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Russian Lenses


New Member
Hi, sorry if this is a heretical question in this group, but can anyone advise me about the quality of Russian/Ukrainian lenses to fit Hasselblad? They look very cheap, but what is the quality like?

Optically, the Ukrainian lenses have a pretty good reputation. But keep in mind that they are shutterless, and can at best be adapted to a 2000/200 series body. They also do not have any contacts for the cameras that have exposure automation features. They also will naot have the ability to couple aperture and shutter speed rings.

There are some dealers that sell these lenses with Hasselblad adapted mounts. Unless you are getting these lenses for a special purpose, like a shift lens, or a rarely used fish-eye, or going to use them on an older 2000/2003 camera, I don't see the advantage of "dumbing down" the camera just to use the cheaper glass. There _was_ a reason for getting the advanced 200 series body, wasn't there?

Hi Taras and everybody,

I am also interested in this question of shutterless third party lenses for blad.

Since I do long exposure astrophotography almost exclusively with my 503CX I don't really need a shutter. The rear baffle by itself is fine. My questions are:

Will these shutterless lenses mount to my 503CX?

Will the infinity focus stop be accurate?

Which shutterless 3rd party lenses are considered excellent for telephoto (150mm to 500mm)?

Which 3rd party lenses are considered excellent for extreme wide angle (fisheye to 40mm)?


I also shoot astrophotos with my Hasselblads. Some of my photos can be found at .

I haven't tried any non-Zeiss glass yet, so I can only speak about what I've read about the Ukrainian lenses. And beyond the Kiev lenses in Hasselblad mounts, I have not seen any "production" lenses for the Hasselblad V-system from third parties. Most are conversions, or lens hacks. I recently saw a 250mm f/2.8 Leitz lens in a mount machined for the Hasselblad from Australia on an auction site. No shutter nor aperture control, it was just an f/2.8 lens.

As far as Zeiss glass goes, there are a lot of bargins available in the old "C" type lenses. I've got a stable of them over the last year or so. The old 40mm Distagons seem to be showing up quite frequently on the used market now. I've been using this lens for wide-field shots featuring this winter/spring's evening planetary show from NYC. When I haven't had mount flexure problems unrelated to the lens, I've gotten good results with a 350mm f/5.6 Tele-Tessar C T* lens. I recently got an 500mm f/8 Apotessar CF lens for what I consider a steal, and I can't wait for the weather to improve so I can try this lens out at my "dark" site. You can only get so dark within 100 miles of NYC.

My favorite lens is the 100mm f/3.5 Planar C T*. It doesn't suffer from the pronounced coma the 80mm f/2.8 Planar does wide open.

It is always a good idea to confirm focus, especially if you shoot at extremes of temperature. The shrinking/expansion of the lens may be enough to make the stop not the exact infinity focus. The Apotessar focuses beyond infinity to avoid this problem and it's slow focal ratio makes it more difficult to focus than the faster lenses.

Regarding a shutter for astrophotography, for any relatively long focal length, it is best to pre-fire the mirror. When using a shutterless lens, this means the auxiliary shutter is open, so it is a good idea to use the 'hat trick" to control your exposure, that is an opaque dark object in front of the lens like a shutter. Hats, dark t-shirts, cups, cardboard all make decent improvised shutters.

Hi Taras,

Nice Work. You've added quite a bit recently.

I too have seen the coma on the CFi version of the 80mm Planar. It is VERY noticeable on stars in the corners.

My older 50mm T* Distagon is almost coma free!

So if I understand you correctly, Any lens that will mount on a Kiev will mount on my 503CX? It just won't have a shutter, correct?

I also practice the hat-trick. It's a good one.

I have been doing some experiments with a 1500mm Maksutov lens on the Hasselblad, and I do experience considerable "sag" in the assembly. How have you been fighting this problem?

What do you consider to be a fantastic price for the 500mm Hasselblad lens?

Sorry so many questions....



Here is what I wrote last year about the lens on the Hasselblad Users Group maillist:

"Testing my recently acquired 80mm C lens at full aperture, I noticed some coma in the corners of my slides. I took some relatively short guided astrophotos, and stars in the corners appear as pin-cushioned triangles. Is this typical of the 80mm f/2.8 C, or is it possible that I have a poor ex&le of this lens? I was expecting some minor aberrations in the corners, but I wasn't expecting coma this visible.

"For those who don't know what coma is... has some good descriptions of lens (optical system) aberrations.

"Mind you, for normal applications, this lens is excellent. Astrophotography is one of the most severe tests for an optical system. Due to most films still suffering from reciprocity failure at extremely long exposures, most astrophotographers strive to shoot with their lenses as wide as they can open them without introducing too many aberrations."

At there was a discussion on a lens aberration that turned out to be coma. I was also involved in that discussion.



No, the stock Kiev lenses need to be adapted to Hasselblad mounts. I believe that there are two types of Kiev mounts, those that are almost compatible (but not quite) with the old Hasselblad 1600F and 1000F pre-1957 cameras, and those that use a Pentacon 6 mount. Neither of these will mount on a Series-V body (5xx or 200x/20x) without having the mount modified. There are a number of Kiev camera vendors that sell already adapted lenses in the Hasselblad mounts. There is, and, but a search on any of the various photo forum sites should lead one to other Kiev camera vendors. Check the review of each site before you dive in. Some offer great service, others, not so great.

I haven't been using the Hasselblad for "prime focus" through the telescope shots. What are you using to mount the camera to the telescope. I use a Losmandy rail sytem with camera mount and tube rings for piggyback mounting the Hasselblad with lens on my 8" SCT (Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope for the non-astronomers on the list).

Maybe we should move the astrophoto portion of this discussion to the "Photo-technical questions" section of this site?

I paid less than $2400 US for a near mint ex&le with case, caps and hood and 4 86ø filters! Only thing missing was the key to the case. Someone was trying to sell one for almost $500 more at the same time on the auction site, but it had lens separation in the front lens group. I had bought from the shop directly, before finding the listing, so I trusted the description of the lens.