Difference btwn ssc , sc , and newer fd lenses?

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I've had an AE-1 since new in '80. A few years ago, I added a Tokina 35-135 zoom and vivitar 155 flash. I've had loads of fun and success with this camera. Recently, while looking at used fd lenses, particularly the 50mm 1.4 ssc, I've noticed the sc and ssc designation. After you've finished laughing, I'd like to know what these designations represent. I haven't been able to find anything on any sights I've visited on the net.

Thanks. Mike / N9IVO pender111@home.net http://members.home.com/pender111

-- Mike Pender (pender111@home.com), January 07, 2001


Hi Mike. I teach for a living. There are no questions that ought to bring on laughter. Since I'm practiced at answering the same questions over and over (grin, though), I'll tackle yours. The earlier FD lenses with the silver breechlock ring were anti- reflection coated in two different "grades": SC was short for Spectra Coating, SSC for Super Spectra Coating. SSC was obviously the better coating. When the "New FD" mount came out around 1979--the mount many folks call a bayonet mount, with a release button--Canon began treating all the lenses with SSC, except the 50mm/1.8. Other differences: some of the New FD lenses also contain more plastic (varies by lens, from a little to a lot), many are lighter in weight, some have larger maximum apertures or smaller minimum. Some have different optical designs, some not. In general, the older lenses that used 55mm filters switched to 52mm. There is a lot of net discussion about the relative merits of the two mount variations. I've had no problems at all with the newer mount. There you go--way more than you wanted to hear!

-- Alan Swartz (swartz@tyler.net), January 07, 2001.

BTW, S.C. is a single coating while S.S.C. is a multi coating.

Most lenses used the same or better optical formulas when going from FD to New FD, but the difference is not great. And the 50mm f1.4 S.S.C. is the benchmark lens for many optical benches used for testing lenses.

The only reason to stadardize on one or the other is filter size. And if you don't mind using a step up ring, buy all filters in 55mm size and get the best deal on the lens you want.

-- Terry Carraway (TCarraway@compuserve.com), January 08, 2001.

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