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Thread: picking a digital back

  1. #1
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    picking a digital back

    Ive been pondering getting a used digital back for my Hasselblad H1 for quite a while but cant seem to settle my mind on what to get, so I was hoping I could get some thoughts and opinions from the hive Please forgive me if you have read similar posts in the past - new baby and new house put my photography on the backburner so I've procrastinated on the issue

    eventually I will get a technical camera, as I am used to movements on my LF camera and I often miss having them on medium format. Image quality is important to me

    anyway, I am looking for a newer back more suited to landscape photography (no studio, no strobes, no architecture etc) purely landscape

    budget, I guess around $10,000 (ideally less)

    I love working in Capture One, but I am not totally tied to it, I could therefore upgrade the Hassy body too, if something suitable presented itself
    Because of Capture One, my first thought is another Phase One back, to go with my P30+, such as an IQ - but even used they are very strong money (and hard to find in H mounts)

    I have thought of mirrorless, such as the GFX 50s or even X1D, but the latter requires too much of an investment in expensive glass, and I felt a little frustrated with the operational speed of the system. If the 50s is going to give me greater quality images then I will see what the future holds for prices of the unit once the 100mp version is released in a few weeks (that will be out of my price range, give that I will need to get new glass to go with it) a plus side being, I get to keep my capture one workflow with the Fuji, unlike with a complete Hasselblad system


    I would have thought one of the CMOS IQs would be a good fit - but I think I am going to struggle for that with my budget so I am going to be sticking with a CCD and living with the fact I cant get super long exposures. High iso noise doesnt concern me as I rarely ever go above 200 - mostly sticking to 50-100

    any thoughts/opinions very gratefully received

    thanks
    Simon
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  2. #2
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    Re: picking a digital back

    I think this is a good option as long as you didn’t need some of the bells and whistles of an IQ back:

    https://www.digitalback.com/product/...lblad-h-mount/

    From a reputable dealer and significantly less than the top end of your budget. Would give you a 40x54mm 60mp CCD sensor with a more modern interface than the P series, and you’d still be working within capture 1.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member dave.gt's Avatar
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    Re: picking a digital back

    Quote Originally Posted by tcdeveau View Post
    I think this is a good option as long as you didn’t need some of the bells and whistles of an IQ back:

    https://www.digitalback.com/product/...lblad-h-mount/

    From a reputable dealer and significantly less than the top end of your budget. Would give you a 40x54mm 60mp CCD sensor with a more modern interface than the P series, and you’d still be working within capture 1.
    Excellent advice!

    Or...

    Talk with Steve Hendrix at the same number... he just might have a nice H5D-50c available too!
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)

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    Re: picking a digital back

    Quote Originally Posted by tcdeveau View Post
    I think this is a good option as long as you didn’t need some of the bells and whistles of an IQ back:

    https://www.digitalback.com/product/...lblad-h-mount/

    From a reputable dealer and significantly less than the top end of your budget. Would give you a 40x54mm 60mp CCD sensor with a more modern interface than the P series, and you’d still be working within capture 1.
    I second the Credo 60 H. I have been using one on an H2 and an Alpa STC with Schneider lenses. The files are gorgeous, unlike anything I had ever experienced in digital and as a die hard film shooter it's the first digital camera I ever felt comfortable shooting all the time (from an image look perspective). Capture One is the icing on the cake.

    That said there are some considerable drawbacks such as being generally limited to ISO 50-100 (which doesn't seem like an issue for you), and having a heavier system with the H. Using it on a tech camera is kludgy and annoying with the strobing live view and manual focus, but there are tricks to speed it up and if you can afford the time and patience the images are again incredible in quality. There is no doubt that an X1D or 50S will be more convenient to use, but as you've noticed, the native glass doesn't come cheap and giving up C1 would be frustrating in the case of the X1D. The 50S has a leg up with C1 but from what little I've played with it and researched it doesn't seem to have quite the same colors and 'look' as Phase/Hasselblad to me, tends to look more like other high-end DSLRS and feels rather blandly utilitarian in usage.

    I really like the H platform because you have a good range of choices between HC and CF glass both plentifully available used and for rental. CF lenses are a particularly interesting option as focus assist on the H gives them the potential to be as accurate as AF, just slower, while being affordable, sharp, and a versatile investment as you can use them on film or as regular or PC lenses on an X1D or 50S and DSLRS. I mostly shoot with an 80mm CF on my H, have printed to 40"x50" and I find it astonishingly sharp and luscious. I actually prefer it over the HC 80 which often looks too microcontrasty and 'digital' to me.

    -m
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  5. #5
    Senior Member dave.gt's Avatar
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    Re: picking a digital back

    An interesting article for you, it may be an interesting and I find it absolutely great reading.


    https://www.eoshd.com/2017/09/guide-...format-camera/

    I have heard from numerous members that the larger sensor size is very appealing and the price vs a much higher priced back may be worth considering. You have great choices these days! Not sure if you can actually go wrong in any direction.
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)

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    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    My guess is that the GFX is a champ...

    Hi,

    GFX has a modern CMOS sensor and it is made by an experienced maker of EVF systems. The GFX lenses seem to be excellent and the GFX has a very accurate AF.

    Also, a new version of the GFX is coming soon, with 100 MP resolution.

    The GFX can use H-lenses with an adaptor, with some limitation. AF is not working and I don't know about leaf shutter and sync speed.

    So, I would say the GFX makes a lot of sense.

    Also, it is supported by Capture One.

    Best regards
    Erik

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    Re: picking a digital back

    I bought a used IQ280 from a member here earlier this year and I am very happy with the back. The final negotiated price was plus minus at the limit of your budget, so you may be able to find another one at a price acceptable to you. I am using it on an RZ67ProIID, mostly to shoot art nudes in the studio and outdoors, usually with strobes - i.e. a different usage scenario from yours. Having said that, the RZ lenses are super cheap these days and the latest versions with APO designation and/or floating elements are still pretty good. The RZ I bought was a mint unused specimen and together with the 110 lens came at approx EUR2300 plus customs/VAT on eBay, from a seller in Japan. The adapter plate was expensive, at around EUR1100, from a dealer in Germany. The other lenses (50, 65, 250 APO) have each been in the range of EUR250-EUR450 on eBay, in mint condition, all latest version. I am not sure if this system would fit your needs (not weather sealed), I am only mentioning it because of your declared budget constraints (in other words, I have been able to build a full system - body and lenses - around the IQ280 for approx. EUR5k). The reason I got the IQ280 was the ultimate size of the sensor, with the "look" associate with MF, and the nice rendering of skin by the CCD chip.

    As far as GFX is concerned, you may want to wait another ten days till Fuji's expected launch of the GFX100 (indicated price for the body is EUR10k - but the lenses would of course add to your budget). With that system, I would get the 32-64mm zoom only, initially (it really is superb, you will not lose anything in image quality compared to the primes) and the 23mm lens later. If you really need to fit within $10k and get a camera now, then I'd suggest you buy a second hand GFX50S plus the 32-64 zoom and don't look back. I took this same combination to Iceland two years ago and took about 90% of all images with the zoom, the remaining 10% with the 23. The camera and lenses are weather sealed, the files (and tethering) are now supported in Capture One. Image quality is superb, especially for landscapes. There is nothing not to like.
    Last edited by baudolino; 13th May 2019 at 08:40.
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