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Future of Hassy- Bleak or Bright?

satybhat

Member
I’m expecting some answers that I won’t like here. Fir the last few weeks, I’ve been mulling over Leica S3 v the X1D2. ( Have the 100s and really cannot gel with the handling). This was posted on a FB forum, receiving no answers. Any opinions?

“Greetings photos. Quick question. Has Hasseelblad completely given up on the X system? There have been no new firmware updates, nor any hardware updates. Is this because DJI bought a large chunk of the company and is more or less killing it off? Really hard to be optimistic about the future of Hasselblad at the moment. I could be wrong and hope that I am but I don't see much in the future for the company.’
 

jecxz

Active member
Hasselblad is a boutique company. Their past workmanship is outstanding, proven by my continued use of their H3DII39 system and lenses since 2007, hampered only by sensor dust.

If you are looking into a new camera system there are many who are using Hasselblad’s new mirrorless, or you can look at the GFX system which can use HC lenses.

Speculation on Hasselblad’s future has become an art form, countless word battles over the decades across the Internet; but they have been around forever and I suspect they will continue to endure.

Go get a camera and make some photographs; have fun and be happy. Bitcoin is for speculation (or is it the other way around?).
 

drevil

Well-known member
Staff member
i think to say its boutique company isnt fair, their cameras are still good tools, their color science top notch.
people just cant forgive HB the rebranded sony cameras, can they?

nonetheless, its been very quiet surrounding the X system, its been years since the last lens release and still no 100mp camera on the horizon.

maybe the 907 sold so well they can relax for a while? doubtful.

nonetheless2, i think its safer to bet on the fuji system for the future

Leica S3....hmmm expensive camera, which takes good pictures for sure, but glass is outragesly expensive and even with leica you just cant shake the feeling their heart isnt into the S system anymore. have you thought about the SL system?
 

jecxz

Active member
i did, but i still think it isnt fair, they make very good tools to create amazing imagery
The term "boutique" came from them!

The meaning of "boutique" is: a small company that offers highly specialized services or products.

My next sentence clearly states the make good quality products.

I have been using Hasselblad equipment since 1995. They have used my images in trainings and promotional literature. My artwork was on the cover of their Victor Magazine and I was featured in an article therein. I was integrally involved with them as a beta tester for Phocus as well as long exposure for their firmware. I can go on. Nothing I wrote was negative, hence why I asked you if you read what I wrote. I do not think you know who I am, but you do not need to.

I cannot actually believe I am writing this. Let's stop, be safe, warm regards to you. Really, no more.
 

Paul Spinnler

Active member
The S4 will come, it will be the ultimate Leica. Mirrorless and with a 100 MPX or above sensor. The S glass is unmatched. I have all S lenses except the Zoom - edge to edge sharp, wide open, with resolution across the frame above 100 MPX. Most people who talk badly about the system have never had the chance to try it it in full.
 

tcdeveau

Well-known member
All we can do is speculate.

FWIW, there was a rumor of the first X2D pic leak in March….is it real or fake? Will it make it to market? Again we can only speculate.


I personally believe there will be a next generation at some point of both the X1D/X1D2 and 907x/CFV2….or at least like to hope. Certainly not going to hold my breath on it though. My experience with HB over the years has taught me it’s important to have patience.

The X and S systems are apples and oranges so idk what would fit your needs better. You’ll end up spending a lot more on the S system. I have no extensive experience with the S system, but really enjoy the M system. Of course you pay a premium for the Leica but Ive drank the kool aid and am a believer in the Leica magic/looks/whatever.

if you go with the X system, id buy used to save some $$. I’m still using the OG X1D, and while a little slow and quirky by 2022 standards, still does what I need and produces great images. Plenty of great deals out there on barely used X lenses too.
 

med

Active member
I think you can flip a coin with both of those systems… development has been quiet on both fronts but there is certainly still a market for a new X__ body as well as an S4. Some say that the next S body will be mirrorless, but I’m not sure if that is a credible rumor or just mere speculation.

Both systems have a lot of great glass developed for them and you would think that putting an updated sensor/processor in a body would be an easy project to green light at either company, but who knows…neither company is very good at outlining their plans/roadmap for continuation or discontinuation of product lines (see H system in Hasselblad’s case, or L-Mount APS-c in Leica’s case. Neither has been publicly announced as discontinued but they are as good as).
 

bab

Active member
My thoughts are there are no more systems or system loyalty there is however the right tool'(s) for the job. The options are so vast at this point and with availability of any "BRAND's" specific products in question one would be smart to buy what they need and only what they need for now. In the next year we will see quite a change is the camera-lens-sensor offerings lots of unreleased products JAMMED Up in the pipes.
good luck

FWIW I have not been able to duplicate the quality of the Hasselblad files.
 

Paul Spinnler

Active member
There are some amazing and unique lenses in the S lineup. Besides the APO macro 120 2.5, I find the 35 2.5 really great. It allows you to do environmental portraits which really pop - fantastic lens. It is a distinguishing factor that the S lenses all have a wider aperture than the X lenses except the 80 1.9, of course, which is the only lens I would buy from the X system. They are all also highly corrected with some APO designated lenses such as the 120 and 180.

The X system, on the other hand, has the advantage of being able to adapt M or Zeiss Otus lenses right now already and you can get a special look with the Otus 85 / 100 1.4 or the Nocti 75 1.25. I even saw some great pics on Flickr of the Apo Summicron 35 on the X system with barely vignetting - in my view a very enticing combo.

Once the mirrorless S4 comes out with the ability to adapt, SL with AF, S with AF and M / R lenses you truly have an ultimate camera that can also adapt all the other lens systems such as Otus in Nikon mount for example. I think it is still way off though, with 2022 being M11 year, 2023 being the SL3 / Q3 year (moving to the 60 MPX sensor) and then the S4 at one point thereafter I'd assume -> moving to 100 MPX or above and finally into mirrorless.

One advantage of Hassy is their colour science which in effect is just a kelvin dependent LUT transformation (there are different transformations depending on the illuminant condition at the time of the image capture, ie to adjust for the specific light at recording) at raw file level to get pleasing tones reminiscent of analogue especially on the skin tones. The colours of the S system are also fantastic though, I think here both systems are markedly better than the Phase files which have a bit of a digital touch in comparison.

If you can, though, would suggest to try out an S system - if you go to a Leica dealer they will somehow make it possible after some talking although it may require a few days waiting in case they need to procure the demo unit from some other Leica centre. Judge by the quality of the files.

Finally, understand that Mr. Kaufmann is a big fan of the system, so I think it will not be killed off at all and also during the M11 presentation video you can see the Leica systems roadmap on a wall and on the S side it is continuing to the right ... S4 can't wait for you to come! I would also assume that this is then the time for Leica to introduce a mirrorless S line, maybe called "SX" or something like that, including the possibility for amazing stuff as new APO summicrons or summiluxes or a reference grade noctilux. Whether we will see a fully fledged SX lens line will also depend on the state of the global economy down the line as my understanding of how Leica works is that they have product management which dictates based on market research the design goals in the systems departments based on a target price they deem marketable.

So they will say there's a market for 10k EUR SX summilux lens or not and depending on that the optics department will produce a lens backtracking based on margin needs the maximum production costs. The close focusing ability of the APO 35 M was also based on the target specs of the product management team as was the need to develop a unified system to produce the APO SL Summicron lenses in a cost efficient manner.

On Hassy's future - it is widely believed that the X1D III is coming with improvements across the board (EVF, speed, 100 MPX), but given war, supply issues, could take a bit longer than expected. Pls. note that the price of the Phase One IQ4 also increased during the last months due to the input cost inflation, namely Sony raising significantly the cost of the sensors ... in addition to components being more difficult to procure. And as DJI already got what they wanted - namely colour science and brand equity to slap onto their drones it could be that indeed the H system is dead and the X system will from now on be milked given the lenses have more or less been finally developed - not aware of any other upcoming lens on the X side ...

I think it is therefore bright for both systems with me leaning to think that based on the size of Leica the latter is for sure more secure in the long-term. You never know how DJI will decide to "optimize" the Swedish HQ, production, etc. if the profitability declines, for example. This is in contrast to Leica who has two cash cows with the Q and M systems and lightly profitable SL line and a passion project with the S line which I'd strongly assume is also still profitable given R&D of S3 was limited and S lenses have been fully developed and are produced in batches.
 
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ThdeDude

Active member
Hasselblad's X system has a certain sexiness. 907X 50C appeals both to the older crowd reminiscent of the Hasselblad's V system and, at the same time, has a certain hipster appeal. The X1D Mark II seems to be a decent camera although the sensor is now a little long in the tooth for 2022. IMO, might be around a while.

Hasselblad's H system is a different story. General consensus that Hasselblad's H system is going the way of the dodo.
 
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bab

Active member
There are some amazing and unique lenses in the S lineup. Besides the APO macro 120 2.5, I find the 35 2.5 really great. It allows you to do environmental portraits which really pop - fantastic lens. It is a distinguishing factor that the S lenses all have a wider aperture than the X lenses except the 80 1.9, of course, which is the only lens I would buy from the X system. They are all also highly corrected with some APO designated lenses such as the 120 and 180.

The X system, on the other hand, has the advantage of being able to adapt M or Zeiss Otus lenses right now already and you can get a special look with the Otus 85 / 100 1.4 or the Nocti 75 1.25. I even saw some great pics on Flickr of the Apo Summicron 35 on the X system with barely vignetting - in my view a very enticing combo.

Once the mirrorless S4 comes out with the ability to adapt, SL with AF, S with AF and M / R lenses you truly have an ultimate camera that can also adapt all the other lens systems such as Otus in Nikon mount for example. I think it is still way off though, with 2022 being M11 year, 2023 being the SL3 / Q3 year (moving to the 60 MPX sensor) and then the S4 at one point thereafter I'd assume -> moving to 100 MPX or above and finally into mirrorless. It was Kaufman who said the S has the right amount of MPX as is, but MPX isn't its issue price and functionality are its biggest challenges.

One advantage of Hassy is their colour science which in effect is just a kelvin dependent LUT transformation (there are different transformations depending on the illuminant condition at the time of the image capture, ie to adjust for the specific light at recording) at raw file level to get pleasing tones reminiscent of analogue especially on the skin tones. The colours of the S system are also fantastic though, I think here both systems are markedly better than the Phase files which have a bit of a digital touch in comparison. Agreed but H has also fallen down with its crippled antics, lack of sensible CEO with direction and drive to make the right deals back when,

If you can, though, would suggest to try out an S system - if you go to a Leica dealer they will somehow make it possible after some talking although it may require a few days waiting in case they need to procure the demo unit from some other Leica centre. Judge by the quality of the files.

Finally, understand that Mr. Kaufmann is a big fan of the system, so I think it will not be killed off at all and also during the M11 presentation video you can see the Leica systems roadmap on a wall and on the S side it is continuing to the right ... S4 can't wait for you to come! I would also assume that this is then the time for Leica to introduce a mirrorless S line, maybe called "SX" or something like that, including the possibility for amazing stuff as new APO summicrons or summiluxes or a reference grade noctilux. Whether we will see a fully fledged SX lens line will also depend on the state of the global economy down the line as my understanding of how Leica works is that they have product management which dictates based on market research the design goals in the systems departments based on a target price they deem marketable. S system will never be competitive in todays world.

So they will say there's a market for 10k EUR SX summilux lens or not and depending on that the optics department will produce a lens backtracking based on margin needs the maximum production costs. The close focusing ability of the APO 35 M was also based on the target specs of the product management team as was the need to develop a unified system to produce the APO SL Summicron lenses in a cost efficient manner. Summilux lens or not several lenses being produced today W AF and Stabilization rival Summilux's of yesterday's.

On Hassy's future - it is widely believed that the X1D III is coming with improvements across the board (EVF, speed, 100 MPX), but given war, supply issues, could take a bit longer than expected. Pls. note that the price of the Phase One IQ4 also increased during the last months due to the input cost inflation, namely Sony raising significantly the cost of the sensors ... in addition to components being more difficult to procure. And as DJI already got what they wanted - namely colour science and brand equity to slap onto their drones it could be that indeed the H system is dead and the X system will from now on be milked given the lenses have more or less been finally developed - not aware of any other upcoming lens on the X side ...You said it!!!!

I think it is therefore bright for both systems with me leaning to think that based on the size of Leica the latter is for sure more secure in the long-term. You never know how DJI will decide to "optimize" the Swedish HQ, production, etc. if the profitability declines, for example "the path has been there for years DJI for some unknown reason has chosen to ignore it and go another way. Any deals that could of given life to the H system have long been extinct and what they have in store for the X is... should, would ,might, be to release a new body. However bear in mind that DJI only funded H on sold orders... This is in contrast to Leica who has two cash cows with the Q and M systems and lightly profitable SL line and a passion project with the S line which I'd strongly assume is also still profitable given R&D of S3 was limited and S lenses have been fully developed and are produced in batches.
 

stngoldberg

Well-known member
I replaced my H system and all of my lenses with the Phase One system. Capture Integration gave my a very reasonable deal and took all of my HASSELBLAD equipment in trade.
I am compelled to add that Chris Snipes displayed a large amount of patience with me while he educated me on my new camera. He answers all of my frantic texts and emails with alacrity!
Stanley
 

Paul Spinnler

Active member
On the competitiveness point - it is clear that as of now they are not competing, but catering solely to a boutique audience wanting the special Leica look and which is enamoured with the S system which in all fairness still has some strong advantages to this day. I know some Leica salespeople and apparently Leica S is primarily sold to people with prior experience with the system and less so to new customers. One other issue is that the smaller stores often don't stock the S3 or the full array of lenses and the salespeople are also not really trained to sell it and mostly focus on getting Qs, Ms and SLs out of the door in that order. I was also surprised to learn that the Q is an absolute best-seller and more sold than Ms in some stores ... and there are still plenty of people who do not need to count pennies and just get an S with some lenses at full retail. For example in China. There was a special edition of 25 red Leica S3s which was just sold off in record time last year ... go figure.

On the S I love for example that it has endless battery life, that it is weather-sealed and effectively all images coming out of it are effortlessly beautiful. It's just a great workhorse and when I see it in the corner and I have a nice weekend trip planned ... well I just grab it with the 35 2.5 and I know the imagery will be amazing. I do not miss the 8 MPX EVF, 12 FPS, 0.2s AF speed or the 99 focus points, although when the S4 comes out in mirrorless form ... which can take all Leica lens mounts ... is weather sealed, has a fantastic industrial design, long battery life, a fantastic EVF, etc. I know it will be competitive again. Just imagine all the benefits an ultimate Leica S4 camera can bring. They could optimize sensor crop modes depending on the lens mounted, allowing for example for an XL cutout of the sensor for longer focal length M lenses, etc. Imagine it recognizing the Summilux 50 and then allowing you to crop something in between the S format and 35mm - with digital correction for CA, vignetting, etc. built-in if desired courtesy of Maestro 4.

I think the 100 MPX will be just the sensor size available from Sony in that reduced mini MFD format ... and I think they will be happy to take it given the M11 is a huge success and given they managed to come up with their own image pipeline which renders beautiful colours in a differentiated manner compared to the Sony cameras themselves.

In any case, I am really looking forward to the X1 III but primarily to adapt Leica lenses onto it. I think the Apo Summicrons 35 / 50 should cover it with minimal vignetting as well as the SX 50, the Noct 75 and the SX90 / Summicron 90 ... then also super curious to one day try the 80 1.9 which from all I've seen seems to be the star in Hassy's X line-up and then we, of course, should not forget that one can adapt the Otus line - they all come from cine with larger image circles, so from what I gather especially the Otus 85 / 100 might be great lenses to try ... with an 1.4 aperture ... and once the S4 comes the Hassy will be sold.

The ultimate dream ofc would be if the new S4 has a flange distance lower than that of the Z system or if they build it in a way where you can swap mounts which would mean the best 0.95 lens in the world, the 58mm from Nikon, could be adapted ... which I don't think will happen, but ofc one can dream that Leica is now plotting a new zero compromise SX line with lowest possible flange distance to be able to develop new designs by removing design constraints from for example the legacy M system. A reason why we don't have a new reference grade, ie even better corrected Noct 0.95, is because they do not want to obstruct the viewfinder more than the current size. Mirrorless and lower flange distance combined with Leica's design prowess on the optical side would create the best camera system in the world, arguably, as Phase One and Hassy need to resort to contract R&D and lens manufacturing in Japan for their lenses meaning there's also not so much wiggle room to push the frontier of optics design when commissioning a new lens line as every trial and error cycle would create additional costs, etc. This is why Leica will always have a competitive advantage by having their highly experienced in-house optics department with 100s of years of combined design experience ...

Look at the APO SL lenses - probably the best corrected lens line in 35mm format currently available - took them quite a bit of R&D to marry cost efficiency, production processes, etc. to create a truly stunning and well corrected line; I mean try to create CA with the new 28 APO SL ... or the new Apo 35 M for that matter ... Hassy on the other hand has good Japanese designed lenses with smaller apertures, but nothing utterly fantastic (except the 80 1.9) as it seems to me outside-in.
 
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med

Active member
… when the S4 comes out in mirrorless form ... which can take all Leica lens mounts ... is weather sealed, has a fantastic industrial design, long battery life, a fantastic EVF, etc. I know it will be competitive again. Just imagine all the benefits an ultimate Leica S4 camera can bring. They could optimize sensor crop modes depending on the lens mounted, allowing for example for an XL cutout of the sensor for longer focal length M lenses, etc. Imagine it recognizing the Summilux 50 and then allowing you to crop something in between the S format and 35mm - with digital correction for CA, vignetting, etc. built-in if desired courtesy of Maestro 4.



In any case, I am really looking forward to the X1 III but primarily to adapt Leica lenses onto it. I think the Apo Summicrons 35 / 50 should cover it with minimal vignetting as well as the SX 50, the Noct 75 and the SX90 / Summicron 90 ... then also super curious to one day try the 80 1.9 which from all I've seen seems to be the star in Hassy's X line-up and then we, of course, should not forget that one can adapt the Otus line - they all come from cine with larger image circles, so from what I gather especially the Otus 85 / 100 might be great lenses to try ... with an 1.4 aperture ... and once the S4 comes the Hassy will be sold.

The ultimate dream ofc would be if the new S4 has a flange distance lower than that of the Z system or if they build it in a way where you can swap mounts which would mean the best 0.95 lens in the world, the 58mm from Nikon, could be adapted ...
I am not an optical engineer, but is it crazy to think that the L mount could support the S sensor size for a mirrorless S4? If so, they already have the necessary adaptors developed, at least to leverage their own lens systems. The flange distance is right in between Fuji and Hasselbad’s, however the L mount diameter seems too narrow. That being said, many said Sony E mount could not support 35mm FF when it was APS-C only, and they could not have been more wrong, so we shall see.
 

Paul Spinnler

Active member
My point is that they are developing a system from scratch now if they move the S into mirrorless. Should they construct it in a way whereby the flange distance of the new mirrorless S mount is shorter than the current L mount and adapter for the latter should be possible.

Imagine an S4 which has been designed to have the shorted flange distance of all Leica cameras meaning it can act as consolidating body for the whole Leica universe with different adapters. You could adapt L lenses to the new mount via a separately sold L to SX adapter and also produce M to SX and S to SX adapters. And if they construct it with a distance shorter than that of the Z system you could adapt optics such as the Nikon 58 0.95 ...

If I were in charge of the product management I would at least want to make sure the new body is compatible with the whole Leica universe to make it immediately attractive to the widest possible Leica demographic. That way SL, M and S users can directly migrate and over time buy specifically made SX lenses which may have even wider apertures than the S lenses - say a Summilux SX or a Summicron APO SX etc.

Seeing what they've been able to do with the S mount and flange distance ... I think this could be Karbe's final project. Reference grade medium format SX optics with the highest requirements: no aberrations, 1.4-2.0 apertures incl. a Noct SX.
 
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onasj

Active member
While I'm fortunate to have access to Phase One IQ4-150, Leica M11, Hassy CFV-II-50c, Hassy V, Sony alpha 1 and a7r4, and a few other systems, with the best glass each system has to offer, when I travel I choose the Hassy CFV system and XCD lenses, ever since the CFV-II-50c was released. A CFV-III-100c would be even better. So at least for me, the future of Hassy is bright and I will be rooting for them to continue to innovate and excel.
 
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