I am just curious here, since quotes like this always seem to crop up in threads like this:
Something tells me the price is gonna be double for new EF 135 f/2L IS
Does everyone really, truly, honestly believe that the current street price of currently released lenses is the same as the original manufacturers suggested retail price when those lenses were first released? Does everyone truly, honestly believe that the introductory MSRP of a brand new lens should or even could be exactly the same as the current street price of the item it may be replacing? Does no one understand that R&D costs a hell of a lot of money, and those costs need to be recouped by sales at the introductory price when a new product is introduced to the market, before it's price can reasonably be reduced? Does no one understand that over a period of decades, simple inflation will naturally increase the introductory MSRP of a new product above and beyond the MSRP of the product it is replacing when it was first released, thanks to the devaluing of our lovely fiat currencies?
Why does everyone complain about the higher introductory prices of new lenses or cameras? OF COURSE THEY ARE MORE EXPENSIVE. That's how things work! If you want manufacturers like Canon to continue improving, to continue making technological advancements in optics, sensor technology, camera ergonomics, frame rates, and other features...WE pay for it. Research and development costs for something like a new lens design that is actually better than the GOOD lens design it is replacing runs in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Private sector corporations like Canon aren't funded by taxes...they are funded by the consumers who purchase and use their products. So OF COURSE the price of a BRAND SPANKIN NEW lens like the 135L is going to be more than the old 135L. Thanks to inflation, OF COURSE the introductory MSRP of that brand spankin new lens is going to be higher than the introductory MSRP of its predecessor...your dollars are WORTH LESS today than they were back then.
Please, stop bitching about the prices of newly released products if you don't understand some of the basic economic fundamentals that underpin those prices. It has gotten SO INCREDIBLY OLD now.
Wow. That's pretty harsh, given that you are making some assumptions yourself that from an economics standpoint might need further evaluation. Most things have become cheaper over the last several years. And if you leave out gas price fluctuations (a whole other can of worms) you may see that most of the Western world is actually faced with DEflation - despite the fact that our governments have increased the money supply to unprecedented levels.
But with everything that is rather complex some items for sometimes unclear reasons have become more expensive or stayed pretty much the same. Optical stuff seems to be one of these areas. Not sure what the camera manufacturers are thinking. Maybe they can charge more for lenses now because cameras have come down to a more reasonable level after the "digital revolution" is everyday stuff now. Other lenses may come down again once the supply-demand cycles normalize things again. I don't really see spending over $2000 on a 24-70 even if I had money sitting around. The current 135L is a great deal in my opinion and (don't tell Canon) I might have spent a few bucks more even if necessary. But not a whole lot more. And I rather have it without IS anyway. Metal barrel and everything? Yeah, I'd pay a little extra for that. The optics are fine as they are. That's actually true for all their lenses. I wish they were of even better built quality.
You may not quite understand the kind of optics that are going into Canons newer generation of lenses. Canon's older generation of lenses that use optical designs a decade old or older are not always capable of resolving the kind of detail modern high-density sensors can. Canon's 18mp APS-C sensor is capable of resolving more detail than most of their middle-grade L-series lenses can offer. Only the top few superteles, such as the 300mm f/2.8 L II and it's immediate family, could really resolve anywhere close enough to fully take advantage of a 4.3 micron sensor. As sensors push into 40mp or even 50mp FF territory, and 25mp to 30mp APS-C territory, we are going to need lenses that perform at a much higher optical level.
Canon has produced a variety of innovations either not found anywhere else, or found only in one or two competitors. Nanocoatings on lenses (SWC), for example, which uses a fairly precise coating of nano-scale wedges on the lens, rather than a multicoating, required a considerable amount of R&D to develop. The only other manufacturer that has something similar is Nikon, with their Nano Crystal Coat, which uses nano-scale spherical grains rather than wedges. Canon developed a way to grow near-flawless fluorite crystals for use in lenses as an alternative to UD glass (as its ability to reduce dispersion is superior to UD). They have been continuously developing their fluorite crystal growth, and are capable of producing very large, truly flawless crystals in a large enough quantity to start mass-manufacturing supertelephoto lenses with multiple fluorite lenses. The use of multiple fluorite lens elements is one of the few key factors directly responsible for the extremely high cost of Canon's new line of supertelephoto lenses, along with more expensive and far lighter materials for the lens barrel. Canon has also put in a tremendous amount of R&D into not only proving diffractive optics could actually be used to counteract CA in lenses, but developed it and produced several lenses using the technology. They have continued to develop diffractive optics, and have greatly refined their processes and designs such that they now have somewhere around 6-8 new DO lens design patents using far superior DO designs with smaller gratings, multi-layered gratings, etc.
All of that R&D is funded by the sale of their own products, and as such it is no surprise that newly introduced lenses carry a hefty price tag...whether they actually directly benefit from the technological advancements or not. Personally, I chose and continue to choose Canon because they never seem to stop pushing the envelope with their optical research. They have brought more newfangled lens designs and lens technology to market in the last decade than any other manufacturer, including Zeiss. That is something I appreciate, and I'm not about to diss Canon for selling their products at high prices to fund it all, so long as the market can bear them. (Which, so far, it certainly seems to...I want to buy myself a either one or both of the EF 300mm f/2.8 L II and EF 600mm f/4 L II, and I can't even find them in stock anywhere. Whenever I get a notification from the likes of B&H or Adorama, by the time I find a computer log in, and try to buy, they are already sold out. I've never been one for backordering things...but I may just have to.) If the market can bear a price, and a product is in high demand, then it seems as though the price is fair