do we envision what a 'lens' is? Do we think (narrowly) of consumer cameras and other commercial optics ('scopes, binocs, etc), or do we expand to include premier surveillance optics, large astronomical glass, eyeglasses, et al?

If I'd asked, "Who are the *biggest* lensmakers, by volume?" the answers would probably include producers of lenses for automobile lights. If I'd asked, "How many lenses do you have?" how many respondents would include those on their IR remotes, CD/DVD players, other household devices? We are surrounded by hidden take-no-notice lenses. They've got us right where they want us...
03-21-2011, 10:09 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
I thought the first guilds of lensmakers were Flemish, but I could be wrong.
I believe they improved the process tremendously, but they came after the Italians. You're making me doubt however.
03-21-2011, 10:20 AM   #29
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The oldest lens artifact is the Nimrud lens, which is over three thousand years old, dating back to ancient Assyria
Nimrud lens - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

not up to pentax standards though

also Persia, where the learning that allowed the italians to make early reading lenses then specs came from

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ibn_al-Haytham
03-21-2011, 10:29 AM   #30
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not to mention he also built the first successful Camera obscura, and explained it's workings
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