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Two Hasselblad Portrait Lenses at Infinity - now with a Leica Lens and a Tree

MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
One of the attractions of the X2D is the possibility that it will make it easier to use older wide aperture glass. In particular, I've always been interested in the Hasselblad FE 110mm f/2. Wide open, it is a very special portrait lens. But I don't shoot a lot of portraits, and so I was curious about how it performed as an architecture or landscape lens. Crazy, right?
The HC 100mm f/2.2 is the more modern AF Hasselblad portrait lens, and it will work with AF on the X1D (I'm assuming it will on the X2D as well), so a comparison might be interesting.
I mounted both of these on an X1D. I should have used the Leica S3, as both will mount on it, and the S 100mm f/2 could join the fun. AND no need for the electronic shutter. Next time.

To my surprise, both lenses were pretty sharp across the frame wide open. Until I set everything up on a good tripod, this had not been my impression. But sharp isn't everything (Cartier-Bresson was talking to his friend Helmut Newton when he made that famous quote. Sort of changes the whole vibe.) There are some fascinating artifacts that arise in the absence of Apochromatic corrections.
Oddly, I neglected to shoot any apertures between wide open and f/5.6. Smaller apertures, f/8 and f/11, were indistinguishable - no diffraction effects on a 50MP 44x33 sensor, which is consistent with my tech cam experience.

So, Hasselblad X1D, Acratech panning head, Gitzo GT5533LS with leveling base, 2 second delay, adapters by Hasselblad.

First, the scene. Having a bright sky in the background, I overexposed the image to better see the detail and accentuate fringing (and possible misplace a modifier). This was with the 100/2.2, so the image has a slightly wider FoV than the 110/2. The edge crops will not be identical.

The buildings are about one mile away - the trees about 1/4 mile.

First the 110mm f/2

Central and edge crops at f/2

Hint: The Empire State Building, seen poking its spire up in the background there, is NOT actually purple.

By f/5.6 things are better. Sharpness at the edge and contrast are much improved. And the purple is greatly suppressed.


And by f/11. Hmmm.Yes, the light does change between shots. Sorry. Very slight improvement over the f/5.6


And the HC 100/2.2?

Wide Open - a lot of purple again. More softness at the edge. This is consistent with the field curvature hypothesis. I have focused this lens at the edge and it is sharper wide open than appears below.


f/5.6 - better


And f/11


Huh. The only issues were purple fringing. Both of these lenses are quite sharp enough for landscape and architecture once past f/5.6. Field curvature was not *as* pronounced as I was expecting. If I can find a nice grassy slope, I'll try Roger Cicala's "field curvature without expensive lab equipment" test. Aside from the AF, I don't see much in favor of the 100/2.2. Just as much fringing, softer at the edge wide open. But this was all at infinity. Closer up? Remains to be seen. Looking forward to the X2D.

Well, maybe I should just shoot some portraits.

Matt
 
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itsdoable

Member
Interesting. But keep in mind, the V lenses were optimized at infinity, while the H lenses were optimized at studio distances (I can't remember the exact distance, but something around 6~12 ft -I'd have to find that article again... and it might be dependant on focal lenght) I wonder if the differences would be greater at closer distances.
 

MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
Interesting. But keep in mind, the V lenses were optimized at infinity, while the H lenses were optimized at studio distances (I can't remember the exact distance, but something around 6~12 ft -I'd have to find that article again... and it might be dependant on focal lenght) I wonder if the differences would be greater at closer distances.
I might have thought that the 110/2 would be optimized for portraiture, but it just says “planar”. I really don’t know.
 

MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
Soup approves although he must be thinking if you're going to shoot wide open you need to tune up your eye-detect focus (it takes one to know one). :ROFLMAO:

John
The second one is pretty spot on. But the intensity of his direct stare isn’t too adversely affected by the focus. I think. Maybe.
 
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MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
The Contax 100mm F2 Planar is a great landscape lens. The Hasselblad V version (110mm Planar) is just kind of a "super sized" version.

Thank you! That is extraordinarily interesting. I'm reminded of the Contax 645 35mm being a "super sized" 21/2.8 Distagon.

Matt
 

Photon42

Well-known member
[..] Aside from the AF, I don't see much in favor of the 100/2.2. Just as much fringing, softer at the edge wide open. But this was all at infinity. Closer up? Remains to be seen. Looking forward to the X2D.
Thanks for the comparison, Matt. The main reason for me to use the HC100 over the 110 on X cameras is existence of shutter, aperture control and open aperture view and auto focus. All this is also true when using the HC100 on the Leica S cameras.
 

MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
Thanks for the comparison, Matt. The main reason for me to use the HC100 over the 110 on X cameras is existence of shutter, aperture control and open aperture view and auto focus. All this is also true when using the HC100 on the Leica S cameras.
Completely fair. The elephant in the room is the shutter. On the S, the FP shutter works with everything, but on the X1D or X2D, the ES could really limit functionality. Indoor lighting, for instance, leaves a lovely 60Hz set of stripes on the image. Except for pictures of the cat, everything else I do is outside with reasonably stationary subjects. If the S had IBIS, I doubt I'd be so interested in the X2D. Perhaps an S4 mirrorless will have it, but I try not to think about nonexistent cameras.
 

Photon42

Well-known member
I think IBIS is the single most important feature on the X2D to me. It really freeing to take photos at longer shutter speeds. Next is overall camera responsiveness (AF included), followed by the 100MP. Surprisingly the battery life seems improved noticeably - that's at least from my way of using the camera.
I have made a pretty tough decision a year back to sell my S007 and the the S lenses (24/707120). Still hurts occasionally. That leaves with with the old lady S2 and some adapters with a bunch of Contax 645, Hasselblad CF and FE lenses, the Pentax 105 and a Mamiya 80 🤷‍♂️ The lenses are vintage, and so is now the S2. I am pretty certain at this point that I won't buy into the S system again. But ok - who knows for sure:eek:
 
It's all relative :) I could care less about IBIS because my landscapes shots are almost always on a tripod, otherwise it's snaps and I'm using using ISO and fast apertures. I loved my Canon IS lenses back in the dSLR days, but nowadays ISO performance is so darn good. I generally don't like dragging the shutter speeds, so the net betterment from IBIS is marginal (for me). The biggest upside (again, for me) is steadying the EVF when focusing, especially when zoomed in @ 100%.

The ugly side of adapting Hasselblad 110/2 is how freakin' big the lens adapters are if using the 110/2 on Fuji GFX or Hass XC camera. The adapters are probably ~1.5" long. The Hass 110/2 itself is not very big - maybe ~1.5 pounds give or take. But add that adapter and the length becomes more like a 70-200mm on a 35mm dLSR camera. I applaud Matt's efforts and I'm cheering from side lines, but for my cameras, the adapter 110/2 is too large.

These are not intentional A vs B shots, but it gives some context -

110/2 on a GFX 100 shot at F4 in mid summer (aka - HOT!) -


Then later the same year in October with a M10-P and Leica 90 APO M at F2.8 -
 

MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
It's all relative :) I could care less about IBIS because my landscapes shots are almost always on a tripod, otherwise it's snaps and I'm using using ISO and fast apertures. I loved my Canon IS lenses back in the dSLR days, but nowadays ISO performance is so darn good. I generally don't like dragging the shutter speeds, so the net betterment from IBIS is marginal (for me). The biggest upside (again, for me) is steadying the EVF when focusing, especially when zoomed in @ 100%.

The ugly side of adapting Hasselblad 110/2 is how freakin' big the lens adapters are if using the 110/2 on Fuji GFX or Hass XC camera. The adapters are probably ~1.5" long. The Hass 110/2 itself is not very big - maybe ~1.5 pounds give or take. But add that adapter and the length becomes more like a 70-200mm on a 35mm dLSR camera. I applaud Matt's efforts and I'm cheering from side lines, but for my cameras, the adapter 110/2 is too large.

These are not intentional A vs B shots, but it gives some context -

110/2 on a GFX 100 shot at F4 in mid summer (aka - HOT!) -


Then later the same year in October with a M10-P and Leica 90 APO M at F2.8 -
I very rarely rely on IBIS for image capture. It is fantastic at focusing a long lens, or magnified focusing of any lens. I would never consider manual focus otherwise. On a tripod, it matters less. When shooting the Zeiss 250/5.6 or 350/5.6, I bring a very light tripod (RRS 1-series) for focusing, but then hand hold the capture.
 

msadat

Member
i have a set of Hasselblad H lenses (28/4, 50mm ii,110,150 and 300) that i use exclusively on my Leica s006 as my retro kit. i love the combo a lot and usually shoot with it when in mammoth lakes
 

Photon42

Well-known member
FWIW, as a portrait lens, the 110/2 is really good with the 203FE and the CFV II 50C back
I used that combination a bit for a while with the first version of the back. Focussing was much easier with my S and the focus indicator and the manual focus screen. It seems that very small focussing changes on the lens aren't really visible (for me) on the matte screen. I used the one provided with the back.
To me, the 110 shines the most when used "full frame" on a 20x series with 6x6 film. I sold the CFV50 back then to finance the X1D2, but still have the 203 and the lens. Won't sell these.
 
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FloatingLens

Well-known member
I used that combination a bit for a while with the first version of the back. Focussing was much easier with my S and the focus indicator and the manual focus screen. It seems that very small focussing changes on the lens aren't really visible (for me) on the matte screen. I used the one provided with the back.
To me, the 110 shines the most when used "full frame" on a 20x series with 6x6 film. I sold the CFV50 back then to finance the X1D2, but still have the 203 and the lens. Won't see these.
Yes, I share the idea that the 110 shines when used full frame. That‘s why I have purchased a 205 just to utilize this lens full frame to its full potential, ie. for handheld situations.
That said, with slower shutter speeds and stopped down, the 110 is really also very versatile for digital use, eg. architectural or landscape.
 

MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
Round 2
I'm splitting this into three parts. Distant Center, Distant Edge, and Portrait (ok, a Tree). The last one at least shows rolloff and bokeh.

Note: This is hard, and my sincere admiration goes to reviewers who do it consistently well (Vieri, Kasson, and Cicala come to mind).

We have here a Leica S3 with the native S 100mm f/2, the Hasselblad HC 100mm f/2.2, and the Hassy/Zeiss 110mm f/2. All adapters are by Leica. The weather was a bit hazier than last time, so here's the full shot:


Here are center crops of the S, HC, and Zeiss images, respectively. I make no attempt to remove or minimize fringing. These are also a bit smaller than 1:1, as the S3 has smaller pixels and I wanted to get three images across a row.

First, wide open. The S 100 has the least fringing. All are sharp, but the Zeiss 110 has a bit of dreaminess (yeah, Spherical Aberration, I know)


At f/2.8, things are better. Fringing largely gone from the Z110, but still quite visible in the HC100.


By f/4, we have pretty sharp unfringed images from them all.


And at f/5.6 and above, we are good to go.


Next time on the "Misuse of Portrait Lenses" channel, we'll look at the edges of these captures.

Matt
 
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