Hasselblad HV — Finally a DSLR With Style, Spirit and Soul?

Must confess I like the look of the new Hasselblad HV, a full-frame Sony A99 converted by the Swedes into a stylish, grayish and blackish “DSLR with style, spirit and soul,” as Hasselblad praises its pepped up A99 on luxurious steroids. The camera will be available in an ultra robust, special TTX01 (?!) resin case together with the Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm F2,8 ZA. This lens alone costs $2k. And you get an extra battery.

Meet the Hasselblad HV -- a Sony A99 on luxurious steroids.
Meet the Hasselblad HV — a Sony A99 on luxurious steroids.
This Hasselblad — the venerable camera maker’s first full-frame DSLR — is nothing to be laughed at. Is the company finally getting its act together after the Lunar and Stellar debacles when Japanese Sony cameras met Swedish rebranding extravaganza and Italian baroque design?

To become a member of this exclusive club will certainly cost you slightly more than an arm and a leg — the package is said to set you back $11,500 or €8,500. Finally a camera maker with a fair conversion rate… No doubt the Sony A99 is an amazing camera. Hasselblad makes it even more amazing.

A word about the materials used, certainly the HV’s highlight:

Even though the trend in the camera industry is to manufacture camera bodies in cast magnesium for lightness, the fact is, “old school” aluminium has far more qualities. It is resistant to corrosion, more durable and much tougher than magnesium — especially when machined from a solid block of top quality alloy.

And then PVD — “the best coating available today”:

We certainly don’t intend to bore you with the details of high temperature vacuum evaporation and plasma sputter bombardment processes, but suffice it to say that PVD (Physical Vapour Deposition) is serious cutting edge coating technology. It was originally developed as a specialist hardening treatment for high speed cutting tools but has evolved into an outstanding finishing process solution. Its hardness is second only to that of diamond.

Hasselblad HV
Hasselblad HV
Hasselblad HV
Hasselblad HV

For all the specs and details (about the mostly external amendments) tune in to Hasselblad’s dedicated Hasselblad HV microsite. An 18-page HV brochure can be downloaded here.

Just remember, in essence it’s a Sony.




  • Bengt Nyman

    Hasselblad is fighting for its life. The question is whether these German engineered Sony to Hasselblad re-branding exercises will prolong the life of Hasselblad or kill it.

    This latest Sony to Hassy venture will produce a camera with a modest image quality outperformed by D800E, A7R, D600, RX1, Df, D4 and 7 others. To its present Venture Capital owners Hasselblad is just another burger patty to be seared, flipped and sold for a profit. The question is how long it will be allowed to take up space on the venture grill before it becomes irreversibly overcooked and discarded.

    When this charade is over I hope there is enough life in Hasselblad to let it limp along and find a new path in the service of photography.

    • Noyb

      In the world of venture capital, Hassy could be seared and flipped for a long time. Once the present owners get tired of it they will sell or swap it with another venture capital firm at an outrageous valuation. Post a profit on the sale, the partners take their cut and the “other people’s money” (pension funds, insurance companies, etc) are left holding the bag. Once the second vc company tire’s of it, it will get merged with something else, packaged and traded/sold-off to yet another vc firm. All of them do this to make sure valuations remain high and partners can get their well deserved slice. Eventually the vc firms will lose interest and Hassy will be sugar coated and taken public.

      The moral of the story is, hope your pension/insurance companies do not participate with vc and do not buy the ipo. This is no longer an imaging company, it is simply another means for vc to fatten their partners’ wallets.