Photography is painting with light to give the viewer the illusion of reality

New life for an old friend

Carl Zeiss always took a big risk producing a 500mm lens for Hasselblad as commercial realities simply dictated a cut off point between the ultimate quality and saleability – the lens had to be affordable. So the Carl Zeiss f8/500mm Tele Tessar for Hasselblad always displayed a bit of colour aberration at the edges and a little fall-off in the corners. Nothing drastic and it certainly was a perfectly usable lens and I loved it for landscape photography for more than 30 years. Many ugly reviews have been out there as people picked this lens to pieces and all I could say is that they either would never pay for a ‘perfect’ lens and they also probably never owned one and used it for long enough to be able to really write a detailed review; Be that as it may, I have found the perfect use for this super lens:
Hasselblad Carl Zeiss 8/500mm Tele Tessar on Sony Alpha 7R
Stick it on a Sony Alpha 7R body; Now the Sony Alpha 7R resolves 36.4 megapixels and when you use the Carl Zeiss 8/500 Tele Tessar on it then you are really only using the ‘sweet spot’ of the lens as the coverage circle (being a medium format lens) is much larger than the full-frame sensor the 7R is using. Ergo, no colour aberration and no fall off.
This lens is available on Ebay for somewhere between $700 and $1200 and the adaptor from the 7R’s E-mount to Hasselblad is available from B&H in New York and it’s going to be the best investment you’ll ever make!
Here are some quick test shots for you.



2 Responses to “New life for an old friend”

  1. Simon

    Fascinating overview of an oft overlooked item of quality glass. The idea of combining it with the superb A7 is inspired. A truly stunning combination.


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