I am thinking to buy a Hasselblad 501CM. I usually work with Nikon system, so I need help from you just to be sure that I am buying what I should buy. For this reason, I am going to list the mandatory items and some possible extras, and I would appreciate your recommendations about the selection I have made.
- 501 CM body with waislevel. Chrome or black?
- 80 F2.8 CFT with caps.
- A12 Back. Please, explain me which one I should buy.
- PME51 viewfinder.
- B60 UV-SKY Filter.
- B60 yellow filter.
- ADAPTER 67 on B60 brand filter ring adapter. (Just in case of …)
- 80 CF Shade.
Please, tell me if I need to buy something else, and if I have made some mistake in my selection. Thank you,
It's really a matter of what you can find/afford. I carry four filters: polarizer, yellow-green, orange, red. If you can find/afford the bellows shade, that is what you want. Also think about a way to carry it around.
Ok, the most important question: chrome or black?
Seriously, whatever you can find and whatever you like. I have a black one. I think I'd rather have a chrome one purely because I think it looks better but then again the black one does look great, especially in my hands when I'm using it.
I would say start with the basic kit, i.e. body, waist level finder, 80 lens and A12 back and a strap. I have the shade but I don't know if it makes that much of a difference, I use it more for protection to be honest.
After you shoot a few films then see if you really want the filters and if you want a prism viewfinder. These things are not exactly cheap so buy slowly and as you see the need. I think the first accessory you'll find the need for is another A12. Or two.
Agree with 'film_man' above, except I use plain old 12 back which are somewhat cheaper than the A12's and work just as well. You only have to sight the number ! in a little hole in the back and reset the counter on the winder and you and ready to roll.I have a batch of them and so do KEH....
You have put together a good wish list.
I would move the lens hood from the possible-extras to the must-have portion.
And until you buy that PME finder, you will need another light meter (which will also be of use when you do have a PME prism).
Black or chrome? Both good.
But, for what it's worth, the black paint tends to chip easily, so chrome cameras keep their good looks for much longer. (It's hard to find black trim magazines that still look anywhere presentable).
And there are many more chrome cameras and, particularly, chrome magazines available.
So chrome would be the first choice, both because it keeps better and because it's more readily available.
Pay attention to what generation focussing screen is in the camera when your get it.
The original, first generation screens are good. But a stop dimmer than the later Acute Matte screens.
Which matters when you get a PME prism: the screen is preferably matched to the meter's calibration, else you need to apply a correction.
PME prisms are often sold using an incorrect type name. Except for the very latest PME45, they all look the same, so it's easy to pass the earliest PME of as the latest PME51. This is helped by the fact that the lettering printed on the prisms to identify which is which rubs off easily, and is often gone.
When buying a PME, look for the aperture and ISO scales. The earliest PME has white lettering on black showing in the window. The later PME models, calibrated to work with the later generations Acute Matte screens, have black lettering on a white background. Much easier to read too.
To confuse matters however, the earliest PMEs often are recalibrated to work with Acute Matte screens. The official service centers who did this put a factory supplied sticker underneath the eyepiece to indicate the recalibration. That sticker however is as 'durable' as the white lettering...
So perhaps best to look for the black-on-white scales.
As to what type back to get: i would indeed get an A12. They are in plentiful supply. Not much more expensive than the non-A magazines. And they load and unload a bit quicker.
A magazine will need regular maintenance, the most important part of which you can do yourself: change the dark slide slot light seal (once every one or two years).
A well used one could do with a full service. This consists of a good cleaning (and perhaps a bit of relubrication) and tightening of screws. Perhaps a readjustment of a part or two also. There's nothing much that can and will break inside a magazine, but there is a nylon stop, that gets bashed out of shape after a considerable amount of use and will then need replacing.
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I just got a Hasselblad kit. I like the look of chrome, for what it's worth.
Personally, I think a prism viewfinder is heresy. Stick with the waistlevel. I'd recommend buying an extra darkslide or two. You will lose one eventually, and that will leave you in a bit of a pickle, especially if you want to take the film back off.
What he said.
Originally Posted by Q.G.
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.
One thing to keep in mind with the waist level.....you can't get the camera nearly as high on the tripod. I'm short and shoot mostly on a tripod so I bought an old, nasty NC2 finder. Fantastic and inexpensive. You didn't mention a lightmeter or tripod. A good tripod and spot meter (or incident) make a huge difference. Oh, and move the shade up to need....a generic bay 60 shade from eBay is fine.
Last year i bought just Hasselblad 501CM body only with its Waist Level finder, and also last year i was in USA and bought new film back [A12] and a used lens for Mamiya RZII [180mm], and in this year, i bought 2 more lenses in the beginning of the year, 60mm CF for Hassy and 50mm for the Mamiya, i had film from my US trip, so just when i got the lens and the back is attached already i started to shoot with Hasselblad, i don't have 80mm even i feel it is a must or kit lens maybe and i never feel i want this lens, just 2 weeks ago i got 150 and i don't want anything else, ofcourse i have a cable release, my body is black and the film back is chrome, so i was thinking to buy 500CM body only Chrome to match my film magazine, and later i can buy another back black 220 format maybe for my 501CM black body, i have filters but i bought an adapter ring for Hasselbald CF lens [Bay60], i want to buy either PM viewfinder or another focusing screen because the one i have which coming with the body is not good enough, difficult to focus.
As long you get the body, the lens, the film back then you can start always, and later you can add more one by one depending on your need or another reasons, don't forget to buy a scanner if you want to digitalize your film shots, or if you print in darkroom, but if print only B&W then what you will do with color film? So that i said a scanner is a bonus to have even here all or most going for pure analogue.
I want to thank you for all your comments and suggestions. Probably, I start buying the body with the waislevel viewfinder, the A12 magazine and the 80 F2.8 CFT lens, all in chrome, as Q.G. suggested. Also, I will try to get yellow and UV filters. I already have an incident light meter, so I will buy a spot one later.
Thank you again,