Hasselblad launches faster, cheaper X System medium format camera
Hasselblad marked its 75th birthday with the release of the X1D in 2016, which was billed as the world's first compact mirrorless medium format camera. The system has continued to evolve, and the company has now announced the new X1D II 50C – with improved usability, better performance and a cheaper price tag.
The X1D II 50C features a 50 megapixel CMOS (43.8 x 32.9 mm) sensor with large 5.3 x 5.3 µm pixels for "images with superb tonality" and the incorporation of Hasselblad Natural Colour Solution technology further promises true-to-life, natural tones from the system. There's 14 stops of dynamic range available, and stills can be captured as 16-bit RAW and full resolution JPEGs.
Users can now transfer such files over to an iPad Pro and iPad Air (2019) running the new Phocus Mobile 2 application via either USB-C or Wi-Fi, allowing for post-processing on the go.
The new camera gains an improved 3.6-inch, 2.36 million-dot touchscreen panel around back that's said to be the largest LCD display on any digital medium format camera. The OLED viewfinder above it rocks 3.69 million-dot resolution and 0.87x magnification, and users can now get to the camera's menu system through the EVF, for those times when trying to navigate system parameters in bright sunlight proves taxing.
Hasselblad says that photographers using live view can look forward to a faster refresh rate, reduced shutter lag and black outs between frames, better continuous shooting rates and a startup time that noticeably quicker than the first gen X1D.
The X1D II 50C is due for release in July for US$5,750, which is also when the Phocus Mobile 2 app will be available for download.
Hasselblad has also launched a new X System prime lens alongside the X1D II 50C – the XCD 3,5-4,5/35-75 Zoom Lens. Reported to be a good fit for a variety of scenes – from landscapes to portraits – the mid-range zoom covers "moderate wide angle to short telephoto focal lengths" and delivers quick autofocus.
"This really is the best lens Hasselblad has developed – its performance is extremely high, competing with our prime lenses," said the company's Per Nordlund. "I can even go as far to say that it's probably the best zoom lens currently available on the market." The lens will be available from October for $5,175.
And finally, the development of a modernized CFV II 50C digital back and new 907X camera body has been revealed. The 50 megapixel medium format back will be compatible with most V System cameras produced from 1957 on, as well as some third party technical or view cameras. And it will sport a tilting touchscreen and integrated battery.
The digital back can also be used with Hasselblad's smallest medium format camera body so far. The upcoming 907X will grant photographers access to the company's X System lenses, together with much more glass courtesy of adapters. More details on both of these developments will follow later in the year.