MF If I'm going to do it ... (I bought a hasselblad)

Discussion in 'Equipment & Media' started by Hamish Gill, Dec 13, 2011.

  1. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    ... maybe I should go all out and just get a hassleblad?
    I've been reading about the V system ...
    Am i right in thinking that if i bought an old 500c pretty much any v series bits for the 50 years since they came out will fit?
    I could just buy the odd bit for it here and there ...

    Does this seem sensible or silly?

    I bought into the nikon "system" years ago and havent really deviated when it comes to slrs ... im wondering if buying into another system with it in mind to never really deviate seems like a good idea??

    Is hassleblad actually the best?
    would i be paying a lot for name?

    any other thoughts?
  2. Kev Pugh

    Kev Pugh Well-Known Member

  3. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    thats MF digital ... i really cant even begin to tell you how much i cant afford that path right now!
    but one day maybe ... and should that time come the v system blads seem to have quite a few available options for digi backs ... but realy thats not much of a consideration at this point in my life!
  4. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    Hamish, you are quite right, there are a lot of excellent older lenses for the V-System bodies and a C or C/M body with a 12 exposure back would be a very cost-effective way in. It is all compatible. Some of the shutter components for the older lenses are getting hard to come by but they are pretty reliable anyway. Parts for the bodies are plentiful and there are a fair number of independent service engineers out there if you ever need anything fixing. Having said that, these are very reliable systems. One thing to look out for is that the last 3 numbers on the back and its insert match - if they don't it means someone has muddled them up and the alignment of the film in the back might be a bit off.

    And there are digital routes too of course and secondhand P20 and H20 backs (16MP, 4 x 4cm sensor) from PhaseOne are getting quite affordable on the S/H market.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2011
  5. Dan Cattermole

    Dan Cattermole Dan Down - The Steampunk Womble

    Guys, Fill me in on this one.... whats Medium Format Digital?? :/
  6. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    Medium format digital is any digital camera that has a sensor bigger than my d3 ...
    There are a few "large format" digital options, but not many ...
    It's very expensive as the sensors in the cameras (or digital backs) are relatively speaking very big and the market place for such kit is tiny compared to that of the sort of kit I or you might use ...
  7. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

  8. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    Thanks Pete!
    What's the difference between a c and c/m
    Are there any others worth concidering or do they start jumpin up in price?
  9. Dan Cattermole

    Dan Cattermole Dan Down - The Steampunk Womble

    That H4D is INSANE!!!!!! ouch on the price tag though! lol
  10. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    I would go for a C/M over a C as they have a removable screen which means you can put in the brighter Acute-Matte screen rather than the original (it does make a big difference and this is really the only major difference). You can also use Beattie screens. Although these are brighter, the fresnel is quite coarse and the Acute-Matte is far superior in use. These came standard with the 501 C/M and 503 CW. For most purposes you won't see much difference going from a C/M to the more modern bodies; they have a 'floating' mirror which reduces vignetting on the viewing screen (the picture is unaffected in either case) - rarely a major issue, off-the-film flash and some electronic connection to later lenses, flash, backs. C/Ms are the most abundant on the market too and there are plenty of nice examples out there. My favourite lenses are probably the 60mm and 180mm but the 80mm is extremely nice also. The 250mm is also a stunning lens and is unusual in that it is sharpest at maximum aperture. Make sure you buy a T* coated lens at least and go for a CF if you can afford it over a C as you can get the shutters serviced easier these days. Any A12 back will fit to give you 6x6 on 120 film (again watch out for matching backs and inserts). A winding crank is preferable to the knob (but the crank is the most common configuration anyway). The body will probably come with a WLF. It is quite convenient to buy a quick release adapter for the tripod and the older stye are very cheap usually.

    I really like the V system for the mechanical perfection of the design, the quality of its build, simplicity and modularity and, above all, the magical quality of the Zeiss lenses.


    Hasselblad C/M + 80mm f1:2.8 Planar CF T* at f1:2.8, Ilford Delta (100 I think).
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2011
  11. Larry Bolch

    Larry Bolch Member

    Hamish, I can understand that there are other factors going here—as in film. On the other hand, I shot medium format any time that 35mm was not absolutely essential and I have done a whole lot of scanning. For image quality at any given ISO setting, I will use the RAW from my D700 over a 6×7 scan any time. The difference is not vast, while 35mm was surpassed a long time ago.

    Back in the day, I would muse that what I really wanted was an 8×10 that handled like a 35mm. Good for laughs among fellow shooters. Well, we are still quite a ways from that, but the D3/D700 is clearly in the medium-format film range. Certainly, you can scan the film to enormous resolution, but the key is to directly compare a decent sized print made from it along side a D3/D700 with equivalent focal length from the same viewpoint.
  12. Chris Dodkin

    Chris Dodkin West Coast Correspondent

    Hamish I know where there are a few kicking around unused. They're going for free as well.


    New owner collects...

    Last edited: Dec 14, 2011
  13. Andy Boardman

    Andy Boardman Trade Member: Bob Rigby Photographic

    Hi Hamish, the Hasselblad V system is brilliant & is compared to new prices as cheap as chips used, there are loads of them around as well and always a good supply.Getting repairs done is never really a problem as someone else said loads of indie repairers around to sort them out.You can put a digital back on them as well and say a 16MP back would be less than a top spec PRO Canon or Nikon body & give much better results due to the much larger pixels.
    I guess a 500c/m in great nick with a CF lens would be around the £500 mark compared to last new price of approx £3000, used A12 backs from around £50 upwards so they are affordable now, other lenses from arouns £200 upwards though bear in mind with this sort of kit you do not needs loads of it just 2/3 lenses & you cover everything you might ever need to shoot.
  14. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    Right ... I've taken a risky punt!
    I put a bit of an optimistic punt on this
    eBay - The UK's Online Marketplace
    And won it for £500!
    It seems a good buy but with the vague information I could also get stung...
    I realy wanted a prism finder and from what I can work out I seem to have for a good one?
    It also looks like its a t* lens ... But which one I don't know??
    And what back is that?
    Risky maybe! But hopefully it will come good!

    Any thoughts anyone?
  15. Dan Cattermole

    Dan Cattermole Dan Down - The Steampunk Womble

    your mad!! :D :D
  16. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    I agree!
    Thing is, I didn't expect to win at all!
    The last one I was watching went for nearly £900 ... I was starting to think I wasn't going to get anywhere ...
    Then just decided I'd bid £500 on a few in the last mins if any were still sub £500 ...
    This was the first one I tried and I bloody well won it!
    That finder looks to be £300 worth alone though!! :)
  17. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    Well it looks quite clean. Slightly unusual configuration to sell but nothing wrong with that. The lens looks to be the 80mm f1:2.8 C T*. The back is one of the later ones (with the dark slide holder) and, as I'm sure you know, the finder is the 45º metering prism. It has a wind-on knob rather than the crank. The speed-grip is quite nice but I have to say I rarely shoot off of a tripod these days so don't use one often.

    A crank is easy to source and seem to sell for £25 - £50:

    Hasselblad camera crank for 500cm | eBay

    A WLF will probably be a bit more but you wanted a prism finder and that indeed is what you got. Look forward to seeing some shots.

    Maybe a couple of tips just in case.

    Make sure the shutter is cocked (ie film wound on) before trying to remove the lens. If you get them out of sync, don't panic. You can recock the shutter in the lens by turning the key with a small screwdriver. Same for the body by accessing the key through the rear blinds.

    Make sure the back and the body are in sync before fitting the back (white and white dots or black and black).

    It will not fire if you haven't removed the dark slide!

    You cannot take the back off if you haven't fitted the dark-slide.

    Loading film is easy but make sure the key for the insert is in the open position so that the film 'grips' on the front of the insert are in the loosened position. Once the film is in and you have aligned the arrow with the marks on the insert, put the insert in the back. Make sure the dark slide is in and then wind the crank on the back until it stops (if it doesn't, the stop mechanism has stuck - this can get better with use or might need to be lubricated / adjusted). It is now ready to go and should show a No 1 in the window.

    My guess is that none of this will make much sense yet but should be clear once you have the camera in your hands.
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2011
  18. Dan Cattermole

    Dan Cattermole Dan Down - The Steampunk Womble

    Pete, Are you sure you know what your talking about with these... these... clicker boxes.... you know.. these camera thingy's??...... :p :D :D :D
    Fair play..... as they say............ you know your **** !! :D :D :D
  19. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    So is it an A12 then?

    Blimey, it's really starting to sink in what ive just done...
    Yes much of what you say is a bit of a mystery ... But I'm fairly good at getting a hang of these things!

    Yeah, I think I will get more out of a prism finder, that with the speed grip should give me the useability on the move I wanted when I decided I wanted a MF RF even if I haven't quite got the smaller size I was originally after!
    At least it's mine to break so I wont have that same worry when taking it out as I have with the mamiya :)

    I'm a little worried about the description of the lens saying the "front lens has some wear" but I assume that is just fairly standard minor rub marks to the coating...? Hopefully!!

    One way or another, all being well, does it look like I've done pretty well do you think Pete?
  20. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    It looks a pretty reasonable buy to me. It is probably an A12 back but they all look pretty much the same. I reckon by wear on the front (given that he says the lens is clean) it is the bayonet he is referring to where you mount filters, hoods etc. They often show shiny marks through the paint.

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