Originally Posted by raid
How would you compare the resulting images from a Hasselblad medium format digital back (50MP) and a Leica 35mm digital image of (say) 50MP?
Is this not comparable?
The Hasselblad back sets you back around $10k, and then you need to buy the camera too. The SLII may have MP50 capabilities. Isn't the SLII less costly than a Hasselblad with digital back?
Just some thoughts as I am enjoying a sunny Friday here.
Let's put the money issue aside for a moment.
Few folks buying a digital back for their Hasselblad are actually buying a whole new Hasselblad system. Most of us (thinking of the hobbyist and fine art owners of Hasselblad gear) already have a V system setup (like my 500CM and four lenses, two film backs). The reason to buy a digital back is to allow you to use digital capture with your existing kit, albeit on a smaller than original 56x56 mm format (33x44 or 33x33 cropped square for the CFV50c/II).
Comparing it to my once-SL and once-M-D/M-P Leica's, the big gain from buying that CFV50c/II isn't resolution per se, it's getting 50 pixels from a sensor with four times the area. This nets smoother, lower noise captures, more tonal gradation, AND a different relationship between FoV and DoF. The Hasselblad V-system lenses are mostly comparable to Leica lenses in terms of resolution and contrast, and rendering qualities.
Once you have a digital back, your system becomes even more versatile with the Hasselblad. It can swap between digital capture, B&W, and Color film in a couple of seconds. It provides even more focus zone control than FF. All of the system accessories available for the Leica reflex cameras once upon a time are also available for the Hasselblad V system cameras ... bellows, extension tubes, focusing screens, etc etc. Add the new 907x stub body to your kit, and you then have access to the current Hasselblad XCD system auto-focus lenses, which to a one are outstanding quality. Add Leica M and R lens adapters to that, and you can also shoot with your existing Leica lens gear ... most will cover at least the 33x33 square crop nicely, some will cover the 33x44 full frame beautifully.
What are the downsides? Cost, bulk of the system, ... the usual. Speaking of cost now, the complete Hasselblad 907x Special Edition includes everything needed (907x stub body, CFV50C II back, various essential accessories and battery) but a lens and is priced at $7500. The back is the same one that I can buy standalone for my 500CM. That price is very similar to what I paid for a Leica SL or M-D body.
So in some senses, it's the same thing as buying a high-end 50Mpixel Leica, and in some ways it's not. I want it for the versatility with lenses and with doing ultra wide with some focus zone control ... that's the bugaboo of using small formats for ultra wide ... and because the back will lend new life to my often neglected Hasselblad 500CM outfit.