I always thought that I wanted a Hasselblad.
For the last 6 months to a year, I have been having this mental sparring with myself. To Hasselblad or not to Hasselblad? I kept telling myself, "Self, you have a perfectly good medium format kit. Pentax 6x7, 45-105-150 lenses, filters & polarizers, a bag to hold it all. You don't need a Hasselblad."
Then a friend handed a 501 & 80mm lens to me. "Try it. See if you like it." Not a gift. We haven't talked price yet. I haven't decided if I like it.
Is the Pentax 6x7 3 lens kit perfectly acceptable? It certainly seems that way.
If I bought the Hasselblad I know I would want the 50mm & 150mm lenses. The 50 isn't as wide as my 45 on 6x7. The 150 is a stop slower.
I suppose I could sell the Pentax kit to partially fund the Hasselblad kit.
Way back in 1969 I spent a summer with a Mamiya TLR. That was my introduction to 6x6, WLF, single lens and medium format in general. I still have the negatives from that summer and like them a lot.
Since 1969 I have been a 100% eye level viewing photographer. I'm not convinced that WLF is for me. I can see advantages sometimes. And disadvantages other times. I could put a WLF on the Pentax. A definite possibility.
So. Is a Hasselblad at this stage of my life redundant? Compliment to the larger format? Replacement for the larger format?
I should also mention that originals from both cameras get dumbed down by my Epson flatbed scanner. I'm not seeing any major difference in image quality between the Pentax and Zeiss optics. Has anyone done any comparison in the real world? I've seen the medium format lens tests that say the Zeiss 80mm is sharper than the Pentax 105mm lens. I can't see any difference.
Thanks for putting up with me. Does anyone have a clue what I should do? I sure don't.
Last edited by Venchka; 10-08-2009 at 01:29 PM. Click to view previous post history.
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The most important thing is does the camera fit your shooting/composing style? Pentax made/still makes some first rate optics, and quite frankly, I don't think you'll suffer from the difference except in extreme situations (strong backlighting or other areas where the coatings make a difference). The bigger question for you should be does the 6x7 in a horizontal orientation prove to be a plus or a detriment to you? Does the waist-level shooting of the Hassy help or get in the way of what you want to do? I was a long-term Hassy shooter (I'm now using a Rolleiflex, long story). To me, the way you hand-held the Hassy, the square format, and the lighter weight were what put it over the top for me as a choice. I'd think that you will be happy with the results from either - it's just a question of which makes you HAPPIER - and only you can decide that.
My 500c is still my favorite MF camera. I'm not exactly sure why; it's not just the optics. I guess it's a combination of the square format, compactness, precision. At least that's my opinion.
You're right that you will want a 50 and 150 later, plus you'll want an extra back or 2. Based on "Since 1969 I have been a 100% eye level viewing photographer", you may also want a prism as my 50 some year old eyes find focusing with the standard screen more difficult that it used to be. So you see that body, back, and 80mm is really just a "teaser".
I found it relatively easy to find an inexpensive prism (Kiev first) and 150 C lens. "C" backs are usually inexpensive also. 50s are to tougher to locate without paying a high price; but can be found. Of course "inexpensive" is relative; both to Hasselblad gear and to your finances.
If getting the H'blad means selling the Pentax, I'd probably stick with what you have unless you really need interchangeable backs or leaf shutter lenses. If you are adding the H'blad to your current MF equipment and are patient in adding the rest of the package, go for it. If you buy carefully you should recoup your investment if you decide to sell.
I think you should go for the Hassy -- that way when people ask you, "Is that a Hasselblad?", you can answer "Yes!".
Other than that, FC's answer is solid. I am also a Rollei user -- it is my minature camera. I like the way the shutter is almost silent...the opposite of the Pentax 6x7!
At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.
We only have one passage through life--get the Hasselblad. Have fun, try something different--think square.
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A few years ago I found myself in your exact situation……. I had a Pentax 67 kit, and I had always been an “eye level viewing” person. But I had always wanted a Hasselblad, and with prices being so low, I decided to take the plunge. Now, a few years later, I am very glad I got the Hasselblad!
The Hasselblad and the Pentax 67 are two completely different cameras that perform best in different settings. I originally bought the P67 for aerial photography, and use it for outside, more active photography. I find the Hasselblad best for interior work, mainly portraits. Both systems are outstanding, and there is very little “overlap”.
Oh, and to address my “eye level viewing” preference, I also bought a 45-degree finder for the Hasselblad. It is bright and sharp, and allows me to focus quickly.
Buy the Hasselblad—you’ll love it!
Get a mamiya 6
I think you've answered your own question here. Since you don't see a difference, and you are happy with your Pentax kit, why change a thing?
Originally Posted by Venchka
You got some solid replies. I agree with considering shooting style and type of photography. The Hasselblad V-System and the Pentax 6x7 are made for different styles of photography. The Hasselblad is ideal for many situations but not for all. I love it in the studio and get away with the 50, 80 and 150mm lens. As Keith suggested, I also invested in a Mamiya 6 with a similar lens setup, which is an ideal travel camera, but I would not want to use it in the studio.
So try it! But be warned, a Hasselblad can be very dangerous... to your wallet.
No, the Pentax is worthless. You must buy the 'blad and GIVE me your Pentax.
Originally Posted by Venchka