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H1 vs 500CM What will you choose



As I find myself older and lazier, I start considering an AF 645 workhorse.

Same as you guys (pros or serious amateur or both), H1 is a great thing I am thinking of.

Question: H1 and 500C/M which will you choose? Will you purchase H1 and still keeping the 500C/M? Or just abandon the whole V system and go for the H1? Not yet thinking the H1D because the CCD is not large enough... and for H1 I still have a long long way to go...

Pal Dou
You do not have to sell your 500 CM if you have one - the price you would get is low - and you never now when you need a back-up analog film camera. I am not thrilled by the feel of the H1 (sorry) so If I should skip the V system I am not sure it would be for the H1 - probably another brand! and most certainly a digital one
Keep your 500 c/m system and jump to the H1. This camera is so ready for the future that it has no match. Pricey? Yes but think of how pricey your 500 was in comparison to others. I have had mine for over a year. It has a metering system that is right on in even the most difficult situations, functionally it is so smooth and easy to use and adjust that even a beginner can feel at home with it in a short time. Also the autofocusing system is so fast and accurate that you would have a hard time beating it physically. Your eye won't be able to improve on that. And there isn't a 645 out there which will focus as quickly. It is also easier on the batteries than most. The wide angle lens for the H1 is almost reason enough to buy the body. Anyway keep the 500 system and skip anything in between and go for the H1.
Keep an eye open (while keeping the 500 series). There are strong arguments for the 500 series...second hand lenses/attachments are at an all time low on Ebay...and some are simply not available for the H1 as yet ( like a 500/8 with a 1.4X converter for nature shots).

A mechanical camera is also a critical backup for an electric one.

Occasionally bargains pop up. I found an H1 that was the store's demo unit this last month. They had to get rid of it because apparently the store is now going to be considered part of Hasselblad USA's "dominion" and US pricing is being implemented. The demo was part of the shipment they had when they were under the "International" umbrella. Anyway, to make a long story short, they sold me the full H1 kit (body, back, viewfinder, 80mm lens) for $3500. The body only registered 100 "activations" .... even less on the back and VF (< 20). Seemed like a good deal to me.

When new equipment comes out, some rush to pick it up, only to find out it does not fill the bill. I have seen some H1's showing up second hand already that fit this bill, at well below the MSRP.
Just an FYI, you can in fact use the V96C on BOTH the V series and the H1, you'll need a adapter kit such as the 32c and a special cable for PC input to the back. Works like a ch& and gives you 6x6 on your H1.
The ONLY downside is rapid shooting does not work well.
This can save you $1000's of bucks off the 96c model and keeps your V and H both alive.

> Never used ( or had a chance to peruse for that matter) the back > you refer to, but do you mean on an H1, you get the same format/ > coverage as when used on a "V" series camera? I have a 553ELX and > an H1, so having a back that could fit back would be appealing for > obvious reasons.

Of course, affording it is another issue......:)
Yes, I am refering to the H1. I use for both my 500 C/M and the H1 and it's awesome. You will have to get two things, the 132C adapter kit and the fuji sync cord for the PC socket on the H1 to the V96C back.
Same 6x6 image and size (48Meg)
Images are stunning
I can send a image of the setup if you would like.

> Are you saying that the V96C will work for the H1. Please send me the set up. So I will get a 6x6 with the H1? Sounds great. Can you shoot fast with this set up? Thanks Lori
Lori, that's exactly what I'm saying BUT
a rapid continous fire sometimes leaves
some ghosting. My rule is 1.8 seconds.
Words like a ch& but don't count on
Hasselblad to support it. This is exactly
the same unit as the 96c but with the different
mounting plate.

If you look at the V96C, at first you can't see the screws
thru the mounting holes but they are simply covered up
by black tape. Simply pop thru it with you 96 screwdriver.

I'll post a pic in a few.

Let's try again
Hi Pal. While many of us V series "lovers" get sweaty, shake at the knees, and feel faint when anyone suggests an H series camera over a "true Hassy", I can understand your desires.

Having reached a point 5 years ago where I just "had" to move to an AF 135 format system from my Olympus OM system (with 8 sensational Olympus lenses), I can see where you are at. But, funnily enough I've never been truly tempted to do the same with my MF or rangefinder 135 format kits.

I don't own an H1; and originally I screamed when I learnt Hassy had "partnered" with Fuji to build some key body parts and the lenses, leaving behind the wonderful legacy of a long association with Carl Zeiss.

Why would Hasselblad risk traditional customers' defection by building its "next generation camera" with: some plastic parts; Japanese lenses; rectangular rather than square image etc.?

However, after experiencing the H1, I "woke up".

From my only experience with the H1 where I was leant one for a week and took one roll of film; I must agree with the majority of reviews (that I have read) that concluded the H1 is a truly wonderful camera in every respect and the leader in its class.

BUT, can I make 2 suggestions to answer your question?

1. Like the others have posted here - keep the V series gear! A perfect fully mechanical camera as a back up.

2. keep any V series lenses you have now since they can be used on the H1 with the recent adapter (so while you build an AF lens kit you've got others to use).

With regard to the H1, my observations from the little use I had are: The 80mm lens was excellent and produced very high quality images consistent with Fujinon's reputation in LF lenses.

The body was ergonomically well designed and quite intuitive to use. Despite the plastic shell, it's built around a robust stainless steel structure with a core of light alloy.

The film back is a clever design; the menu functions etc are good to use; the AF is the fastest in the MF game and very accurate with a wide EV range in which it works. The AF is well suported by continuous availability of MF without having to change the setting enabling you to adjust the focus point if necessary.

It has just about all the features available in the best AF 135 format cameras; so was the result of really good design, engineering and research in the beginning.

Many ask why the departure from 6x6 frames (me too!); but I think when you consider what's involved in AF lenses and a body that will do 1.5cm larger (vertical) frames, the result may be a horrible "clunker" with huge lenses and a huge body like a Mamiya 6x7 SLR (sorry if I offend anyone, but they are IMHO awful things to handle).

So maybe after some time for you to settle into the H1 and build a kit of lenses, then you might more safely liquidate your V series kit if it still gets too little use. This helps you to avoid serious regret if you later find that the H1 was not for you anyway.

I hope I've helped.
> I can find info on a 132C digital back (22 megapixel), but not the > "adapter" alone. Can you give a link to a photo store, Hassy site, > etc ?