I always thought Schneider designed the leaf shutters. I'm sure there must have been consultation between Mamiya and Schneider during the design stage of optically incorporating a large LS into the traditional Mamiya lenses and is probably where the marketing BS get the Schneider design from.
However, I for one have never thought the lenses were built by Schneider in Germany and if anyone does (Fred), they must be pretty gullible.
Anyway who cares, Phase versions of mamiya lenses have always costed more and is to be expected that Schneider versions with leaf shutters would cost even more. Are they worth the extra is very debatable but that depends on the individual IMO.
Just for clarity sake - and I am speaking only of the USA here - Phase One and Mamiya branded versions of the same lens cost the exact same thing. Ditto for Schneider branded lenses, there is no difference in price whether they are distributed through Mamiya America Corporation or through Phase One USA.
In my experience, I have generally found the Phase One/Mamiya D lenses to be slightly higher resolving than the Mamiya AF lenses, and the same for the Schneider branded versions. More or less (except for a very few instances, like the 150mm), to a small degree (which may be a critical difference for some). And in all cases, chromatic aberrations are reduced, at least when compared to the Mamiya AF versions.
As a result, you could consider the Mamiya MF and AF glass a bargain, by comparison. Whether the new lenses are "overpriced" is for the market to decide. If they sell in good numbers, they are not overpriced. If they do not, they are. Anything else is only your own personal opinion on whether the price is worth it to you
. Whether you're compelled optically, the new lenses offer extended warranties or high speed Leaf Shutters, and the value for these features is encompassed within the new pricing, as well as any optical improvements. The market decides.
Whenever the topic of Schneider branded lenses comes up, "who makes the glass?" always seems to be the question. I would pose that the design of the lenses themselves, as well as the relative positioning, spacing, and angle pitch of the optics is the more critical question, and in that case, Schneider handles that part of the equation, all of the design, calculations, and measurements. If you don't believe that, then you're telling me the Schneider Product Manager is lying to me.
I think if it means so much to someone to know
, that they should take the opportunity to tour each facility and satisfy their own curiosity.