The state of the art in 1st and 2nd generation autofocus SLRs WARNING: Heavy Musing Ahead! If taken internally may cause nausea, headaches, and rashes. I'm a bachelor, my kid is off to school, and my pets have died. This pretty much defines freedom - as Janis said in "Bobby McGee" (well Kris, but Janis said it better). Looking back, I am somewhat nonplussed to find that I have got to this stage. It was just one lens to start with. Then ... Well, anyhow, although my heart may still belong to my beloved DDR cameras (from the "workers' and peasants' state"), I had got interested first of all in the history of EOS Canon cameras. That led to a long chain of reports on the Canon forum and later on Modern Film Cameras. At the very end I have listed links to these 'reports' and the early AF cameras more generally for anyone crazy enough to be interested in the series. I admire our colleague Eric Skopec who has actually published a book on his work with the Canon FD cameras (search for, but a link to Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Canon-Manual-Focus-SLRs-Collectors/dp/1463674686 ), but I confess I follow the idea of Ecclesiastes 12:12 "And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh." I spent my life in the "publish or perish" environment, and am still working on some professional projects, so I'm keeping my camera work strictly for fun, spiced up with the occasional flame war here on Photo.net. Even more than in academe, the heat of the argument is generally inversely proportional to the actual importance of the subject. So where are we? "We" assuming that there is anyone still with me on this one. I have now looked at a lot of old autofocus cameras and the manual cameras that preceded them. I may not have the expertise of Herbert Keppler who was able to say: "I am not shilling for autofocus camera makers. I'm simply stating my conclusions after having used most manual-focusing cameras for many years on an almost limitless number of subjects. And I've now tried every different AF SLR system with almost every sort of autofocus lens." (Popular Photography 1988-12). Still if you look at my history of posts here, I think you have to admit I should have some basis for judgment. So what follows here is a short and opinionated discussion (perhaps the actual discussion, unlike the introduction, will be fairly short - you can always hope).