Falling prices mean it might not be too long before medium-format photography is back on the agenda for enthusiasts, but what can we expect from a digital medium-format camera?

Product Overview

Hasselblad H4D-40


Hasselblad H4D-40 review


Price as reviewed:


Hasselblad H system

The Hasselblad H4D-40 is part of the Hasselblad modular H series of medium-format cameras. Like other digital medium-format cameras, there are two main parts: the camera, in this case with a battery forming the grip, a viewfinder and lens; and the digital back that contains the sensor.
The digital backs are interchangeable, but with the cameras costing upwards of £12,000 most photographers are likely to have only one.

There are currently 11 Hasselblad H-series lenses available, including the HCD 35-90mm f/4-5.6 and HC Macro 120mm f/4 lenses we used with the H4D-40. Lenses from the classic Hasselblad V system are also compatible with H-system lenses via an adapter.

One of the more interesting accessories in the H system is the HTS 1.5x tilt-and-shift lens adapter. This works with five of the existing H-series lenses, giving them tilt-and-shift capabilities while retaining infinity focus. However, it costs around £3,500, so it is only likely to be of interest to professional users.

There are three viewfinders available in the H system. The HVD 90x and HV 90x are 90° reflex viewfinders with slightly different magnifications. These viewfinders make the H-series cameras handle a lot more like a conventional DSLR. A waist-level finder is also available in the form of the HVM. Like most medium-format waist-level finders, this features a magnified hood to make precise focusing easier.

A medium-format roll-film back is also available in the form of the HM 16-32 and even the HMi 100, which is compatible with Polaroid 100-type instant film. It may seem odd to produce these products on such an advanced digital camera, but specialist film is still used in some advanced medical and scientific applications.

  1. 1. Introduction
  2. 2. Features
  3. 3. Hasselblad H system
  4. 4. Medium-format options
  5. 5. Landscape Shoot
  6. 6. Landscape Shoot Handling
  7. 7. Landscape Shoot Image Quality
  8. 8. Landscape Shoot Conclusion
  9. 9. Studio Portraits Shoot
  10. 10. Studio Portraits Shoot Handling and Lightroom
  11. 11. Studio Portraits Shoot Conclusion
  12. 12. Still Life Shoot
  13. 13. Still Life Shoot Mirror-slap
  14. 14. Still Life Shoot Image transfer
  15. 15. Still Life Shoot Conclusion
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