Hasselblad 80mm CFE or 100mm CFi ?

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by john_mourk, Jun 24, 2002.

  1. Hello,

    I am considering buying a hasselblad camera and hesitating between a
    new 501 CM Kit with 80 CFEmm lens and a used 503 CW millenium kit
    with 100mm CFi Lens which would cost 600€ more (around $600).

    I know I have no use of a winder and that I will mainly shoot outdoor
    and will never use a flash, so there is no difference for me between
    the 501CM and th 503CW.

    The main difference is between the 80mm CFE and the 100mm CFi.

    My questions are :
    1) Is it worth spending $600.00 to have the 100mm instead of the
    80mm ? What will I have and is it worth the money ?

    2) A "classic" MF system seems to be 50mm / 80mm / 120mm. If I buy
    the 100mm it looks like it will be harder to build a consistent
    system. Am I right ?

    Thanks in advance for your help !
  2. John:

    Obviously, the choice between the 80mm and the 100mm would be shaped by how you intend to use the camera most of the time. As one who recently purchased the 501CM kit with the 80mm Planar, I can tell you that I am very pleased with the 80mm (my only MF lens at this point) and find it to be an excellent "general purpose" lens.

    With my 35mm camera, the 50mm lens is my default lens; likewise, with the Hassy I suspect that at least 80% of my shooting could be done well with the 80mm normal lens. Were I to need a longer lens (and I would get a wide angle first), I would look to the 120mm. I tend to agree that the 50/80/120 would be an ideal set up. I would suggest starting with the 80mm as the base lens -- and the 501CM is a great camera.
  3. I'd go for the Cw, you never know when your photo intersts might
    change, so get the most versatile body @ the beginning, you
    never know when fill flash may be needed, and its a cinch with
    ttl. My combo is 60-100-150, so it all varies.
  4. With brand-new kits in the UK and other parts of the EU, Hasselblad usually throws in some freebies like a free back or prism finder or whatever, so you have to factor that in.

    Assuming that the 503CW is in mint shape, you'd have to consider that at the time of purchase as a new product, the owner probably got something free for it too. That has to be factored into the deal in order to ascertain whether it is good or not.

    The difference in price between a brand-new 80 CFE and a brand-new 100CFi is more a little less than 780 Euros. The difference between a brand-new 501Cm and the 503CW is a little less than 330 Euros. You get a free PM45 right now with a brand-new 501CM kit and a CW Winder with a brand-new 503CW kit.

    If you get the Winder with the used 503CW, the used price is about 337Euro overpriced (based on a 30% depreciation). If you don't, the 501CM is the much better deal with the freebie.

    I have been looking at it strictly from the price point of view.

    As for the qualitiative differences between the 80mm vs. 100mm, you will have to decide for yourself. The 100mm CFi is one of the sharpest lenses and with the best MTF curves available from Zeiss but sharpness and MTF alone are not the criteria to choose a lens by.
  5. Sorry, there is a redundant 'more' in the clause 'a little less than 780 Euros'.
  6. What Bill Dewberry said. 60-100-150 makes a fine kit. I added a 38mm Biogon at the wide end, since I like wide angle lenses. I like it better than the 50, anyhow.
  7. John, Why are you considering the 100mm over the 80? Both lenses are very sharp. The 100mm have almost no distortion while the 80mm have a slight barrel distortion, rarely noticable but irritates me when I shoot seascapes with high horizons. The 100mm can be used with the 1,4 EX converter but the 80mm cant. If neither of the above advantage for the 100mm matters significant to you, the difference boils down to focal length only(the 80mm have a half stop speed advantage). I have the CF 50/80/100. What focal length are best, are very personal and what to like depends partly on the subjects. In my opinion, for a start with only one lens, the 100mm is a bit to narrow and I would prefer the 80mm. The "classic" MF 6x6 setup is 50/80/150 and works fine for many people. Others prefer the 60/100/180 combination but the 60mm is just a moderate wideangle and corresponds to 38mm from left to right in 35mm format, so many adds a 40 or 38mm lens (very expensive!). The 50/100 combo works fine for me, and is my favorite for nature/landscapes while the 80mm often suits better for groupe portraits and buildings.
  8. Thanks a lot for these answers.

    Just to give some more information :

    - The reason why I am considering the 100mm over the 80mm is just that at a local shop they've got a used 503cw kit with a 100mm instead of the classic 80mm. The angles of view between those two lenses seems to be very close so if it looks like I will be able to take about the same photos with those 2 lenses, providing I can can walk a little bit around the subject. The 100mm seems to be sharper while 80mm is faster.

    - There is no freebies : the used 503cw is sold with the 100mm lens and a back and nothing else. If I go for the 501cm I will order it from a shop like Adorama or B&H (there is a HUGE price difference with Paris prices) and I do not think they will throw in a free PM45.
  9. 1: You may find out later that you need TTL-flash and/or winder and remote controle, so I would go for the 503CW.

    2: The CFi 3.5/100 is a better lens than the CFE 2.8/80, and it has practically no distortion, so I would go for 3.5/100.

    3: 3.5/100 can be used with the 1.4XE, this and some extention tubes I would bye next.

    4: Combination suggestion: 3.5/100 + 1.4XE and later 3.5/60 or 4/50 (and maybe 903/905SWC). Much later (if needed) 4/150 or 4/180 or even longer (CFE 5.6/350Sa).

    I think this is the way I will do it.
  10. Did you suss out the prices at www.robertwhite.co.uk ?
  11. I think most Hasselblad users will agree that the 100 CFi is generally considered one of the best overall lenses produced by Zeiss for Hasselblad. (Perhaps you can talk a dealer into selling you the camera you want with a 100mm lens, or making a trade for the $600 difference immediately after recording the sale so that you qualify for the prism promotion.)

    If you can get a 45-degree prism for free in the deal by buying a new 501, you're ahead of the game as this normally would run you $1000 minimum. The prism is more valuable and useful than stretching for the slight difference between the 100 and 80 mm lenses. And you would save $600 + $1000. I'd go for the new one. I have prisms on both my 503 and 203 and wouldn't want to be without them.
  12. If you are highly interested in sharpness,definition, and contrast (and why spend all the money on Zeiss lenses if you are not?) then the 100 will impress you much more over the 80, which is soft in comparison. I've shot with 6 80's in my life, and all I can figure about the people who say how "tack sharp" it is, is that they have never shot a 100.

    It is the superiority of the 100 and 180 over the 80 and 150 respectively that has many folks who have used all of the lenses to prefer the 3 lens system 50 100 180 over the 50 80 150.

    If someone is thinking of the 80 and 150 I suggest to them that they can get just as good performance from a much less expensive Bronica SQ system. It's really the 38, 100, 120, 180, 250 super achromat, 350 super achromat that give substance to the "Zeiss legend" in these days. Everyone has pretty much caught up or passed the 80, 150, standard 250 lenses.

    The above is my conclusion after owning, (and still owning) all of them, so no sour grapes or Hassy bashing here.
  13. John, The sharpness issue is the last and the least important factor to consider unless your hobby is to examine the outmost corners with a loupe. I used the 80mm as the only lens for more than a year, before I got the 50 and 100mm lenses. I felt that I quite often would like something "a little wider", so the 80mm is already a little narrow for being the ideal one-lens outfit. It is true that you can replace the 80 with the 100mm in many situations, but at the same time you would likely feel the need for a wideangle even more. If you feel that you often would prefer the angle of view of the 100mm lens over the 80 when you could use either AND you can get a wideangle lens in a reasonable time, then go for the 100mm. If you feel that the difference in angle of view dont matter to you, why dont save the $600 for the next lens?
  14. I faced the same question myself just a wjile ago. I opted for the 501CM kit with 80mm and bought the 120 macro. This is an astonishly sharp lens with a very flat field curvature. It is a lens very widely used on Hassy's with a digital back because it "illuminates" all the pixels very uniformly. Also the lens is lightweight and balances nicely. It is slightly more "tele" than the 100 and because the short focusing distance, nice for close up.
    By the way, I tested the 180 lens but found it much to heavy, not quite balanced when shooting without tripod.

  15. All Hasselblad lenses i own (50, 150) are good. Not
    extraordinary, but good (maybe i expected too much). But i was
    absoutely blown away when i rented a 120 Makro Planar. THAT
    LENS IS AMAZING!!! Its all and more of what i expected from
    Zeiss lenses. Unfortunately they're not all as good as the 120...
    If youre going to buy a light tele-Zeiss, forget the 150 and go for
    the 120: its a far superior lens, and it gives you the posibility to
    make unforgettable close-up portraits-something you can rule
    out with the 150....

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