Hasselblad 50mm & 40mm lenses

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by billy_bunton, Oct 15, 2009.

  1. Hi People,
    I have a Hasselblad 501cm with the standard 80mm lens, which is fine for the portrait project I doing at present and for the rest of this academic year. However, I have possibly £1000 to spend on either a MacBook, but think I'd be better off investing in a second hand lens.
    I am thinking either a 50mm or 40mm lens, and these are my options...
    40mm f4 CF FLE - £899

    50mm F2.8 F - £349
    50mm F2.8 FE - £750
    50mm F4 C Black - £399
    50mm F4 C Chrome - £449
    50mm F4 CF - £499
    50mm F4 CF FLE - £649
    I work part-time at a printers and when I graduate I will be looking for work through their client base, photographing local businesses such as golf courses, bed & breakfasts, hotels etc. So I am looking to purchase with this in mind. I was recently asked to photograph some food for a restaurant but I turned the offer down as I wish to concentrate solely on my degree, I am thinking 50mm would probably be wiser than the 40mm at the moment, but maybe some of you out there disagree?
    I was also wondering, what is the difference between the "F", "FE", & "FLE" lenses?
    Thanks in advance,
  2. I believe the F and FE are for the focal plane shutter cameras and will not work with your camera. The CF FLE I am not familiar with. I have the CFi lens and I believe it will work with either of the camera types.
    I would recommend a 50mm to start with. I sold my 40, although I wish I hadn't. That said, I generally found it too wide for many things and used the 50 more often. I think the 50mm will serve you well.
    Shooting architecture, you would probably find the 40mm to be more useful, however, you will be dealing with a lot of distortion if you don't have rise and fall capabilities, which these lenses don't have. Some clients don't worry about it and you can sometimes correct it in Photoshop. I would still stay with the 50mm and worry about the other when you get there.
  3. Yeah, the F and FE lenses won't work with your 501--they don't have shutters in them. My choice would be the black C, if it's T* and in decent shape. Very good lens. Except for the FLE, you probably won't find enough difference for the more expensive lenses. I honestly don't have enough experience with the 40mm, other than using them. I wasn't as impressed with the C version, and the FLE seemed a bit better, but again, not enough hands on experience. Oh, the the FLE is a floating lens element, which does seem to help IQ a bit.
  4. Consider a SWC if you want a 40mm. It has a built in 38 and a heck of a body, which is lighter than the all purpose body and comes with a low vibration shutter which may be used hand held at very slow speeds.
  5. If I needed the coverage of the 40mm I would get a super wide (38mm). its smaller, lighter and a lot sharper, and gives you another camera body. I have a 38mm-50mm-80mm-120mm-150mm in my kit.
  6. 50 CF-fle, I have this for some time. This is a very fine lens, and I highly reccommend it. I have limited experience with the 40 fle, but it's also superb. I also agree with the SWC if you need that type coverage, the 40 is heavy but fits your body.
  7. Out of that line-up I'd go for the 50mm CF. The 40mm is really quite wide on 6x6 and is a significantly larger lens with larger front element. The 50 is roughly equivalent to 24/28mm in 35mm format and makes a very flexible all-round wide-angle with bay60 filter thread the same as your 80mm.
    The SWC is a great camera if your into Hasselblad but its not exactly the most practical or fluent camera to use. There's a big practical difference between using a 50 on your 501 and an SWC or 40. Newer (FLE) versions of the 50 have larger front elements and are a bit bigger than the original 50 CF. The older C series lenses are fine but investment-wise the're not so good, you'll get back what you pay for the CF if you want to sell, the C series are harder to shift.
  8. "The 50 is roughly equivalent to 24/28mm in 35mm format [...]"
    More to a 27 - 32 mm lens, depending on what angle of view is compared.
    I agree that the 50 mm is the more versatile lens. And that the SWC - great though it is - is a bit awkward in use.
    Comments about the weight of the 40 mm lens compared to the SWC appear to ignore the fact that the SWC actually weighs more, not less, than the 40 mm lens.
    The SWC is bigger than the 40 mm lens too, with the body and its viewfinder attached to the lens.
    The SWC is only smaller and lighter if it is all you need, and are not carrying a 500-series body with other lenses anyway.
    So i would indeed say that if the 38 mm lens is all you need, the SWC is a good choice. But i carry the 40 mm in my kit for all those times it is not.
  9. mizore

    mizore A Gringa in Nicaragua

    The 50mm FLE is a nice lens. All things considered, a C chrome would be cheaper than a C T* black, so I'd check the C T* black very carefully. The price difference between the two CF lenses is about right.
  10. Wow! Thanks for all your replies, you have all been very helpful, and hopefully I'll decide and make my purchase on monday :)
    Thanks again people
  11. Q.G. I'm not sure what you're saying? A 501CM with a 40, back and finder is going to weigh more than a SWC with back and scope. The 40 by itself won't, and if he uses a prism then it will be even more. If I'm not correct please indicate but I too have used all of these and my perception is different.
  12. [redundant, double post removed]
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  14. What i am saying is that - though an SWC with finder and magazine weighs less than a 500 C(...) with 40 mm lens, finder and magazine - when you want to add (!) a lens of that focal length to your kit, you will be adding more weight and bulk when your choice is to add an SWC than when you opt for the 40 mm lens (simply because the SWC with lens and finder weighs more than the 40 mm lens, and is bigger too).
    The SWC is only smaller and lighter when it is all (! With magazine, obviously) you are carrying, and is considered instead of a 500 C(...) with 40 mm lens.
    If not, if the 38/40 mm lens is in addition to what you already are carrying, the 40 mm is the lighter and smaller choice.
  15. If you want to do a personal project then the hasselblad 38/40/50 are all great.
    I sold my 40mm FLE for a SWC because it's more compact and lightweight i.e. a great travel camera.
    However accurate full frame alignment and full frame printing including the rebate is rather difficult with the OVF alone.
    The 41050 view screen adapter is discontinued - it took me 6 months to track one down.
    As you are quoting ffordes prices and they don't have a SWC at the moment ( it would cost £1500+ ), it's probably academic anyway.
    I would go with the 50mm - it's certainly better if in your project you want to take people or groups in their environment.
    The 38 and 40mm need the right subject - for groups you will probably end up cropping to 6x45.
    If your are seeking commercial income from interior photography, you are probably better starting with a DSLR and a lens in the 14-28 range coupled with the option of digital stitching.

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