New equipment: Hasselblad X2D 100 megapixel camera

Hasselblad introduced its X-series medium format mirrorless cameras in 2016 with the original X1D. It was an original camera with excellent construction and outstanding image quality. The Swedish automaker refined the concept with the X1D II in 2019, but now the line is ready for a complete refresh. The X2D, which Hasselblad just announced, bumps the resolution up to 100 megapixels and adds a custom image stabilization system to help stabilize that big sensor.

Hasselblad X2D sensor

The X2D sports a 100-megapixel sensor. Hasselblad

The $8,200 X2D 100C (which is currently available for pre-order) uses a 100-megapixel back-illuminated sensor that measures 43.8mm x 32.9mm. That makes it larger than a full-frame sensor (which typically measures 36mm x 24mm) and exactly the same size as the chip inside Fujifilm’s GFX cameras. It’s usually what we call “medium format” in the digital world, even though it’s technically smaller than any medium format film frame. Hasselblad claims the X2D’s sensor offers 15 stops of dynamic range (one more than the X1D II that preceded it) with 16-bit color to go along with all those pixels. The body is also surprisingly compact, registering just under two pounds. Let’s break it down:

Auto focus

Hasselblad's new X2D 100C
The X2D is a similar form factor to its predecessor. Hasselblad

In terms of autofocus, the X2D offers 294 independent phase detection areas, which allow you to select and focus on just about any part of the frame. The original X1D only offered contrast-based AF, which lacks both speed and precision compared to the phase detection system introduced by Hasselblad with the X1D II. The X2D should be even faster and more accurate than its predecessor. It still won’t compete with beastly action-oriented cameras like the Nikon Z9 and Sony A1, but it should be plenty fast and accurate for most common shooting scenarios.

Hasselblad has incorporated a brand new image stabilization system into the X2D in an attempt to squeeze the maximum image quality out of it. More pixels can translate to more detail, but they also make image shake more noticeable. The company claims the IS system can provide 5-axis image stabilization for up to seven stops of total shake reduction. This is crucial for a relatively compact camera (at least for a medium format model) meant to be handheld.

Screens and other features

Hasselblad's new X2D 100C
The rear touch screen tilts. Hasselblad

As for the screens, the X2D comes with a 0.5-inch electronic viewfinder with a resolution of 5.76 million dots. It has excellent 1x magnification, so images will appear large and easy to see. The refresh rate tops out at 60fps, which is standard, although it would have been nice to have 120Hz as an option, like in some very high-end mirrorless cameras. The screen on the back of the camera is a 3.6-inch, 2.3-megapixel touchscreen that tilts for taking pictures at odd angles. You can even lay it flat so you can look at the camera like you’re using an old-school Hasselblad with a waist-level viewfinder.

Battery life

Hasselblad's new X2D 100C
The camera is incredibly compact considering the size of its sensor. Hasselblad

The battery is only rated for around 420 shots, but it’s fast-charge tech compatible, meaning it can pick up a charge fairly quickly if you’re in a jam. Still, it’s best to have several batteries on hand when shooting with a mirrorless camera, or any camera for that matter.

Pricing & Availability

The Hasselblad X2D is expected to hit the market in late September 2022. It will retail for $8,200 for the body alone and you can pre-order it now. That’s a considerable jump over the $5,750 price tag attached to the 50-megapixel Hasselblad X1D II. You get a lot more pixels and built-in stabilization to justify that cost. It’s also a lot more than the $5,999 Fujifilm GFX 100S, which also has in-body stabilization. I’ve had limited shooting experience with the Fujifilm, so I’m looking forward to trying the Hasselblad to see how it compares.

New Hasselblad X-series lenses

Hasselblad has also released a trio of new premiums
Hasselblad also offers a trio of new prime numbers. Hasselblad

Along with the new camera body, Hasselblad also introduced three new lenses for the X-series cameras. They will work with any X-series camera, including the weird but wonderful 907x 50C. Here is a preview of the new glass.

XCD 38mm f/2.5

The new wider lens also represents one of the widest options in the X-mount system. It’s obviously longer than the 21mm ultra-wide, but it’s in the same ballpark as the 30mm f/3.5 and it’s considerably faster. It acts like a 30mm lens on a full frame body. It costs $3,699 and is currently available for pre-order.

XCD V 55mm f/2.5

This short standard lens acts like a 43mm lens on a full frame camera. It’s considerably faster than 45mm lenses in the range and a little faster than the 65mm f/2.8. The 55mm f/2.5 costs $3,699 and is also available for pre-order now.

XCD 90mm f/2.5

Even on a medium format body, this lens acts as a short telephoto lens meant for portraits and other similar shooting scenarios. It acts like a 71mm lens on a full frame body. This will likely be very popular with portrait shooters, even with its hefty price tag of $4,299.

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