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Hasselblad 503CWD

Luuk Jurrien
Photokina report
Saturday 31st, December 2005
Posted by: Luuk Jurrien

In recognition of the centenary of Victor Hasselblad’s birth on 8th March 2006, Hasselblad unveiled the Hasselblad 503CWD Anniversary Kit, a prestige high-end photographic system that offers state-of-the-art digital capture technology elegantly integrated with a classically designed Hasselblad 503CW body. Combining the rugged reliability of the black and chrome V System body, with its range of high performance, central shutter-based lenses, and Hasselblad’s latest digital technology, the exclusive Hasselblad 503CWD perfectly melds the heritage of the old Hasselblad with the focus of the new Hasselblad on digital high-end photography to create a new digital workhorse.

Hasselblad 503CWD

Hasselblad 503CWD Medium format
The Hasselblad 503CWD Anniversary kit will be supplied as a limited edition of Hasselblad 500 medium format cameras, each one numbered and engraved with Victor Hasselblad’s signature. Reassuringly solid, the kit comprises the Hasselblad 503CWD integrated digital camera with waist-level viewfinder, specially marked focusing screen and chrome winding lever, a Zeiss Planar CFE 2.8/80mm lens, and a beautifully produced book marking Victor’s anniversary.

Hasselblad 503 CWD - Compatibility
Christian Poulsen, CEO of Hasselblad, comments: “Hasselblad’s reputation for excellence and outstanding quality was built on the V System. Therefore the Hasselblad 503CWD, a truly professional tool that is fully compatible with the Hasselblad V system, offers great value for money, and is built to the same exacting standards that have become the signature of the Hasselblad company, is a fitting tribute to the design process that Victor Hasselblad started himself in the 1940s. Having been passionate about photography, Victor would also have loved the concept of digital photography, and in the 503CWD kit, with its stylish retro body and advanced digital capture technology offering the ideal balance of old and new Hasselblad, he would recognize the culmination of his own work.”

Hasselblad 503CWD specification
• Camera body: special design based on the 503 CW camera body
• Lens: Planar CFE 2.8/80 mm
• Sensor size: 16 Megapixels (4080 x 4080 pixels)
• Sensor dimensions: 36.7 x 36.7 mm (Lens factor 1.5)
• Single shot
• 16 bit colour
• ISO 50, 100, 200 and 400
• Longest shutter speed: 32 seconds
• Image storage: CF card type II (write speed >20 MB/sec)
• New Imagebank external hard drive or tethered to Mac or PC
• Color management: Hasselblad RGB: full dynamics and reproduction dynamics
• Storage capacity: on average 45 images on a 1GB CF card
• Storage capacity: over 4000 images on a 100 GByte disk
• Battery type: Sony InfoLithium L NP-F series
• Capture rate: 35 captures per minute
• Colour display: 2.2 inch OLED type, 24 bit colour
• Histogram feedback
• IR filter: mounted on CCD sensor
• Acoustic feedback
• IAA - Instant Approval Architecture
• Included with Acoustic feed back and Metadata classification
• File format: lossless compressed Hasselblad 3F RAW
• Software: FlexColor (included)
• Macintosh: OSX. PC: NT, 2000, XP
• Host connection type: FireWire 800(IEEE1394b)
• Battery capacity: Sony InfoLithium L, up to 8 hours of shooting capacity
• Operating temperature: 0 - 45 °C / 32 - 113 °F
• Dimensions: complete camera w. 2,8/80 mm lens: 113 x 110 x 193 mm [W x H x D]
• Weight: 1620 g (excluding battery and CF card)

Hasselblad 503CWD digital camera - Limited edition
The Hasselblad 503CWD Anniversary kit will be supplied as a limited edition of 500 cameras, each one numbered and engraved with Victor Hasselblad’s signature. Reassuringly solid, the kit comprises the Hasselblad 503CWD integrated digital camera with waist-level viewfinder, specially marked focusing screen and chrome winding lever, a Zeiss Planar CFE 2.8/80mm lens, and a beautifully produced book marking Victor’s anniversary. Not only does the Hasselblad 503CWD satisfy the aesthetic needs of V System fans, but it also boasts very advanced and, in some aspects, unique digital technology, such as Hasselblad Natural Color Solution, Instant Approval Architecture, and versatile storage and workflow, alongside files captured on a CCD 50% larger than a full frame 35mm DSLR.

Hasselblad 503CWD - Color solution
Color management solutions have in the past imposed limitations on professional digital photographers, because of the forced choice of a specific color profile to suit the job: for example, capturing various skin tones, metals, fabrics or flowers. To combat this, Hasselblad has developed the Hasselblad Natural Color Solution to be used with its FlexColor imaging software. Working with the powerful, new Hasselblad Natural Color Solution enables professional photographers to produce outstanding, reliable out-of-the-box colors, with skin tones, special product gradations, and other difficult colors accurately reproduced.

Hasselblad medium format camera - Instant approval architecture
Some of the potential benefits of capturing large numbers of images can be lost if the photographer cannot quickly review and select the best images to present to the client. Hasselblad’s Instant Approval Architecture (IAA) assists by labelling images according to technical parameters and allowing the photographer to downgrade visually poor images, having previewed them on the clear, bright OLED viewing screen. Sorting the red, amber or green flagged images is then very quick. Audible and visible signals facilitate the selection process by giving instant feedback during a shoot.

Hasselblad 503CWD Anniversary kit
Optimum portability and image storage are critical for the professional photographer. Hasselblad 503CWD offers a choice of the portable CF card storage, the flexible Imagebank, or the tethered operation with extended, special capture controls. With these three operating and storage options, the photographer is able to select a mode to suit the nature of the work at hand, whether in the studio or on location.

Hasselblad professional digital workflow
For the studio photographer, the most accurate colours and highest degree of control can be achieved by using 3F RAW (3FR), Hasselblad’s raw file format, in Hasselblad’s workflow software, FlexColor. The file format also includes lossless image compression, saving 33% of storage space. In tethered operation tools such as live video and overlay masking bring increased productivity to advanced set composition. The newest FlexColor version allows the photographer to manipulate color temperature and compare image details across multiple images for precise image selection. Alternatively the 3FR files can be converted directly into Adobe’s raw image format DNG (Digital NeGative), which can be opened directly in Adobe PhotoShop CS2.

Hasselblad CFV digital back
Hasselblad is also launching the CFV, a new digital back and the successor of the V96C back, for existing Hasselblad V System users. Built to match the design and functionality of the Hasselblad V System cameras, it can be easily and elegantly integrated into an existing Hasselblad system, enabling the photographer to work in exactly the same manner and with their preferred equipment, but with the productivity benefits of digital photography over film.

Hasselblad CFV - V system
The Hasselblad CFV digital back is custom designed to match the appearance and functionality of the Hasselblad V System cameras. Using a 16 Megapixel sensor that is 50% larger than full frame 35mm DSLRs, the CFV provides the ultimate in digital integration for the classic Hasselblad V System camera and lenses and turns your existing V System camera into a modern digital workhorse. Inside the Hasselblad CFV, lies some of the most cutting edge digital technology on the market, such as tools for powerful digital workflow control using Hasselblad’s Instant Approval Architecture (IAA) and direct conversion to Adobe’s DNG format. Other advanced features include Hasselblad’s new Natural Color Solutions and 3F RAW file format, a choice of three separate storage modes, tethered or untethered shooting, compatibility with other view cameras using the V System interface plate. The Hasselblad CFV combines timeless design with modern technology, providing photographers with seamless integration and unmatched flexibility, for both mobile and studio shooting.

Hasselblad 503CWD - Price and Availability
Of undoubted appeal to the Hasselblad connoisseur, the camera delivers the perfect blend of versatility and simplicity in a compact, professional tool that gives the user complete control over digital image capture and is a pleasure to operate. The Hasselblad 503CWD will be available from Hasselblad’s Digital Partners in March at a list price of 11,900 Euros, excluding VAT and the Hasselblad CFV will similarly be available at a list price of 8,990 Euros, excluding VAT.

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