September 19, 2014, 02:06:15 AM

Poll

Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?

Canon just isn't into "updating" lenses at all and wants lenses to keep their value
4 (5.4%)
Lenses that are in longtime production are cheap to manufacture and a cash cow
39 (52.7%)
A larger lens zoo creates logistical problems because it's harder to keep parts for repair available
8 (10.8%)
Until recently, Canon thought that people would like to have zooms and they are sufficient for the current sensor generation
14 (18.9%)
Canon has no clue at all what their customers want and just reacts to other manufacturer's releases
9 (12.2%)

Total Members Voted: 63

Voting closed: April 19, 2012, 01:28:37 PM

Author Topic: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?  (Read 8162 times)

Marsu42

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Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« on: April 09, 2012, 01:28:37 PM »
Leaving nuclear holocaust, floods and earthquakes aside - I'm wondering why Canon is so slow actually rolling out updated versions of their legacy lenses. There seems to be no short supply of patents, and they released several 70-200 versions. But: A weather-sealed 35L, 50mm without focus breathing or micro usm anyone?

If I knew, I'd probably be less surprises which of the rumored lenses actually arrive... if anyone has any other suggestions than the ones I came up with, please let us know.

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Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« on: April 09, 2012, 01:28:37 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2012, 01:58:14 PM »
I voted, "Until recently, Canon thought that people would like to have zooms..."  Although I don't actually think that's changes - Canon still thinks people want zooms, and I'm sure they think that because they can look at their sales figures and easily see that trend.
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Marsu42

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2012, 02:11:25 PM »
Although I don't actually think that's changes

I put in "until recently" because of the new primes with IS - but of course they are primarily made for video.

prestonpalmer

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2012, 02:35:33 PM »
I wonder if the Tsunami has anything to do with delayed lens production...???

DavidRiesenberg

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2012, 02:45:13 PM »
I'm not sure it is a fair assessment to say they are slow to update. In the past few years we have seen a steady release of updates and I have no reason to think the future will be any different. We can argue which lens should be updated sooner and which later but fact remains that Canon is releasing new lenses at what seems to me an adequate pace. The latest major being the super whites. Now, I would love to see right now a new 35L and 135L with IS but Canon decided those superteles are more important.

As for the 50 1.2L, I too am frustrated by the focus shift but overall I believe the feedback is very positive on the lens (I love it too, despite the shift). And it being a fairly new lens, I don't see them updating it too soon.

By the way, regarding the focus shift of the 50mm, how do you AFMA it? Do you set it for 1.2 or somewhere further back?

dickgrafixstop

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2012, 02:49:54 PM »
If it ain't broke, don't fix it. 

RichATL

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2012, 05:21:07 PM »
People underestimate the amount of technical skill and development it takes to create a lens. 
When you start adding "breathing", and other video considerations... the cost quickly moves beyond the pro/consumer range that is Canon's bread and butter.

Why people feel the need to "update" their glass when a new version comes out is beyond me.
Great lenses, should, last you your entire career if taken care of properly.

For example.. I just purchased a 28-70mm L about a month a go...
It's rubbish on a crop sensor...because it was created in 1993...before digital.
But now... on my 5d3, its incredible!

Canon went from having to update lenses for digital in the early 2000's, which meant lowering the quality a bit because lenses couldn't be designed soley for one format...(FF etc), to now having to re-evaluate their quality to match the ever increasing sensor technology.

I decided to hedge my bets (and save money), buy getting some well kept "old School" glass, along with some of the new hotness.

Here's one (albeit small) from the 5d3, and the aforementioned 28-70 2.8L

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2012, 05:21:07 PM »

Marsu42

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2012, 05:33:30 PM »
Why people feel the need to "update" their glass when a new version comes out is beyond me.

Rumor has it that Canon uses other glass/coating in for the digital generation lenses - so that would be one reason to "update". The other reason is that some 80s tech is just crappy today - talking of non-usm af motors... and Canon did update some lenses like the 24L but didn't do the same for the 35L for reasons unknown to me.

pwp

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #8 on: April 09, 2012, 06:28:27 PM »
I voted, "Until recently, Canon thought that people would like to have zooms..."  Although I don't actually think that's changes - Canon still thinks people want zooms, and I'm sure they think that because they can look at their sales figures and easily see that trend.

Yes, outside of a statistically tiny percentage of photographers who are completely "prime" focused and incorrectly perceive zooms as  optically and creatively lightweight trash, the vast majority of the market either chooses or very happily accepts the flexibility and very high performance of particularly L zooms.

Why are Canon slow to update older glass? First and foremost they are a business with obligations to the long term viability of the company and to shareholders. Pragmatic business decisions are being made daily, based on a whole raft of criteria, none of which would include what they may see as distant background noise from lists such as this one.

I didn't vote as the options were too narrow.

Paul Wright
« Last Edit: April 10, 2012, 04:08:06 AM by pwp »

wickidwombat

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2012, 07:10:31 PM »
i just wish they would hurry up and update the 50mm f1.4 already
I love the compact 50
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Aglet

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #10 on: April 09, 2012, 07:11:10 PM »
I voted, "Until recently, Canon thought that people would like to have zooms..."  Although I don't actually think that's changes - Canon still thinks people want zooms, and I'm sure they think that because they can look at their sales figures and easily see that trend.

Yes, outside of a statistically tiny percentage of photographers who are completely "prime" focused and incorrectly perceive zooms as  optically and creatively lightweight trash, the vast majority of the market either chooses or very happily accepts the flexibility and very high performance of particularly L zooms.

Why are Canon slow to update older glass? First and foremost they are a business with obligations to the long term viability of the company and to shareholders. Pragmatic business decisions are being made on daily, based on a whole raft of criteria, none of which would include what they may see as distant background noise from lists such as this one.

I didn't vote as the options were too narrow.

Paul Wright

it's all about the money
takes quite a bit of R&D investment to make improvements on lenses. Not so much the actual design, i think, otta be a way to have modern computer analysis help out in optimizing every aspect of any design.  But getting that design into a practical and manufacturable product at a cost that leaves room for profit is a whole different game.

Priorities are likely given to marketing mainstays, cheap zooms kitted with consumer class items, then some decent primes that actually sell in measurable amounts and those higher end pieces, like L class zooms and a few L primes.

I've been eagerly waiting for a whole whack of updated wide primes for FF. The old ones are just not up to expectations when more modern zoom designs can outperform many of them.  And that should just not be the case.  Hopefully the recent news on refreshed wide and standard primes will turn up soon and provide us with performance that meets today's expectations and tomorrow's technological advances. With or w-o the red stripe. (I'd also like to see some hot new primes for the other big brand too)

I didn't vote either - my reason's above.

FunPhotons

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #11 on: April 09, 2012, 08:11:44 PM »
  • Making these things takes specialized talent, and good engineers are hard to come by these days anyhow. They surely have a small team or two that does this that is already heavily loaded
  • Bringing a lens (or any device I can tell you because I do something similar) takes a huge amount of effort, engineering, OF (order fulfillment/manufacturing), marketing, learning products, etc ... just tooling up a new line takes a lot of capital
  • Big, old conservative companies go slow


peederj

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #12 on: April 09, 2012, 08:18:12 PM »
Leaving nuclear holocaust, floods and earthquakes aside

I LOL'ed!  ;D Not like you could be serious!  ;D


Unh.......

wait....  ???

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #12 on: April 09, 2012, 08:18:12 PM »

birtembuk

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #13 on: April 09, 2012, 10:23:16 PM »
I think we have become a bit of spoiled brats. The performance of zooms have tremendously improved over the last decade or so. But, drooling in front of our 24" full HD PC screens, we always ask for more. Canon have more than 70 fine lenses in their catalog. IMO, their zooms cover from 16 up to 400 almost flawlessly and the more so with their new 24-70 and 200-400. There surely will be touch-ups here and there, or maybe some silent improvements but overall, we are spoiled with choice.

For a number of us though, primes remain the photography grail. Correct me if I am wrong but price is not real issue here. I don't mind paying a load for a flawless 50/1.2 knowing that there's 1.4 or 1.8 for those who don't want to get in serious conflict with their spouse. Same applies to any other prime anyway.

Problem is that Canon is probably busy doing in the zoom compartment as this is obviously mainstream. But don't forget, once we are loaded - and we love it - with a truckload of L glass, for sure the last think we want to think of is to jump ship when the itching, sometimes, becomes a bit painful. Canon, do make us more captive customers ! Give us more of our addictive L drugs !           

Ellen Schmidtee

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #14 on: April 10, 2012, 12:13:01 AM »
People underestimate the amount of technical skill and development it takes to create a lens. 
When you start adding "breathing", and other video considerations... the cost quickly moves beyond the pro/consumer range that is Canon's bread and butter.

Why people feel the need to "update" their glass when a new version comes out is beyond me.
Great lenses, should, last you your entire career if taken care of properly.

I'm interested in updated primes for other reasons.

The 24mm f/1.4L is too expensive for me. The 24mm f/2.8 non-IS is just one stop faster than my kit lens, and it's IQ isn't good enough to make me buy it. If Canon made a 24mm f/2 USM with good IQ, I would buy it. If the new 24mm f/2.8 IS USM would be very favourably reviewed, I would consider it.
« Last Edit: April 10, 2012, 01:10:05 AM by Ellen Schmidtee »

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Re: Why is Canon so slow updating (legacy) lenses?
« Reply #14 on: April 10, 2012, 12:13:01 AM »