Minolta introduced their manual focus lens mount in 1958 with the SR-2. The mount would be called a few things over its 40 year production run, including SR and ”Minolta Mount” but is now generally known as Minolta MD.
There were four versions of the SR/MD mount over the years, but all retained basic compatibility. This gave Minolta MD bodies a huge library of lenses to choose from without worrying about the compatibility issues that plague some Nikon and Pentax cameras.
In 1972, Leica and Minolta signed a technical cooperation agreement. Leica would share optical design techniques and secrets in exchange for Minolta’s electronics expertise. Among the many cameras to arise from this partnership are the Leica R SLRs as well as Minolta’s XE and XD SLRs. The Leica CL and Minolta CLE also grew from this partnership.
Most Minolta lenses are branded with the Rokkor name. From the beginning, Minolta’s goal was to be a technically-innovative company that offered excellent lenses for competitive prices. They were one of few Japanese companies that made their own optical glass from scratch. Their lenses are excellent quality and easily adaptable to most mirrorless systems.