THE VERY FIRST 1600F

As a passionate photographer fascinated by bird watching, Victor Hasselblad wanted to create a camera that could capture the beauty of nature and easily fit in his hand – a portable, high-quality piece of technology.

The first Hasselblad 1600F Nr. 0001

In October 1948, he introduced the world to the Hasselblad 1600F, the world’s first single lens reflex camera for medium format. With its sleek, innovative design and modular build, the 1600F was a truly groundbreaking feat of engineering and one of the most influential models in the history of photography. In preserving Victor’s legacy, the Hasselblad Foundation in Gothenburg, Sweden has the very first 1600F (serial number 0001) and its prototype models on display at the Gothenburg Museum of Art. And to further the preservation of this momentous first camera, Hasselblad documented it with the H6D-100c.

The Hasselblad, as it was originally called before the introduction of the 1000F, is a historic example of photographic innovation. Not only was the 1600F smaller and lighter than most models of the time, but it was also a system camera, which meant it boasted a modular design. As the first of its kind, this gave extreme flexibility with interchangeable lenses and the ability to attach a viewfinder. Most importantly, this modularity allowed for removable film magazines; because of this, photographers today can attach a digital back in place of the film magazine and use the camera. It wasn’t until 10 years later that full frame producers adopted this type of modular construction. In addition, the innovatory choice to utilize a Fresnel lens in the focusing screen of the 1600F allowed for a much brighter viewfinder image. Using a focal plane shutter with a top shutter speed of 1/1600 sec, roughly 3000 1600F cameras were made between 1948 and 1952. 

First model of Victor’s “ideal” camera
Made from wood and metal
1943

First model of the 1600F
Made from wood and metal
1945/1946

The original prototypes of the 1600F, made of wood and metal, were constructed in 1943 and 1945/46. Hints from Victor’s work with the HK-7 shined through in the camera’s design, in the form of interchangeable film magazines and lenses as well as its compact build. Sixten Sason, the Swedish product designer behind the designs of previous Saab automobiles, Electrolux vacuums, and airplanes, was part of the 1600F’s prototype design, styling the iconic smooth edges and rounded top of the boxy camera.



With the powerful 100-megapixel CMOS sensor of the Hasselblad H6D-100c, high resolution imagery of the very first Hasselblad 1600F, and in that, the very first SLR medium format camera and its prototypes, is digitally preserved for future generations of camera historians, dedicated Hasselblad users, and photography aficionados the world over. 


Tom Oldham

Unlocking New Lens Opportunities with XH Converter 0,8

As one of the first to try out the new XH Converter 0,8 on the 907X 50C, British photographer Tom Oldham executed a brilliantly dynamic studio session with Greek model and activist Billie Dellios. Allowing H System Lenses to be used on X and 907X cameras with a wider field of view and improved maximum aperture, the XH Converter 0,8 opened Tom’s typical portrait-taking style of shooting on f/11 to a wide f/1,8 to create stunningly bold visuals.

Read more

Isa Leshko

ALLOWED TO GROW OLD: ELDERLY ANIMAL PORTRAITS PRESERVED ON THE 503CW

As a project that started off with confronting her own mortality after caring for her mother suffering from Alzheimer’s, Isa Leshko embarked on a decade-long project photographing elderly farm animals. Creating connections with pigs, cows, turkeys, and sheep, among others, Isa captured the unique personalities of each animal on film through the lens of her Hasselblad 503CW.

Read more

Dino Kužnik

The Solitude of the American West

With an affinity for photographing the American West, Slovenian creative Dino Kužnik embarked on a two-week road trip across Colorado, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico after months of lockdown in his New York home base. Used to shooting on medium format film, Dino opted for digital medium format using the X1D II 50C and XCD 45 and 90 Lenses. Driving through the earthy terrain of the rugged desert landscape, Dino’s images let us travel back in time to an America of yesteryear.

Read more

Anna Devís and Daniel Rueda

Expanding their Visual Universe with the 907X 50C

Drawing inspiration from Hasselblad’s long legacy, creative duo and Hasselblad Ambassadors Anna Devís and Daniel Rueda tried out the new 907X 50C to create imagery that celebrates some of Hasselblad’s most renowned features. Expanding on their own visual universe – including a cloning situation, blending in with a record player, and mapping out their own constellations – each of the photographs give a nod to the camera’s long-lasting build, classic design, and innovation behind the technology that also led to working with NASA.

Read more

Adam Weist

Adventuring Through the Subtropical Rainforests and Active Volcanoes of New Zealand

As the world turned upside down for many in March 2020, Los Angeles-based photographer Adam Weist found himself removed from it all on the other side of the world in the middle of New Zealand’s magical scenery. Shooting with the X1D II 50C in wild conditions ranging from the middle of a downpour in subtropical rainforests to a snowstorm on an active volcano, Adam’s images expose the beauty of the country and transport us to a landscape photographer’s dream.

Read more

Sven Baum

Cinematically Documenting Newborn Life with the XV Adapter

For almost a year, self-taught photojournalist Sven Baum has been documenting the life of his first newborn daughter, Romy. Steering away from posed, stiff baby portraits, Sven uses the X1D, various XCD lenses, and the XV Adapter with Carl Zeiss Planar 80mm and Distagon 50mm lenses and a 21mm extension tube to capture cinematically cut and color graded imagery that tells an honest story about growing.

Read more

Simon Norfolk’s Lost Capital

CAPTURING THE EMPTY STREETS OF LONDON AMIDST A PANDEMIC

Suddenly stripped of its usual hustle and bustle, cars and trucks, and the constant foot traffic of locals and tourists alike, Simon Norfolk unearthed a new side of London with the X1D II. Getting lost in the sharp lines and curves of the buildings that are usually concealed by the city's hyperactivity, all its glorious architecture shone forth like never before.

Read more

Digitally Reproducing Leonardo da Vinci’s Early Works in 3D Interactive Models with the Multi-Shot

Reproducing some of Leonardo da Vinci’s early sketches as digital versions, the Department of Architecture at the University of Bologna used the H6D-400c Multi-Shot in combination with their own developed software to create 3D models of these art pieces that are hundreds of years old.

Read more