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Thread: Hasselblad 503/203 Questions

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    Hasselblad 503/203 Questions

    Hi, I'm confused about Hasselblads and I'd appreciate some help, please:

    1 If a person picks up a used 503CW, does the V-back fit directly on it successfully without any modifications, meaning that it can then be used for digital OR for film.
    2 If a person picks up a used 503CWD, can it be ever used with film or is the CWD model digital only?
    3 If a person picks up a used 203 (or 205), what actually gets modified for use with a V back or Phase back?
    4 If a person picks up a used 203 that has been modified for use with digital, can it be used for film?
    5 And, finally, the number of options for these cameras seems pretty daunting, is there any schematic available that shows which options can be used for which cameras?

    Thanks for you help, guys, Ray

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    tetsrfun
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    Re: Hasselblad 503/203 Questions

    Hi, I'm confused about Hasselblads and I'd appreciate some help, please:
    ********
    I am not an expert but I do own several 500 series including 503 and a CFV back.

    1)Yes..the CFV back is the only digital back that will function without an external cable. (Not that big of a deal but nice, IMO)

    2)Either may be used, I have used my CFV to determine best long exposure time and then switched to a film back.

    3)Internal camera electronic board mod. that disables the ISO communication between an "E" film back and the camera..Hopefully an "expert" can give a better answer.

    4)Yes but the ISO function on the film mag is no longer operative..

    5) A 503 is back compatible with most 500 series bits and pieces. The 503 electric winder is 503 specific; just about everything else can be mixed and matched. Richard Nordin's Book "The Hasselblad System Compendium" is the best source of info for all of the "stuff" that was made for these cameras.

    Hopefully a 200 series expert will comment.

    Steve

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    Re: Hasselblad 503/203 Questions

    The 503CWD is a 503CW with CFV, nothing more. Works both with film and CFV backs without modification.

    With a 203/205, the contacts normally used to transmit ISO from film back to camera get reworked to transmit shutter information from camera to back. This means that you must set the ISO in the camera before it can meter properly, as far as I understand.

    5) Which options do you mean? The 203/205 cameras have an LCD readout for metering info, and use only special viewfinders with a cutout for this. Other than that, I think that almost all Hasselblad accessories can be used on them, except a few items like the 500-series winder and such. C-lenses can also not be used, but CF and forwards can. I mistakenly once put a C lens on my 2000FC/M and had trouble getting it off again. The tolerances in certain areas are just not made for it.

    What are you looking for, and for what?
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: Hasselblad 503/203 Questions

    Hi Carsten, thank you for the info. I much appreciate it. I came across a beautiful 503CW this weekend and didn't know enough about the camera to consider it further, so I needed to ask the folks on this forum about the camera. In terms of what I'm looking at as an 'add-on," I was looking for information on which prism viewfinder would be compatible/work best on the 503 and the 203. I seem to recall that over the last few weeks since the new 39MP V back was introduced, there was a bit of conversation about which prism would be best for these cameras. I will indeed look at the compendium that you referenced.

    The 503CW is a beautiful camera, as is the 203FE, I'm sure. Lots to learn about both!

    Thanks again, Ray

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    Re: Hasselblad 503/203 Questions

    Hi Steve, thanks for all the info you provided. Much appreciated. I was under the impression that if a person bought a 503CWD, going to film wasn't an option. So, thanks for clarifying! Ray

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    Re: Hasselblad 503/203 Questions

    The 203 is a special camera, having a metered body, which makes it quite modern by Hasselblad standards. The 205 cameras also have some pretty esoteric zone system functionality, which some (many?) find a bit too much, so the 203 is the sweet spot.

    All older cameras, (500 series, 2000 series, SW series) don't have metering in the body, so if you don't want to guess, and don't want to carry a handheld meter, you need to buy one of the metered prisms, like the PME45 and PME90, I think.

    The 203 is picky w.r.t. accessories, but the 503CW takes almost everything.
    Carsten - Website

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    tetsrfun
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    Re: Hasselblad 503/203 Questions

    you need to buy one of the metered prisms,
    ********
    The metered prism, a PME-45 for example, is very useful if you are planning on shooting a lot of film. With the digital back, TTL metering is not that useful, IMO. Guess the exposure, check the Histogram and make needed adjustments.

    I have just change my PME-45 for a HC-3/70 prism. The 4x magnification with the HC-3 is nice. (the PME-45 is 2.5x)

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    Re: Hasselblad 503/203 Questions

    Thanks Eric and Carsten, this is exactly the kind of info I was looking for. Ray

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