Leica launches the M-E (Typ 240), a more budget-friendly M-system rangefinder

Leica has introduced a new M-E model designed to give users access to the M system at a lower price than would usually be required to buy one of its rangefinders. The M-E (Typ 240) replaces the M-E (Typ 220) first introduced in 2017 and delivers several upgraded features. The new model offers a 24MP CMOS sensor that matches the resolution of the top end M10-P but which has an ISO range limited to 200-6400.

The buffer for drive shooting and clearing images to the memory card is also increased to 2GB, allowing three frames per second, and this new model can shoot video—but only in 1080p FHD. A special grey anthracite paint coats the body of the camera, the rear display is a 3-inch 920k-dot screen and Leica claims the M-E (Typ 240) is dust and spray proof. The viewfinder has a 0.68x magnification.

Details are still a bit thin on the ground as Leica hasn’t released any further technical specifications yet, but retailers are advertising the M-E (Typ 240) for £3500 / $3995 body only. The camera is set to be available at the end of July 2019.

For more information see the Leica website.

Manufacturer information:

Leica M-E (Typ 240)

Welcome to the M Family!

The moment in which you decide to purchase a Leica M changes your view of the world. And making the choice has never been easier: become the proud owner of the new Leica M-E, benefit from its exceptionally favourable retail price, and use this opportunity to join the family of M photographers.

The new Leica M-E continues the unique tradition of rangefinder photography. A stringent paring down to the most essential camera functions ensures a streamlined and intuitive operation. Compact, quiet and characteristically discreet, the new Leica M-E allows photographers to blend into their surroundings, establish a direct connection with their subject, and capture each scene with absolute authenticity and brilliant image quality.

Available End of July 2019!

The Leica Rangefinder System Seeing the Bigger Picture
Leica’s unique M-System – whose name is based on the German term ‘Messsucher’, meaning rangefinder — has been making history for 65 years. The ‘Messsucher’ presents a bigger picture - a broader view of your subject - and opens up a whole new world of creative freedom: this enables the photographer to anticipate the way in which a composition might develop — and press the shutter at the decisive moment.

Consequently, Leica M cameras are particularly suited to street and reportage photography. In addition, the rangefinder allows for a fast and precise focus, even in challenging lighting conditions.

The Iconic M Design

Visual and Tactile Perfection
The Leica M-E (Typ 240) is distinguished by a timelessly elegant aesthetic and high-end construction; each model is handcrafted in Germany. The compact camera body is dust and spray water resistant, while the genuine leather trim offers both a sophisticated appearance and a safer grip on the camera. Top and base plate are finished in an anthracite grey paint which has been developed especially for the M-E.

As with all Leica M models, owners of the new M-E benefit from the comprehensive system compatibility that distinguishes the Leica M series: thanks to the M bayonet mount, the M-E is compatible with nearly every M lens ever produced — and so represents a particularly sustainable investment.

24-Megapixel CMOS Sensor

Image Quality without Compromise
The new Leica M-E ranks among the most compact full-frame camera systems in the world. Its 24MP CMOS sensor offers a high light sensitivity of up to ISO 6400 – facilitating outstanding image results even in low-light situations. Its 2GB buffer memory ensures that the Leica M-E is always ready to shoot, even when capturing a rapid succession of frames – so you can rest assured that you will never miss out on the decisive moment.

Integrated Video Function

Leica Look in Full-HD
Thanks to its exceedingly high resolution and light sensitivity, the Leica M-E delivers photographs imbued with the classic ‘Leica look’, characterized by a unique bokeh rendition. Owners of the new Leica M-E are also able to apply this distinctive quality to their moving images: the Leica M-E features a 1080p, full-HD movie mode — allowing you to capture stunning videos using a dedicated recording button, adding yet another dimension to your creative pursuits.

The Wingo Pro creates a bullet-time effect with your action cam

When the bullet-time effect was first introduced with the original Matrix movie in 1999 it was somewhat of a movie-making sensation. Fast forward twenty years and similar results can be achieved with affordable consumer imaging products, for example, the Insta360 One X 360-degree action cam we reviewed last year with a specific bullet-time accessory.

If you are the owner of a more conventional action cam and would like to experiment with some bullet-time shooting the Wingo Pro, whose makers are currently looking for funding on Kickstarter, might be worth a close look. The Wingo Pro is essentially a polycarbonate wing on a 2-meter string that allows you to control the camera's flight and keeps the subject right at the center. You can adjust the angle the camera which allows you to cut the string and the hand holding it from the footage.

The Wingo Pro was developed by filmmaker and inventor, Artem Gavr, who says the device folds up small enough to fit it in a backpack, making it an ideal travel companion. It also comes with a standard GoPro mount and an adjustable counterweight.

For a real bullet-time effect footage should be captured at the highest frame rate possible and then played back at a standard 24 or 30 frames per second for a slow-motion effect, slowing down both subject and camera movement.

Sample clips posted on the Kickstarter page look promising but if you want to try the Wingo out yourself, you can do so by pledging $45 on Kickstarter. The funding goal has already been reached, so the project will likely go ahead.

Disclaimer: Remember to do your research with any crowdfunding project. DPReview does its best to share only the projects that look legitimate and come from reliable creators, but as with any crowdfunded campaign, there's always the risk of the product or service never coming to fruition.

A sample image from Samsung’s 64MP Quad-Bayer sensor has appeared online

In May, Samsung launched its 64MP Quad-Bayer image sensor for use in smartphone cameras. Like the 48MP Sony equivalent that's already inside several current flagship devices, the Isocell Bright GW1 is designed to produce full-resolution output in good light conditions and use its Quad-Bayer technology to combine four pixels into one, for better detail, lower noise levels and increased dynamic range, in more challenging circumstances.

On a device equipped with the Samsung sensor, this would result in 16MP images vs. 12MP files from the Sony sensor. Now we are seeing the first sample image captured with the new Samsung sensor.

According to mobile industry ‘leaker’ Ice Universe, the 64MP sensor will not only be available in Samsung phones. This first sample image was captured by an unreleased Realme device, according to the tweet. Budget smartphone manufacturer Redmi is also interested in the sensor, according to Ice Universe.

Unfortunately, the sample has been compressed and downsized by Twitter, so we can’t say much about image detail or noise, but the dynamic range looks promising. We are looking forward to testing the first production devices with the Samsung Isocell Bright GW1 sensor and comparing its image output against the Sony-equipped high-end rivals.

These unseen photos of Ground Zero following the 9/11 attacks were salvaged from rotting CDs

Archivists Dr. Johnathan Burgess and Jason Scott have published 2,400 previously unseen images of Ground Zero in the days following the 9/11 attacks. The images were found on old CDs purchased from a house clearance sale in New York and shared by a ‘partner’ of Dr. Burgess because it's ‘about doing what's right for humanity,’ according to a statement he made to the BBC.

Dr. Burgess said the CDs were in poor condition after so many years in storage, and that a recovery service was used to retrieve some of the photos. At this time, the duo hasn't been able to locate the photographer or any family members who may know them. Scott says the images were captured with the 3MP Canon PowerShot G1.

The full archive of images has been made available to the public via Flickr. The photos appear to have been taken by a construction worker in the aftermath of the attacks. Emergency and construction workers are featured prominently in the images, as well as debris from the fallen buildings, machinery, dust and the surrounding New York City skyline, including multiple aerial shots.

Dr. Burgess suggests that ‘people who are moved by [the images] should consider donating to a worthy cause of their choice,’ according to the BBC report.

Shopping for a lens? Our buyers guides list our top picks

Looking for a lens for your Canon or Nikon DSLR, or Fujifilm or Sony mirrorless camera? You're in luck, as we have four buying guides to help you pick out the best lens for your shooting situation, whether it's landscape, macro or travel.

Best lenses for Canon DSLRs

Best lenses for Fujifilm X-mount mirrorless

Best lenses for Sony mirrorless

View all our buying guides

Alien Skin Exposure X4 software review

Alien Skin Exposure X4
$119 | alienskin.com/exposure

A screenshot of Exposure X4.

When I reviewed Alien Skin Exposure X3, I noted several features that make it unique among other photo editing and organizing applications, such as its extensive library of professional presets, a quad-layout interface option for reviewing multiple similar shots at once, and a novel way of storing nondestructive edits on disk.

The changes in this release address some prior rough edges, add features and refine the experience of processing your photos

Although the new Exposure X4 version 4.5 feels more evolutionary than its version number would suggest, that’s not a criticism. The changes in this release address some prior rough edges, add features that are now expected for this class of software, and in general refine the experience of processing your photos without feeling like the software is getting in the way.

Performance and Fixes

In Exposure X3, I was surprised by laggy performance when editing photos, specifically working with the Raw files from my FujiFilm X-T1 and its 16.3MP X-Trans sensor. Using the brush to paint adjustments was like watching a movie with dialogue out of sync: I’d paint an area, wait for the software to apply the effect, paint another area, wait, and so on. The problem wasn’t as pronounced with Canon or Nikon Raw files, though it did show up to a lesser degree on large Sony Raw files.

The improvement between that experience and Exposure X4 is noticeable: the lag is gone

The improvement between that experience and Exposure X4 is noticeable, even with larger Raw files from today’s cameras, including the 26MP FujiFilm X-T3. I’m using the same computer (a 2016 MacBook Pro with 16GB of RAM and the Radeon Pro 460 graphics processor with 4GB memory), and, happily, the lag is gone.

There’s still a pause when opening Raw files or switching zoom levels, as Exposure X4 loads the image data, but even that seems improved with this version. I see the once-ubiquitous “Rendering” badge less often now.

The Shadows control, which was oddly heavy-handed in the previous release, now behaves as you would expect, manipulating just the tones in shadow areas instead of lightening or darkening the entire image.

Unedited (aside from simple Black & White conversation) version at left; shadows adjustment at right.

New Organizing Features

When importing photos from a memory card or camera, Exposure X4 now includes image thumbnails so you can choose which photos to copy - a seemingly essential feature that was missing in previous versions. That fills out the Copy Photos from Card dialog, which also allows you to select multiple cards or directories at the same time, make backups to a separate location during import, and assign metadata to the images.

Preview and select which photos to import.

The new Smart Collections feature displays photos based on criteria you set, such as revealing all photos captured with a 50mm lens rated three stars or higher. As you add photos to your library that match those specifications, they’re automatically added to the smart collection.

The feature does have one limitation I’d like to see fixed. When defining capture time as a criterion, you can enter only specific dates. So, for example, you can define a smart collection that shows all flagged photos captured between May 1 and May 31, but you cannot specify a less-specific range such as “the last 30 days” or “one year ago today.”

The only flaw in smart collections is that date ranges must be defined as specific dates, not general ranges such as "the previous month."

Exposure X4 populates its library by reading folders on disk, as opposed to some applications that move images to a central library, which means it’s always on the lookout for file changes. (Lightroom, by contrast, requires any file management be done within the app, or else it loses track of where photos are stored.) Exposure X4 is quick about updating folders when new images are added to them.

Exposure X4 populates its library by reading folders on disk, as opposed to some applications that move images to a central library

That’s the basis for a new Monitor feature for tethering purposes. Although Exposure X4 doesn’t include a direct camera tethering option, if you have software running that can shuttle image files directly from the camera to a folder on disk, the response is fast enough that photos appear in the library almost instantly. When you instruct the application to monitor a folder, it adds the ability to assign metadata and rename files as they’re ingested.

Monitoring a folder lets you assign metadata and rename files as they arrive via a tethered connection.

I also discovered, by accident, that Exposure X4 does a good job of keeping edits and metadata together with original files if the images are moved on disk. To recap the program’s method of handling this information: edits and metadata are stored in special sidecar files, nested in folders in the same directory as the photos. When I moved some images to a different folder in the Finder on my Mac, Exposure X4 automatically moved the associated sidecar files to the new location.

New Editing Features

The editing improvements bring Exposure X4 in line with modern photo editors. You can apply color lookup tables (LUTs) to affect how colors are translated and to apply distinct looks. The advantage of a LUT, compared to a preset, is that LUTs don’t affect any other editing controls; once a LUT is applied, you can then build adjustments on top. The application includes nearly a dozen sample LUTs, with the ability to import more.

Get different looks by applying LUTs.

Exposure X4’s Overlays panel now includes light effects to superimpose colors, simulated light leaks, sun rays, and others. Now some of those effects can be freely moved, scaled, and rotated. With controls for zoom, opacity, and blend mode, you can make an effect as dramatic or as subtle as you wish.

This is a before/after view of applying an editable light effect.

There’s also a Transform panel that includes controls for stretching, scaling, and rotating the image.

If you still have years of Adobe muscle memory, you’ll quickly realize that Exposure X4 doesn’t share any keyboard shortcuts: pressing G reduces highlights by –5 instead of switching to the Grid view, for example. But now you can remap every shortcut in the preferences if you want to, or just see which keys perform which actions.

The editing improvements bring Exposure X4 in line with modern photo editor

Speaking of Adobe, Alien Skin added a Lightroom migration tool to Exposure X4, but be aware that Lightroom’s adjustments don’t carry over as editable settings. Instead, there’s an option to save edited photos as new files, which you can use as reference if you need to re-edit the original in Exposure. Still, metadata, color labels, and ratings all transfer. That’s not an ideal situation, but one can safely assume that the bulk of your editing going forward will be on new images, not ones in the library.

Odds and Ends

Review similar shots in quad-layout mode.

Some of my favorite features aren’t new, such as the ability for collaborators to edit the same image by storing it (and its associated sidecar file) on a shared local volume or cloud drive, as long as only one person is editing at a time to prevent conflicts. Also helpful are export presets for generating photos formatted for social networks; Exposure X4 now also includes print presets.

One item on my feature wishlist remains unchanged: Raw+JPEG pairs are still treated as separate images. I’ve softened my stance on this over time, as there are situations when you may specifically want a JPEG adjusted in-camera (such as shooting in a black and white simulation) while keeping the original Raw file. However, I’d still like to see options for handling Raw+JPEG pairs get a bit smarter, such as having an option to import only raw files, or to view them as a single shot with the ability to choose which version you wish to edit.

You can remap every shortcut in the preferences if you still have years of Adobe muscle memory

I also ran into a weird problem that ate up several hours of diagnosis. Sometimes, the Folders panel—and therefore, my library—would not appear when I launched Exposure X4. It turns out to be part of a feature, but one which looks like a bug. When the application is opened as a plug-in from within another program, such as Lightroom Classic, the Folders panel and the Crop tool are disabled, because the expectation is that you’re only editing. Opening Exposure from a third-party launch utility, in my case LaunchBar, makes the application think it’s being opened as a plug-in. This situation isn’t triggered when opening Exposure X4 using the macOS Spotlight shortcut (Command-space).


Exposure X4 is a solid update that shores up some areas that needed attention and builds on a photo editor that already stands apart in interesting ways. And most important, Alien Skin improved the performance in areas that make a difference.

Exposure X4 is available as a single purchase, not a subscription

I can’t wrap up this review without noting that Exposure X4 is available as a single purchase, not a subscription, which I think is still a motivating factor among many photographers. It costs $119 for Exposure X4 itself, or is available as a bundle for $149 that includes a couple of other Alien Skin utilities. Upgrade pricing for earlier versions of Exposure is also available, and you can try the software for free during a 30-day trial. It runs on Mac OS X Yosemite or newer and Windows 7 64-bit or newer.

What we like:

  • Improved performance, specifically with Raw files
  • Review photo thumbnails during import from memory cards
  • Import from multiple cards simultaneously
  • Improved shadow and highlight recovery
  • Smart collections
  • Monitored folders improve tethering options
  • LUT support

What we don't:

  • Raw+JPEG pairs still treated as separate images
  • App confusion when opening it from a launcher utility

Who's it for:

Photographers who want sophisticated editing and organization without a subscription or a central-library structure.

Photos: This is what it looks like when farm machinery goes to battle

The Lind Combine Demolition Derby takes place the second weekend of June every year, and draws huge numbers of people to a town with a population of around 550.
Panasonic Lumix S Pro 50mm F1.4 | ISO 100 | F5.6 | 1/100 sec

Lind is one of those western American towns that, unfortunately, a lot of folks have forgotten about. It was never a huge town, but the railroad brought enough hustle and bustle to support people’s jobs and families. But then the completion of Interstate 90 from Seattle to Boston effectively altered the flow of people around Lind instead of through it.

There are still a handful of businesses scraping by - Slim’s Tavern is one, and Jim’s Market is another. Although, given that Slim’s is owned by a man named Skip, it seems unlikely that Jim’s Market is still owned by someone who goes by Jim. Then again, Slim's has literally been around for more than a hundred years, so I guess an eventual change in ownership was inevitable.

Bill, at his home one block off main street in downtown Lind. Bill used to be the announcer for the demolition derby, but health problems have forced him to retire and pass on the torch.
Lumix S 24-105mm F4 | ISO 100 | 1/320 sec | F4

A friend and I went to Lind for the one weekend a year where Slim’s Tavern is packed to the rafters. It's the only weekend where Skip’s grandson comes through not just to visit, but to help out behind the bar, pouring shots of Jaegermeister and Fireball, neither of which is stocked (or needed) for the bar’s regulars the rest of the year. There are only two beers on tap: Budweiser and Bud Light, and they ran out of Bud Light.

The second weekend in June is home to the Lind Combine Demolition Derby. There are pickup truck races too, and there’s a parade, but the main attraction concerns the smashing of ancient combine harvesters. These mechanical steel farm hands belch out black diesel smoke as they slam into each other in the arena to the sounds of cheers and the crushing of beer cans.

The tail-end (pun intended) of the parade.
Lumix S 24-105mm F4 | ISO 100 | 1/1250 sec | F4

So how exactly does a combine demolition derby work? There are several heats taking place over the course of the afternoon starting at 1pm sharp, and if a driver hasn't made contact with another combine in three minutes, he or she is disqualified. The last wreck still moving at the end of each 15-minute heat is the winner, and in-between heats there are intermissions where teams may make some repairs if necessary. Honestly, the full rules are pretty thorough.

And lest anyone worry about the waste involved in smashing up perfectly good equipment - well, it's not exactly perfectly good. The rules require the combines to be quite old, and most people are upgrading to fancier GPS-driven equipment anyway. Will they eventually run out of old combines? Perhaps. But for now, that's a bridge best crossed when it's arrived at.

In any case, my friend and I showed up on the morning before the main event, just catching the tail-end of the parade. The plan? Talk to the locals, soak up the culture, and photograph the crap out of everything. It was a spectacle the likes of which I’ve never seen before, and won’t likely see again (until next year, anyway).

Spectators in the beer garden are kept some distance from the combines, but that doesn't mean you won't get covered in dust.
Lumix S 24-105mm F4 | ISO 100 | 1/400 sec | F4

I used the new Panasonic Lumix DC-S1R. This brief story, and the point of our trip, are about the town and pictures of Lind and not about the gear we used, so I won’t go into too much detail beyond the fact that it was a great camera for this sort of work. In short, it was responsive, sealed against the dust and beer, and gave me tons of resolution and great color out-of-camera.

Some of these images will make a reappearance in our full S1R review, but for now, enjoy the sights of Lind, Washington, during the one weekend where the town’s status rises to that of ‘destination’, the streets are crowded, and late at night, the bar is once again packed.

Spectators exit the stands after most of the combines have died.
Lumix S Pro 50mm F1.4 | ISO 100 | 1/320 sec | F8

All images in this story are processed through Adobe Camera Raw 11, using the 'Camera Standard' color profile.

Sample gallery

Australian Nikon ambassador Dale Sharpe, 36, killed in tragic roadside accident

Dale Sharpe, an Australian storm-chaser, landscape photographer and Nikon Ambassador has passed away after a tragic roadside accident while in the United States.

According to The Wichita Eagle, a local paper in Kansas, Sharpe was killed when he was hit by a vehicle after suffering car problems of his own.

The report says Sharpe was traveling northbound on highway K-2 when his vehicle made contact with a deer and ultimately came to a stop in the southbound lane due to the damage not long after midnight on June 20, 2019, according to the Kansas Highway Patrol crash report.

In an effort to seek safety while making a call for assistance, Sharpe moved to the side of the road. Shortly after, a vehicle traveling southbound attempted to avoid Sharpe's broken-down vehicle when it swerved off the road and into the same ditch Sharpe had attempted to run to for safety. Sharpe was taken to Harper County Community Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 2:14 a.m. local time.

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A post shared by Dale & Karlie | Gold Coast 🇦🇺 (@dkphotographyau) on

The driver of the vehicle who hit Sharpe was unharmed. A Kansas Highway Patrol spokesperson told The Wichita Eagle that the 45-year-old man driving the vehicle was ‘driving in accordance to the law and will not be charged.’

Sharpe, who was 36 years old, is survived by his wife, Karlie Russell, who served as a partner in their photography business, DK Photography, as well as his daughter, Mia.

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A post shared by Dale & Karlie | Gold Coast 🇦🇺 (@dkphotographyau) on

In a statement to DPReview, Nikon Inc. said ‘We are deeply saddened to hear about the loss of Dale Sharpe. He was a talented photographer and a valued member of our community. We extend our heartfelt sympathy to his family, friends and all those that he inspired through his work.’

Two separate GoFundMe campaigns (’Bring Dale Home’ and ‘Memorial Fund for Dale Sharpe DK Photography’) have been set up for the Russell family. Per the DK Photography Facebook post, DPReview did not contact anyone to verify the GoFundMe campaigns out of respect for their privacy.

DPReview TV: Waterproof camera shootout 2019

Summer is here, which means it's time for Chris and Jordan's roundup of new waterproof cameras for 2019: the Olympus Tough TG-6, the Ricoh WG-6, and the Panasonic TS7. Find out which one is right for your next vacation.

Want more information about waterproof cameras? Watch Chris and Jordan's 2018 Waterproof Camera Roundup, which includes several models still on the market, or read our recently updated Waterproof Camera Buying guide.

Get new episodes of DPReview TV every week by subscribing to our YouTube channel!

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

The Hasselblad CFV II 50C is an upgraded version of the original CFV 50C digital back that was launched in 2014. This new model though comes, I assume, with the benefits of the speed improvements in the X1D II 50C that make operation quicker, and that it will provide large JPEGs as well as general improved quality in JPEG files.

The back is exciting in as much as it is designed to work with V-system film camera bodies to bring them into the modern age: even some of the earliest Hasselblad models from the 1950s.

What makes this version much more exciting though is that is also designed to couple with a new 907X body that accepts the X-series lenses – so the CFV II 50C back is a gateway not only to digitizing older classic bodies, but also to using the new X lenses in a smaller, classic-style format. Here the CFV II 50C back is married to the 907X body and mounted with the XCD 65mm F2.8 lens.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

The back is designed very much in the classic Hasselblad style, and the 907X body is made to match. The black textured finish and chrome trim is straight from the first mainstream Hasselblad medium format film bodies.

This side of the 907X body features only the strap lugs, while the CFV II 50C has its USB-C socket disguised as something like a frame counter window on the A12 film back. It is all quite minimalist this side.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

Underneath we have a collection of screw mounts and sockets. On the left are the connections that will allow the 907X to communicate with the optional grip that Hasselblad will introduce with the camera. In videos shown of the system the grip has a shutter release and a collection of control points for directing the operation of the body.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

Below the rear screen is a flap that conceals another series of connection ports. Sockets for microphone, headphone, HDMI, two sizes of flash connections (in and out) and Hasselblad’s ELX socket.

The flash sockets allow short cables to be used to connect wireless triggers and standard PC flash cables. It isn’t certain yet if the HDMI socket will survive into the final production model, I was told, so don’t count on it until the camera comes out.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

The CFV II 50C has a neat flip-out screen that allows viewing from three positions: folded flat to the back and slightly raised are just two of them. The screen has a collection of buttons for controlling the back and camera’s functions, and the buttons come up with the screen when it is angled away from the body.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

Here the screen is flipped up fully. It provides something of the waist-level finder experience of the classic V system bodies. Someone will probably invent a chimney-finder hood before the CFV II 50C even arrives on the market.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

The front of the 907X with the lens removed shows that there’s no body shutter so we see straight through to the sensor of the CFV II 50C. As all Hasselblad lenses use a lens shutter there's no need for one in this little camera.

The body carries the contacts that allow it to communicate with the lens to drive the AF, aperture and shutter commands.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

This new version of the CFV has an internal battery compartment so we no longer have to attach a battery to the outside of the body. The back accepts the same battery that is used in both X1D models. You can see too that there are dual SD card slots: most likely UHS-II, as with the new X1D II 50C.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

To access the battery compartment and the SD card slots, a panel on the side of the CFV II 50C is pulled backwards to reveal the hinge. Once this is done the compartment door springs open. It is a very neat design.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

The CFV II 50C digital back and the 907X camera body clip together in exactly the same way a film back mounts on the back of a V series camera. Guiding prongs at the bottom slide in first and then we just clip the top edges together.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

Away from the CFV II 50C the 907X body is very skinny. It really is more than just a mount adapter though, as it offers controls for the user as well as running functions like AF, aperture etc that you wouldn’t expect to be able to control from a digital back.

The 907X name comes from the SWC 9xx series that saw the 903 and 905 bodies designed to be used with super wide-angle lenses.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

The shutter release button on the 907X is positioned exactly where you would expect it to be on a classic Hasselblad, so that it can be operated with the same hand that cradles the body. Around the shutter release is a dial that can be used to adjust exposure settings.

Next to the dial, on the side of the camera, is a small button that can be used to toggle the dial’s function when the camera is used in manual mode. I guess it will also deal with exposure compensation in the semi-auto modes.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

The CFV II 50C is also fitted with a USB-C socket for tethered shooting and for downloading images from the memory cards. The socket can also be used for charging the battery, though I’m not sure whether it can be used to power the back while it is in use as well.

The CFV II 50C has a whole new row of contacts that the original version didn’t have. These are to allow the back to interface with the 907X.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

In Hasselblad’s publicity the CFV II 50C and 907X set up is shown with an optical viewfinder mounted on the top of the camera section, just as the SWC models had.

I couldn’t see how this could be done on the pre-production example I was using as there is no hot shoe or obvious mounting area. There is chance that Hasselblad name plate will flip up to allow accessories to be mounted. This one though was firmly rooted in place.

Hands-on with the Hasselblad CFV II 50C and 907X

Here’s the CFV II 50C mounted on the back of a Hasselblad 503 CX – a model made between 1989 and 1994. This is a relatively modern model that still fetches just under $2000 with an A12 back and a good 80mm F2.8 standard lens. The CFV II 50C looks completely at home on it, and there is little to tell us that it wasn’t made at the same time as the camera.

Hasselblad bodies don’t have too much trouble holding their value on the second-hand market, but we should expect rising prices over the next few months as interest in these models is peaked and the V-system comes back to life once again.

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