Quote Originally Posted by blockend View Post
I disagree. If you look at the photographs of Cartier-Bresson very few are highly resolved and a number aren't close to being in focus but they hang together just fine. The reproductions of Tony Ray Jones work (it's a long time since I've seen his originals on a gallery wall) exhibit an array of resolution and exposure issues and are all fantastic photographs.
In the end it's a philosophical issue as to whether 35mm is the correct medium to pursue absolute tonality and resolution or whether grain and processing differences intervene before lines per inch, for most viewers.
We are discussing two completely different things here. I was simply responding to your statement that the image you posted, could have happily been made on high-resolving Leica glass, whereas it is clearly technically deficient (based on the posted web image) compared to (small, 5x7in prints). This (and I repeat) does not mean it's a bad image artistically.

Many of the great images of the past (and present) have poor technical quality, but are favourable because of their pictorial content. I am sure that this will always be most important...

You, however, seem to be stating that their pictorial content causes them to have inherently good technical quality in a large print? That's as absurd as the (common) reverse sentiment: That good technical content makes a good picture.

But we digress: The intent of my post was not to discuss the artistic merits of certain photographs, but simply an interesting lens. Certainly, in the 1950s, nobody had access to a Leica M- or LTM-mount lens of anywhere near the technical quality as this modern Heliar lens. (I believe this to be easily demonstrable). I am pretty sure that careful testing might show only the Coastal Optics UV-VIS-IR 60mm f/4 lens to be optically superior in the 35mm format (sure the reference lens to date), otherwise, in all likelihood, the Heliar 50mm f/3.5 is "it" - and I believe that may have been the reason for it's creation by Cosina.

Still, even with lesser lenses, great photographers made great images. I really don't disagree with that. And that's what counts in the end!