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Impressed by Mutar 14XE


Active Member
A while ago I sought opinions from users here about the Mutar 1.4XE.

Well despite some initial concern that the optics are made by Fuji rather than Zeiss (which surprised me since this extender is fitted to Zeiss lenses used on the V series cameras) and made me wonder about how well it could "match" the Zeiss optical characteristices; and that extenders can be a "mixed bag"; I proceeded with buying this after a 2 week trial.

It was opportunistic since it was traded in at my favourite dealer as part of a huge kit in "like new" condition. I got it at the trade in price (don't ask, or it may bring tears to your eyes)!

I am very impressed by this lens after doing my own test with my CF 250, 150 and CF 120 lenses, wide open and at f8; near focused and at infinity.

To my eyes there was no noticable degredation in image quality at all; and the images were very very sharp. The finest details resolved very well too, even out to the edges of the image.

Additionally, in the street with a "lite" kit the relatively small (somewhat surprisingly so) Mutar is so so so handy. When out with an 80mm and a 150mm I now have the ability to shoot at 210mm with hardly any extra weight or bulk.

So this baby really has a good purpose in my kit and I won't need to think twice about using it for fear of any lesser image quality.

I certainly did not try to do line chart tests since I don't shoot line charts!

Here are s&les of the types of things I shot (not that a web image will tell you much) although not very interesting in themselves.

The colour is 100% spot on (shot with 100VS) even though the gum tree looks so pink - it is meant to!

1. CF 120 at infinity with mutar - wide open:


CF 120 closer focused with Mutar - wide open:


CF 150 focused at infinity with Mutar - wide open:


CF 150 closer focused with Mutar - wide open:


I added the images despite the web limitations because often we feel that seeing an image helps "tell the story".

So if you contemplate a Mutar 1.4xe rest assured that my experience has been an excellent one. By the way, the sun was very harsh while I was out trialling this lens and no other nasty attributes crept in either!
I believe MUTAR is a protected name of CARL ZEISS . Are you talking about the MUTAR 1,4X shift converter or about the HASSELBLAD telekonverter 1,4XE with the catalogue number 3020608 . This one is designed to be used with lenses from 100mm and higher focal length only . I have that one , but never used it up to now .
I Agree! The 1.4X CFE is a wonderfully convenient way to extend a current selection of lenses without much noticeable degradation in image quality. It is the reason I never added the 250/5.6 to my 500 series lens list ... the 180/4 plus 1.4X = 252mm f/5.6.

I also have and use the shift version which is a different animal all together, and requires use of a double cable release when employed on the 500 series cameras. I have not noticed any image degradation with this unit either.
I also have the 2XE which I presume is also made by Fuji for Hasselblad, because it says Sweden on it like the 1.4X does.
A few questions:

1) if it says Sweden on it, does that mean some components are made by Fuji and assembled in Sweden? I thought for a manufacturer to state a place of origin, a certain % of content had to be from that place. For ex&le, the X-Pan says made in Japan if I recall correctly. And my Japanese made 60-120FE has no markings at all, but is simply branded Hasselblad rather than Zeiss.

2) While the 1.4XE has the focal length restriction printed on the inside, the 2XE does not. I wonder if the 2XE can be used with the 80/2.8? (Producing a 160/5.6) Hmmmm...?

At any rate, attached is a shot using the 1.4XE on a 180/4. Not my usual subject matter, but I couldn't resist a shot of this unusually beautiful home which was inaccessible except to a nice long lens ; -)

I also have some stuff yet to be scanned using the 1.4X on a 350/5.6 (equals a 490mm, f/7.85) ... a reason I never added the 500/8 to my lens list.

While the 1.4XE has the focal length restriction printed on the inside, the 2XE does not. I wonder if the 2XE can be used with the 80/2.8? (Producing a 160/5.6) Hmmmm...?

The 1.4XE should be used on 100 mm + and neither the 1.4XE or 2XE be used on the Macro 135/5.6.

The instructions for the 2ZE state that is not recommended for the 30 mm.

Yes, the 2XE, 160/5.6 with the 80 MM.

The Mutars are Zeiss the others are not.

Have fun:


BTW-Nice shots gentelmen.
Jurgen, I am talking about the 1.4XE - 1.4 times teleconverter. Yes it is limited to use with 100mm lenses up with (I recall) the exception being the C 135mm because the rear element may hit the extender's front element I think.

I was unaware that the 1.4XE was made by Fuji for Hasselblad but recall QG told me that on this forum some time ago.

The Shift version limited to wider angle lenses is indeed manufactured by Carl Zeiss.

I think I may be wrong in calling the 1.4XE a "Mutar" as you point out. It may just be called a 1.4XE extender. The only identification on the barrel is "1.4XE" as best I can recall.

Interestingly on the inside front near the front element are the words "made in Sweded". So maybe only the optics are made by Fuji and the rest is built and assembled by Hasselblad.

However it works a treat!
Marc, that's a gorgeous image very nicely taken! I have both the CF 180 and CF 250 lenses and love what they produce. I think my 1.4XE will see more use on the 250mm than the 180mm.

But, this little "baby" really adds flexibility to my kit. Can leave the 250mm home if necessary..... lots of combinations without fear of "below par" images.

RE: made in Sweden; yes, I think if the majority of "work" is done by Hasselblad and say just the optical elements are supplied ex-Japan, then it's legitimate to claim "made in Sweden"

The XPan on the other hand is 100% built in Japan. The level of concept design, engineering and specifications input by Hasselblad itself are a mystery to me.

The "story" one reads occasionally is that Hasselblad people one day conceived the idea; how then Fuji got involved is where the mystery starts for me. Maybe someone has a better understanding of how it all came to be.

It seems that if (and may be common among Japanese companies) Fuji is involved to the extent of full component supply and manufacturing assembly, the company "reserves some" right in the manufacturing agreement to self-branding and marketing within Japan - hence the "brother" XPan in Japan.

With regard to the 2XE extender's limitations, I suppose the only real issue is if there is a risk that the extender front element will touch the lens rear element. So, it may be worth you examining both the 2XE and the 80mm closely and then trying it out.

Personally I can't see me having the need for a 2XE.

Gilbert, thanks for clarifying the Mutar term and how it's confined to Zeiss products.
Now , as i know you have brilliant results , using the 1,4XE teleconverter , and i have the same , but never ever used it , i will go out and do some shots as well. Unfortunalely the weather here is not as good as in your country . Snowfall and grey sky all over . Thanks for your nice pictures .
Thanks Jurgen. Yes, It's interesting how one can have a thing lying idle for so long only to awaken to how effective it can be in use.

My extenders for my Canon EOS 1vHS system frequently lie idle. I think mainly because these things are a "get by" item where the "real" focal length is far better to use.

But, certainly the Hassy 1.4xe is genuinely a serious item where serious use leaves no fear of below "par" outcomes.

Funnily enough I bought this and a few months back a "like new" CW winder for my 503CW purely opportunistically. I did not have a true "need" but felt the opportunity to buy both that were hardly ever used at the trade-in price would be silly to miss especially when the store owner invited me to try both for a couple of weeks before I buy. I hardly needed more gear

Their use became quite compelling - adding new felxibility to my system and in the case of the CW winder, new opportunities to increase my use of my 503CW.

This made me think and I wonder what other pro-users say: some pros seem to end up with gear in their kits that they rarely use and ultimately sell off. Does this arise because they often fund their pro-kit in one initial hit? That is, when say getting into Hassy 6x6, do they often buy a somewhat "complete" kit because they can negotiate an overall better deal in one go and then finance it under the one package rather than end up with some risk of "false savings" that might arise for a more progressive kit purchase and then risk cash flow issues from that.

I'm sure amateurs, no matter how "dedicated" we might be, are in a totally different situation of funding our kits from "discretionary" spend and much more progressively.
Have any of you guys tried the H1.7XE converter? It can only be used with the HC line of lenses. Brand is Hasselblad, made in Japan.