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.

Remote Cable Home Made


New Member
I recently purchased an outfit that came with a 553 ELX and an 500 C/M.. An 80mm C T* lens and a 150 CF T* Sonnar... I read somewhere that a home made trip cable could be made for the 500ELM for about $15 to plug into the side with the controls. Can the same thing be done for the 553 ELX?? If so could somebody direct me to the pin out diagram for that plug?? I could probably figure it out but don't want to blow something up in the process.

Secondly, The outfit came with 2 backs.. Both 120 6x6 backs but one looks a little different in that the case doesn't actually Say hasselblad on the outside(the other does). The insert however Does say hasselblad. What type is it or how do I tell the difference? Both are chrome btw..

Lastly, supposedly, one of these backs doesn't work. However, in running a test roll through, the counters on both are working and I've verified that the film transport is trasnporting the film.. Is there a way I can tell, without blowing a lot of expensive film, what may be wrong? I don't think the seller knew very much about this stuff (maybe a little more knowlagable than I am)....

THanks, and thanks to whom ever posted the CM manual.. 8) Jeff
Sorry my answer took so long.. I now have 3 backs.. The serial numbers are: UT490911, UE3139015, 30EH31157.. Thanks.. 8) Jeff

Your backs probably are all A12 backs.
Do they ahev a 12 in a circle on the plate that also has the film plane position marker on the frame counter side?

If not, there should be a 16 for A16 (16 frames, 6x4.5 cm format) or 24 for A24 (24 frames, 6x6, on 220 film).

Your backs (assuming they are all A12s) may be different in minor aspects, but are the same in the important ones.

The UT one is from 1976, the UE from 1979, and the EH from 1992.

The early ones did indeed not have the "Made in Sweden by Victor Hasselblad" print on the counter side. When they changed that exactly i don't know.

Ignoring obviosu failures (like the thing falling apert), the only way to find out if a back works or not is by putting film through it.

Film is not expensive, is it?
It certainly isn't as expensive as what we have to do to be able to use film to record things worth recording (how much is, say, an airline ticket to your favourite holiday destination?).
I'd rather waste some film, testing.
Yes, film is cheap, especially the way I buy it. Short dated, or outdated usually on ebay. That is, unless the use is REALLY important, then new. It doesn't matter how much a plane ticket costs, I haven't set foot on an airplane since 1994 and have no intention of starting now.. I make enough mistakes however that anything else can happen. Ask me about my recent lesson with exhausted E6 developer and the Lunar eclips...

That aside, they are all 12 exposure backs. The lack of the "made in sweden" on one of them is what made me wonder if it was an A12 or just a 12. They Are all different in some minor way and do all appear to work.. The 2 earlier ones have a flip open film reminder that also has a dial to show the film speed. The later one just has a fixed film reminder holder seen on many other cameras. To date, I've only exposed film with one of them but did run a test roll through another to check spacing. That is, load a junk roll, set and release the shutter, mark the position on the film, advance, repeat. The end result of that is a junk film with several equally spaced markings.

Strangly enough, the EH came with a 500C and the other two came with the 553ELX and 500 CM (both in same package). Thanks once again for the help... 8) Jeff
>[I'm trying to buy a new lens for my 503CW. I'm torn between getting a >50mm or a 60mm. Mostly I'd like to do reportage kinds of stuff with it. >Any help deciding between the two focal lengths would be very appreciated.

However, my real question is about all the different types of Hassy lenses out there. CF, CFI, CFE, CB. What do they all mean? What advantages does each give me. Which ones are more contrasty? Is there a source on the net for a description of each? Are the price differences worth it? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

> Hi Emiliano Regarding your first question , out of my experience , i would =20=

recommend the 60mm . Its is not as heavy as the 50 and is sufficient in the most = cases =20 .(reportages) second: CF lenses are very good and CFI is a further development = using =20 newer sorts of glasses . CFE lenses have electronic contacts so that they can be used at = the =20 500 series as well as on the 2000 series with full support (E-MAGAZINS and camera electronic) I believe that there is no quality difference between CFE and = CFI =20 except the contacts , which you do not need on your 503CW. On the other side i think all future lenses for the V-SYSTEM = will be =20 CFE (when CFI's are no longer available) The CB serie was on the market just for a short time . These CB lenses were more or less "low cost" lenses . For = ex&le: the =20 CB80 mm had only 6 lenses in comparison to CF 80mm , which has 7 =20=

lenses . Hope this makes your decisions a bit easier. Regards Jurgen

With the 200-series discontinued, and no other V-system camera using the Databus, it's likely that if anything changes the lenses for the V-system will all be CFi, not CFE.

But then, though they don't make 200-series cameras anymore, there still are some in use. And they could use the CFE version, of course.

So maybe nothing will change.
CFE versions are still usefull, but no point in converting CFi versions into CFE versions.

The first series of leaf shuttered Zeiss lenses for Hasselblad are generally referred to as "C" lenses.
These lenses have a Synchro Compur leaf shutter, with self-timer, and choice between X (electronic flash) or M (medium speed flash bulbs) flash synchronization.
They first came in "silver"-finish barrels, and initially had a single layer "T" (Zeis name for their coating) reflection coating.
Later the barrel colour changed to black, and about the same time they were given multi layer antireflection coating ("T*"). But mind you, the colour of the barrel is no indicator for type of coating. Always look for the T* symbol in red.

The C-barrels were rather uncomfortable: EV-lock with default setting "locked", knurled metal grip rings.
So they changed that in the next version: the CF lenses.

CF-lenses have rubber focussing ring, default state of the EV-lock is "unlocked", generally more ergonomical.
The biggest difference however is the shutter itself. The Synchro Compur was replaced by a Prontor shutter. Life expectancy of which is supposed to be much longer. And the shutter in the CF lenses can be switched off, so you use these lenses on focal plane shutter Hasselblad cameras as if they were shutterless. Nice, that.

The optical designs were more or less the same as that of C lenses (micro-changes are made without us knowing it).

And they are basically the same too in CFi/CFE
The main difference between these and CF lenses is, again, ergonomics, and an improved life-span (new shutter main spring).
They have better stray light reduction, focus with less effort, hold the flash cable better, have different typeface lettering, etc.

The difference between CFi and CFE lenses is that the latter have all that CFi lenses have, plus the four electrical Databus contacts, through which the lens can transmit aperture data to the metering electronics in 200-series cameras (202 FA, 203 FE and 205 TCC/FCC). If you don;t use any f these 200-series cameras, you donlt need CFE lenses (not that there is a choice: lenses come either as CFE, or CFi exclusively. So though we may not need Databus contacts, some lenses just haven them. Period. ;-))

CB lenses were an attempt to lure people into buying Hasselblad, tempting them with lower prices.
CB lenses were not much cheaper though. And (moe importantly) two out of the three/four available were of lesser quality too.

Apart from the optical design differences, the CB lenses are CFi lenses, but without the "F" mode (in which the shutter is switched off).

There were four CB lenses: a 60 mm Distagon, a 60 mm Planar, a 120 mm Makro-Planar and a 160 mm Tessar.

The Tessar was a new design. Not quite on par with the near equivalent focal length lenses from the C/CF/CFi/CFE family.
The 80 mm Planar was a bit less in quality too.

The 60 mm Distagon and the 120 mm Makro-Planar however were the exact same lenses (except for the CB barrel/mount, of course) as available in CF/CFi/CFE mount.
Both are excellent lenses, and if you don't need the "F"-mode (only needed when used on focal plane shutter asselblads, when using the focal plane shutter and you want an instant mirror return) these are well worth considering.
The CB 120 mm Makro-Planar however was made available very briefly and in "selected markets" only, so you may not come across one at all.

Now the Big Question: performance.
The short, and truthfull, answer is that they all are excellent (except maybe the CB 80 and 160 mm lenses).
Differences are small, if detectable at all (mostly not).

And life expectancy? Perhaps surprisingly many almost 50 years old C lenses still work perfectly today. So there's not much to worry about. Yet when buying used, "newer = better" generally is true. even though things do not break, they do wear, don't they? ;-)
> Hi > Yes , you are right . There is no need for other CFE lenses , if = =20 > HASSELBLAD does not build the 200 serie any more . I use a 201F , =20=

> which in my opinion is a great camera , and also a 203FE with E12 and =20=

> E24 magazines . But as a collectors backup i still have a 501CM and also a 500CM = . Now , how do you know , that HASSELBLAD will not build the 200 = serie =20 any more ?????? It would be very bad news , if it is true . the H HASSELBLAD is = of no =20 advantage , because of her smaller format , and on a square format , you can always choose your final image later on , and = you =20 still have an image of the same size as the H-SYSTEM camera will =20 produce it . Now do the same on a 4,5 x 6 image !!!! ahh you = know =20 all that of course . But again , who says that the 200 serie is not built any more =20=

?????????????? HASSELBLAD Germany never ever answers delicate questions . might = be =20 you have better sources . let me know . Thanks and regards Jurgen > =09
Jurgen, The Canadian distributors have stated that the 200 series are not being made anymore. If you want to see it in writing..just visit and look under the Hasselblad listings. It is indeed sad. I believe that the 203FE was their best and most user friendly focal plane body todate.Probably wont see anymore F/P products.

Hasselblad have said so. Nobody bought these things.
Looks like they haven't been produced for some time already.

But the 500-series continues!
The H1 6x4.5 isn't the only Hasselblad left.

But the 500-series will go up in price... :-(
They say they are losing money on every 500-series camera sold, and thathas to stop. If not, i guess, the 500-series will have to stop.
I am sorry - can not help it - but I need to ask:
What if Hasselblad outsourced most of the mechanical work of producing the 500 series to the far east - they are getting pretty good at doing quality stuff out there to and I do not think that we would notice if the body was diecasted in sweden or in korea! - After that the most difficult assembly could be done in Sweden - perhaps that might lay off some more employes on the plant right now but could save the 500 series and some jobs in the long run ??? no offense meant to anyone working at Hasselblad :)
> Hi I think we should not take part on such speculations in this = forum and =20 also not exchange political ideas . If it comes to changes , we will not be able to stop them . lets take good pictures and enjoy them instead . Regards Jurgen

The future of Hasselblad can affect any of us, Hasselblad users. What, for instance, if you just bought your first camera, hoping to expand your "set" in the future (when you manage to save uop to buy another item), and find there's nothing to buy?

And can we not influence future events?
Well, i'm not so sure we can't...

First, by our buying decisions. Which will be also dictated by news or rumours about the future of Hasselblad.
Second, by expressing our feelings. By speculating even. This makes Hasselblad aware of how we, the ones spending money on their products, feel about everything. Listening in on Forums like this is a rather cheap form of market research.
> Hi Colin Yes it is true . I have looked at the site above and also got = the same =20 info from my dealer today . The 203FE and 205FCC are out of production . So the offers we = can see =20 at local dealer are to sell out the remaining cameras . This makes me very sad . Shriro seems to run a fine old camera = maker =20 right down the drain . The H system is no good replacement . Regards Jurgen
The future of Hasselblad is important. I have been using their equipment = since 1972. In the Summer of 2002 I purchased a new 501cm kit and in 2003 = purcased a CFE 180. I would like to continue adding to it but am very = unsure what the future holds. If I must switch to the H system I would = prefer not to add more items to the V system. At the moment I am holding = back, which does not help any of the manufacturers.

James A. Bryant
Jurgen, It is a pity. But if you can live with an obsolete camera and pray that it can always be fixed, then, to use an American expression, there are some "real deals" out there. 203FE's for less than half price. It is tempting. Shutterless Hasselblad lenses go for a song on the used market.Unfortunately I think Hasselblad has made a business out of discontinuing items. If you look through their catalogues it seems that items get dropped from one year to the next. I ordered a projector some years ago and whilst waiting for it, heard rumblings of "discontinuence" Sure enough it was true and I cancelled. Spending that sort of money on an item that was "obsolete before delivery" made me nervous.

Who says you have to switch to the H-system???

Don't you know that the 200-series (the one that is discontinued) is not (!) the only 6x6 series Hasselblads???

And that Shriro does not (!) run the company down the drain, but we, not queueing to buy Hasselblad cameras, but 35 mm based digital products instead.

Not even Shriro's move (acquiring Imacon and adding that company's expertise, product development and product line to Hasselblad's "arsenal") will, so it seems, do much to stop the onslaught of Canon Eos 1 Ds Mark II and the like. Not to mention the surge of "lesser" 35 mm based digital products of the D70 sort.
The market has turned away from MF. And Shriro is trying to move with it. Not trying to "run a fine old camera maker right down the drain".

Quite the contrary: would they not attemnpt what they are doing now, Hasselblad's immediate future would be very bleak. And short.

Anyway, again, remember that the V-system is still very much alive. Even though the 200-series isn't.