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What's the most expensive lens you've owned?

Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by summerkl, Feb 8, 2011.

  1. summerkl

    summerkl Veteran

    Oct 11, 2010
    Vancouver, Canada
    A couple related questions:

    Are you paranoid of damaging it?

    Do you think it was worth the significant premium?
    • Like Like x 1
  2. ricardovaste

    ricardovaste Regular

    Jan 29, 2011
    Not really sure... I guess it's that Tokina 300/2.8 a couple of years ago, that was about 850-950 in Sony a-mount.

    Today, probably the 21/2 Zuiko, but it's for sale as it's not really needed.

    Worth mentioning that insurance isn't expensive at all, and anyone with any sort of value in their equipment would be a fool not to own any... Unless you don't use your equipment & it's covered by your home insurance.
    • Like Like x 1
  3. deirdre

    deirdre Top Veteran

    Sep 26, 2010

    Until this past week, it was the amount I paid (around $700) for the Panasonic/Leica 45mm macro.

    But then I just dropped $1000 on an old Summicron 35mm. I really really (really!) hope I like it.

    Not paranoid about damaging it, no more so than I am about writing with expensive fountain pens. Stuff happens.

    As my friend Kyle Cassidy says: "The M6 is what I’ve always considered “my camera.” It’s the thing I’ve bonded with; it’s the one I’d grab in a fire. It’s been through experiences with me and to me it’s unique in all the world. To drive that point home, I took a metal file to it, with some great vigor, while giving a lecture at the New York Leica Users Group at the International Center for Photography, horrifying a room full of Leica owners. The point being that file marks on your camera and dents in your camera and chipped paint on your camera are the things that make it your camera and not someone else’s. I wouldn’t want a camera I couldn’t immediately identify in a pile. [...] A lot of times I’ll bring my M6 along even if I’m pretty sure I won’t use it because it feels like having a friend."

    The lens I've gotten the least use out of is actually the one that's my first Leica lens (50mm f/2 Summarit from 1951) and my second least expensive. It needs to go to the doctor and yet I'm hesitant to take it. So that's the one I have the most difficulty with "value."

    My 45mm, 20mm, 15mm, and 28mm are all used constantly. I'm sure I'll use the 135mm more once I get out there with it, but it's a new lens I haven't quite bonded with yet.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. summerkl

    summerkl Veteran

    Oct 11, 2010
    Vancouver, Canada
    I ask this question because I was looking at a recent sale of a fellow who was switching systems and he listed his setup and each of the half dozen lenses were 1000 euros or more. He was a "hobby" photographer - in total roughly 10,000 euros for the lenses and bodies ... Zoinks!

    My current 16-80mm Zeiss at $500 is the most expensive lens I've owned. It is at the upper end of the range that I would spend but it does provide a lot of the specs that will make it my most used lens.

    Is it worth the premium? hmmm - I would say yes as what I am seeing is what I am capturing ... the downside is I can't blame the equipment any more for a bad photo :) 
    • Like Like x 1
  5. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    I don't have any cheap Leica lenses...
    But I guess the Noctilux was the dearest.

    I got it when my daughter was borne in 73.
    It's the 1.0 1st version from Midland.
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Grant

    Grant Veteran

    Nov 12, 2010
    Lunenburg Nova Scotia
    All my lenses cost $49.95 that is what I have told my wife and that is the story I am sticking to.
    • Like Like x 3
  7. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    Grant, notice I didn't post the price....

    Now that you refreshed my memory, $50.00 sounds about right...
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Mayank

    Mayank Veteran

    Jul 16, 2010
    Canon 17-40 f4 L It was a lemon, I managed to return it well in time and bought a Canon G9 instead. Whew!
  9. stratokaster

    stratokaster Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Dec 27, 2010
    Kiev, Ukraine
    I had a brief period of interest in film just about 2 years ago and went through a great many of film cameras and lenses. I accidentally bought an Olympus OM Zuiko 90mm f/2.0 Macro lens together with OM-1n for $50. I later sold the combo for $300 not knowing its true value (about $800 at the time and more than $1000 now). It was one of the most stupid things I have ever done, I still regret it sometimes.
    • Like Like x 1
  10. deirdre

    deirdre Top Veteran

    Sep 26, 2010
    I'd expect so! Sounds like it's been a great lens for you.

    My least expensive Leica lens ran $90 (for the 135mm Hektor from 1960). It has really nice detail even at a 100% crop.
  11. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    My ex tells me that I got the Noctilux in 76 when my son was born....
    I think it was around $1500.00 back then and I remember in the early 80's buying the 28 Elmarit for $750.00 new.
    I had bunches of Leica and Nikon stuff from the paper I was working at. When they shut down, the photo dept head told me to take whatever I wanted....
    Obviously the choices were very easy.... (Grins with a secret smile)
    • Like Like x 1
  12. deirdre

    deirdre Top Veteran

    Sep 26, 2010
    Heh. :) 

    I really really want one of the new aspherical 28 Elmarits. They are seriously nice lenses and super-small.
  13. olli

    olli Super Moderator Emeritus

    Sep 28, 2010
    Metro Manila
    Tamron 17-50 2.8. Stuck it on my A200 and hardly ever took it off. $450. Kept the lens hood on at all times to protect the front element.

    I'm hoping Tamron will make an E-mount version of this lens asap.
  14. ajramirez

    ajramirez Hall of Famer

    Jul 9, 2010
    Caguas, Puerto Rico
    The most expensive lens I own (or have ever bought) is a Canon EF 70-200 4L IS. Paid about $1050 for it, if I recall correctly. Definitely worth the money; it's a beauty of a lens. Not paranoid about damaging or losing it, or any of my other gear for that matter.

    In terms of price, it's closely followed by the Lumix 45mm 2.8 for m4/3, for which I paid $899. While I believe it is overpriced, it is a beautiful lens.


  15. soundimageplus

    soundimageplus Top Veteran

    Jul 6, 2010
    A Nikon 70-200 f/2.8 VR which was also by far the heaviest lens I've ever owned. So in terms of price per ounce (or gram) it was probably really good value! I used it on a D3 and attempted to climb hills with it!

    I didn't keep it long as I have hopes of still being able to walk when I get older!

    It wasn't my finest purchasing decision.
  16. The Voigtlander 25mm f/0.95 for my Olympus E-P1 is the lens that cost me the most but the Sigma 150-500mm zoom for my Nikon is the most expensive lens I own - but I got it at a great discount so it worked out marginally cheaper than the Voigtlander. The cost of my lenses has ranged from too much to nothing and everwhere in between.
  17. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia

    Most expensive lens I bought was a used Sigma EX 50-500mm "Bigma" bundled with a 2x teleconvertor (still don't know why it needed that!), however my most valuable lens is a Canon 70-200mm f2.8L IS MkI which I picked up (also used) for less than the Sigma. I intend to sell the Canon but I'm waiting until the next financial year as the Australian Tax Office thinks that if you sell too much on eBay you are running a business and I have already done too much buying, trying, and selling this year I think!
  18. :rofl: Nice one!!

    My most expensive lens was £650 for a used Canon 24-105 f/4L used at £650. Awesome lens but huge and heavy. I would gladly pay the same again for a M4/3 equivalent which may be coming in the shape of a Panasonic 12-50mm f/2.8-3.5. I was going to save for a Carl Zeiss 25mm Biogon but at over £800 for a fixed focal length lens it's too much really. There are more lenses coming out in April / May from Panasonic and Olympus so i'll see what they are like as i want a super high quality zoom to cover 12mm - 50mm+ and be fairly fast.

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