Hasselbland 500CM or 2000FC
I'm looking to start in MF. My head says buy a Bronica, my Heart says sod the expense get a Hasselblad.
Looking at used prices, the 2000 series seem to be cheaper than the 500 series, especially the lenses, presumably because the 2000 lenses have no shutter.
What are peoples opinions on the best choice. Cant say I will use flash often so the benefit of high flash sync with leaf shutters is irrelevant. And finally are Hasselblad's really worth the extra over a Bronica?
I haven't made direct comparisons between current models of the Bronica and Hasselblad, but I did own the first model of the Bronica way back when. What a clunker. But, my impression is that more recent models have closed the gap considerably. I still believe the Hasselblad is the superior system, however. Whether that's worth the premium is up to each individual.
As to the 200 vs. 500 series question, I think it depends largely on what and how you shoot. There are advantages and disadvantages both ways. Personally, I lean toward the 500s because of the additional flexibility of in-lens leaf shutters, and the history/manufacturing experience behind that model.
[COLOR=SlateGray]"You can't depend on your eyes if your imagination is out of focus." -Mark Twain[/COLOR]
Rio Rancho, NM
I asked myself the same 500 vs 2000 question and consulting with a Hasselblad repair tech brought the answer very fast : the metallic sheet focal shutters of the 2000 series hasselblad cameras may be relatively resilient, but if a failure occurs, then you're in trouble, because space parts are generally no longer available, so you have to canibalize another body to repair your broken camera...
The 200s, with cloth shutters on the other hand are much better, and like other focal plane hasselblads, allow for the use of wide apperture lenses like the 50 f2.8, 110 f2.0 and 150 f2.8, as well as the Russian Kiev lenses that can be adapted. Those lenses are not cheap, in general...
The basin Hasselblad workhorse is still the 500C/M, and you can upgrade later if need be...
(as for bronica vs hasselblad, I'll place my vote on the swedish cubes any day...)
Patrick Jan Van Hove
"The heart and mind are the true lens of the camera"
, The Ultra-Large-Format photography homepage
Swedish cubes? I love it! Also, I'll second everything you just said, PJ. I'd go with the 500C/M, I have one and I love it.
Just because you're not paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you.
I don't know about Bronica. I have a Hasselblad 2000FC and a 500ELM (which I haven't used yet). I love the 2000FC, but know that one slip and the shutter is gone. So it depends on how much cheaper the 2000FC is compared to the 500c/m. If I were buying, I'd get the 500c/m. As far as Bronica vs Hasselblad goes, I love my Hasselblad.
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If you're doing this for professional reasons, then crunch the numbers and decide which is the better use of your available resources. Do you need something that one system offers, but not the other? What is your kit likely to be in two years, and how much will that set you back? (Bronicas can be cheaper out of the gate with a basic system, but some add-ons can be outrageously expensive.) Are you willing to stick with used equipment for your livelihood? Will the cachet of using Hasselblad help your business? You get the idea...
On the other hand, if you're doing this for the love of photography, then follow your heart. You'll be happiest that way, and more likely to get out there shooting with a camera you have more than a simple intellectual attachment with. (This is what I've done in every format from 35mm to 8x10, and it's worked very well for me.)
Film is cheap. Opportunities are priceless.
I have 3 - 500 series Hasselblads -- I have owned and destroyed 1 - 2000. They are a very nice body but a very expensive repair item.
You cannot go wrong with the 500 C/M
I pretty much have to agree with what's already posted here. Note that even Hassey the comapny has picked the 500 series over the 200 series (newer version of the 2000 series), from my understanding. They will continue development of the 500 system and the their new H1 cameras going forward.
Bronica Vs Hasselblad
I do not own either camera at this time. I have owned a Bronica SQ and a Hasselblad 500c, 500cm, and 500 ELM. I have also seen the used prices on these goods over 40+ years. Hasselblad gets my vote. I understand that currently Hassleblad can be had relatively inexpensively. I am not a fan of the Compur shutters if they are to be used in cold weather. They have a tendency to develop problems when used in very cold weather unless winterized. I owned Hasselblads during the 70's. I had 3 instances of the shutters hanging open for me in cold weather. During the 70's this was a $50.00 repair charge by a local independent firm. I have not experienced the CF shutters and therefore offer no opinion of them. If you will not be using the camera in cold weather then I believe the you would be satisfied with the Comput shutter. I have used both T* and non T* Planars..I do not know if the non T* lens was actually multi-coated or not but there seemed to be very little difference. I should add that I always was using a compendium lenshood.
I have no personal experience with the latest bersions of the Bronica lenses. I had the regular version of the 80mm. It was acceptable but not in the class of a Planar.
I should also mention the I am very much predisposed to Zeiss lenses and I may not be an Unbiased judge.
What can I say except to wish you "Haselblad Happiness".
Ok, the Swede comes barging in!
I have a 500C/M with CF120/4 and CF60/3.5 which I am very pleased with. If you decide to go for the 'blad, make sure to check the optics carefully. Avoid C- and CT*-lenses, service agents are running out of parts for these. While they can be found for peanuts, I wouldn't recommend them. The C-lenses are getting pretty old by now, the last were produced during the early seventies, then replaced by the CT* (in -72 I think) and by the first CF's in -82 (approximately). The housings are generally easier to serve and requires only a CLA every 5-10 years, ask the seller if it has been done recently. On the magazines, remember to check the dark slide insert as it might loosen up and fog the film. It is a simple thing to replace, I had my magazine done for $25 including parts but you can get the parts and a small screw driver for $10 to do it yourself.
Good luck with your camera, whichever you choose!