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Site & Board Matters => About This Site => Topic started by: Kenneth Sky on September 30, 2006, 08:35:49 am

Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Kenneth Sky on September 30, 2006, 08:35:49 am
Michael:
Well said. As a Hasselblad user for 36 years, I am concerned as well, at the attitude of the new management to its customers. Canon has recently displayed this same condescending attitude which, as you point out, may well border on illegal selling practice. I suspect that the H1 and H2 models will be selling at a premium on eBay as buyers reject the notion of a closed architecture and look to 3rd parties for new lenses.
Ken
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: John Camp on September 30, 2006, 12:29:17 pm
I understand Michael's concerns from a photographer's point of view, but from the company's point of view, it looks like they are simply trying to knock down the competition while locking in their customer base. Nothing new in that; sort of reminds you of Microsoft and Adobe. And another way to look at it is that Hasselblad is now simply selling "a camera," like Pentax does, but instead of having a non-detachable back, as in the Pentax, the back is upgradeable (but not interchangeable.)

It's also possible that Hasselblad has made a mistake -- people who prefer other backs will now go to other systems, and instead of locking in their customer base, they're driving them away. We'll see.

Of course, it's easy for me to say this, because I don't have a dime locked into Hasselblad glass.

JC
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Photomangreg on September 30, 2006, 04:21:57 pm
I guess I'm seeing this in a different light, it sounds like Hasselblad will still produce the H2 which is the standard for any of the other medium format back manufacturers.  In addidtion, they have created an integrated camera system, the H3D, which offers some benefits over a back on a camera, sure it is removeable, but there seem to be a lot of advantages from having a camera with a digital back built together.  For example, the lens correction features found in the new camera sound amazing, how much have we complained about chromatic aberations, distortion, focus issues, etc., over the past years.  If it takes a "DSLR" to accomplish fixing these issues, why not take advantage and create such a tool?  

The 28mm lens sounds pretty cool, according to HAsselblad it will only work on the H3D because it needs the lens correction features found in the HAsselblad software to make it a usable and affordable lens.  It won't even work with a film magazine, and we know that HAsselblad, through the merger with Imacon, is still in the scanner business.

Canon makes what are arguably the best 35mm digital cameras available, I would prefer to use Nikon lenses on my Canon, but thats not very likely to happen.  I think the people who are going to complain about this new camera are the ones who bought Leaf and Phase.  This new camera does not change how their camera works, availability of lenses that were available for it when they purchased it, etc.

Michael seems to spend a lot of time criticizing Hasselblad, yet he shoots with one?  Maybe he should get an H3D, do a proper test and see if the features offered have any merrit instead of just ripping them apart.  he talks highly of this mythical Hy6, will that come along as quickly as the ZD or the Pentax?  Who knows, but at least Hasselblad is talking about products that are real and available now, once again, maybe this is the result of making all the components??

I'm looking forward to taking this camera for a test drive and making the decission for myself!

Greg - Digital shooter for over ten years
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Kenneth Sky on September 30, 2006, 05:45:46 pm
Greg
The point Michael has made is that Hasselblad seems to be intimating that any future developement in lenses and perhaps backs will be built on the H3 system which leaves H1 & H2 owners high and dry. Certainly from Michael's tests all the 39 megapixel backs appear to outresolve older lens designs made for the analogue era. Wouldn't it be more in keeping with Victor Hasselblad's philosophy to keep older models able to take advantage of newer advancements for the system?
Ken
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Boghb on October 01, 2006, 12:17:39 am
I do not envy the Harvard MBAs advising Hasselblad on this one.  Closing the system was an extremely risky decision.  In the case of Apple, that decision relegated the company to minor player at the beginning of the home computer revolution, almost spelling its total demise.  

Apple had a superior operating system with a genius user interface (the mouse) that was poised to dominate the market and wipe out Microsoft's DOS, but they decided to dedicate that system to their not-so-great hardware.  As other hardware manufacturers came out with better and cheaper computers and laptops, consumers opted for choice and out of the Macintosh operating system.  By the time Apple got its act together, Microsoft had managed to copy its user interface, and the mistake could never be reversed.  The whole world paid for that one.

Now, Hasselblad has done the same thing with its camera: made it hostage to its uncompetitive digital backs.  It has gambled that it can force the consumer to choose its hardware.  But this is even worse than Apple's gamble because the H camera system is not a genius idea ahead of its time; its just a decent camera made for film but adapted to digital.

The appeal of the Hasselblad/Imacon camera/back combo was that the consumer had to deal with only one warranty and support team.  Support matters a lot in this market segment, and Hasselblad's superior support system and dealer network might have given it the edge.  

Now, others have cought up on this point and introduced the Rollei-based universal camera that is offered by each back manufacturer under its own name and warranty package.  So there is even less reason to opt for the H system.  

Another marketing tragedy seems in the making.  As someone once said: he who does not learn from experience can't be taught by any teacher.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Steve Kerman on October 01, 2006, 01:38:05 am
If the reaction elsewhere to Hasselblad's announcement is anything like what it is on this forum, I expect that they will back off from the "closed system" position, unless they are totally brain-dead.

Then again, given the obvious "Marketing MBA trumps common sense" exhibited by their "full-frame 48mm" claim, they just may be totally brain-dead.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: cgf on October 01, 2006, 05:52:22 am
If Hassleblad is relying upon tasty new lenses 'forcing' owners to upgrade to a H3 then that's an interesting ploy.

Telling your existing customers that there are no future lenses for them... was that class called How To Destroy Customer Loyalty 101???

The addition of the digital back problem takes this into the bizarro-world.

In plain english, what has Hassleblad achieved:

1. Existing Hassleblad customers are unable to make further purchases within their current system (lens compatibility).

2. Future Hassleblad purchasers considering the H3 system, including those upgrading from H1/H2 systems, are forced to accept the Hassleblad back despite their personal choices, preferences and any digital back already owned.

I always thought that successful marketing involved removing barriers and making the customer's decision (and the opening-of-the-wallet) as easy as possible???
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Lehphoto on October 01, 2006, 05:54:40 am
Quote
Michael:
Well said. As a Hasselblad user for 36 years, I am concerned as well, at the attitude of the new management to its customers. Canon has recently displayed this same condescending attitude which, as you point out, may well border on illegal selling practice. I suspect that the H1 and H2 models will be selling at a premium on eBay as buyers reject the notion of a closed architecture and look to 3rd parties for new lenses.
Ken
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78405\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Hello.

Iīm living in Sweden and two different professional photequipment sellers claim that the H3 can use other backs than Hasselblad. Hope this is correct.
Even I think itīs a dangerous way to lock out other firms.

Cheers
Lars
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Rob C on October 01, 2006, 06:25:10 am
Quote
Hello.

Iīm living in Sweden and two different professional photequipment sellers claim that the H3 can use other backs than Hasselblad. Hope this is correct.
Even I think itīs a dangerous way to lock out other firms.

Cheers
Lars
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78549\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Well, I have no digital camera other than a D200 and I still have an analogue Nikon  too. I used to own and work with two Hasselblad bodies and 50/80/150 lenses as well as what used to be, on average, about three different Nikon bodies and most focal lengths from 24 to 500 mirror.

The point: at no time did my 500C or 500CM accept lenses other than Hasselblad/Zeiss and I can't recall anyone else marketing backs for them either. Was that a problem for me? I don't think it was. With Nikon, why would I have looked at other maker's lenses?

This current bit of angst seems, to me, to be just another newish problem brought into existence by the digital revolution where everything is suddenly expected to be available in whatever permutation that might strike the individual's mind. Life was seldom so - I see little value to expecting things to be different now. After all, you don't have to buy Hasselblad unless you believe their product superior AND can afford to enter the game. Surely there is choice enough already?

Ciao - Rob C
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Ben Rubinstein on October 01, 2006, 06:39:51 am
There are still older photographers who would never forget how canon left their customers high and dry in 1989 when they switched to the EF mount. Hasselblad in the last few years has abandoned their traditional mount to go AF and are now doing it again just a few years afterwards. Why would anyone spend that kind of money just to have it happen again in another 5 years?
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: michael on October 01, 2006, 06:45:50 am
Quote
The point: at no time did my 500C or 500CM accept lenses other than Hasselblad/Zeiss and I can't recall anyone else marketing backs for them either. Was that a problem for me? I don't think it was.

Really?

There were in fact quite a number of third party lenses for the V series Hasselblads over the decades. Have you also forgotten Polaroid backs?

Several different companies currently make digital backs for H Hasselblads. Those photographers who currently have a substantial investment in one of these are now prevented from moving forward with that company's latest bodies and lenses, and those that may wish to step up to Hasselblad's latest bodies and lenses are forced to choose just one brand, rather than having several choices. Why is this not an issues that's easier to appreciate? The free market is about choice.

And just to rebut the obvious rejoinder, of course I have the choice of not continuing to use Hasselblad. But with a $50,000 captial investment in the brand, my real-world options are not as clear cut.

As for it not being a problem for you, well that's fortunate. But try to see the world though a less narrow filter. People who prefer alternatives, or who have substantial equipment investments which are now rendered restricted, or who wish to sell alternatives, or who wish to manufacture alternatives, may think otherwise.

Michael
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: hubell on October 01, 2006, 07:48:56 am
We can all debate endlessly whether Hasselblad's decision to to release the H3 as a "closed" system that will be the only platform that can handle the new 28mm  lens and probably the forthcoming T/S lens is a smart business decision. However, I  am in the market for MF DB solution and I ask myself the following question: before the H3 was  announced, would I have considered Hasselblad's DB for a split second? Absolutely not. It was a choice between a Phase DB and  a Leaf Aptus. Now, the Hasselblad back, because it is the only way into the H3 and at least some new lens offerings from Hasselblad, in a way becomes a real choice that I have to consider and perhaps the presumptive choice. I suspect many will have a similar reaction, despite wishing it were not so.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: pgpgsxr on October 01, 2006, 08:35:50 am
Quote
$50,000 captial investment in the brand

 Dear Michael I think one of the problems is that the MFD world is too new and unstable a place to have a $50,000 captial investment in ANY brand. Sometimes I feel digital world has just made life a whole lot harder for all us; the priority for the industry doesnīt seem to be the client but the latest megapixel count and being able to beat the other brands to the cashbox regardless of  the photographers opinions and real life needs. I think itīs quite clear there is not one single camera maker in the digital world who listens properly to the real life needs of any photographer. Their sole intent is to get their product out as quick as possible to recover as much investment money as possible and get on with the next years digital race and of course we are the real losers here. Of course everyone says thatīs because digital is so new. Well Iīm getting a bit tired of that excuse. Itīs about time sensor sizes, megapixels and camera formats were set under some kind of standard, like we tried to do with Raw and the DNG formats. At least we may begin to know where we are heading, the photo world at the moment maybe very interesting from a "sitting on the fence" approach but being in the thick of it is crazy and any step forward investment wise is a step in the dark.  This hurts us all, the guy with a "investment" in 1DS II like me or you with a massive investment in a very uncertain market, because if we let Hassy get away with it other camera makes may dare to try the same marketing approach later on.
 Paul
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: michael on October 01, 2006, 09:19:22 am
Your point on price is well made, but photography isn't the only craft with expensive tools. A dentist, auto mechanic and many others have comparable financial hurdles. People with hobbies like golf and sailing similarly spend tens of thousands on their pursuits.

For a successful working pro this isn't that great a burden, not is it for the affluent amateur.

The real issue, as you point out, is being hung up to dry by companies that use limiting choice as a marketing strategy. People for whom these are tools are rightly concerned, and even the wealthy don't like being hurt financially.

Michael
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: pgpgsxr on October 01, 2006, 10:28:12 am
Dear Michael,
Wealthy or not, I think anyone who invests a huge sum or a small sum has the right to enjoy their equipment without worrying about updating their equipment let alone not being able to update it. But now we have the prospect of not being able to update thanks to hassy. You are quite right, for the successful pro it isnīt a great burden however the young pro who is just kick-starting his/her business has so many financial hurdles with digital. Come on Hasselblad the pro world is steep enough as it is!! The whole shift in Hassyīs attitude towards itīs marketing I think proves that everyone except for Canon is having a hard time surviving in the digital era. All we need now is Leica to bring out an M9, which canīt use all the existing lenses!!
 Paul
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: larryg on October 01, 2006, 10:31:02 am
I purchased my first Hasselblad 205Fcc system with two bodies and most of the lenses available.  I had about $50,000 invested back in 1999 for the "best" mf
system I thought was available.
While this was indeed a small fortune I felt it was a lifetime investment. Actually I was quite satisfied with the results of this equipment. The only additions to make was a new lens or accessories once in a while.
Back in early 2005 (that was only 18 months ago) I switch to digital mf Contax with Koday DCS back  spent around $20,000+ for the new system, sold my old system and was basically satisfied.
Then fall of the same year Phase one announces a new 22mp back  (ok just another $33,000 investment less trade in)  I made the switch to Phase One when Kodak announced they were discontinuing the DCS Back.  Stil satisfied then within six months of purchasing the Phase one  they announce a newer and greater back with 39mp (just $14,500 to upgrade) while I have been considering this upgrade (not so likely right now)  Phase One announces another upgrade p45 +  for another upgrade fee.

Of course things have changed but it is well beyond possibility of justifying trying to stay on this merry go round to try and keep up with the latest and greatest.
And of course during all this Contax quits   geeeez  

I was even considering  selling the Contax to switch back to Hasselblad so that I would have a camera system still in business?

The last couple of years have seen such significant changes (and still coming)
While this is a good thing to a certain degree  I need to start thinking through some of these purchases  While I still have something left in the bank account
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: pgpgsxr on October 01, 2006, 11:01:15 am
Hi Larrq,
The digital revolution has affected all of us in diferent ways and I think very few are positive steps forward. My experience purchasing gear isnīt as spectacular but also has hurt my wallet.
 I purchased an Ebony SU45 in 2002 with 5 lenses and all the necessary add-ons, I also thought it was a lifetime investment. Enjoyed and worked with the camera for about 3 years, suddenly 3 days before ordering an Imacon scanner my local and only 4x5 E6 lab announced they would not be processing E6 anymore. (I live on a Spanish island and I just couldnīt face the expense of sending all my slides to the mainland) I had medium format pentax 67II but never really adapted to it, but decided to use it as I found a lab which processed 120 and 35mm. But then they warned me they would stop processing E6 in the new year so I decided to jump to digital.
 I now use 1ds II not bad at all, however one thing is going digital out of choice and another is being sort of forced into it!
Paul
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Photomangreg on October 01, 2006, 11:41:16 am
Some unbiased reviews:


Pop Photo:

http://www.popphoto.com/photonews/3073/has...rlds-first-48mm (http://www.popphoto.com/photonews/3073/hasselblad-develops-worlds-first-48mm)
-full-frame-dslr-camera-system.html


PDN Online:
http://www.pdnonline.com/pdn/newswire/arti..._content_id=100 (http://www.pdnonline.com/pdn/newswire/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=100)
3188075
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: michael on October 01, 2006, 12:02:59 pm
To my mind a regurgitated corporate press release is not a "review".

Michael
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: ijrwest on October 01, 2006, 12:51:32 pm
I am a software engineer and I suspect we face the same issues as the camera engineers. If we upgrade software, we have to ensure that data created by old software versions is readable by new versions ( backward compatibility ). Also there is a demand to publish specifications (APIs) so that third party software can be integrated. What I can tell you, is that these demands are expensive to meet and can make product development uneconomic. It may be that the engineers at Hasselblad are calling the shots here, not the marketing people - they don't have the resources to develop new products and still keep compatibility with everything else.

Iain West
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Quentin on October 01, 2006, 01:32:25 pm
I already think Hassy pricing is difficult to justify before you even get to talk about the new H3.  Buy in to the H3 system and your investment in H3 only compatable equipment becomes so large you can't easily afford to move to another brand.  Why take that risk?  If Mamiya get their act together, there will be several lower risk alternatives.  What Hassy have done is increase the risk of investing in their equipment to a point where it might be foolish to consider doing so, unless you have already done so.

Quentin
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Kenneth Sky on October 01, 2006, 02:18:16 pm
I've been following this discussion and am starting to feel like a voyeur. Most of us can't or won't invest the cost of a luxury car in our photo equipment especially when the product cycles seem to be speeding up (compared to the old analog days). Some of this sorry state of affairs needs to be assessed to photographers' constant demands for improvements so that digital has now exceeded film in almost every way. At the same time professionals have raised expectations in their clients which can only be met by newer and ever more expensive equipment which manufacturers can only provide by marketing strategies such as Hasselblad has made. This in no way exculpates Hasselblad. There is a saying: "Never ask for something you don't really want because you may get it" Perhaps we photographers have fallen into this trap.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: eleanorbrown on October 01, 2006, 02:20:54 pm
I am a photographic artist, not a software engineer and this is probably a less than intelligent question, but if the H3d back is detatchable (meaning another back can be attached), then why can't Phase, Leaf and other companies hack into the Hassy software on the camera and  make their respective backs compatable with the h3d system (or is this illegal??).  i know, sounds over simplified(maybe wishful thinking) but i too have a substantial investment i don't want to loose. Eleanor
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Rob C on October 01, 2006, 02:33:36 pm
Quote
Really?

There were in fact quite a number of third party lenses for the V series Hasselblads over the decades. Have you also forgotten Polaroid backs?

Several different companies currently make digital backs for H Hasselblads. Those photographers who currently have a substantial investment in one of these are now prevented from moving forward with that company's latest bodies and lenses, and those that may wish to step up to Hasselblad's latest bodies and lenses are forced to choose just one brand, rather than having several choices. Why is this not an issues that's easier to appreciate? The free market is about choice.

And just to rebut the obvious rejoinder, of course I have the choice of not continuing to use Hasselblad. But with a $50,000 captial investment in the brand, my real-world options are not as clear cut.

As for it not being a problem for you, well that's fortunate. But try to see the world though a less narrow filter. People who prefer alternatives, or who have substantial equipment investments which are now rendered restricted, or who wish to sell alternatives, or who wish to manufacture alternatives, may think otherwise.

Michael
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78556\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Michael

Third-party lenses for Hasselblad 500 camera bodies. Well, I certainly didn't get to hear about them,  I didn't live in a cell and was a fully paid up member of the profession from '60 onwards! So, who made them and why would anyone buy them?

Polaroid backs: okay, you can call them alternative backs if you choose to push semantics to the extreme, but for me they were a very seldom used accessory that did not, in fact, prove all that valuable over all those years. In fact, the over-use of Polaroid proofing is perhaps what has led to the easy acceptance of digital screen watching as a way to go; further, I think that much of the navel gazing which pixel peeping seems to be about is a wholely unwelcome new twist to the saga of  photography.

Why so? Well, I have, as mentioned previously, but a single digital camera, a D200. Previously, all my work was governed by readings from generations of Westons and then finally a Minolta; now, with this D200, I can rely, for the very first time, on a camera's sense of exposure being good. I put it onto matrix and that's all I need to do (I do set everything by hand - I have no a/f optics and never felt the need - and have never used a priority setting of any kind) in order to get a very nice exposure which gives me a print as good as I feel is possible in the real world.  I gave up looking at the large screen on the back almost within the first two or three days of using the camera and have not felt the need to change that course of action other than from the aspect of keying in different lenses of the no-chip variety.

Clearly this flies right in the face of beliefs of most of the theorists in the current photographic chattering circles that seem to be around - well, that's okay too and you are all welcome to your ideas which are, probably if not certainly, mathematically correct. However, photograpahy is not about maths, regardless of how much the latter may attract you as a discipline.

You mention the free market  being about choice: for everyone except the manufacturer then? If you are already into one of the digital H systems then that does not mean your device is no longer of use because a new geegaw has been invented; it only means that there are more different ways to cook the goose and, importantly, the magic you can or can not weave with the first camera does not desert you because of the new kid on the block.

But then perhaps all this is really more to do with equipment as jewellery than as tool.

Cheers and don't get indigestion - Rob C
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Photomangreg on October 01, 2006, 02:45:36 pm
Quote
To my mind a regurgitated corporate press release is not a "review".

Michael
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78591\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


And skewing the information is?  Michael didn't test the camera.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Smack on October 01, 2006, 02:54:51 pm
Quote
The point: at no time did my 500C or 500CM accept lenses other than Hasselblad/Zeiss and I can't recall anyone else marketing backs for them either. Was that a problem for me? I don't think it was. With Nikon, why would I have looked at other maker's lenses?

Ciao - Rob C
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78551\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I'm not sure that medium format film backs are an appropriate analog for digital backs.  Perhaps film would be a better, but not perfect, analogy.  Imagine in 1973 that Hasselblad decided that for all future Hasselblad cameras you could only use Hasselblad "Victorchrome" film loaded on a proprietary reel that could only be used in their new proprietary back.  Then imagine that any new lenses (for only god knows what reason) could only be used with this new film.

Of course Hasselblad would never have done this then.  In the 70s the medium format camera market was robust.  Now however, there are very few players left and those that remain are near dead.  Hasselblad obviously sees an opportunity to deliver the coupe de grace to the remaining players.

Should Hasselblad allow choice of recording media?  It's their prerogative.  Up to now they have - and by "up to now" I mean from the beginning of their existence to today.  It looks like they're taking that choice away.  They're going to piss a lot of people off (well a lot relative to the size of the medium format market).  I suppose they've calculated the costs of that.  The market will show how accurate their calculatations are.  Perhaps the new Rollei offering, which at first glance appears to be the antithesis of the H3D, is a variable they didn't consider.

As I don't own and likely won't own a medium format digital back any time in the near future, this issue is somewhat academic for me.  In general, though,  as a consumer, I greatly prefer open systems to closed ones.  On the other hand, I can't choose the sensor manufacturer for my 5D and I didn't complain about that.  Would be nice if I could though.  Perhaps if I had a choice I'd choose a Nikon D200 body with a  Canon 5D sensor

Steve
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: michael on October 01, 2006, 03:07:33 pm
Quote
And skewing the information is?  Michael didn't test the camera.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78631\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Please let me know what information i "skewed". I'll be pleased to respond.

Neither did I ever claim to have "tested" the camera. Why would you imply that I had?

I have been commenting on Hasselblad's business and marketing approach, not the H3D itself as a product. There'll be time enough for that.

Michael
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: izaack on October 01, 2006, 03:15:52 pm
That is a great reply, Rob C.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Photomangreg on October 01, 2006, 03:18:14 pm
Quote
Please let me know what information i "skewed". I'll be pleased to respond.

Neither did I ever claim to have "tested" the camera. Why would you imply that I had?

I have been commenting on Hasselblad's business and marketing approach, not the H3D itself as a product. There'll be time enough for that.

Michael
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78635\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


"reporting" only what fits in your agenda is the same as skewing the information.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Photomangreg on October 01, 2006, 03:34:27 pm
Quote
I already think Hassy pricing is difficult to justify before you even get to talk about the new H3.  Buy in to the H3 system and your investment in H3 only compatable equipment becomes so large you can't easily afford to move to another brand.  Why take that risk?  If Mamiya get their act together, there will be several lower risk alternatives.  What Hassy have done is increase the risk of investing in their equipment to a point where it might be foolish to consider doing so, unless you have already done so.

Quentin
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78609\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

If I buy a phantom Mamiya ZD system, is my investment safe?  Will I bhe able to use a third party back on it?  Can I use other lenses?  Other software?  How is the risk in buying a brand new, unproven system a lower risk?  They announced this camera over two years ago, I've lost a little confidence in them!
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: stemc on October 01, 2006, 03:54:06 pm
Quote
"reporting" only what fits in your agenda is the same as skewing the information.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78639\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Photomangreg - why not tell us about your agenda? You joined the site yesterday to respond to this thread only. Do you work for Hasselblad or something?

Stephen
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Photomangreg on October 01, 2006, 04:19:55 pm
Quote
Photomangreg - why not tell us about your agenda? You joined the site yesterday to respond to this thread only. Do you work for Hasselblad or something?

Stephen
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78648\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


My Agenda is to find an avenue with honest information.  I can't trust the manufacturers, I can't trust the marketing, I can't trust the dealers, I can't trust the publications, heck,  I'm not even sure I can trust my own eyes sometimes.  Where can one go to find honest, yet accurate comnparrisons of the benefits and features of MFD backs, MF DSLR's, and 35mm DSLR's?  It get's very tiring always listening to one sided information where it is more than obvious that someone has an agenda.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: John Camp on October 01, 2006, 04:50:29 pm
There doesn't seem to be much of an "agenda" if a guy who owns $50,000 worth of Hasselblad gear suddenly finds he can't move up to the next camera without also buying into the extremely expensive back, which he doesn't need, because he's already got one. Reichmann wasn't talking about the camera per se; he was talking about the system and how Hasselblad has left him, and many people like him, high and dry.

Hmmm...how do you say "boycott" in German?

By the way, do people still read Pop Photo? If they do, for what?

JC
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Rob C on October 01, 2006, 05:04:39 pm
Quote
My Agenda is to find an avenue with honest information.  I can't trust the manufacturers, I can't trust the marketing, I can't trust the dealers, I can't trust the publications, heck,  I'm not even sure I can trust my own eyes sometimes.  Where can one go to find honest, yet accurate comnparrisons of the benefits and features of MFD backs, MF DSLR's, and 35mm DSLR's?  It get's very tiring always listening to one sided information where it is more than obvious that someone has an agenda.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78652\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Photomangreg

You have a valid point where you complain about the problems associated with finding realistic, valuable information. I do not for a moment subscribe to the oft-aired notion that Michael is totally Canon hooked; he did at one time use Nikon and has his own reasons for doing otherwise now. But, as he uses Canon in its particular format and it seems to give him images every bit as good as does his larger equipment (in aesthetic terms, at least as can be seen on-screen) I understand how he might be misinterpreted.

But the problems with finding information are not new, not of the digital age alone. Time was, when I lived in Scotland, that I had a local Hasselblad dealer - I go back here to the mid-sixties to early seventies - who was able to show me, to let me actually TOUCH the cameras before purchase. One fine day I went to see him to discover that he no longer carried the range. Why, I asked in dismay. The answer revolved around the number of units he could shift. The sums worked out in a manner that showed that he was unable to buy, from the supplier, at the price which the mega-dealers down in London and Leeds could sell!

Later, when other independent dealers had been squeezed out of the Scottish market, the professional photographer was left the option of two and then one pro dealership and even here, you could order what you wanted but, more often than not, like hell could you see it!

So, even in the days of film, choice was there but hardly to hand if you didn't live in the capital. And information, for many of us, was had by reviews in The British Journal of Photography, reviews by that great man Geoffrey Crawley, upon whose advice I bought more than one Nikkor and never regretted the trust placed in his word.

Will it get easier? Nope, I think not, and more and more will depend on the opinion makers of the web (in the amateur market, at least) with the professional buyer (as in photographer)  becoming ever smaller as the industry shrinks.

Cheers - Rob C
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Nick Rains on October 01, 2006, 06:33:48 pm
1. Canon cameras 'force' you to use their chip, as do all DSLRs. You can buy their lenses, or 3rd party ones - do we know for a fact that there can be no 3rd party lenses for the new 'blad?

2. Is it possible that to allow future lenses like 28mm and TS, the current camera/mount cannot be used? To throw off the design shackles to allow new and exciting lens designs may well be a brave move. Whether it is successful time will tell.

3. As someone pointed out Canon caused a stir in the late 80s when the EOS mount was brought out. I weathered that, and replaced my FD lenses eventually, and now I am reaping the benefits of the EOS mount being so superior to the older FD mount. Nikon have struggled by insisting on backwards compatibility and have lost to Canon as the No1 brand as a consequence. As in 2 above, maybe this is the gamble 'blad are taking - but in a much less robust sector of the market.

Just questions, I have no intention to agree with or disagree with any of the indignant positions taken at this point...
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: BernardLanguillier on October 01, 2006, 07:24:58 pm
Quote
I am a software engineer and I suspect we face the same issues as the camera engineers. If we upgrade software, we have to ensure that data created by old software versions is readable by new versions ( backward compatibility ). Also there is a demand to publish specifications (APIs) so that third party software can be integrated. What I can tell you, is that these demands are expensive to meet and can make product development uneconomic. It may be that the engineers at Hasselblad are calling the shots here, not the marketing people - they don't have the resources to develop new products and still keep compatibility with everything else.

Iain West
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78600\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Iain,

The H system isn't that old, besides engineers don't call the shot in succesful corporations, they strive to meet directions defined based on actual market needs.

Cheers,
Bernard
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: BernardLanguillier on October 01, 2006, 08:07:42 pm
Quote
1. Canon cameras 'force' you to use their chip, as do all DSLRs. You can buy their lenses, or 3rd party ones - do we know for a fact that there can be no 3rd party lenses for the new 'blad?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78666\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Not sure whether some other brand could produce lenses for the H system, but the fact is that nobody has over the course of 5-6 years. Besides, the problem we - Hassy H1/H2 - users have been facing with these new developements is more our inability to use the new H lenses with our existing bodies, isn't it?

We don't know yet for sure at this point of time why Hassy has seemingly decided to make the 28 mm unusable on older bodies, but if it is only because of image circle being optimized for digital, then they could have called the lens DX. Period.

A large part of H users use it with digital backs whose image sensors are all the same size as the Imacon backs. These people would have had no image circle size issue when using the 28 mm. Hassy could have prevented the usage of the 28 mm when the H1/H2 use a film back, and allowed it with digital backs.

Regarding the T/S, we are probably seeing one more impact of the problems with the kodak sensor. My guess is that Hassy considered that the color shift problems they are seeing with Kodak sensor when shift/tilting the lens need to be corrected transparently by the system.

Quote
2. Is it possible that to allow future lenses like 28mm and TS, the current camera/mount cannot be used? To throw off the design shackles to allow new and exciting lens designs may well be a brave move. Whether it is successful time will tell.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78666\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Well, there is no stopping progress, but it is reasonnable to hope that a brand like Blad thinks sufficiently ahead when it develops a new lens mount. The H system is only a 6 years old system. They knew about 28 mm and T/S lenses 6 years ago, and if it turns out that they were unable to design their mount according to the needs of 28 mm/T/S lenses, I feel entitled as an engineer to speak of critical lack of technical competence on their part.

Quote
3. As someone pointed out Canon caused a stir in the late 80s when the EOS mount was brought out. I weathered that, and replaced my FD lenses eventually, and now I am reaping the benefits of the EOS mount being so superior to the older FD mount. Nikon have struggled by insisting on backwards compatibility and have lost to Canon as the No1 brand as a consequence. As in 2 above, maybe this is the gamble 'blad are taking - but in a much less robust sector of the market.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78666\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Nick, agreed that a switch of lens mount can be a good move in the long term (EOS is indeed a good example), but Hassy has already done this switch when introducing the H system. Nobody would have forgiven Canon if they had introduced a non compatible EOS2 in 1996.

As far as Nikon goes, I see zero evidence that there is a relationship between the supposed demised of Nikon and their willingness to stick to the F mount. Some people have said that the F mount isn't compatible with FF sensors, but the Kodak SLR/n has clearly proven otherwise (I know, I used to own one).

Nikon has IMHO decided not to release a FF sensor yet because their feel that the current technology isn't mature enough to provide suitable image quality in the corner of images with wide angle lenses.

They are IMHO right from a technology standpoint, and obviously wrong from a marketing standpoint judging from how many Canon shooters are extremely happy with their FF bodies - even if image quality isn't that great in the corner of wide angle images.

Cheers,
Bernard
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: MarkKay on October 02, 2006, 12:58:45 am
Is there any chance that Hassy will change its plan?  Should we start a letter writing campaign?  Will it be helpful?
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Josh-H on October 02, 2006, 07:47:20 am
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Is there any chance that Hassy will change its plan?  Should we start a letter writing campaign?  Will it be helpful?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78707\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
No.
No.
&
No.

Nup - Hassy would not have announced it if they had doubts.
Nup - Would be a waste of time
Nup - See above.

Whilst Hassy's move severley sux for those owners of phase or leaf backs... it really is indiferent news for new owners of H3's. I mean... bottom line Hassy is saying... 'Buy our H3 camera and we will suport you - 'look here is a new lens to prove it!' ohh.. we're sorry for all you H2 owners.. maybee you could try e-bay? and then buy a H3!

Its just a fact of marketing life... Hassy holds the medium format market in their hands... by locking out phase and leaf they only strengthen their own position. I mean what are you going to do... run out and buy a phase or leaf camera?

We see this sort of stuff daily in the electronic market across the board.. no reason to expect the niche medium format market to be any different.  A sad fact of life....
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Ed Jack on October 02, 2006, 12:07:41 pm
Quote
Please let me know what information i "skewed". I'll be pleased to respond.

Neither did I ever claim to have "tested" the camera. Why would you imply that I had?

I have been commenting on Hasselblad's business and marketing approach, not the H3D itself as a product. There'll be time enough for that.

Michael
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78635\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

 I was shocked to learn that as a H1 user of well over 2 years, that not only the new 28mm lens will be exclusive to the new product, but ALL future lenses - implying that there is something wrong with my H1 system - which cost me a pretty penny. Now I am quite happy to use a 24mm on the new horsemann SW-DII I intend to buy, but then I shouldn't have to - end of story.

Michael... have you had your P45 less than one year ? If so, then I think you get a free adaptor plate change don't you ? I'm just thinking that you could "vote with your wallet" and go back to using your Contax kit (if you still have it).

Maybe its time all digital backs had an adaptor plate system  a la Sinar/imacon (as was), such that companies are not tempted to such mischief. As Michael says, I suspect that there is a legal argument that could bring Hasselblad back into line.

Ed
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Quentin on October 02, 2006, 01:06:38 pm
Quote
If I buy a phantom Mamiya ZD system, is my investment safe?  Will I bhe able to use a third party back on it?  Can I use other lenses?  Other software?  How is the risk in buying a brand new, unproven system a lower risk?  They announced this camera over two years ago, I've lost a little confidence in them!
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78644\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

If its not safe, you've lost a heck of a lot less money for starters, which is why I invested in a Mamiya ZD (camera, not seperate back - they are available from stock in the UK).  The cost of eventually completely replacing the body is likely to be less than buying just a new back.  The lenses are a lot less expnsive but just as good, in my opinion.  I can treat it like any other dslr investment but with much better image quality.  As for the ZD back, well, who knows, frankly, but that reflects the current evolutionary state of the industry.  

Quentin
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Nick Rains on October 02, 2006, 04:39:29 pm
Quote
As far as Nikon goes, I see zero evidence that there is a relationship between the supposed demised of Nikon and their willingness to stick to the F mount. Some people have said that the F mount isn't compatible with FF sensors, but the Kodak SLR/n has clearly proven otherwise (I know, I used to own one).

Cheers,
Bernard
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78677\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

The Nikon F mount caused quite a few problems with autofocus in the early 90s because it was hard to incorporate a focus motor into the lens and keep the old mount - Nikon had to put the focus motor in the body. The autofocus of the early Nikons was very slow compared to the equiv. Canons and the brand suffered as a consequence. The EOS mount, with its fully electronic coupling, allowed Canon to push the autofocus concept futher and faster than Nikon.

Nikon have now caught up but it took a while.

That is all I meant, I have no idea whether the legacy Nikon F mount has any bearing on digital sensor design...
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: grandguru on October 03, 2006, 04:46:12 am
Am I alone in seeing the potential that is offered with the H3D? I first heard of the digital correction for optics in a speech given by Christian Poulsen last year and was literally blown away by the concept. This is one of the most fundamental improvements to imaging ever made and to be able to apply it on the fly to images as they are taken is an amazing step forward.
Why does the introduction of this camera mean that the other models will be discontinued, of course they will be offered for sale while there is a demand as is the case for the V system. Hasselbad have proved again and again that they do not kill old cameras, they have one of the best reputations of all manufacturers for support for older equipment.
I understand the reactions of people to the expression 'full frame' when applied to the H3D but in truth the camera is designed to utilise the frame of the digital chip, no more no less.
The H3D will not be end of the story, if a chip is made that just happens to coincide with a format that was dreamed up over a century ago and it offers a real advantage then Hasselblad would be foolish not to take advantage of it.
I believe that this step is a very positive one and I look forward to seeing what can be delivered with this system, after all what else matters.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: michael on October 03, 2006, 05:36:54 am
The problem is not that the H3D allows for new technology that provides digital lens correction and other capabilties. That's to be applauded, and few doubt that it's a worthwhile advance.

The issue is that Hasselblad has decided to do this in a prioprietry manner. It's only software, which means that other back makers could be licenced to handle this capability as well, but the company has deceided to restrict it to themselves.

This leads to the situation described in my essay, which I believe hurts existing H1 and H2 owners, as well as potential buyers. Ultimately, I fear, Hasselblad themselves.

This is not about technology. It's about business practices.

Michael
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: BernardLanguillier on October 03, 2006, 05:53:07 am
Quote
The Nikon F mount caused quite a few problems with autofocus in the early 90s because it was hard to incorporate a focus motor into the lens and keep the old mount - Nikon had to put the focus motor in the body. The autofocus of the early Nikons was very slow compared to the equiv. Canons and the brand suffered as a consequence. The EOS mount, with its fully electronic coupling, allowed Canon to push the autofocus concept futher and faster than Nikon.

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78812\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Nick,

I see your point. On the hand, as far as I recall, the problem was also pretty much coming from Nikon not having mastered the AF-I/AF-S technology yet.

It is true that they had to increase the number of electrical contacts in their mount, but that didn't really seem to be a major problem.

Cheers,
Bernard
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: grandguru on October 03, 2006, 07:14:06 am
Quote
The issue is that Hasselblad has decided to do this in a prioprietry manner. It's only software, which means that other back makers could be licenced to handle this capability as well, but the company has deceided to restrict it to themselves.

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78877\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I seem to recall that when autofocus was first introduced Minolta had the field to themselves until competitors bought the license from them. This is the advancement of technology and it will not work unless the developer can recoup their investment. But no one will rush to buy a license until they are satisfied  the technology works so lets all sit back just as the lens makers and digital back makers are doing to see how good this is. All the H1 and H2 cameras and backs out there are just as good today as they were last week, who has lost anything? The future will be very interesting.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: eleanorbrown on October 03, 2006, 11:14:23 am
I obtained the names of the US Hasselblad reps from my Phase One dealer (Global) and yesterday wrote an email letter to both of them about their upcoming "closed" system.  I let them know that I have been a long time Hasselblad customer (V and H systems) and how disappointed I am that I will not have the opportunity to purchase new equipment in the future because I can't hang my P45 on the new cameras and lenses.  I also let them know that the Hasselblad equipment will go before I give up my Phase back in favor of the Hasselblad back.

Please if any of you are dissappointed in any way about Hasselblad's marketing decision, get the names of the reps and let them know.  In the end everyone will loose, including hasselblad, if they don't reconsider their marketing strategies.  Eleanor
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: MarkKay on October 03, 2006, 01:02:51 pm
I wrote and emailed my letter

Quote
I obtained the names of the US Hasselblad reps from my Phase One dealer (Global) and yesterday wrote an email letter to both of them about their upcoming "closed" system.  I let them know that I have been a long time Hasselblad customer (V and H systems) and how disappointed I am that I will not have the opportunity to purchase new equipment in the future because I can't hang my P45 on the new cameras and lenses.  I also let them know that the Hasselblad equipment will go before I give up my Phase back in favor of the Hasselblad back.

Please if any of you are dissappointed in any way about Hasselblad's marketing decision, get the names of the reps and let them know.  In the end everyone will loose, including hasselblad, if they don't reconsider their marketing strategies.  Eleanor
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78917\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: David Mantripp on October 03, 2006, 02:35:16 pm
Quote
Am I alone in seeing the potential that is offered with the H3D? I first heard of the digital correction for optics in a speech given by Christian Poulsen last year and was literally blown away by the concept. This is one of the most fundamental improvements to imaging ever made and to be able to apply it on the fly to images as they are taken is an amazing step forward. [a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78872\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Huh ? Surely Olympus does this with 4/3rds cameras and lenses ?

I can't help but wonder why digital correction is needed - I mean, are the lenses crap or something ? Will we get to the point where you can stick any old rubbish in front of sensor and have the electronivs sort it out in the mix ? And in that case, does that mean that lens prices will plummet ? After all, if you can fix it electronically, why bother designing and building good lenses ?
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: eleanorbrown on October 03, 2006, 02:35:23 pm
On case anyone is interested: Here are the email addresses of two Hassy reps:
[email protected]
[email protected]
(Jeff Payne and Bruce Wiseman)
Eleanor
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: grandguru on October 04, 2006, 03:32:31 am
Quote
Huh ? Surely Olympus does this with 4/3rds cameras and lenses ?

I can't help but wonder why digital correction is needed - I mean, are the lenses crap or something ? Will we get to the point where you can stick any old rubbish in front of sensor and have the electronivs sort it out in the mix ? And in that case, does that mean that lens prices will plummet ? After all, if you can fix it electronically, why bother designing and building good lenses ?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78951\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I am not a lens designer but I dont think it is possible to make a perfect lens, a designer will balance some properties  against others to get the best performance they can (at a price of course). For photography I guess chromatic aberation must be one of the most important considerations with flat field following closely behind (when did you last see a curved CCD). If the designer knew that fall off, distortion and chromatic aberation were all definable and correctable with software he could concentrate on optics that people could only dream about. I promise you that this has nothing to do with correcting poor quality optics, how pointless that would be! Correction will make the current optics even better than they are now. The genie is out of the bottle and you are granted wishes (optically at least). The argument about open or closed systems is clouding the issue and will wither away and camera makers everywhere will now raise their game, that was the point that I was making about autofocus, there will be no going back from here.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: pprdigital on October 04, 2006, 01:14:22 pm
Quote
The issue is that Hasselblad has decided to do this in a prioprietry manner. It's only software, which means that other back makers could be licenced to handle this capability as well, but the company has deceided to restrict it to themselves.


Michael
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=78877\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

If it's only software, I suppose they might consider licensing or sharing their software technology to other back makers - like Phase One and Capture One software - when they decide to license or share theirs.

Steve Hendrix
PPR Digital
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Photomangreg on October 04, 2006, 03:25:42 pm
Quote
If it's only software, I suppose they might consider licensing or sharing their software technology to other back makers - like Phase One and Capture One software - when they decide to license or share theirs.

Steve Hendrix
PPR Digital
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=79075\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Why doesn't Phase give away Capture One software?  I hope they're not trying to make a profit!  Every year or so I have to pay or an upgrade, wouldn't it be better if they shared their software technology openly with Canon and Adobe?  No, instead they are locking other software manufacturers out!  I think there should be some sort of legal investigation into their practices....
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: DarkPenguin on October 04, 2006, 03:29:47 pm
Quote
Every year or so I have to pay or an upgrade, wouldn't it be better if they shared their software technology openly with Canon and Adobe?

Sure would.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: BernardLanguillier on October 04, 2006, 07:03:22 pm
Quote
Why doesn't Phase give away Capture One software?  I hope they're not trying to make a profit!  Every year or so I have to pay or an upgrade, wouldn't it be better if they shared their software technology openly with Canon and Adobe?  No, instead they are locking other software manufacturers out!  I think there should be some sort of legal investigation into their practices....
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=79087\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

That's a little bit unfair. Noone requested Hassy to license their lens/back software interface for free.

If you are speaking about the opening of the Phaseone backs "color callibration" information to third parties, then I agree with you, but I also don't think that it should be done for free.

Regards,
Bernard
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Photomangreg on October 04, 2006, 07:27:03 pm
Quote
That's a little bit unfair. Noone requested Hassy to license their lens/back software interface for free.

If you are speaking about the opening of the Phaseone backs "color callibration" information to third parties, then I agree with you, but I also don't think that it should be done for free.

Regards,
Bernard
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=79117\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I am under the impression that hassy has tried to get license agreements from both Phase and Leaf
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: BernardLanguillier on October 04, 2006, 07:43:46 pm
Quote
I am under the impression that hassy has tried to get license agreements from both Phase and Leaf
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=79121\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

So you do have some insider relationship with Hassy, don't you?

Cheers,
Bernard
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: eleanorbrown on October 10, 2006, 11:58:21 pm
Here's an email I recieved from Hasselblad CEO's office today . eleanor

"Thank you for your mail.
Yes, there has been a lot of confusion, but let me try to give you my personal view.

The H3D camera is our attempt to challenge, in a serious way, the dominance of the Nikon and Canon DSLR cameras in the high end market.
There are things in both the optical system, the image quality, functionality and the ease of use that simply is not possible to achieve unless we create a true DSLR camera, which the H3D is.
The 35 mm DSLR camera vendors chose to make 2 different product lines, one analog and one digital years ago, instead of creating a hybrid solution. I think everybody agree that the gap between these cameras and a film camera with a camera back is smaller now than ever. Hasselblad need to change this. In my opinion Hasselblad lost most of its market position to 35 mm SLR cameras years ago by not making important changes in due time, and it is my job to secure that this doesn't happen again.
In industries where technology and markets become more mature, products and solutions often become more and more integrated. This is the trend we are seeing.
I hope you agree that Hasselblad need to make the best cameras possible, to allow the best photographers to shoot the best possible images in the future.
Next time when you get a chance check out an H3D, and I am sure you will see the difference.
The new DSLR strategy does not mean that we will not continue to support our existing product lines. We will continue to supply H2 cameras and lenses etc. as well as 503 CW cameras along with a line of camera backs. "


Best Regards

Christian Poulsen
CEO, Hasselblad
+45 70 26 08 00
[email protected]
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: MarkKay on October 10, 2006, 08:44:04 pm
I got a similar email from a Hasselblad higher up in the USA. He has been very responsive to my needs when I had problems.  The difference in his email vs the one you list below was that he did not mention any thing about Canon or Nikon.  To state that Hassy lost out on sales based on the Canon/Nikon more rapid  move to digital is ludicrous.  IT is only in the two or three years that the digital sensors have been cost effective, big enough, and good enough to compete with MF film images.   Even when Canon came out with the D30 it was so inferior to 35mm film, and some might argure that their 1Ds or 1Dsmk2 is the first DSLR that is as least as good as film.    In addition, the consumers and pros that shoot with 35 vs MF are different.  I do not think I would ever see a sports or birder using MF (at least extremely rare) shooting with MF.  I think the markets are different albeit with a very slim overlap.  

When i got my letter,  I stated that I was disappointed that there would be no new H2 compatible lenses.  I have been waiting for a shift or tilt/shift option.  Perhaps I should not have gone with Hasselblad based on rumors that they would make such a lens for the H2. I decided to go with Hassy and even  paid extra for an H2 sliding back mount for my view camera figuring that this would be the dominant MF system out there.  If I would have known their plans, I would have waited instead of spending all that money.  Mark

Quote
Here's an email I recieved from Hasselblad CEO's office today . eleanor

"Thank you for your mail.
Yes, there has been a lot of confusion, but let me try to give you my personal view.

The H3D camera is our attempt to challenge, in a serious way, the dominance of the Nikon and Canon DSLR cameras in the high end market.
There are things in both the optical system, the image quality, functionality and the ease of use that simply is not possible to achieve unless we create a true DSLR camera, which the H3D is.
The 35 mm DSLR camera vendors chose to make 2 different product lines, one analog and one digital years ago, instead of creating a hybrid solution. I think everybody agree that the gap between these cameras and a film camera with a camera back is smaller now than ever. Hasselblad need to change this. In my opinion Hasselblad lost most of its market position to 35 mm SLR cameras years ago by not making important changes in due time, and it is my job to secure that this doesn't happen again.
In industries where technology and markets become more mature, products and solutions often become more and more integrated. This is the trend we are seeing.
I hope you agree that Hasselblad need to make the best cameras possible, to allow the best photographers to shoot the best possible images in the future.
Next time when you get a chance check out an H3D, and I am sure you will see the difference.
The new DSLR strategy does not mean that we will not continue to support our existing product lines. We will continue to supply H2 cameras and lenses etc. as well as 503 CW cameras along with a line of camera backs. "
Best Regards

Christian Poulsen
CEO, Hasselblad
+45 70 26 08 00
[email protected]
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=79811\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: John Camp on October 10, 2006, 10:52:41 pm
Quote
To state that Hassy lost out on sales based on the Canon/Nikon more rapid  move to digital is ludicrous.  IT is only in the two or three years that the digital sensors have been cost effective, big enough, and good enough to compete with MF film images.   Even when Canon came out with the D30 it was so inferior to 35mm film, and some might argure that their 1Ds or 1Dsmk2 is the first DSLR that is as least as good as film.    In addition, the consumers and pros that shoot with 35 vs MF are different.  I do not think I would ever see a sports or birder using MF (at least extremely rare) shooting with MF.  I think the markets are different albeit with a very slim overlap. 
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I think (but I'm not sure) that you misinterpreted what he said, or at least what he meant. I think he meant that Hasselblad got squeezed at the high end **in film cameras** years ago, because Nikon and Canon cameras became so good that MF in general began to lose out. That's what he doesn't want to happen again, with digital.

Most people would now tell you that film was more or less matched at ~ 6mp; or at about the Nikon D1x level, and that the top-end Canons and Nikons now challenge MF. When he says he doesn't want it to happen again, he doesn't want Canon and Nikon, expected to move up to the ~22mp arena in the next step, to again squeeze Hasselblad out of the market.

He may have an argument, but I suspect MF is a long-term loser and a niche product anyway. In four to six years, I doubt there will be any big commercial application for which Nikons, Canons, etc., will not be adequate. MF, IMHO, will pretty much become the preserve of art shooters and people who need to make super-sized prints.

JC
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: MarkKay on October 10, 2006, 11:39:42 pm
Perhaps I did misinterpret his letter.  However, The size of the sensor in a 35mm format is limited and at 22 megapixels full-frame, most lenses will have reached their resolution limit before reaching the 22megapixel sensor.  So I still think the two formats are not directly comparable. Mark

Quote
I think (but I'm not sure) that you misinterpreted what he said, or at least what he meant. I think he meant that Hasselblad got squeezed at the high end **in film cameras** years ago, because Nikon and Canon cameras became so good that MF in general began to lose out. That's what he doesn't want to happen again, with digital.

Most people would now tell you that film was more or less matched at ~ 6mp; or at about the Nikon D1x level, and that the top-end Canons and Nikons now challenge MF. When he says he doesn't want it to happen again, he doesn't want Canon and Nikon, expected to move up to the ~22mp arena in the next step, to again squeeze Hasselblad out of the market.

He may have an argument, but I suspect MF is a long-term loser and a niche product anyway. In four to six years, I doubt there will be any big commercial application for which Nikons, Canons, etc., will not be adequate. MF, IMHO, will pretty much become the preserve of art shooters and people who need to make super-sized prints.

JC
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Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Photomangreg on October 11, 2006, 11:55:19 am
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I think (but I'm not sure) that you misinterpreted what he said, or at least what he meant. I think he meant that Hasselblad got squeezed at the high end **in film cameras** years ago, because Nikon and Canon cameras became so good that MF in general began to lose out. That's what he doesn't want to happen again, with digital.

Most people would now tell you that film was more or less matched at ~ 6mp; or at about the Nikon D1x level, and that the top-end Canons and Nikons now challenge MF. When he says he doesn't want it to happen again, he doesn't want Canon and Nikon, expected to move up to the ~22mp arena in the next step, to again squeeze Hasselblad out of the market.

He may have an argument, but I suspect MF is a long-term loser and a niche product anyway. In four to six years, I doubt there will be any big commercial application for which Nikons, Canons, etc., will not be adequate. MF, IMHO, will pretty much become the preserve of art shooters and people who need to make super-sized prints.

JC
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It's kinda funny, when digital started many years ago, MF backs were at 5.8mp and 35mm DSLR were at 6mp, now with backs at 39 and DSLR's at 16, the gap has never been greater.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: cescx on October 12, 2006, 12:58:25 pm
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It's kinda funny, when digital started many years ago, MF backs were at 5.8mp and 35mm DSLR were at 6mp, now with backs at 39 and DSLR's at 16, the gap has never been greater.
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Yes, but in this epoch, the MF backs are 24*36 mm dimensions, and, today, the difference are the double dimensions of the MF Vs 35 mm DSRL, of all ways, if is certain that, those of 35 arrive at the half of resolution that those of MF, 39 to 17, and the 17 MP, are A3 applications (offset 300 ppp), the 80% of the professional printing, the discusion, I think, is not which is better, the question is that, many applications of MF, they can be done without problems with a 35.

In this way, Hass and the other, they see its market reduced, and enlarged the difference in 8x the price of a DB-MF that in the best of the cases, multiplies for 2 the resolution of a 35...  In the epoch that your speeches, a DB-MF cost around 12.000 and the first one DSRL, of Kodak for Nikon F-3 some 7.000.

I believe that, the hasty descent of sales in MF, by photographers that utilized MF and now they utilize 35, is very large for which has carried on the one hand to the businesses MF-makers to close or to stop manufacturing (bronica,pentax,contax,yasica,rollei??) and by another, due to the great investment, cannot do more accessible its product, and therefore the present difference of price has grown so much.  

Y belive, the solution for the manufacturers, is to produce more affrodable products, to entry to the MF, and versatile than 35 cameras. The Mamiya Way.
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Rob C on October 12, 2006, 04:09:11 pm
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Yes, but in this epoch, the MF backs are 24*36 mm dimensions, and, today, the difference are the double dimensions of the MF Vs 35 mm DSRL, of all ways, if is certain that, those of 35 arrive at the half of resolution that those of MF, 39 to 17, and the 17 MP, are A3 applications (offset 300 ppp), the 80% of the professional printing, the discusion, I think, is not which is better, the question is that, many applications of MF, they can be done without problems with a 35.

In this way, Hass and the other, they see its market reduced, and enlarged the difference in 8x the price of a DB-MF that in the best of the cases, multiplies for 2 the resolution of a 35...  In the epoch that your speeches, a DB-MF cost around 12.000 and the first one DSRL, of Kodak for Nikon F-3 some 7.000.

I believe that, the hasty descent of sales in MF, by photographers that utilized MF and now they utilize 35, is very large for which has carried on the one hand to the businesses MF-makers to close or to stop manufacturing (bronica,pentax,contax,yasica,rollei??) and by another, due to the great investment, cannot do more accessible its product, and therefore the present difference of price has grown so much. 

Y belive, the solution for the manufacturers, is to produce more affrodable products, to entry to the MF, and versatile than 35 cameras. The Mamiya Way.
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Francesc

I think you are right when you suggest that the entry point into MF digital is too high. I understand the reasons given - high cost of sensors and the difficulty of getting more than a small number of them out of a single larger unit - but I think it is far more than that: I think that the prices are being kept high intentionally in a move to attract the few (relatively) professionals who have the work to justify the price (or even the clients that demand the size of image); it seems to me to be a 'last man standing' situation with the players, at the end of which shoot-out there will be one player left to satisfy the pro market I referred to as well as the wealthy amateur who might feel inclined to burn some of his bucks in photogaphy.

Wipe out the competition. Always the ideal business model.

Hasta leugo - Rob C
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: cescx on October 12, 2006, 05:50:00 pm
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Francesc

I think you are right when you suggest that the entry point into MF digital is too high. I understand the reasons given - high cost of sensors and the difficulty of getting more than a small number of them out of a single larger unit - but I think it is far more than that: I think that the prices are being kept high intentionally in a move to attract the few (relatively) professionals who have the work to justify the price (or even the clients that demand the size of image); it seems to me to be a 'last man standing' situation with the players, at the end of which shoot-out there will be one player left to satisfy the pro market I referred to as well as the wealthy amateur who might feel inclined to burn some of his bucks in photogaphy.

Wipe out the competition. Always the ideal business model.

Hasta leugo - Rob C
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Amigo...

I think the same, and I believe that besides there is too much coincidence in the prices of all the manufacturers. but alone can remain one.. or two  .

In the other hand...  The price, is not it more important at this time.  But they are obliging the buyers to be moved toward one or another, if we recall the principle of the article, Michel is a perfect example, a pro with a P45 and a H2.. that option has remained without future, and what remains us for seeing...  

Nos vemos...
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: pprdigital on October 12, 2006, 06:14:08 pm
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He may have an argument, but I suspect MF is a long-term loser and a niche product anyway. In four to six years, I doubt there will be any big commercial application for which Nikons, Canons, etc., will not be adequate. MF, IMHO, will pretty much become the preserve of art shooters and people who need to make super-sized prints.

JC
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Despite the opinions of some, MFDB cannot be profitably produced in the price range that many would like ($8K - $12K) - at least not without some considerable drawbacks that deteriorate the end product competitively to 35mm.

That means that the only viable path for medium format is to enhance the quality of the product at the best price they can offer for profitability. Medium format will definitely not survive by offering "adequate solutions".

For many years - even in the film days, 35mm has far outsold medium format. In the commercial world, medium format lost it's shirt in the digital age because 35mm started to approach it in image quality, and ease of use blew it away. Many who moved in the direction of 35mm digital did so because medium format didn't offer an easy to use, viable alternative, and the price of entry for 35mm digital was low in comparison.

However, MFDB sales have increased in recent years, and dramatically of late. Price points have remained relatively stable, although new, slightly smaller chipped products like the Aptus 65 and the P30 have extended some range on the entry level side of MFDB's ($15K - $20K). The increase in sales can be sourced to the enhanced ease of use that MFDB's have been able to develop recently and the continuously evolving superiority in image quality.

Today, many commercial photographers have found that with 35mm, the upgrade path seems to be constant, so that after 5 or 6 years, you've invested as much as you would have in a MFDB system - even more. And 35mm appears to be hitting the ceiling in terms of image quality and resolution, wheras medium format still has legs. And I think a lot of photographers - while valuing what 35mm does well - realized that they missed shooting medium format for many reasons. Our customers who have recently purchased MFDB's, after shooting 35mm digital for the past few years, seem to feel like they're "home" again. Their creative energy seems invigorated.

As to how some photographers afford these systems and others aren't able to or choose not to, I can't fathom. Without peeking into every photographer's business plan and budget, it's impossible to say why two photographers who shoot the same niche, serve the same industry, and enjoy comparable success, have divergent opinions about what each can afford.

Steve Hendrix
PPR Digital
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: Rob C on October 13, 2006, 10:55:53 am
Quote
Despite the opinions of some, MFDB cannot be profitably produced in the price range that many would like ($8K - $12K) - at least not without some considerable drawbacks that deteriorate the end product competitively to 35mm.

That means that the only viable path for medium format is to enhance the quality of the product at the best price they can offer for profitability. Medium format will definitely not survive by offering "adequate solutions".

For many years - even in the film days, 35mm has far outsold medium format. In the commercial world, medium format lost it's shirt in the digital age because 35mm started to approach it in image quality, and ease of use blew it away. Many who moved in the direction of 35mm digital did so because medium format didn't offer an easy to use, viable alternative, and the price of entry for 35mm digital was low in comparison.

However, MFDB sales have increased in recent years, and dramatically of late. Price points have remained relatively stable, although new, slightly smaller chipped products like the Aptus 65 and the P30 have extended some range on the entry level side of MFDB's ($15K - $20K). The increase in sales can be sourced to the enhanced ease of use that MFDB's have been able to develop recently and the continuously evolving superiority in image quality.

Today, many commercial photographers have found that with 35mm, the upgrade path seems to be constant, so that after 5 or 6 years, you've invested as much as you would have in a MFDB system - even more. And 35mm appears to be hitting the ceiling in terms of image quality and resolution, wheras medium format still has legs. And I think a lot of photographers - while valuing what 35mm does well - realized that they missed shooting medium format for many reasons. Our customers who have recently purchased MFDB's, after shooting 35mm digital for the past few years, seem to feel like they're "home" again. Their creative energy seems invigorated.

As to how some photographers afford these systems and others aren't able to or choose not to, I can't fathom. Without peeking into every photographer's business plan and budget, it's impossible to say why two photographers who shoot the same niche, serve the same industry, and enjoy comparable success, have divergent opinions about what each can afford.

Steve Hendrix
PPR Digital
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Hi Steve

What you say is true, but also true is the opposite; it all comes down to my point of budget and not, I think, anything much to do with the latter part of your post where you talk about MF photographers 'coming home' as it were. Simply put, I was in a position where I had two Hassleblads, a 500C and a 500CM as well as at least 3 Nikons at all times, I was able to use either and my field then was fashion and calendar girls. So, why didn't I use the Swede all the time? Again, as with so much photographic, the answer was gut reaction, a visceral feeling, an unarticulated knowledge that made me pick up the right camera at the right time in the shoot.

You can't then, make the argument that format per se is what calls the shots, at least, not in the world I inhabited, it wasn't.

But you can make the argument that high prices for MFD has put a stop to having the choice.

Just a way of seeing things, but as you know, it all comes down to big business trying to stay there.

Ciao - Rob C
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: pprdigital on October 15, 2006, 06:19:57 pm
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Hi Steve

What you say is true, but also true is the opposite; it all comes down to my point of budget and not, I think, anything much to do with the latter part of your post where you talk about MF photographers 'coming home' as it were. Simply put, I was in a position where I had two Hassleblads, a 500C and a 500CM as well as at least 3 Nikons at all times, I was able to use either and my field then was fashion and calendar girls. So, why didn't I use the Swede all the time? Again, as with so much photographic, the answer was gut reaction, a visceral feeling, an unarticulated knowledge that made me pick up the right camera at the right time in the shoot.

You can't then, make the argument that format per se is what calls the shots, at least, not in the world I inhabited, it wasn't.

But you can make the argument that high prices for MFD has put a stop to having the choice.

Just a way of seeing things, but as you know, it all comes down to big business trying to stay there.

Ciao - Rob C
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Perhaps instead of saying my customers who have shot 35mm, and have gone back to medium format, and coming home, I could say my customers who abandoned their medium format systems to shoot 35mm exclusively, feel like they've come back home. Most of my customers were predominantly medium format shooters in the past. It doesn't mean there's anything wrong with 35mm, or that 35mm doesn't have a place as a tool for a commercial photographer. Indeed, nearly all of my MFDB customers still shoot 35mm when the occasion calls for it.

If I had been a photographer who employed medium format for the majority of my work - as many did - and I could go back to shooting medium format, after going to 35mm exclusively, I gladly would if it enhanced my work. The challenging and unfortunate part, and upon this we agree, is being able to pay for a medium format digital system. Of course, many do, and knowing how some do and others don't is the puzzle I've never been able to explain.

But the medium format manufacturers have no choice but to continue to push the envelope with their solutions. Which means their solutions will never be in the same price range as 35mm. Which means that their market will continue to be intensively competitive, and not likely to ultimately support all the current players.

Steve Hendrix
PPR Digital
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: John Camp on October 15, 2006, 08:56:19 pm
The point I was trying to make above is that given the requirements of the end product of most professional work, MF simply will no longer be required. Or, put another way, the amount of professional work that most photographers could generate, that would require a MF system, and for which a 35mm system would not be adequate, wouldn't be large enough for most people to invest in a system.

As for paying for it, however, I don't think that many pros who need a MF system would have a problem. People routinely spend as much for a car. So you get a bank loan for five years and pay a eight hundred dollars a month, which is really (in the states) only $500 or so after you deduct it as a business expense...if you can't afford $500 a month for a MF system, then you don't need the MF system. IMHO, of course.

JC
Title: H3D Concerns
Post by: samuel_js on October 31, 2006, 04:38:14 pm
Well, in this link (http://www.hasselblad.com/downloads/datasheets/h-system.aspx) there's a DISCONTINUED PRODUCT called H2D-39 (among others) and I fully understand that the feeling must be horrible!!! And after spending that kind of money...How old is the H2D? A year? Even the 503CW (the one I own) is till presented as a modern tool with future.....  It really sounds like forcing all the digital Hasseblad to the HD3.