The lens is generally the most expensive and least understood part of any camera. In this book, Rudolf Kingslake traces the historical development of the various types of lenses from Daguerre's invention of photography in 1839 through lenses commonly used today. From an early lens still being manufactured for use in low-cost cameras to designs made possible through such innovations as lens coating, rare-earth glasses, and computer aided lens design and testing, the author details each major advance in design and fabrication. The book explains how and why each new lens type was developed, and why most of them have since been abandoned. This authoritative history of lens technology also includes brief biographies of several outstanding lens designers and manufacturers of the past.
"This book is well illustrated, clearly written and a most useful source of knowledge about lenses. It will interest historians of photography, camera collectors and amateur photographers. For any first-time would-be buyer of a good camera, it will prove an invaluable aid." --NEW SCIENTIST "[Kingslake has written] an instructive and entertaining account of the development of lenses from the earliest simple double convex lens to the meniscus, to doublets and triplets, achromats and apochromats and even aspherics, and including the most elaborate telephoto and zoom lenses used today." --John N. Howard, OPTICS NEWS "Kingslake has done an outstanding job of writing a readable book.... Rudy Kingslake is today's first name in optics. His new book belongs in every camera collector's library." --SHUTTERBUG MAGAZINE "Rudolph Kingslake is eminently qualified to write this book...It is...a rich source of references to books, papers, and most importantly patents, where much of lens design knowledge is archived." --JOURNAL OF MODERN OPTICS