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  1. #1
    Rafal Lukawiecki's Avatar
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    Best Way to Buy a New Hasselblad?

    Things have moved on a bit since my yesterday's question about a Bronica SQ or an RZ67. My very understanding husband is trying to convince me (I still cannot quite understand why) to just go ahead, skip the eBay and all, and buy a new Hasselblad 503CW since perhaps that is what I have always wanted MF-wise.

    :o

    I am not sure this is what I have always wanted, but a lot of happy users (and contributors here) may point to that conclusion. I have been doing photography for about 28 years, more arty and personal and definitely not as a pro. For the past 8 years I shoot 4x5 landscapes using a lovely Ebony but I have just started taking more portraits, indoors with studio flashes, and I am looking for a more handheld approach.

    I live in Ireland and I have looked at Robert White, Teamwork, Calumet, but I am wondering what would be the most economical and sensible way to go about getting this as a kit. Would anyone wish to recommend places to talk to? Should I make a pilgrimage of sorts to Gothenburg (I will be there in March anyway but if I buy I'd rather do it now)

    If you prefer to PM me with your experience I'd be happy to hear though I thought it might be interesting to get your suggestions for everyone's benefit.

    Naturally, I would like to get a nice deal on the kit.

    Thanks for your suggestions.
    Rafal
    Last edited by Rafal Lukawiecki; 12-23-2009 at 06:31 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  2. #2

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    I'll make one last pitch for almost new. With some email/phone communication with KEH you should be able to come up with a nearly new, this decade, 503CW and 80mm CFE or CFi lens. Assuming they will ship to Ireland. Next try: Forums like this, Rangefinder Forum, Large Format Photography Forum. Various U.S. dealers like Midwest, Igor's, Samy's. GOOGLE can find them.

    www.keh.com

    Q.C. will provide a link to the Hasselblad date code so you can shop by year of manufacture. It's easy.
    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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  3. #3
    Rafal Lukawiecki's Avatar
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    Thanks - this is very useful though I fear the dreaded customs duty might make it less attractive than buying within EU. However if the price is way lower, it may make sense. I'll work through the sites...

  4. #4

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    The Hasselblad historical site has the date coding; http://www.hasselbladhistorical.eu/

    There is a lot to be said for skipping ebay. While you might get a deal, you incur a lot of risk, KEH's prices tend to be around the average selling price on ebay, and you get a no questions asked return policy. But, my understanding is that their shipping out of the US is pretty costly. You would probably be better off working with a European or UK dealer, though the cost might be somewhat more. B&H or Adorama might be worth considering too.

  5. #5

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    Perhaps you might be happy with an overhauled H'blad from David Odess. He's well-respected. I suspect that you could place a standing order for the equipment you want, and he would notify you when it is available.

    http://www.david-odess.com/

  6. #6
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    Buy from KEH - credit card works better than cash

    The translation of the first to letter of the camera body, film backs, prisms is

    V H P I C T U R E S
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0

    So RR would be 1988
    and SP would be 2003

    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.

  7. #7
    rwboyer's Avatar
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    I personally would get a lightly used like new 503 and spend the savings on glass - like a 50 FLD, 110 planar/120 Mako and a 150 or 180 sonar with the three lenses (get all CFi used but like new)you can get the whole shooting match for less/same as a brand new 503 + 80 kit if you shop well.

    Really.

    I bought all my stuff new when the V system was still THE camera to have back in the 80's/90's/early 00's if I had to do it now i would go for the very very lightly used like new stuff and save a ton of money or better yet buy more glass/mags for the same.

    RB

    Ps. Your husband wants to buy something to.

  8. #8

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    You can't use a 110 mm Planar on a 503.

    Buying used from across the Pond (KEH) is not such a good idea, no. Because taxes and duties (it's not what you have to pay for shipping) will indeed add a huge amount of money* to the total you have to pay. You would then end up paying too much really.
    Finding something used from a reliable source in Ireland or the rest of Europe (no taxes and/or duties to pay then) could save a good amount. These thingies are still rather expensive new.
    But where indeed?

    I'm not sure that Hasselblads are more affordable when you buy them (new) in Sweden. You may find they cost less elsewhere. The only/best way to find out is to search the net for dealers (Hasselblad's partner locator may help), and compare prices.


    *To give you an idea: it can easily amount to 30% extra, over the total of purchasing price + shipping.
    Last edited by Q.G.; 12-23-2009 at 08:45 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  9. #9
    rwboyer's Avatar
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    Oooops meant a 100 planar - my double ones vs double zeros. I wish I could type.

    RB

    Quote Originally Posted by Q.G. View Post
    You can't use a 110 mm Planar on a 503.

    Buying used from across the Pond (KEH) is not such a good idea, no. Because taxes and duties (it's not what you have to pay for shipping) will indeed add a huge amount of money* to the total you have to pay. You would then end up paying too much really.
    Finding something used from a reliable source in Ireland or the rest of Europe (no taxes and/or duties to pay then) could save a good amount. These thingies are still rather expensive new.
    But where indeed?

    I'm not sure that Hasselblads are more affordable when you buy them (new) in Sweden. You may find they cost less elsewhere. The only/best way to find out is to search the net for dealers (Hasselblad's partner locator may help), and compare prices.


    *To give you an idea: it can easily amount to 30% extra, over the total of purchasing price + shipping.

  10. #10

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    I'm sorry to say that there is nothing much left of the "temple", sorry Hasselblad factory in Gothenburg nowadays. As Q.G. says Sweden isn't the cheapest place to source a new or lighty used 'blad either. Anyhow, you can most probably find a nice 503 anywhere in Europe (not excluding Sweden though ) at a good price.
    As for lenses. As you intend to shoot studio flash, the TTL/OTF flash meter will not work anyhow (you'll need a camera-mounted flash for that to work), but you have to rely on your existing meter and metering skills. (Which should be fine given your LF background.) Well, lenses: You can use any glass from the early chrome C lenses up to the modern CFi/CFe versions (except for the F/FE lenses which are intended for the 200-series). You'd probably want at least CF lenses, as they are easier to operate/manipulate than the older C lenses. Please note that you will not gain anything in terms of performance if you buy new or next to new glass as most of the lenses have been the same since the 60's. So e.g. a chrome C 150 Sonnar will probably perform equal to a brand new CFi Sonnar. (There have of course been updates to the lenses as well as there's been updates to the cameras. So newer glass does have somewhat better light dampening (?), but as always there's a balance between cost and performance. What I'm trying to say is that I'm very content with using (in my case) late C lenses, made in the mid to late 70's. I know that I will not gain anything of significance if I traded these lenses for newer or even new counterparts.)

    Anyhow, welcome to the wonderful world where you simply can answer "Yes" when people come up to you and ask "Is that a Hasselblad?".

    //Bj÷rn

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