Bronica SQ System - PS vs S lens

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by David47, Jun 15, 2010.

  1. David47

    David47 Member

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    I've been gradually assembly a Bronica SQ-A system together from various parts of the world, and have acquired an 80mm f/2.8 PS lens as a starter, but will start looking at other lenses in the future ...

    The questions I have are; what is the difference between the earlier S and the later PS lens, besides the bank balance ?. Also, from those who have either or both, are there noticeable/notable differences between the two ?

    I've trawled the Forum topics because I did see a succinct description of the difference between the S and PS from someone before - but these things have a habit of disappearing more often, the older I get. Strange thing that ....

    David47:smile:
     
  2. heespharm

    heespharm Member

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    ps is better coated and noticeably sharper
     
  3. Paul Green

    Paul Green Member

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    Like heeppharm says the PS's are better coated, but I can't tell the difference when looking at prints made by either.
     
  4. David Henderson

    David Henderson Member

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    Better coated and not noticeably sharper.

    Half stop detents on the PS apertures, whereas the S series had only full stop detents. Not a big issue though since the aperture actually changes as soon as you move the ring so you can set the half (or third or whatever) stop by eye.

    On the 50mm lens the older S version uses 67mm filters whereas the PS uses a 77mm filter that you don't need for anything else Bronica. This, and the fact that I can't see any difference in sharpness or colour, explains why I use a 50S alongside an extensive array of PS lenses.
     
  5. Keith H

    Keith H Member

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    I have both a PS 80mm and S 50mm and 150mm lenses, they are all sharp and have good contrast in normal use. I find the lenses to be more prone to flare than say Zeiss T* ( sun or other bright light source in the image) but the difference between the PS and S is less than the difference seen if using a cheaper UV or skylight filter. Thought I have to declare a dislike of 'protection' filters unless conditions dictate.
     
  6. NJS

    NJS Member

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    I think that with most of the lenses difference is barely noticeable. I think the main difference is 50mm lens, I think design in PS version have changed with bigger front element, due to vignetting in S version. I have mostly PS lenses except 105/3.5 S and I think coatings in PS lenses have richer color rendition, my limited experience in comparison tell me that S lenses have colder color cast. As for sharpness I can not speak, all of the lenses I use are very sharp wide open and get even better when stopped down - most importantly diffraction is almost unnoticeable pass f/11, at least I haven't been able to notice it in bigger enlargements, even at f/16 and f/22.
     
  7. CGW

    CGW Member

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    I suspect a controlled blind test of S/PS shots would be inconclusive. I recently got a pretty 105/3.5 S that's subjectively "better" than the 80mm PS/B that came with my SQ-B kit--"better" meaning simply a "look" I like. Guess the difference really depends on your enthusiasm for hair splitting-vs-enjoying your Bronica.

    Here's a quick SQ system overview with a good deal of useful info:

    http://www.ayton.id.au/gary/photo/photo_BronicaSQ.htm
     
  8. PhotoJim

    PhotoJim Member

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    My 50 is a PS; my 80 and 150 are S. I'm happy with all. The 150 S is f/3.5 and the PS is f/4, but this isn't terribly significant. I bought the S because it was markedly less expensive than the PS and I was assembling the system on a budget.

    The newer I backs, though, are worth buying over the non-I because the ISO dial on the older non-I back is much harder to change and read if you have a prism finder. With a waist-level finder it's not an issue.
     
  9. David47

    David47 Member

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    Many thanks to all contributors. The info you've given me is very helpful, and now I feel I can make some informed choices. The general difference for the PS seems to be in lens quality, 1/2 stops and elimination of vignetting for the 50mm lens (read that on the link from CGW) ... other than that, the end item print (and therefore neg) seems to be about the same with either lens.

    Keith H and and NJS, your pictures on the links are spectacular. Just proves that film is still alive and very well indeed.

    So now I can go and enjoy my SQ-A .... and the Mamiya RB67 Pro-S lead brick that lives in the same closet.

    David
     
  10. NJS

    NJS Member

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    david, thanks for your kind words.

    so, basically there isn't much difference, mostly not worth the extra buck. However - lens coatings only matter with wide angle lenses which design consists of many glass elements therefor making it more possible for rays to get 'lost' or 'mixed-up' and then cause some abberations and such, so having better coatings in WA lens helps there.
     
  11. David47

    David47 Member

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    Thanks NJS. What you say makes sense. Much appreciated.

    David
     
  12. Keith H

    Keith H Member

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    Thank you David, TBH my Bronica does not get the regular use it deserves, I must make an effort to use it more often.
     
  13. tommy20

    tommy20 Member

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    What does it mean "W/o W.l.f." for a Bronica Sq-a Slr Body? www.Adorama.com is trying to sell a used Bronica without giving its original image and detailed specification. Can anybody help to me please? Many thanks.
     
  14. DWThomas

    DWThomas Subscriber

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    Without waist level finder, which unfortunately is an item typically more expensive than one might expect.

    Back when I was looking, I got the impression the optical improvement in the PS series was most noticeable only in the widest and longest lenses. But I have bought PS series partly because they are likely to be a bit younger and might have more life left in them.