Hasselblad launches faster, cheaper X System medium format camera

Hasselblad X1D II 50C Medium Format Mirrorless Camera

Hasselblad X1D II 50C Medium Format Mirrorless Camera

We mentioned that the original X1D was "slow", and that didn't just mean it was slow to capture images. There's 14 stops of dynamic range available, and stills can be captured as 16-bit RAW and full resolution JPEGs.

Dual SD card slots now support the UHS-II standard, while Hasselblad's tendency to build the shutter mechanism into its lenses keeps the camera body weight down to a pleasingly minimal 650g.

The new model also doesn't have image stabilization or an articulating screen. A very bland 1920 x 1080 at 25 and 30p recorded as H.264.

It targets a few of those deficiencies with the second-generation X1D II 50C. Some spec improvements like a 46% faster startup time, reduced shutter lag, and improved autofocus, which all help when comparing this to a much faster yet smaller system like the 42-mp full frame Sony a7R III. The OLED viewfinder above it rocks 3.69 million-dot resolution and 0.87x magnification, and users can now get to the camera's menu system through the EVF, for those times when trying to navigate system parameters in bright sunlight proves taxing. As the name suggests, the X1D II 50C is also 50-megapixels, like its predecessor.

Hasselblad has also revised the body design for better handling, and has made adjustments to the user interface for better operation. Further, the menu system is now accessible when looking through the EVF. Additionally, Hasselblad claims that the autofocus accuracy has been improved, though they do not detail what specifically has been changed.

Phocus Mobile 2 takes the image editing process to a portable level. The body design is very similar-the controls are in the same place and the grip feels the same-but the camera now has a much nicer EVF, a bigger rear display, more modern memory and tethering options, and an integrated Global Positioning System, to name just a few changes.

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The new camera arrives alongside the XCD 3.5-4.5 / 35-75 lens, a 35-75mm optic designed for various applications. Compatible with the X1D II 50C via either USB-C or Wi-Fi, Phocus Mobile 2 is supported on iPad Pro and iPad Air 2019 models, giving traveling photographer a quicker and more seamless workflow.

There's also a new app, Phocus Mobile 2, which not only lets users work with their images, but also doubles as a remote controller enabling tethered shooting and direct camera control.

The lens features an internal focusing system that keeps the lens' length the same throughout its focal range, which is equivalent to 28-58mm in 35mm terms. Hasselblad says to expect between 150 and 200 images per charge, which is not good.

"This really is the best lens Hasselblad has developed - its performance is extremely high, competing with our prime lenses", said the company's Per Nordlund. "I can even go as far to say that it's probably the best zoom lens now available on the market".

The Hasselblad X1D II 50C is available to pre-order now for $5,750 and is expected to ship in July.

Even at $5,750 United States dollars, it's still not as affordable as either the Fujifilm GFX50R ($3,999 USD) and the Fujifilm GFX50S ($5,499 USD).

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