Who started the white lenses?

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by shorty6049, Jun 1, 2008.

  1. shorty6049

    shorty6049 TPF Noob!

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    So I've heard it said that Sony's new (relatively) white 70-200mm f2.8 (and other sony tele's) stole the whole white lens idea from Canon. I've also heard it the other way. Throw nikon in the mix as well now. Not that it REALLY matters, but does anyone know who STARTED the whole white lens business??
     
  2. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    i don't' know who started it, but i know it's purpose, it's supposed to reflect heat instead of absorb it to avoid any adverse effects of use in extreme conditions.

    I think it might have been started by Canon, and I think it's more of a marketing scheme then anything. their 70-200 f/2.8L is white, but their 200mm f/2.8L is black. They're super teles are white and can be seen from space at sports events, thus letting everyone know that Canon pretty much dominates the sports photography arena.
     
  3. shorty6049

    shorty6049 TPF Noob!

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    The reason i'm asking, is because i've been told that sony stole the white lens idea from canon, but then i know the minolta brand (who was bought by sony) has had white lenses for a while, and i'm sure canon has as well. I just was wondering if it was more the case of- I wear a green hat to school, and everyone thinks its cool (this is a hypothetical situation) . then tomorrow someone who is more popular than me wears the same hat, and everyone associates green hats with them, and thinks THEY started the trend. I knew the part about heat and everything, just trying to get my facts straight i guess. (and hopefully use it against canon photographers ;-) )
     
  4. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    shorty6049..... You are not on my happy list right now!!!!!!;)

    I just spent an hour on the net trying to find this one out and I still don't know. Even the unreliable wikipedia doesn't have an answer. I believe it was Canon back in the film days, but I have no facts to back it up. Just from memory. I hope someone can find an answer to this one so I can sleep tonight.

    Edit... Ok I just found a Nikonian who indicated that it was Canon as a marketing ploy and because of their use years ago of inferior floride glass. Since then the glass has been improved and the white has been kept as one of the great marketing ploys in camera history.

    I'll buy the marketing ploy idea, even the Nikonians are interested.

    The first photo I find of a white lens is with the introduction of Canons FD line of lenses around 1976. http://www.canon.com/camera-museum/history/canon_story/1976_1986/img/new_fd_lens_l.jpg

    Hopefully some one will put this to rest. HELEN, WHERE ARE YOU?????????? :)
     
  5. shorty6049

    shorty6049 TPF Noob!

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    haha. sorry! I just saw someone on flickr say that minolta made white lenses first for THEIR film lineup, and thats kind of why i was wondering. otherwise i had assumed that it was canon.
     
  6. shorty6049

    shorty6049 TPF Noob!

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    wait, so what did the flouride glass have to do with the white lenses? were they trying to make people think the lenses were special because they were a different color even though they used the same glass or something?
     
  7. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    IIRC, Canon was the first to use a white (more like off white or putty) finish for their lenses. Prior lenses with either black or silver painted which mimic the chrome lenses of yesteryears. There was a time that chrome body and lenses where very popular among professionals (remember the Silvered Elan II?). Later, it returned to black being more popular (Black ELan 7). For a while it was a cycle.. back.. silver.. black. Lately, it has been black for a long time.

    Many say it was to "protect" some of the internal elements that were sensitive to heat.... I still say it was a brilliant marketing ploy.
     
  8. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Yep that was my understanding, it was to keep heat down and protect the flouride elements in the lens. The newer Ultra Low Dispersion glass doesn't need this but the white really stands out in the crowd.
    http://static.flickr.com/45/152386454_fa67e5da89.jpg
    That has Canon add written all over it. In white (off-white).

    Instead of "Where's Waldo" lets play "Where's Nikon" in this photo.:lmao:
     
  9. shorty6049

    shorty6049 TPF Noob!

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    anyone from the minolta crowd out there (or nikon) wanna chime in?
     
  10. RyanLilly

    RyanLilly No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Well I started to create a fake wikipedia article about the famous white lenses just for the hell of it, but I decided that maybe it was wrong(but still funny). There is enough misinformation on Wikipedia already.
     
  11. KD5NRH

    KD5NRH TPF Noob!

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    Then why not chrome the heck out of it and drive the Nikon shooters crazy with the glare? :mrgreen:
     

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