Hasselblad 503CX Questions/Tips

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Phillip P. Dimor, Aug 24, 2005.

  1. Phillip P. Dimor

    Phillip P. Dimor Member

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    I am seriously considering buying into a small Hasselblad system.
    At first, I was eyeing the 500cm with standard 80mm 2.8 planar and a waistlevel finder. I know that they made these cameras for a very long time and even updated them into the 501 series..

    The 503CW sounds nice with the ttl flash and the possibility of adding that fancy winder grip (the IR trigger is what sold me) but really i'll never need that and it's $$$. So i've settled on the 503CX or a CXi if the price is right..
    Basically I'll be piecing it together over the course of a long time..

    Any tips for a first-time buyer and even first-time user? Add-on accessories?(that lindahl darkslide holder seems essential but which backs include a holder?) Anything I should avoid? I was also planning on picking everything up from KEH, as I could probably drive up there and pick it all out in the store..

    -phil
     
  2. winger

    winger Subscriber

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    I have a 503cxi that I bought used. My backs don't have the darkslide holder and I have to admit it could be useful. But I don't think I'd want to pay extra just for that. I just got my 2nd back (used) for about $230.
    If you get the basics, you can add better parts (like 90 degree prism finders and more backs) as you go. It gets pricey fast.
    If you can, shop around for used ones in good shape. An instruction book would be very handy (I don't have one, so I just learned as I went).
    I haven't used mine as much as I want, but it is great.
    You'll want to have a good and sturdy tripod and possibly a monopod, too. Even at 1/500, I like using the monopod to help steady it. I'm more likely to carry the monopod since it isn't as awkward to carry around.
     
  3. Jan Cornelius

    Jan Cornelius Member

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    I have the 503cx with the 50mm and 80mm CF(E) lenses. It came with the viewfinder as well as the pm90, after having used both I decided to sell the pm90 for the viewfinder is fantastic, I like to shoot at waust lenght it does improve your shots. As for a tripod you will need one to get the maximum result. I find that a Manfrotto 190 works well, it's transportable, light and will just hold the 503 with the 40mm lens. As for the TTL flash feature, I don't use a flash ever. I have 3 backs all with the holder (you will loose the darkslide, or at least misslay it often) Furthermore what can I say... it's a terrific camery, sturdy and dependable, and nowadays affordable too.... I'de say go for it
     
  4. Ed Sukach

    Ed Sukach Member

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    I use the 503Cx as well.

    One *very* useful things about the 503Cx and the "old" Pro-Flash was the ability to easily control fill-in flash. The TTL flash intensity is independent of the camera's exposure itself - giving GREAT flexibility.

    Example, and one I need to do more of .. A model in front of a spectacular sunset: Meter for the sunset and set the f/stop and shutter speed; Turn the Pro Flash ON while set at the proper film speed. The TTL system will provided a correct exposure for the model, and the camera will record the sunset correctly as well.

    I have the 503Cx Instruction Manual.
     
  5. dtomasula

    dtomasula Member

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  6. Phillip P. Dimor

    Phillip P. Dimor Member

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    Are the older chrome 80mm C lenses are almost as good as newer T* coated ones?
    Also, can you adjust the f stop and shutter speed without needing to fiddle with EV stops?

    I'm looking forward to using the waistlevel finder, but would also like a metered prism finder. Those Kiev finders, especially the newer ones; Do they work alright?

    After using a Pentax 645 and finding only one complaint (it's not truly modular) I am thoroughly excited and confused about all of my options.

    Thank you all again for the advice!
     
  7. Magnus W

    Magnus W Member

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    Almost. Take care to have a proper hood, otherwise the contrast goes down a little. Surprisingly little, though.
    You can adjust it, but there is some fiddling since the f-stop and shutter are locked together by default. To move either of them independantly you have to push a tab on the lens towards you while adjusting(C-lens).
    Local word of mouth has it that the Kiev TTL-spotmeter is less than precise. But take this with a grain of salt since I have no firsthand experience of this meter.

    -- MW
     
  8. Phillip P. Dimor

    Phillip P. Dimor Member

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    I just got my 503cx in from KEH. BGN condition for $205 w/o finder. I am very pleased with what I got, the only fault being some scratches in the body shutter foam. I also am waiting for a waist-level finder and an a12 back. I'm also waiting for an older 80mm C lens that looks to be in excellent condition. I'm pretty excited!

    I love the almost 'vacuumish' sound of the body shutter and mirror flapping!

    I think that the 80mm lens and the 120 makro planar and I will be golden!