Sunday, August 10, 2008

Up to my neck in cameras

A friend of mine just picked up a new camera... well new to him. He actually picked it up the day before he was going out of town. Since he wasn't going to be able to take it with him, he left the camera with me. He figured he was better off leaving it in my grubby hands as opposed to just sitting on the shelf gathering dust while he was out of town for a week.

Here's the camera sitting next to one of mine(Tricky are you seeing this???):

Yep, it's a Hasselblad. The Holy Grail of the medium format film camera in my opinion. I've wanted to get my hands on a 500 C/M forever. Well this is my chance. I ran it through it's paces to see how it compared to the Pentax.

First off, this is a nice camera. Really nice. Well built and sturdy, every time I pick it up I feel like I'm holding a Swiss watch that can take pictures. It's really user friendly and pretty intuitive. I can see why this has been such a popular and well regarded camera for so long.

The glass is crystal clear and the controls are right where they should be. It's all mechanical, so in some respects it's pretty fool-proof. A good feature for someone like me. One of the things I really like about it is the fact that I can set exposure values for a range of settings off one light meter reading. This means there's I take one EV reading with my hand held light meter, set it on the bezel of the camera and it gives me a range of matched shutter speeds and aperture settings for that reading. An awesome option for someone like me who always forgets, even though I know it's really not that hard.

This is a nice, deliberate camera that is perfect for portrait and landscape work. I took it out and ran some film through it this morning. Flawless. I really like waist level viewers. Seems like I focus on my composition a little better when I use them. Of course, the true test will be when I develop that roll of film. I've got some Velvia in the fridge, maybe I'll run it through this camera if I get time before I have to give it back.

Surprisingly, it's a bit more compact than the Pentax as you can see from the pictures... but not by much.

I would have expected it to be a bit bigger due to the interchangeable backs. Apparently not the case.

Hard to say if I like it better. Really, I think it's a different camera for a little different purpose. The Pentax is a great field camera that takes beautiful spontaneous pictures because it's so quick and deliberate. The Hasselblad is a fantastic all round camera that would probably be a great choice for landscapes, portraits, and anything else where you have a little more time to get that exposure. I really like both, and while I would like a little more time to play with it... I think I could give one a good home if it showed up.


Velo, Tx said...

droooooool. Can I touch it?

Can't wait to see the pictures.

Bernie said...

Have you still got that thing? That is one sweet camera.