If I can only have 2 hassy lenses for landscape

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by vincent_lau, May 31, 2003.

  1. Dear All,

    I am new to the forum. I enjoy taking lanscape pictures (95% of time)
    and I came across a 501CM body with reasonalbe price. (with no lens
    or the fime back). I use 135 camera and I enjoy the light weight when
    I am hicking. I usually have 3 lenses with my Nikon FM ( 35mm, 85 amd
    180). All of us known that the hassy lens are expensive and I don't
    believe that you need all lenses available to take good picutres any
    way, so I decide to limit myself for 2 lenses only. What focal
    lengths would give a good 2 lens set.

    Thank you all.

    Vincent Lau
  2. Vincent:

    I'd recommend the 50mm and 80mm. The 50 is very sharp, distortion not glaringly obvious and shares the same filter size (bay 60) as most other lenses. This lens will be sufficient for virtually all your wide-angle shots. That said, the 40 is very nice as well, but it is heavier, bigger, more distortion, and takes the insanely expensive Bay 93 filter size. Unless the mild distortion is what you are looking for, you can do a lot more with the 50. As for your "normal" lens, I can highly recommend the 80, tack sharp, cheaper, light. I've not had experience with the lenses above 80 other than the 180 (which is a fine lens itself, although quite heavy and large relatively speaking) ... so I'll leave those reviews for other forum members. It all depends on your favorite perspectives (for instance in 35mm). The angle of view is the same regardless of format, you just have to ask yourself how you see the world. You might wish to check out Michael Kenna (www.michaelkenna.com) and Rolf Horn (www.f45.com) for some outstanding landscape b/w work. Kenna is Horn's mentor and uses almost exclusively the 80mm for his work, but your mileage may vary. Good luck.
  3. I would probaly get the 60mm and 120mm or 150mm. The 50 is not as distortion free at the edges. Just an opinion. Of coarse the 80mm is much lighter.Possibly if weight was the big concern maybe a 80mm and a 150mm.Or carry just a superwide only!You could go on forever.
  4. I have only 2 Hasselblad lenses. My main interest lies in B&W portraits while I travel. However, on these trips the occasional landscape comes up as well. I find that I can take most of the landscape pictures I want with my 80mm and 160mm. Of course I sometimes wish for a wider or more tele perspective, however, I have to do with what I have and I have accepted that.

    Having used the 120mm C T* lens I would advise you not to use it for landscapes. It is extremely sharp at closer distances, say about 4-5 meters and closer, however, it is not as sharp further away.

    Good luck, Frank
  5. I carry a 50, 80 and 150. I tend to use the 80 most of the time, and the 50 for about 1/3 of the shots. I rarely use the 150 for landscapes, and then only to dramatically compress perspective. I tend to use the Hasselblad for pictures which will be viewed large (11x14 and up). I tend to shoot longer with 35mm, typically 50-105mm, or really wide (<24mm) or long.
  6. Vincent,

    I would start by using your experience with the 3 lenses you currently have for your Nikon. Is the 35mm lens wide enough for your landscape needs? If not, I would definately get a 50mm or possibly a 40mm. I have a 38mm and 50mm. Last Fall, I went to Utah, Arizona and New Mexico to take landscape photos. While the 50mm was used mainly, several shots did require the 38mm to capture the entire subject matter. I also find the 38mm useful for city scapes (especially in Europe where the narrow streets require a very wide angle). You may want to rent some lenses and experiment. Also, keep in mind that you will have to crop out a portion of the frame in order to enlarge to 5X7, 8X10, 11X14, etc. Definately, surf photo.net for past responses and gain from the many postings that it offers!


    J. P. Mose
  7. The two I use most are 50 and 150. The 80 is alright for pretty basic views, but I would drop it off any list of 2 pretty fast, especially as you do not carry a standard now. Unless one wanted some closeup ability with an extension tube. It is light, though.

    A 60 might substitute for the 50 if you don't need wider than the view of 35mm in 35mm format (it is about the equivalent). It is a very good lens, and becomes more of a standard for other purposes.

    The 150 gives the mild telephoto effect similar to your 85mm, and is a substitute for it. There is a 100mm that is reckoned to be a good lens, but it's main virtue (very exact geometry) may not be so relevant for landscape.

    You will find it harder to substitute for the 180 though, as MF teles get heavy and expensive. You might have to forgo this length. The 180 H'blad gives you the middle ground between your two current focal lengths, but is more expensive and bigger than a 150 (300g more weight). The same for the 250mm, only more so!

    Cost seems to be an issue and 50 and 150mm lenses are probably the cheapest wide angle and tele option secondhand.
  8. I do alot of landscape with the hasselblad when traveling. Last week I was in SF area and northa nd south on highway one. I did about 60 rolls in four days. I have had hasselblads for about 35 years. I reccommend the 50mm, get the cf with the bay60 filter size. I do about 70% witjh this lense. Then the 100mm 3.5, Super Sharp!!! Do not use the 120mm for landscape. You can then consider a telephoto. The 150mm is very sharp, the 160 is lighter, the 180 is very sharp and still f:4, I use the 180 or 250 alot. the 250 creates more dramatic compression and is sold for about the same as the 150.
    Once you get the lenses then you have sunk a considerable amount of capital but remember one in with three lenses then you can trade for the ones that ft you style the most. I do n ot recommend the 60mmm because it does not allow for the depthe of field or wide angle feel of the 50mm. The forty is freat as is the 38mm SWC/M but these are like 20MM on a Nikon. They require a learning curve.
  9. Definitely the 50mm. The second lens choice would depend on what you want to do with it. The 120 is not so good for long shots, but it is incredibly good for close-ups. I use it often to take shots of leaves, flowers, etc., so if you ever have a bent for getting the close view, go with that for the second.
    The 150 is a good portrait lens. It does not give much of the telephoto effect of a longer lens, so I would not recommend it for landscapes. I do not own, but have used a 250. I would go with that if you want one wide and one telephoto lens.
  10. I used the 80 and 150 for quite a while before adding the 50. They are each quite useful outdoors. For reference, on 35mm format, I use a 35 and 85 or 90mm lens most.
  11. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    I shoot landscape with Contax 645 and I only have two lenses: 45mm and 80mm. Obviously I wouldn't mind having another telephoto and one more wide angle, but those two work quite well for me. The 45mm for 645 is roughly similar to a 28mm for the 35mm format and is used for most of my landscape shots.

    The closest 6x6 Hasselblad equivalent is the 50mm, but of course, there is no guarantee that what works for me will work for you.
  12. My openion, the 80mm takes in too much, resulting an unconcentrated photogragh. 150mm is better choice. For near and far effect, a wide angle lens 38mm SWC will give you the result; but it is a pricy lens. Perhaps, 50mm normal wide is an alternative.

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