My faculty commencement current from my mother and father was a Mamiya 6 rangefinder. I cherished that digital camera. It supplied the picture high quality of medium format movie however in a hand-friendly, rangefinder-style physique fairly than the boxy type issue of most medium format cameras.

The Mamiya 6 had its limitations. There have been solely three lenses out there, and rangefinders could be tougher to make use of while you’re making an attempt for a exact crop in-camera. However the additional element captured by the medium format body made the trade-offs price it for me.

Hasselblad X1D II for landscape photography: image of a waterfall

The Hasselblad X1D II doesn’t have in-camera picture stabilization, so for longer exposures like this, you’ll want to make use of a tripod or discover a appropriate base on which to set the digital camera—I used a conveniently positioned rock for this picture. Publicity: 1.2 sec., ƒ/32, ISO 100.

The Hasselblad X1D 50C, launched in 2016, and its successor, the X1D II 50C, remind me a variety of the Mamiya 6. It’s an analogous story: medium format picture high quality in a physique that’s acquainted, approachable and designed for use on-the-go fairly than caught in a studio. It, too, has limitations, nevertheless, and relying in your fashion of images, they could be deal-breakers, particularly when you think about that the physique alone is priced at $5,750.

Velocity Is A Limitation With The Hasselblad X1D II

An important limitations of the X1D II middle on pace. This isn’t a digital camera for wildlife or sports activities photographers—it maxes out at 2.7 fps steady capturing, and although Hasselblad states that the X1D II is quicker at startup and has much less shutter lag and blackout time than its predecessor, it’s nonetheless noticeably gradual in these respects in comparison with most digital cameras as we speak. Should you’re choosing up the X1D II after rising accustomed to the speedy responsiveness of a contemporary fanatic or professional mirrorless or DSLR system, it’s possible you’ll really feel such as you’ve stepped again in time.

Alternatively, for panorama images particularly, you possibly can make an argument that slowing down is an effective factor. The X1D II forces you to be a bit extra intentional. As soon as I adjusted to the leisurely tempo that the digital camera imposes, I realized to understand it in some methods.

The XCD 90 (71mm equal) produces lovely bokeh when capturing at giant apertures. Publicity: 1/1250 sec., ƒ/3.2, ISO 100.

Hasselblad X1D II Picture High quality

Panorama images is the place the X1D II shines. The digital camera’s 43.eight x 32.9mm medium format sensor is sort of double the dimensions of a 35mm, full-frame sensor and produces 50-megapixel photos with attractive element. It’s the identical sensor used within the authentic X1D, one which DXOMARK presently ranks the very best amongst all cameras it has examined, with a rating of 102. Hasselblad states that the digital camera is able to 14 stops of dynamic vary, which locations it among the many absolute best out there in a client digital camera.

One of many benefits of this stage of element and determination is the latitude it supplies for cropping post-capture. For our overview, Hasselblad included two lenses: the XCD 30 (24mm equal) and the XCD 90 (71mm equal). I discovered myself capturing rather a lot with the XCD 90 and at occasions had wished for an extended lens just like the XCD 120 Macro. I used to be completely happy to search out that I used to be in a position to crop into these frames to get the topic magnification I needed whereas retaining ample decision and element for a big print. That’s the medium format benefit in motion.

Flower image taken with the Hasselblad X1D IIFlower image taken with the Hasselblad X1D II

(Above) I wasn’t in a position to amplify the topic as a lot as I needed with the Hasselblad XCD 90 lens (71mm equal) however the excellent picture high quality, particulars and determination of the digital camera’s medium format sensor allowed to to crop in considerably in put up processing (beneath).

Right here is the picture after cropping in Photoshop. Even with this important crop, I used to be left a 16-megapixel file. Publicity: 1/1000 sec., ƒ/5.6, ISO 100.

Lens Choices For The X1D II

There are presently 10 XCD optics designed particularly for the system. There’s one zoom that’s “coming quickly” as of this writing, the XCD 35-75 (28-58mm equal), and prime lenses from the XCD 21 (17mm equal) to the XCD 135 (105mm equal) in addition to a 1.7x teleconverter to be used with the XCD 135 (178mm equal).

The lens choices cowl the focal lengths that the majority panorama photographers will need, and adapters can be found to make use of further Hasselblad lenses and likewise third-party lenses. Lens pricing ranges from $1,099 for the lately launched and really compact XCD 45P to $4,845 for the XCD 80, which Hasselblad notes is its quickest lens but with a most aperture of ƒ/1.9.

X1D II Design & Ergonomics

The digital camera, and the system as an entire, is elegant. The sculpting and supplies convey a way of refinement and luxurious that set it aside, and I believe there’s one thing to be mentioned for that. As artists, we respect aesthetic magnificence not solely in our topics but additionally in our instruments and the best way they really feel once we use them.

Product shot of the Hasselblad X1D IIProduct shot of the Hasselblad X1D II

Hasselblad X1D II (entrance view).

Placing apart the attraction of exclusivity, the system’s magnificence has sensible advantages. The X1D II’s menus are a peaceful retreat from the overwhelming chaos of typical digital camera menus. Paring down the infinite array of choices you’ll discover elsewhere, Hasselblad has largely succeeded in a consumer interface and expertise that emphasizes simplicity. It’s one other side of the digital camera that takes a little bit of getting used to, nevertheless it’s refreshing.

The emphasis on simplicity extends from the digital camera’s bodily design to its publicity setting show and menus.

A big touchscreen, generously-sized textual content and comparatively shallow menus work collectively to make it simple to overview and alter digital camera modes and settings in just some faucets.

The three.6-inch touchscreen show makes it simple to get to most digital camera settings inside one or two faucets, and there are devoted bodily buttons for direct entry to focus, ISO and white stability controls with out taking your eye from the viewfinder, in addition to AE lock and back-button AF activation. A number of of those could be personalized to activate a unique digital camera function if desired.

The X1D II’s design makes it a pleasure to make use of, with premium supplies and sparse, thoughtfully-placed controls. The simplicity is refreshing when most digital camera our bodies as we speak appear overly cluttered.

One element that I notably admire is the digital camera’s mode dial. Digital camera makers have give you quite a lot of options for locking the mode dial to stop unintentional modifications, however Hasselblad has performed one thing distinctive right here, and it’s my favourite answer that I’ve used. All the mode dial recedes into the digital camera physique while you don’t want it—simply depress it, and it locks flush with the highest panel.

Hasselblad X1D II top viewHasselblad X1D II top view

Particulars like the form and depth of the grip and a mode dial that recedes into the highest panel categorical Hasselblad’s consideration to offering an opulent expertise when dealing with the digital camera—rightfully so, contemplating its market place andthe value of $5,750 for the physique solely.

The one management that often irritated me was the facility button. I want switches to buttons for energy management since you’re immediately certain whether or not the change is on or off. With a button, you don’t instantly know in case your press on the button registered. That is exacerbated within the X1D II by the digital camera’s gradual startup. There have been a number of occasions I mistakenly turned the facility again off—considering my first press hadn’t labored—which meant one other reboot cycle.

One other nicety of design is present in one thing as mundane because the battery. Most cameras conceal the battery behind a flap door. The X1D II omits this additional half; the battery merely slides into the grip and clicks securely in place. It’s the little particulars like this that talk an unusual thoughtfulness within the digital camera’s bodily presence.

The X1D II’s highly-rated sensor is able to capturing 14 stops of dynamic vary, a bonus for low-light, high-contrast scenes like this. The digital camera captured much more element within the shadows of this picture than you see right here—I deliberately elevated the distinction as a inventive choice. Publicity: 1/750 sec., ƒ/3.2, ISO 100.

X1D II Battery Life

Battery life, in distinction, may very well be improved—although to be honest, the battery is powering a big sensor. My first time utilizing the digital camera, I burned by means of a cost in a short time, in just some hours of intermittent images. I acquired barely over 100 frames on that cost, partially as a result of I wasn’t switching the digital camera off when not actively capturing. As soon as I spotted how rapidly I used to be draining the battery, I used to be way more conscientious about powering down between classes. So, you’ll have to be aware about your battery use, and also you’re positively going to need not less than one additional battery, or extra when you’ll be away from charging choices for an prolonged interval. You may cost the battery in-camera through USB-C, which is good, and a charging hub for 2 batteries is obtainable as an optionally available accent.

How you employ the digital camera may even have an effect on battery life. Options like AF will drain your energy extra rapidly. I discovered myself preferring handbook focus with the X1D II anyway. The 117 selectable-point, contrast-detection AF system is relatively sluggish, and for panorama and still-life topics, the precision of handbook focus with the help of focus-peaking show was only a extra nice expertise than ready on the AF system to hunt for focus. It’s one other instance of why I recommend that this digital camera is greatest for a photographer who appreciates a slower, extra methodical method.

Can The Hasselblad X1D II Shoot Video?

If video is vital to you, be aware that whereas the digital camera is technically able to recording movement, that function shouldn’t be but out there on the time of this writing. Tapping on the video icon within the settings prompts a message: “Video function not supported but.” The digital camera’s datasheet states that video will “be enabled at a later date” however doesn’t point out when or what the video specs will appear like. Contemplating that the digital camera was launched final June (2019), one wonders when “a later date” may be. Hasselblad assured us that work on this function and different system enhancements through firmware updates is ongoing.

Hasselblad Phocus Cell 2

Hasselblad Phocus Cell 2 software program working on an iPad Professional. The essential settings menu is proven.

Hasselblad’s cell companion app for the X1D II, Phocus Cell 2 offers iPad Professional (2017 fashions and newer) and iPad Air (2019 mannequin) the flexibility to regulate digital camera settings in addition to obtain, overview, charge and share photos out of your pill. You may hook up with the digital camera both through USB-C or WiFi. When you can launch the digital camera’s shutter through the app, you gained’t see a stay preview by means of the lens as is feasible with the cell apps from another digital camera makers. For that cause, I didn’t discover the app particularly helpful for digital camera management whereas capturing, nevertheless it’s nice for reviewing frames you’ve already captured to see them on a a lot bigger display.

The power to obtain information to your iPad or share them when linked to the web are nice backup choices for prolonged intervals away from dwelling base. Hasselblad RAW information are broadly supported, so that you’ll be capable to work with them instantly in Adobe Lightroom and different standard apps.

Hasselblad Phocus Cell 2 means that you can tether the digital camera bodily or through WiFi to view captured photos, test publicity settings and launch the shutter remotely. However you don’t get a stay view of what the sensor is seeing.

The Hasselblad X1D II Is A Panorama Photographer’s Digital camera

The Hasselblad X1D II 50C shouldn’t be for everyone. The worth is actually one issue, and its slower tempo isn’t on top of things for quick motion topics like wildlife. However for panorama photographers who need the excellent picture high quality of medium format and a top-rated sensor in a transportable and swish physique, the X1D II is justifiably fascinating.

View the Hasselblad X1D II on the Hasselblad web site for extra data.

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