Medium Format Forum

Register a free account now!

If you are registered, you get access to the members only section, can participate in the buy & sell second hand forum and last but not least you can reserve your preferred username before someone else takes it.

210HC not focusing reliably


New Member
I've just bought the H3D39mk2 and I can't get consistently sharp focus on my 210 lens. I'm using mirror up on a sturdy tripod, no wobbling floors, static subject, careful focus, etc but in a sequence of several shots, even at the same settings, maybe only one will be sharp. I'm pressing the shutter release VERY carefully with the pod locked tight (Manfrotto 055) so I don't think I'm getting vibration. The 28 under identical conditions is tack sharp evey time. So it's either how I'm using the 210 or it's a bad s&le.Any one else had a similar problem? I'm waiting for the 50-110 zoom to arrive so will test that also. (Should add that I might post this also on another Hassy forum but not on LL where the usual mob will descend screaming "Hass is crap!")

Welcome at the Hasselblad forum.

My guess is there is something wrong with the lens.
That is what I come up with from your description here.

Hi Paul

Thanks - it's good to be here.

I also suspect the lens. I have emailed my dealer so will see now whether I've made the right choice! Trouble is, I have work waiting and this is the worst time of year to expect instant responses. I'll keep you informed.

A desperate thought: I seem to have read somewhere that the H3D has a calibrate facility, ie specific lens to body. Is this right or just wishful thinking? And if it's right, does anyone know how to access/operate it?

Thanks for the response and Merry Xmas!
What shutter speed are you shooting at? Manual or AF? Manual or AE metering?

Are the images out of focus or do they show movement? Can you post a close 100% crop of areas that should have been in focus?

Try this:

manually meter and manually focus using the double green arrows to confirm ... when they are both lit, does the image look sharp at the point of focus? Then, with a locked up mirror, set the self timer @ 10 seconds to double check that you aren't moving something no matter how tender you think you are doing it.

I did a series of shots yesterday using a 120/4 macro with a long shutter speed, and 5 out of 6 showed movement. I have the electronic release and that cured it.
Well, Marc, I feel pretty stupid now. Years at this game, years with medium format, 5x4, etc and just didn't test for movement. I thought the tripod was so firm and I squeezed the shutter release so gently that no way could it be movement - but it was. A string of shots using the self timer and every shot sharp. The lens is fine, really crisp. So my answer with the 210 is use an electronic release.

Thanks again Marc for making me try the obvious.

A plus point, my dealer responded by sending out a replacement 210 within an hour so I know I made a good choice with camera and dealer. Sorry Hasselblad for any bad publicity!
Don't feel bad Steward, I learned this one the hard way myself.

I once shot a series of stills to be used in an animated sequence that had to be pin registered. I was using a locked down Gitzo G-500 monster tripod that was sandbagged, and a Manfrotto 405 geared head ... but I fired the camera manually with my finger. The Tech layered up all the shots and ran through them on a laptop, and the images were jumping all over the place ... I was absolutely amazed. Electronic release solved it in one second.

Your point about the dealer you select is one aspect of MF digital photography that I harp on constantly. It's almost more important than what back you select.

Good shooting, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year !

I am glad the problem is solved and by now you know you made the right choice to buy from this dealer.
Good to know Hasselblad equipment did not cause this problem.