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  1. #11
    mhulsman's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info.

    I have all 3 extension tubes, so it is worth to try other lenses.

    Mike.
    --Mike

  2. #12
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    The full set has four extension tubes.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

  3. #13
    jmxphoto's Avatar
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    From what I understand, the Bronica S2's had a design flaw where certain gears in the "mess of gears" on the crank side would fail and need to be replaced on a more than normal basis. This comes from my Grandfather in law who fixes watches, clocks, and occassionally cameras. He's worked on S2's before and doesn't have a high opinion of them. Now the S2A supposedly fixed some of the problems, but I also read somewheres that they just used a stronger steel on the gears and they'll still wear out it just takes a little longer. Personally I have a SQ-A and have been very happy with it. FWIW if you're looking for an older 6x6 SLR, don't skip over the Kowa's.

  4. #14
    Trond's Avatar
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    I've heard and read several places that the problem with the S2, was that some gears would just break if winding the camera to hard. According to a statement from Bronica, the S2A introduced a overdrive protection, in addition to other improvements in the winding mechanism, to deal with the problem.

  5. #15

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    I have an S2A, and it is an outstanding camera. It is extremely rugged, and the optics are the best you are likely to find. A slight quibble is that the prism finder (optional) is dark and hard to see through, especially if you wear glasses. The most important problem is its age. It is very difficult to find accessories for this camera now, and wear is likely to be taking its toll. I suspect service may also be a problem. I had to rebuild one of my film magazines myself (not a big problem). An advantage is that you can sometimes find pretty complete outfits at very low prices.

    I would not give up a working Mamaiya to get an S2A, but I would certainly buy one as another camera.

  6. #16
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    The S2a has steel instead of brass gearing, an overwind clutch, and other improvements. That said, there are lots of S2's out there that haven't been handled by gorillas and should be fine as long as you don't force anything. Then again, S2a's are cheap, so there's no reason not to get one instead of an S2.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

  7. #17

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    I used to use the Bronica S2a....

    The Nikkor 75mm lens (standard) is an incredible performer. The S2 and S2a are virtually identical, but there is a weak gear in the transport mechanism of the S2, which was improved in the S2a. I had an S2 and S2a. I had the gear mod done on the S2 by Bald Mountain in Ca... this was years ago. The Zenzanon lens are also very good. I would still be using that kit... 2 bodies, 4 lenses, prism and film holders today, if it had not been stolen out of my car about ten years ago. Lock em up.

    I also agree with the comment on the Kowa system. I had a Kowa Six and a couple of lenses. I was always tempted to get the Kowa Super 66 with removable backs. Kowa glass is superb. The Kowa is a big camera however, so when the S2a's disappeared, I went to the SQ-A. The leaf shutter in all the Bronica lenses is a real plus, and the lens prices have come down enough that buying all your lenses with shutters is not as forbidding pricewise as when they were new. The Bronica, as a result of the in-lens shutters, does not suffer from the vertical shutter motion in the body. Using mirror lockup and the in-lens shutter with a cable release means NO camera induced shake.
    Last edited by larsco2002; 06-13-2008 at 10:59 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  8. #18

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    I have an EC TL, very satisfied. I am wondering to what extent these are weathersealed. Just used on the beach in Belgium during stormy weather.

  9. #19
    alinCiortea's Avatar
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    I also share the opinion that the S2a is a beautiful beast. It is loud, it is heavy and you need to turn the crank four times (with a very weird 'clank' at the end), but it's seems to have a soul of its own.

    I'd like to know if Kiev 88 focusing screens (such as this one) can be fitted in the S2a (and if they need to be modified, what would this require). The stock ground glass is a bit dim and I found myself staring to tears at times (although my sight is rather good).

    I apologize if I'm hijacking the thread but seeing David active here I thought I could get some answers that might be of interest for other S2a owners or pretenders

  10. #20
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    I've adapted a Kiev TTL Spot prism to the S2a, so I suspect that a Kiev focusing screen might be about the right size, but you might have to cut it down a bit. One question is where the focus plane is in the screen. In the S2a, there is a plastic fresnel lens facing upward that rests in a well below the focus plane, and then the groundglass sits on rails, matte side down, and this is where the focus plane is. There are springs pressing up on the groundglass, and there is a frame with polyurethane foam pressing down on the groundglass. When this foam deteriorates, you have a focus problem, but that's another story (an easy fix, but it seems to happen to all old Bronicas).

    So, if the Kiev screen has the groundglass surface on the bottom and the fresnel lens on top and if it is large enough to sit on the rails that support the groundglass (perhaps after cutting it down slightly), then it could work. If the fresnel is on the bottom, though, then you would have to do something like cutting a rabbet all the way around the groundglass, so that the matte surface inside this one-piece groundglass/fresnel screen would be in the right plane.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

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