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New Kid in the block and have question

  1. debaaich
    Hi All

    I am new Medium format user and have questions regarding the Hasselblad 500CM camera.

    I recently bought one from KEH and it works fine. Though initially I was having a bit tough time with it but I am fine with most of the things now. I have noticed few things and few questions came to my mind which I want answer. Hope somebody will help me to understand this.

    1. When I see in the viewfinder (waist level) I see the view is just a mirror image of the frontal scene which i want to capture. Like if I have a tree at the right hand side in my front, in the viewfinder it is on the left hand side. Is it normal? If yes, isn't it a pain while composing one shot as every turn and twist of your camera should be in opposite direction.

    2. I do have a fine focus magnifier with which i am having a bit tough time to focus. It is not too friendly. Does that have any solution?

    Hope to get guidance from this wonderful group.
  2. Mark Feldstein
    Mark Feldstein
    Welcome to the party ! Optics give you the reversed image whereas viewfinders reverse it to give you a what you see is what you get image. The waste level finders on a Hassie will in fact give you what the lens is showing, a reversed image. The prism finders, both meter and non-meter will give you a normal L-R image whereas the stovepipe finders don't. After awhile, you just get used to it and it becomes pretty natural.


    As far as image size, you can get a stove pipe (vertical) hood that magnifies the image. The newer ones have adjustable diopters built-in to allow for us older types that need longer arms to view things up close. I like those much better than the waist level finders. And the prism finders are sharp as a tack as well. Of course, everything is interchangable.

    KEH is a great outfit to do biz with. They stand by everything they sell and I believe their prices are quite fair especially given their level of service and the quality of their rating systems and warranties. I recommend, however that you get an old copy of Ernst Wildi's book "The Hasselblad Manual", even the older 4th Edition will do (cheap at Amazon.com). It covers all the basics in camera operation for all the bodies produced until that time, including the 500CM, along with accessories and how to use them like mags, finders, prism meters, flash, etc.

    And if you haven't got it, here's a couple of really useful links for you at http://www.hasselbladusa.com/ Sign up for the free owner/members access, register your Hassie gear even though it's used and in the owners/support section, you'll find user manuals for all their camera bodies in PDF format.
    On this sign-up/log-in page http://www.hasselbladusa.com/member/login.aspx there's a link to their downloads and there you'll find the manuals.

    Anything I can do to help you out in terms of usage or particular Hassie issues, feel free to ask. There are others here who are really good with the equipment as well. You can always post in the Medium format section if you're not getting a rapid response in this forum.

    One last thing in case you didn't know about this. NEVER EVER try to fit either an uncocked lens and/or an uncocked body together. That can cause really serious damage. If you don't know how to manually cock both of those, let me know and I'll step you through it or send you some more links.
    Take it light and stay frosty ! ;>)
    Mark
  3. debaaich
    debaaich
    Mark!! Thank you very much!! i did not expect such a warm welcome. Thank you for all the help.

    I will surely have many question as I am shooting more and more. I will go through all your links and will register myself. I did attach the lens myself by seeing youtube video but could not fully understand and might need your help

    You help is greatly appreciated Merk. Thank you.

    Deb
  4. Mark Feldstein
    Mark Feldstein
    My pleasure Deb. One of the really nice things about photography I think, is that the larger the equipment the more slowly you need to work. Especially getting used to new equipment. When I got my initial 500C about 100 years ago it seems, I felt like every time I handled it I needed to put on white cotton gloves. LOL ! When I went to large format equipment, 4x5 and 8x10 that really slowed me down.

    After a short while, I got used to "Hazel", learned when the camera was telling me not to do something or when I did something wrong and what it meant and I was off and walking. Later I learned to run. I hope you enjoy the learning experience, take lots of shots, practice loading mags with a throwaway load of film, respool it and do it over and over; practice attaching and detaching the lens and I'm sure you'll get it down pat in short order.

    Meanwhile, tell us what kind of equipment you got. I'm guessing with the 500CM you scored an A-12 magazine, a waist level viewfinder or maybe a stovepipe viewfinder, a bright screen and perhaps a Polaroid 100 magazine with a CF-T 80mm 2.8 lens.
    I'll check back here more often. Have a terrific weekend !!!
    Mark
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