...Looks like we're going to have to officially forgive 'em for the Lunar. Hasselblad, the maker of medium format cameras once heavily favored by studio professionals in North America, has announced the X1D-50c...a small mirrorless body with a huge sensor.
Huge in both ways. Acreage: 43.8 x 32.9mm (compare with the Leica S at 45 x 30mm). And image size: 8272 x 6200 pixels—that's 50 MP. The CMOS sensor is presumed to be the same one used in several other existing medium format cameras and backs, and is claimed to offer 16-bit color depth and 14 stops of exposure range.
Other features include an EVF that switches formats and includes an "X-Pan" panoramic mode, weatherproofing, GPS and Wi-Fi, full HD 1920 x 1080p video at 25 fps, and two card slots.
Initially there will be two not-too-fast but appropriately smallish lenses, a moderate wide 45mm ƒ/3.5 (35mm-e), and a moderate-tele 90mm ƒ/3.2 (70mm-e) in a new lensmount called XCD. A third lens, a wide-angle 24mm equivalent-angle-of-view (30mm nominal), has been promised for Photokina.
I'll take one!
...Except that the pricing will be a little closer to medium-format DSLRs and backs than to typical mirrorless offerings, at $8,995 for the body, $2,295 for the 45mm lens, and $2,695 for the 90mm lens.
Even so an exciting development. And it's handmade in Sweden*, so it's a real 'Blad.
*ADDENDUM: Several sources have claimed that the camera is being built by Nittoh Kogaku in Sawa-City, Japan. In my comment in the post I was referencing a caption on dpreview, at this link, slide 7, which says, "If there is one message that Hasselblad really wants to get across, it is that this camera is hand-made in Sweden. Equally, Hasselblad representatives with whom we spoke were at pains to stress that the X1D was designed and manufactured in-house and that Fujifilm isn’t involved in any way." Nittoh might be involved somehow, but I don't know if they are or in what way.
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(To see all the comments, click on the "Comments" link below.)
Featured Comments from:
John McMillin: "So far, the weight and size savings of mirrorless haven't been convincing to me. My Fuji X-Pro1 is a little slimmer than my Pentax K5, with similar lenses, but that's not enough reason to choose one over the other. But when you can eliminate most of the empty space in the mirror box of a format this large, you're really changing the shape of medium format. Even the substitution of an artificial RVF for an analog OVF might be worth this kind of efficiency...but selling every other camera and lens I own, plus my computer, to afford this new wonder is not in the cards for me. This new 'Blad looks like the reincarnation of the Fuji MF rangefinder cameras. Maximum image inside a minimum package. It's definitely interesting."
marcin wuu: "Did you notice the 'X' and '1' in the name? I believe you were poking fun at photographic companies for abusing those. :-) One thing worthy of special note: Unlike every other mirrorless system on this planet, X1D will not take any third-party lenses. It has no in-body shutter, and will rely on leaf shutter in the lens. I am sure it will cost Hasselblad a solid chunk of potential customer base...."
Mike replies: As Ming Thein writes, "Before anybody asks again in the comments, the body contains no shutter. This means whilst the flange distance is very short and some 35mm lenses may well cover the format, they will only be usable if a) there is an electronic shutter implemented in firmware—that has yet to be confirmed, and b) some enterprising third party gets out the lathes."
Lynn: "But how well does it do selfies, cats and flowers? But seriously, congratulations to Hasselblad for finding their mojo."
hugh crawford: "I think they finally realized if they released the Hasselblad version first and then the Sony, people would think they were getting a Hasselblad at Sony prices rather than a Sony at Hasselblad prices."