Using a 17-Year-Old Digital Back on a Hasselblad 500C/M

Photography Gear

Photographer Mark Fore has a classic Hasselblad 500C/M that he would love to shoot digitally, but he didn’t want to drop $6,400 on the new 907x 50c with the compatible CFV II 50C digital back. Instead, he picked up a 17-year-old Phase One H20 for less than $600 on eBay, and he couldn’t be happier about it.

The Phase One H20 digital back was released way back in 2003 as a native attachment for Hasselblad V-system cameras. Sporting a 16MP CCD image sensor capable of 16-bit color depth, an ISO range of 50-100, and a whopping 0.75 frames per second at top speed, it’s certainly not blowing minds in the modern day, but the price and performance you can get, makes this an amazing partner for an old Hasselblad camera.

“The results are amazing! The back goes from $400-600 on eBay and I couldn’t be happier,” Fore tells PetaPixel. “It just goes to show you don’t need the latest and greatest to still have all the dynamic range you need.”

Here are a few sample images that Fore has shot with the combo:

Fore dedicated his first ever YouTube video to sharing his experience with the 500C/M and H20 digital back, hoping to turn some more people on to this 17-year-old gem. He even shared one of his Raw files (click here to download) so that you can test the back’s latitude and pixel peep a real-world shot for yourself.

Suffice it to say that 16MP is plenty of resolution, and the dynamic range is surprisingly good… even compared to the latest and greatest.

Go ahead and watch the full video up top to hear more about this combo and see it in action, and if you want to see more from Fore, check out his website or give him a follow on Instagram.

Image credits: All photos by Mark Fore and used with permission.

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