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Old 01-27-2013   #1
FrankS
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Older version is preferred

Weird that I and some others as well, prefer earlier versions of things, over the newer updated improved versions. It could be human nature to think back on and idolize the good old days.

For me this applies to film/digital photography, film stock, cameras, music, motorcycles, stereo systems, cars. All of them from the era of my adolescenthood (and earlier).
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Old 01-27-2013   #2
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In this day and age when maximum profit is the main and sole driver behind the new products "new improved and updated versions" are not necessarily better. New products are not made to last any more, they are made to break down within a few years so you can go and buy "new and improved versions". It is one big rat race.....
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Old 01-27-2013   #3
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It takes a lifetime to fully savor a set of fine tools.
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Old 01-27-2013   #4
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It seems true in that some products are the pinnacle of their design and that further "improvement" is futile. Cameras are a good example of this as the modern versions are usually less bomb proof than earlier designs. I love my Nikon Fm 2n for this reason. I have just bought an F90x which uses different materials but still feels very solid and workman like compared to say a dslr.
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Old 01-27-2013   #5
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Frank, I have thought a lot about this.

It seems that there is a difference between just "old" and classic. I don't idolize the past at all. But I do take comfort in good and beautiful things such as classic cars, classic cameras, classic music including classic rock, and many things that some younger folks think are just "old". Old things I don't care about are in landfills or rotting in a field somewhere having been discarded long ago.

But there is a psychological/emotional attachment to many things and I savor those. Without some foundation, we humans are pitiful beings. Memories are part of it. Owning something now because you could not afford it in the 60s is also a part of it because we can now buy cameras we once lusted for...even the best classic cars can be bought for the price of a new Toyota.

There is a lot to this question about love of old things. It is a healthy condition and touches even to the preservation of families and relationships.

Roger mentioned "neophilia" which is quite the opposite and unhealthy. There is always a balance in life that we all strike with the fulcrum at various locations for each of us and it shifts over time. Me thinks my fulcrum shifted most recently as I resent the consumerism and materialism so rampant these days. But that is another discussion for another day.

These days I like old people because I know what they must have been through and we will not be able to have them around much longer. I think of them as classic, too.
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Old 01-27-2013   #6
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Definitely for cars. If you're a car collector, you always collect the cars of your youth. Take a look at all the baby boomers driving around in 1965 Mustangs and 1964 GTOs'.

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Old 01-27-2013   #7
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Me too. I'd add to that mechanical watches-manual and auto. For some reason I enjoy the tactile feeling of winding cameras and watches much more than the digital versions of both.
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Old 01-27-2013   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mackinaw View Post
Definitely for cars. If you're a car collector, you always collect the cars of your youth. Take a look at all the baby boomers driving around in 1965 Mustangs and 1964 GTOs'.

Jim B.
I had that thought this morning about cars...you might remember the kind where you could tell the year of it coming and going either by the bumper/grill or headlights/tail lights...before they got rid of the chrome and replace it with plastic and the design changed every year...
The kind you could work on without all the fancy electronics...roll up windows, engines you could actually see...
I still have the car of my youth...my 1969 VW Beetle...
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Old 01-27-2013   #9
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haha im probably one of the few younger people who will say i wish i would've grown up in the or 60's... my first car was a 66 chevelle but i had to part with it unfortunately. a 57 bel air or 68 camaro will be the car of my dreams though. for some reason i love 50's music and just find the thought of growing up playing ball in the street with all the neighborhood kids is awesome. now it's just school and work work work ... but hell i guess i just have to work hard now so i can enjoy these things when im older
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Old 01-27-2013   #10
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i am old but i can appreciate the here and now in most things...
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Old 01-27-2013   #11
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I agree, but also disagree. Say, newer Rikenon P 50/1.4 shines over older Rikenon XR 50/1.5 - so it depends.
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Old 01-27-2013   #12
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With some `things` yes. I think the terminology often used to describe gives a hint. For instance I refer to `old` stuff i like as being - made, i.e my autocord was made in 1963.It takes pictures quite well therefore it is usefull and worth looking after.
New stuff is -produced, i.e. my smart phone is produced and for all the stuff it can do, 95% of its use is as a telephone.All the `other` stuff the phone does has no real long term value, so it becomes a throw away item, lose it tomorrow? who cares.
I can appreciate the look and history of certain old cars but I am glad other people own them.Give me late model reliability,safety,economy and comfort.
The marketing folks know all this and that is why there are soooo many retro toasters on the market. Come to think of it there are a lot of micro 4/3 that the toaster designer/marketers have also worked on.
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Old 01-28-2013   #13
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Not me.
My dad's Mark II Jag was a dog in so many ways.
I hated LPs, wearing out just a little with every listening.
I love CDs & my late model Citroen.
Love the X100 and the M9.
In 25 years from IBM PC to a MacBook Pro:
Give me now or later any time.
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Old 01-28-2013   #14
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I prefer earlier version of Gallery on RFF
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Old 01-28-2013   #15
David Hughes
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Hi,

I think its about yearning for something you can't afford then finding you can many years later on.

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Old 01-28-2013   #16
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It all depends.

Older cars are beautiful to look at, but for driving, not so much. Modern cars are more safe and handle better. Not all of them, but most of them.

I used to have a huge record collection. Not any more. I now have a huge CD collection, which now may be headed the way of the dinosaurs.

After wearing out numerous modern office chairs, at a garage sale one day, I found a beautiful wood office chair made in the late 1940's. Paid 15 bucks for it. It is not even close to being worn out and it is simply a beautiful piece of furniture.

Cameras? I don't own one single camera from my film days. I was never a collector of cameras to begin with, having believed they were simply tools, but give me a modern digital camera any day over the old cameras I used so many years ago.

Working in a wet darkroom? Forget about it. The day I saw what I could do with my images on a computer was the day I shut my darkroom down after more than 40 years of operating one.

What I am trying to say is that quality workmanship and products really never go out of style. But quality improvements and innovations are part of what eventually makes quality products. Progress is always a good thing.
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Old 01-28-2013   #17
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Both, I think some new stuff work better sometimes and sometimes they don't ... it's hard to fault XP2 Super exposed through a Rigid Summicron.
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Old 01-28-2013   #18
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Jack Dell of MPP on the transition from the Micro-Technical Mk. VII to the Mk. VIII: "Sometimes you have to bring out new features, because the market is asking for them, but they're not always improvements."

Second interpretation of 'older is better': "I've been doing this so long I know more about it than you Johnny-come-lately peasants."

Third interpretation: What ain't there, can't go wrong -- and if it's old and simple, I can fix it, or get it fixed, cheaply. No electronic diagnoses on my 1972 Land Rover Series III. As as another Land Rover user wrote, "With a Series, the other vehicle is your crumple zone."

Fourth interpretation: A lot of older stuff was better made and reparable. This costs money -- money that many people are not willing to pay when they can buy MUCH cheaper (but sometimes rubbishy) alternatives.

Finally, yes, progress is always a good thing -- when it's actual progress, rather than gimmickry peddled to the hard of thinking. Who else has read J.K. Galbraith's The Affluent Society?

Cheers,

R.
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Old 01-28-2013   #19
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am interested old lenses for their look (some might say defects), secondly nice robust build and feel as well. camera bodies in this digital age, guess one just have to accept the plastics etc... unless Nikon makes FE3d some day
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Old 01-28-2013   #20
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For me, it's a mixed love of new and old stuff .

Someone above mentioned that it takes a lifetime to sort out the good stuff from the junk, and that's true.
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Old 01-28-2013   #21
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Older isn't better, just older. I prefer older motorcycles, but only specific ones-most are a bunch of crap compared to anything in he last 20 years.

Old cars are beautiful, but unless you are talking about something very special, they are a lot of old nails. Usually rusty nails.

Much of the "cheaping down" complaints come from an unhappiness with the effects of modern manufacturing that have allowed access to items that would otherwise be beyond economical reach.
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Old 01-28-2013   #22
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I'm content to be able to choose from a much wider range of "stuff" than I used to be able to. I use old and new(er) cameras, both film and digital, depending upon my mood. I do like well made tools / objects, but that does not necessarily mean hand made from years ago. I certainly would not want to see the vast majority of the cars made in the 60s and 70s (at least in the UK) make a return - drum brakes, crossply tyres and paper thin metal - no thanks. However, what I'm not so fond of is the do everything gadget (eg smartphone) - I know multi purpose has been around for a long time, but it does seem to be much more prevalent now, or maybe I'm just an old git.
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Old 01-28-2013   #23
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Nostalgia's a bitch.
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Old 01-28-2013   #24
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Like most people I think its a mix of old and new. Most certainly not every new version of something is better than the last.
I see this in all sorts of areas like the software Final Cut Pro which has many features cut out of the newer version and is certainly a lesser product.
Computer Keyboards are another who thinks the current 'chicklet' style is better than the old IBM 'clickety' ones for actually typing?
Is Windows 8 better than Windows 7? (harder to prove)

I think some older cameras were better than the products that replaced them, M3 to M4P would be one some here might understand older film emulsions although technically inferior to newer offerings had valued properties i.e Kodak's decision not to stop making Tri-x when Tmax was launched.

In the early 1980's Agfa reformulated Portriga paper not to make it better but to conform to EC regulations; later versions never reached the quality of the earlier ones.

It's not about being older but about perspective and experience IMO and sometimes you can see a product that's been put out not as an improvement but as a cost saving exercise.

So it's nothing to do with nostalgia really, I'm sure almost everyone can think of a product that has worsened over the years.
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Old 01-28-2013   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aad View Post
Older isn't better, just older. I prefer older motorcycles, but only specific ones-most are a bunch of crap compared to anything in he last 20 years.

Old cars are beautiful, but unless you are talking about something very special, they are a lot of old nails. Usually rusty nails.

Much of the "cheaping down" complaints come from an unhappiness with the effects of modern manufacturing that have allowed access to items that would otherwise be beyond economical reach.
Disputable. My most recent column in Land Rover World addresses exactly this, with the following example: My old Rabone Chesterman Silverline two-metre pocket steel tape is of a quality you can't find nowadays at any price. It would probably cost $25 or so if it were new -- but people COULD afford that $25 or so when it was new, 30+ years ago.

We could live better today, with better quality stuff, and more of it, than we had (say) 30 years ago. Instead, many people choose to live with LOTS more stuff, but of grossly inferior quality. They substitute quantity for quality.

Cheers,

R.
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Old 01-28-2013   #26
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Let me add watches to this I prefer the past. Current watches are too large, catch on your clothes. They have chronographs (?) that you can't read because they are too small.
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Old 01-28-2013   #27
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I like old Mods. Preferably those made in the 50's. Older versions can be
ok, but they're getting a bit long in the tooth. Pre-war Mods more often than not are un-coated, with sagging bellows and light leaks.
Except for an occasional curmudgeon, they're often quaint and fun to use.

60's and 70's Mods are lazy and unreliable, plagued with rotting seals and mullet hair cuts.

Newer Mods seem to have issues with wacky circuits and/or capacitors.
I believe they're only intended to last a short time before they break.
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Old 01-28-2013   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Conrad View Post
I like old Mods. Preferably those made in the 50's. Older versions can be
ok, but they're getting a bit long in the tooth. Pre-war Mods more often than not are un-coated, with sagging bellows and light leaks.
Except for an occasional curmudgeon, they're often quaint and fun to use.

60's and 70's Mods are lazy and unreliable, plagued with rotting seals and mullet hair cuts.

Newer Mods seem to have issues with wacky circuits and/or capacitors.
I believe they're only intended to last a short time before they break.
Dear Jack,

Whereas proper greasers were/are mostly pretty tough and reliable, and are STILL riding proper motorcycles instead of hairdryers, UJMs and appliances. They seem to vary mainly in the colour of their beards and the size of their pot bellies. Remember the old slogan: FLY THE FLAG -- HANG A MOD.

(Mod birds were OK though).('Specially when they found out about real men.) (Sorry, couldn't resist. Amazing how the prejudices of 40+ years ago can still surface, though, innit?).

Cheers,

R.
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Old 01-28-2013   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankS View Post
Weird that I and some others as well, prefer earlier versions of things, over the newer updated improved versions. It could be human nature to think back on and idolize the good old days.

For me this applies to film/digital photography, film stock, cameras, music, motorcycles, stereo systems, cars. All of them from the era of my adolescenthood (and earlier).

I won't believe you until you post a photo of the mimeographs you've tacked on to your town hall's bulletin board. And it better be pinhole.
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Old 01-28-2013   #30
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SOME older things are preferable. Not all. I included a list.
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Old 01-28-2013   #31
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i like some old stuff. i like some new stuff. i like some stuff in between.
some old stuff still is made as it was 50-100 years ago, such as single-shot, break-action h&r shotguns and rifles, at a price point the same as it was back then, figuring inflation.
most of all, i like simple, efficient stuff that always works, old, new, or in-between ...
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Old 01-28-2013   #32
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Many things today just aren't built as well as they were. Some things are built better, but generally consumer pressure for inexpensive cheap items trumps the value of a quality item.
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Old 01-28-2013   #33
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Hi,

What always amazes me is the number of things (mostly hand tools) whose design hasn't changed in thousands of years.

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Old 01-28-2013   #34
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probably because they were designed by people who used them generation after generation, not computers ...

knives and axes are good examples. this is the golden age of blade-making, i think, even though the basic forms still live ...
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Old 01-28-2013   #35
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Quote:
. . .I loved my 1952 MG, but let's face it, the car was a safety disaster, made of thin sheet metal nailed over a wood frame, brakes which just vaguely suggesting slowing down, and dangerous objects all around the driver and passengers (not to even mention a live oil gauge on the dash). . . .
Depends on whether you drive into things (new model) or around things (old model).

As a motorcyclist I've always preferred the old model. As for MGs, the TA was the purists' model. Well, among the Ts, anyway.

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Old 01-28-2013   #36
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. . . What always amazes me is the number of things (mostly hand tools) whose design hasn't changed in thousands of years. . .
Dear David,

Probably has, in most cases. I have quite a few 19th century tools that would be hard to replicate nowadays. Then again, some of them (blacksmiths' tools, for example) were made by the craftsmen themselves.

In fact, without wishing to be too aggressive, I'd challenge you to name (say) ten tools that hadn't actually changed much in even 500 years (1513), let alone 'thousands'. This is still more true if 'change' includes 'manufacturing technique'.

Even mattocks have improved.

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R.
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Old 01-28-2013   #37
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I also prefer the way that people were way back when. I've been told by friends that's a perception fault on my part, but I don't think so. I think products have changed over to the "throw away" design concept because people have changed as to what they expect from each other.

Kind of too philosophical, I know, but that's what popped into my head.
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Old 01-28-2013   #38
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Indeed, with motorcycles it is preferable to not run into things. Like deer.

I recently retired from riding my 2004 BMW K1200LT after running over a deer in the dark, going airborne for a loooong time and riding out a tank-slapper for a half mile. Seems the new generation Beemer saved me but if the headlight were better, I might have actually seen and avoided the freshly hit deer that was deposited in the road in front of me.

I don't think the HD would have been as kind to me. That motorcycle bit me more times than I like to remember...in broad daylight!

Like small British sportscars that rely on generally competent drivers and active safety rather than passive safety with electronics, airbags and such...motorcycles are inherently dangerous but they are so much fun.

A side note...I have avoided many obstacles and drivers pulling out in front of me in the 1951 MGTD, so I can attest to the active safety part with that wonderful tinkertoy of a car. It works! But, I would not necessarily like to hit something with that spear of a steering column pointed at my chest. I miss that car. Not so much the long list of Japanese cars we have owned (Toyotas).
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Old 01-28-2013   #39
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I also prefer the way that people were way back when. I've been told by friends that's a perception fault on my part, but I don't think so. I think products have changed over to the "throw away" design concept because people have changed as to what they expect from each other.

Kind of too philosophical, I know, but that's what popped into my head.
Actually, there is much truth in your "perception".
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Old 01-28-2013   #40
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Disputable. My most recent column in Land Rover World addresses exactly this, with the following example: My old Rabone Chesterman Silverline two-metre pocket steel tape is of a quality you can't find nowadays at any price. It would probably cost $25 or so if it were new -- but people COULD afford that $25 or so when it was new, 30+ years ago.

We could live better today, with better quality stuff, and more of it, than we had (say) 30 years ago. Instead, many people choose to live with LOTS more stuff, but of grossly inferior quality. They substitute quantity for quality.

Cheers,

R.
Sir,

Just as we have choices today, so we had choices 30+ years ago. Most of the measuring tapes of my youth were no better than what is available from the nastiest of sources today. Few survive..

And of course you know that $25.00 in 1975 is close to $100.00 or more now, through no fault of the merchandise.

Land Rovers, I love them..and keep my distance after many rebuilds and resurrections, especially after the day trip in the woods in company with a Suzuki Samurai opened my eyes-our current Jeep is much more competent, and unlike my favorite Land Rover, I have yet to crawl beneath to repair yet another thing that has decided to fail just as the temperature becomes unbearable!

Still love them...
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