Hasselblad X1D Field Test: Compact medium format powerhouse captures incredible images


posted Friday, August 25, 2017 at 5:06 PM EDT

Click here to read our Hasselblad X1D Field Test


Looking down at the Hasselblad X1D-50C in my hand, I often let myself marvel at the incredible technolgy I was holding. Small, lightweight, and capable of spectacular image capture, the X1D defies conventional thought on what a medium format can be. For years I hefted large, bulky medium format cameras and found them to only be "worth it" when I could use them in set pieces or in a studio. But there I was, miles into the forests in Northern California after hiking into a fern covered canyon, X1D in hand. The Hasselblad X1D-50C is easily one of the highest quality and most impressive cameras from a sensor standpoint that I have ever shot, and it also fits in a small day pack. 

The X1D-50C does some truly magnificent things with greens and reds, and its ISO performance and dynamic range are truly excellent. But that isn't to say it's without its flaws. Though focus was tack sharp and accurate in most cases, it was far slower than I've seen in a digital camera in some time. Though specs will say the camera is capable of up to 2.3 frames per second, it's a little bit closer to one photo ever three to five seconds. That is to say, it's slow to capture an image. It's an exacting camera that demands patience, but when you give it your time the Hasselblad X1D rewards you with some of the best photos I've ever captured. 

Hasselblad 30mm f/3.5 lens (24mm equivalent) at f/3.5, 1/125 sec, ISO 800.
This image has been modified.

There is a lot to unpack and discuss with the X1D, so check out our Hasselblad X1D Field Test to get a handle on what to expect from this tiny medium format powerhouse. 

Hasselblad X1D-50C Field Test