Hasselblad’s widest lens ever, the XCD 21mm

A new lens, a lens roadmap for 2018 and a new firmware for the X1D and H6D are some of the news the Swedish company shared with users this month. New firmware for lenses also expands the optical choices available to X1D users.

Hasselblad’s widest lens ever, the XCD 21mm

Previously announced, the XCD 21mm f/4 lens is finally available for ordering, at the same time Hasselblad announces the X1D camera get new features through a firmware update.

Announced as the widest lens ever created by Hasselblad, the XCD 21mm f/4, which will begin shipping mid-May 2018 with a suggested price of $ 3750 (excl. VAT) not only opens the doors for even more creative possibilities as confirms Hasselblad’s continued development of the XCD lens line, for which a road map also available suggests what 2018 will bring to the market.

Hasselblad’s widest lens ever, the XCD 21mm

As Hasselblad’s widest lens yet, the high-performing 21mm f/4 lens brings together the compact format of the XCD range with the maximum optical quality across the frame with a wide field of view. The XCD 21mm has an extremely short focal length that provides a 17mm full frame equivalency. It features a 32 cm close distance setting (1:10 image scale) and an aperture range between 4 and 32. Offering a new versatility to the X1D user, the lens is especially suitable for both landscape and interior and exterior architectural photography.

Hasselblad’s widest lens ever, the XCD 21mm

Like the other XCD lenses, the XCD 21mm f/4 lens has an integral central shutter offering a wide range of shutter speeds and full ash synchronisation up to 1/2000th second. “The automatic Lens Correction Tool in Phocus will generate images from the XCD 21mm f/4 that are completely free from any distortion, rendering all lines perfectly straight.” says Ove Bengtsson, Product Manager.

Hasselblad also introduced  firmware update 1.21 for the X1D and the H6D, which introduces new features to both cameras, one of them a White Balance Tool, allowing the photographer to set the colour temperature and tint directly on a photograph when shooting. These values can then be applied to all following images until the setting is turned off.

Hasselblad’s widest lens ever, the XCD 21mm

New features specific to the X1D include an Interval Timer and Exposure Bracketing. Using the Interval Timer, photographers can further their creativity with time-lapse shots. Exposure Bracketing gives users options in their exploration of varied exposure settings, capturing up to 9 frames with customisable sequences of bracketing exposures.

The firmware also introduces a new setting for the X1D, the option to limit the shutter speed for Auto ISO, P- and Full Auto Mode, and a change on the custom button for crop modes, replacing “Crop Mode Cycle” with “Crop Mode Next” and “Crop Mode Previous”. The firmware also offers the following features:

  • Zoom into coordinates of the focus point for the image just taken
  •  Browse images and pan when zoomed-in in EVF with swipe on touch-pad area on display
  •  Start live view automatically in EVF after browsing on rear LCD
  •  X1D – Audio playback through camera speaker during video playback
  •  Auto focus support for all HC/HCD Lenses (except HC120 Macro) when using the XH Lens Adapter

A highlight particular to the H6D allows for the user to create seven customisable profiles. By accessing the General Settings Menu on the main display, the user can easily navigate to the Profiles Menu and save the current camera settings to one of the seven profiles. With these preset settings customised by the user, the photographer has the tools to swiftly change camera settings without losing time, and ultimately, their shot.

Hasselblad’s widest lens ever, the XCD 21mm

The X1D and H6D  also include, as part of the v1.21.0 firmware update the following features:

  • Audio notifications
  •  Tethered image import
  •  Reset all settings: Option to disable reset of profiles
  •  Power Off symbol while shutting down
  •  Improved feedback to user when missing card in backup mode
  •  Browse Zoom: Long-hold to zoom in to 100% or out to full image (X1D: hold the AF-D/AE-L button; H6D: hold the True Focus button)

The firmware updates are available from the “My Hasselblad > Downloads” section online at Hasselblad. Users can update their firmware simply by downloading the “.cim” file to an SD card and selecting Firmware Update from the Service Menu on their camera.

Hasselblad also announced the availability of new lens firmware HC-HCD 19.0.3 and XCD 0.5.20, for XCD, HC & HCD lenses including autofocus support for the following Hasselblad H System lenses when used on the X1D camera with an XH adapter: HCD24, HC150, HC150N, HC210, HC300, HCD35-90 and HC50-110.

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Journalist, writer and photographer since 1979, both print and online, with a vast experience in the fields of photography, software, hardware, web, aviation, History, video games, technology, having published content in almost all Portuguese newspapers…