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Help! I think I might need an SWC...

sportback

Member
Situation's getting serious - back to MF after a 20 year hiatus, and already I'm missing my 20mm f2.8 Nikkor.

I love the extreme of this lens - it's so perfectly balanced in terms of definition, and I get just what I'm looking for when I look through the viewfinder. Problem is, now I'm well and truly back in the MF saddle, I think I'll miss it so much - what is there to match this?

Nothing, if I read the various fora, in terms of an lens for my 500C/M...does this mean I'm going to have to 'go' SWC?

If I understand the equivalence, the 38mm Biogon is roughly a 24mm in 24x36. This would probably be ok I guess...but then things become difficult. In the 'old' days there were the SWC, the 500C/M and the 500EL/M. Now there are so many models, I simply don't know what to choose...

My basic criteria are that 'it' takes my A12 backs, is still possible to service by a reputable technician, and doesn't cost me three arms and a leg.

Anyone out there able to guide me please?

Ian
 
...
Nothing, if I read the various fora, in terms of an lens for my 500C/M...does this mean I'm going to have to 'go' SWC?

If I understand the equivalence, the 38mm Biogon is roughly a 24mm in 24x36.

...

Hassy A12 is 56x56mm and full frame 35mm is 24x35mm, comparing the frame diagonal a 38mm Biogon is roughly equivalent to 21mm in 35mm photography.

Biogon is famous for low distortion and is practically distortionless, which favor architectural photograhy. However, you can also select one of the 3 versons of 40mm lenses with SLR bodies. This is particular helpful for digital shot, as handheld use of SWC can only rely on hyperfocal or DOF coverage and cannot match with sharpness requirement of digital shot.

Regards

Patrick
 
Thank you Patrick - this offers new horizons as I don't know the 40mm (Never used one).

Is there any particular 'vintage' prefered over other models? I tend to purchased black lenses in the past, but this isn't a hard and fast rule.
 
If need be the SWC can be converted into a view camera by fitting a rear screen and a RMfx viewer.
That gives the exact frame and will allow precise focusing.
I admit it is not the most obvious method for digital because the DB needs to be removed and refitted after each shot.
With film this is less of a problem.

There are three other options depending on the requirements and the contents of the wallet of the buyer.

The old large 40 mm from the C series.
Later models of that lens were supplied with T*, not such a bad idea for this lens with its massive front element.
That lens is an anachronism weighing over 1400 grs and its demand for B 104 filters.
Still a lens I use quite often.

The second lens ist the most sensible option as far as quality and funds are concerned.
The 40 mm CF FLE later upgraded to CFE FLE offers low distortion, better IQ especially at close range and more practical 93 mm filters.

Last development and also the last design CZ made for the V series is the 40 mm IF lens.
First sold in 2004 and rather difficult to find as a pre owned lens.
Not many were sold. Quite a few were part of a special offer with the CFV back and a 503CWD body.
Distorion is higher compared with the CF(E) FLE lens but resolution was increased as well.
This lens was designed with digital capture in mind.
It is still a great lens to use with film.
In absolute terms distortion is still pretty low.
Its only real disadvantage is the need for deep pockets from prospective buyers.
 
Hassy A12 is 56x56mm and full frame 35mm is 24x35mm, comparing the frame diagonal a 38mm Biogon is roughly equivalent to 21mm in 35mm photography.

I can calculate a diagonal, and you're right in what you say - but this gives the focal length of a 'standard' lens for the format. Am I correct in assuming I use the same ratio between the two formats to 'backwards' calculate the equivalent? Seems logical, but then so was programming a VHS which I never actually managed either...

Ian
 
Am I correct in assuming I use the same ratio between the two formats to 'backwards' calculate the equivalent? Seems logical, but then so was programming a VHS which I never actually managed either...

Ian

Photography was always easier than video.

You are right. The ratio of the diagonals gives about the correct factor to compare focal lenghts.
"About" because the format and angle of view are different.
 
Photography was always easier than video.

You are right. The ratio of the diagonals gives about the correct factor to compare focal lenghts.
"About" because the format and angle of view are different.

That is why I said "roughly equivalent", unless extreme format like 6x17, using diagonal for the ratio is about right. For extreme format like 6x17, using angle of view of long side for comparison is more right perceptually.


Regards

Patrick
 
That is why I said "roughly equivalent", unless extreme format like 6x17, using diagonal for the ratio is about right. For extreme format like 6x17, using angle of view of long side for comparison is more right perceptually.

One might also want to calculate the angle of view of the horizontal only, and compare those as well. Somewhere in between the angle of view of the diagonal and the horizontal lies the value we key in on. Adding extra height to the aspect ratio, as the square format does to the 3:2 format, does not increase the feel of wideness as much as it mathematically appears.
 
FWIW - The two lenses I used most predominantly when I shot 35mm and full-frame digital where the Nikkor 20mm F2.8 and 35mm F2.0.

Since getting the 'Blad and a 50mm lens I have found myself most content with the semi-wide view I get through the 50mm. Square format and the 35mm aspect ratio are different beasts. I find that the square image format gives a sense of "breath" to the composition, more room to move in the top and bottom of the frame make it feel wider than the diagonal calculations would lead you to believe.

Of course, if I ever have the $$$ spare I would probably not hesitate to pick up a 40mm though would still use the 50mm as a stdard walk-around option.
 
Many users have adopted the 50 mm as a standard lens.
Keep in mind there are 40 mm C lenses available now for quite reasonable prices.
If you look for one try to find a T* model with a shade.
Non T* 40 mm can be found for even less money, they are not bad either.
Unless your work involves a lot of close range shooting the C lens is still a very good lens.

Carl Zeiss only made very good lenses for Hasselblad and even better ones.
I am quite happy using my 40 mm C lens. It also saves me some money for the gym!


C Distagon 40 mm.jpg

Massive front element


500ELX with C Distagon 40 mm.jpg

Good set for a work out!
 

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Joking aside, I think this is what worries me the most in terms of the 40mm - if it's just too big or heavy, I'm unlikely to want to take it with me - which is why the compact nature of the SWC appeals more and more...
 
Hello Ian,

There is an alternative for this C lens: the 40 mm CF(E) .
Less weight and more modest in appearance.


Paul
 
SWC vs other WIDE ANGLE LENSES

Ian

Don't give in the temptation .
No other CZ HASSELBLAD wide angle lens can beat the BIOGON .
Go for an SWC .

Jürgen
 
Joking aside, I think this is what worries me the most in terms of the 40mm - if it's just too big or heavy, I'm unlikely to want to take it with me - which is why the compact nature of the SWC appeals more and more...

A contemporary CF40FLE is no more bulky than (say) a CF50FLE. I carry both all the time. The C40, although impressive to see, is an anachronism and a back-breaker.

An SWC you really should first try handson to see if the non-SLR idea appeals to you. For me it did not, I will not give up the use of a reflex finder. Ever..

And although the Biogon outperforms the CF40, the CF40 has really outstanding image quality itself.

So, go and try, don't let others swing your preferences before you have had the opportunity for some hands-on experience.

Wilko
 
I understand what you're saying, and I'm a very 'hands on' person, however I live in rural France where these things don't grow on trees...

I don't think the viewfinder would bother me particularly, but for me composition on a ground glass screen is one of the beauties of the Hassselblad system.

I'll have to see if the 'blad dealer in Toulouse has an SWC (or more recent derivative) in stock for me to handle.

Having said all this, the reputation of the 38mm Biogon is such that I'm not sure if I'll be able to resist :)
 
Are you trying to disuade me from the SWC ? :lol:

(I've just seen the price - 5000€?!)

If you say it fast enough it sounds less..........

That is for the new 40 IF.
There is a very good alternative in the 40 CF(E) lenses.
Those are available from about a 1000 euro
What is the use of all this?
In the end you will get yourself a nice SWC!
 
Well I'll admit I have a certain 'leaning' towards this solution...however, it all rather largely depends on what's on offer, doesn't it...:cool:
 
Well I'll admit I have a certain 'leaning' towards this solution...however, it all rather largely depends on what's on offer, doesn't it...:cool:

Well... no. It should solely depend on what you prefer in your personal shooting style. Even a nice cheap SWC or a nice cheap CF40 will not satisfy you if discover you find it awkward for your work...

Wilko
 
CFe 40mm versus 38mm Biogon

Hi, this is an interesting thread; I have both the SWCM with the 38mm Biogon, and a 501cm with a 40mm CFLE lens. Both are superb in use. The SWCM is lighter, and probably more convenient to carry, and is completely quiet- as quiet as a Leica M6 in use. There is absolutely no distortion with the SWCM; there is a little with the 40mm CFLE. Both are superb for landscapes, and architecture. The only real difference is in the weight. And of course, carrying a tripod; not always necessary with the SWCM, its a marvellous street camera. But really, you do need a tripod with the 501CM, preferably a heavy one !
 
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