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  1. #1

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    Hasselblad purchasing advice needed

    A local photographer is selling all his old Hassy equipment so I'm very interested in buying 2 of the kits. This will be my first time with Hasselblad and need advice on the body's and lenses. There are several 500 el/m and several 500 c/m bodies. The lenses are 150mm, 120mm, 80mm and 50mm and several 120 & 220 backs. Some of the lenses are the old chrome style and some are black. I know there is different lenses like C, CF but i dont know which one is better. Should i stay away from the old chrome or are they good lenses? All the equipment has been sitting for 5 years since he went digital and he dosnt even know which lenses are chrome or black but he will dig them out tonight and email me the photos. Should i stay away from the EL/M? These cameras will be used by me for street photography and the EL/M looks very bulky with the winder attached so i was leaning to the 500 C/M's. After doing a little research i was thinking of offering $600 per kit (camera, lens & back) is this a fair price? Are there any backs i should avoid? 500 el/m or 500 c/m?

    Thanks for your advice!

    Jim

  2. #2
    DanielStone's Avatar
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    hey Jim,

    since I don't shoot Hassy, my experience is somewhat limited with them. from what I can recall, if you're intending for street use, you have two options that I can see:

    1. 500CM for lighter weight. manual cranking though, so more for you to have to pay attention to. if you shoot fast, you can crank fast, sometimes its nicer to have the motor IMO.
    2. the ELM. gives you that motor winder, but isn't all that discreet in the sound dept from what I recall... also check to see if he had the bodies converted to take (AA/9V) batteries, because the rechargeables that Hasselblad sold with the motor bodies weren't all that good, and replacements can be hard to come by IIRC.
    3. the 'silver' lenses are all fine. The CF/CFE/CFI lenses are the newest(in order of oldest to youngest in model range).
    4. The 120's are all great, no matter what the C/CF. My friend has both versions, and with b/w(assuming you're b/w only for street) they should be fine. However, a bit heavy for me(and I'm a bigger guy)
    5. Try the stuff out. See if the 50 gives you a cool perspective, its wide(think 30mm on 35mm F/L). Works nicely.

    ohhh.... almost forgot.... The newer the models of lenses had more coatings, b/c they were designed to be used with color film as well, so more coatings for proper color rendition.

    give him what you think is proper. check ebay prices for what you see he has. PAY CASH. $100 bills do a wonder to people when YOU want a deal. They're generally more willing .

    -Dan

    please excuse me if some of this may be a little stale info. Most of the people I've assisted used Hassy back in the day, but now they're primarily digital, or use Hassy H2's(645 af bodies) or Mamiya RZ's for film use. Have you thought about the SUPERWIDE cameras?


  3. #3

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    All repair shops say that the shutters in the C lenses are becoming increasingly difficult and expensive to repair. Newer would seem to be better. Unless the current owner "used & abused" the newer lenses. Tough call.

    I would go lean and mean and mechanical with the 500 c/m body and the best looking lenses he has. 50-80-150 is a classic combination.
    Last edited by Venchka; 11-28-2009 at 10:26 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    Wayne
    Deep in the darkest heart of the East Texas Rain forest. Apprentice Analog Activist.
    ... And to paraphrase Yoda, there is no how, only do.
    Vaughn
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  4. #4

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    The chrome lenses (the C versions) may or may not have the T* coating; definitely T* lenses are preferable since they're less likely to flare. But I wouldn't turn up my nose at them if that's all you can get. The black ones are all T* so no concerns there. You do want to make sure the lenses all work at all speeds.

    You should confirm whether the backs are A12 and A24 -- these are the newer design with automatic winding to the first frame. The A backs have a crank on the right side. Not critical, but it's better if the backs have inserts with matching serial numbers.

    I don't know much about the EL/M in terms of reliability but because of the bulk, I think of them as more tripod mounted studio cameras. Electronics add uncertainty, too. So I'd opt for the 500 C/Ms, as you said.

    As for the $600 per kit, which lens does that include? That's in the right range if it's for the 80mm or 150mm, but the 50mm is alone worth that much.

  5. #5
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    For $600 a kit, you could sell off what you decide that you do not want and have a profit.

    It all depends on condition. You may have to get some or all of it CLAed.

    The other posts covered most of the details:
    1) Batteries for the EL/M
    2) Chrome lenses are getting harder to service and have one coating unless marked T*.
    3) The optical prescription for the C and CF et al lenses are the same.
    4) A24 backs are for 220 film which is very limited to a few types of film.
    5) The 120mm lens is very good for close ups.

    Steve
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  6. #6

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    Don't wait 40+ years to do it like I did.
    Wayne
    Deep in the darkest heart of the East Texas Rain forest. Apprentice Analog Activist.
    ... And to paraphrase Yoda, there is no how, only do.
    Vaughn
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  7. #7
    Dan Henderson's Avatar
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    Here is what I think about old chrome C lenses: I have a 50, 80, and 250 CF lenses, and the 150 chrome C. It is by far my favorite lens. It is the one that stays on my camera in the bag, and the one I use whenever possible. To my eye, it produces sharper negatives. If it were to break today and be unrepairable, I would immediately begin searching for a replacement. In fact, if you buy this kit and it comes with a chrome 150 that you do not want, I might buy it from you.


    web site: Dan Henderson, Photographer.com

    blog: https://danhendersonphotographer.wordpress.com/

    I am not anti-digital. I am pro-film.

  8. #8

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    A few notes:

    Quote Originally Posted by DanielStone View Post
    [...] because the rechargeables that Hasselblad sold with the motor bodies weren't all that good, and replacements can be hard to come by IIRC.
    There was, nor is, anything wrong with the rechargeables. Work great.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sirius Glass View Post
    1) Batteries for the EL/M
    Aren't much of a problem.
    Though indeed not as easy to find as regular AA's, you can still get new ones.
    And if you don't want to, there are a number of replacement options that work fine.


    Quote Originally Posted by Sirius Glass View Post
    2) Chrome lenses are getting harder to service and have one coating unless marked T*.
    It's not the finish of the lens, but the parts that go into them. So the repair situation for C lenses both "chrome" and black is the same.
    It isn't as problematic as it often is made out to be. You can get C lenses serviced and repaired, even though Zeiss and Hasselblad don't want to bother with them anymore.

    Do not look at the colour of the lens as the definitive answer to whether it has T* or T coating. Look for the red T or T* on the lens.

  9. #9

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    I use one of the nine bolt battery option in my EL/M.

    David Odess hasn't been raising his prices, so I guess not ALL shops are saying the shutters are getting harder to work on. I wonder how a shutter could harder to work on anyway?

    I sure don't see a lot of posts complaining they couldn't get the C lens repaired and would have to retire it.

    Get'em and have fun.

    Mike

  10. #10
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Q.G. View Post
    It's not the finish of the lens, but the parts that go into them. So the repair situation for C lenses both "chrome" and black is the same.
    It isn't as problematic as it often is made out to be. You can get C lenses serviced and repaired, even though Zeiss and Hasselblad don't want to bother with them anymore.

    Do not look at the colour of the lens as the definitive answer to whether it has T* or T coating. Look for the red T or T* on the lens.
    To amplify on this, the springs for the C shutter are getting harder to find. The good news is that the repair people have gotten replacements from other Hasselblad lenses and that for now this is not a problem.

    The chrome lenses have some handling differences on making settings, but I would not use that for a buy-no buy decision.

    Steve
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

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