Which version Hasselblad Planar to buy?
Hey guys. I recently got a 500C/M, and with it I bought a 150mm Sonnar. The lens is temporary, because the one I really plan on using is the 80mm Planar. But I'm curious: which version should I buy? I want to pay less than $400 if I can, but I don't want one that's really outdated or something. I'm new to Hasselblad so any help is appreciated.
Buy a CF or CB.
I believe parts for the older C lenses are no longer available.
I'll start and let othewr experts chime in. I've had several and will give you the pros/cons from my perspective.
C (chrome or black) Pro: small size, Bay 50 filters, cheap, superb machining,you know you're handling a nice lens. Con- early lenses were not T* coated, plan for a CLA
CFi -Pro: latest. Con: Front filter ring is not metal - I can't use Hasselblad or B&W brand filters without them digging in. I've switched to Hoyas.
If were to do it again, I'd go for the C black T* series. The size factor is relevant for me. YMMV.
The CF's and CB's will tend to cost more than your 400 $ target.
Shutter parts are no longer made for the C versions, but they can generally be CLA'd successfully.
For a C, you probably want the T* version as a minimum. The C lenses have interlocked f/stop and shutter speed rings which is convienient if you expose by EV, and you must press a release to move them separately. On the CF's you can press a button to lock them, otherwise they operate independantly.
Both approaches have their pros and cons. I think I prefer the CF scheme though. Switching back and forth is kind of a pain though.
If you buy an 80 that is the same series as your 150 ( C or CF,CB or whatever), then you won't need duplicate filters.
Not sure where you live, since your location is not shown, but KEH has CF and CB for under $600.
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Given the restraints, the CF-version would be the best choice.
Better ergonomics than the older ones, still more than good enough compared to the newer CFi.
And not as old as the C lenses (they are really getting on a bit now, the oldest being over 50 years old), yet 'young' enough for most to not have developed signs of age that would compromise function.
The CB lens is rather rare, and not quite as desirable as any of the others. The "B" stands for budget, and something had to give to make it (a tiny bit) less expensive. And that something was not just in the mount, but also in the lens design.
CB lenses were meant to provide an entry level to the Hasselblad system, and you were supposed to want to move on to the top level eventually. So they had to build in a reason for you to do that too.
(You can tell that by the the time they came up with that ploy, the spirit of Victor Hasselblad had already well and truly left the company. Victor would have only wanted to sell us the best he could. He cared about photography and photographers. No such two-tier nonsense then.)
And that meant that of the three available CB lenses, only the 60 mm CB was as good a performer as the one in any of the other series (simply because it was the same design put in a CB mount). The 80 mm CB is not as good as any of the other Hasselblad 80 mm lenses.
(In some markets there briefly were 4 CB lenses: an additional CB version of the 120 mm Makro-Planar complemented the set. I don't know if that too presented a step back in quality. It never had a chance to find its way around the world, since by then the CB marketing scheme had flopped.)
Obviously the CFE/CFi version would be the most desirable of them all. But also is the most expensive.
And finally: whichever version you decide on, remember that even a very young lens may have been beaten to death already And that even 50+ year old lenses might still have lots of life in them.
So carefully inspect and test the lens you are considering to buy.
Last edited by Q.G.; 03-22-2009 at 07:53 AM. Click to view previous post history.
I would go for a black C *T lens - especially when you don't have too much money to spend on your gear. You will be able to get a nice one for way under 400 bucks. Be sure, That the lenses are clean and without fungus, scratches etc and that everything works smooth. Even if the lomgest times are a little too slow, you can have a CLA'd done - with the buy and the CLA#d you should be under 400 - and you will have a lens, that will take great pictures the next decade. Good luck (there are always bargains - I 've got a 4/50 with only small cleaning marks that dont effect the pictures taken for less than 100 US-Dollars - so keep your Eyes open and you'll be on the safe side.
Just for input's sake
I have a 500c/m with an assortment of T* as well as older C lenses.
If your budget won't allow one of the later Planar releases, please make note I can find nothing wrong or unsatisfactory with results from the oldest Planar 80mm. Matter of fact, I'm delighted. Sure, parts are hard to come by, but if originally working upon receipt, you'll probably have no trouble. Durable machines, they are. A CLA adds peace of mind.
Thanks a lot for all the advice guys! I've got some time to settle on one so I'll choose wisely.
If you do find a lens put it on your camera to test it or have an ironclad guarantee. On criags list over here (LA) I've seen them for 350.00 ,80mm and body, some times mag also for 500C or 500CM.