Fridays Studio, Wednesday Night, Hasselblad X-D2 on show. Beers and cheers and a new camera to try.
The evening was a while coming the Hasselblad expert was delayed in the eastern states last time and we sat on tenterhooks waiting for this evening. The distributors, C.R. Kennedy - and Camera Electronic took the Fridays studio space on a pretty balmy evening to show off the new medium format body and one of the new Hasselblad lenses. It was a show and tell and then a shoot and try session.
The new camera body carries on the design from the X-D1 with a very similar, if slightly different shape. The main features like mount are the same but there is a host of new features that improve the performance of the camera. If I get any of these wrong it is because the studio space was only fitfully lit and I was scribbling in the dark...
a. 1oo megapixel sensor - back-lit. A sony component, it will take in a native 64 ISO and head upwards from that. There is a 15-stop dynamic range ( which would have made mincemeat of the dim lighting ) 16-bit files.
There is pixel-level calibration of the sensor that takes an hour to do during the manufacture. Note: it is time you pay for...
b. Universal colour profile from Hasselblad - not broken into variants. Images are good straight out of the camera. The files work file with Lightroom but are not intended for Capture one.
c. 7-stop IBIS.
d. Inbuilt 1 TB SSD storage that means up to 4000 images directly into the camera. There is an XQD card slot but many jobs will not need it. If you cannot capture the picture of the dog smiling in 4000 shots, get a cat.
e. Wireless connectivity. Power-on in 2 seconds, tilting LCD touch-screen.
The new design of Hasselblad lenses will feature a direct clutch for the focus ring, much smaller and more reliable shutter mechanisms and the ability to sync flash to 1/4000 of a second. I think I heard that the flash connections are Nikon-compatible so you can use the speed lights and triggers - but it was just a passing mention.
We did notice the concave front element and small size of one of the new lenses - I think it was the 55mm. In true Hasselblad fashion, there are three new lenses on offer; 38mm, 55mm, and 90mm. More of the existing X-D lenses will be redesigned to the new style.
The representative was quite candid - these cameras are putting out large amounts of information and the rest of the processing line will need to be adequate to handle the editing - older computer systems will struggle to do things in a timely fashion. Big files will need big storage.
And a final tip off the hat to the glamorous model who coped with the flashes and the gelled lighting beautifully. I used the dear old open shutter and wait for the flash trick to capture her being captured by the new camera.