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Which Medium Format Mirrorless System Ought to You Select?


For many years, medium format movie was the usual for skilled pictures work, so it’s no marvel that its bigger-than-full-frame decision, shallow depth of area, and magic tonality continues to be wanted by execs and lovers to today.

Beforehand, we explored whether or not mirrorless cameras depreciate quicker than DSLRs, what Leica-M gear sells the quickest, and which Micro 4 Thirds system held up higher over time.

On this article, we’ll examine two main medium format mirrorless techniques.


This story is a part of KEH’s Tilt-Shift Report, the place the corporate shares unique knowledge and distinctive insights into the most recent tendencies in digital camera gear shopping for, buying and selling, and promoting.


The Tilt

For many years, medium format movie was the usual for skilled pictures work, so it’s no marvel that its bigger-than-full-frame decision, shallow depth of area, and magic tonality continues to be wanted by execs and lovers to today.

After all, the trade has largely moved away from movie altogether (we haven’t, although — nonetheless adore it — by no means gonna stop it), and after a decade or so at play within the DSLR house, medium format just lately joined the ranks and took the leap into mirrorless during the last 5 years.

Two manufacturers, specifically, have been on the forefront of the mirrorless medium format race — Fujifilm and Hasselblad. After all, each producers have an extended historical past with the format — from the 500CM to the GF670 — there’s a long time of experience and excellence on each fronts.

Each manufacturers introduced their respective techniques — the Fujifilm GFX and Hasselblad X — in 2016, and have been steadily releasing cameras, lenses, and equipment ever since.

So, which system has confirmed to be a greater funding up to now? Let’s take a fast take a look at our knowledge to shed some mild on the topic.

The Shift

Earlier than we get into it, let me state that this isn’t a comparability of options, ergonomics, or sturdiness. There’s lots written on these topics on the market already, and having shot each these techniques fairly extensively, I can assure that the picture high quality and usefulness for each are glorious.

So, when you’re out there for these kinds of merchandise, there’s actually no incorrect alternative, and I encourage you to strive each out earlier than making the plunge to see which one works greatest for you.

What we’ll be taking a look at right here is the common used purchase and promote costs for these techniques over time to see how they stack up subsequent to one another.

How is this beneficial, you ask? Effectively, it may give you an concept about issues like tendencies in buy worth and resale worth, that are actually good indicators of the general well being and longevity of the techniques. In spite of everything, when you’re going to speculate a superb chunk of change, it’s good to get a way of what the previous, current, and future seem like.

As all the time, the Tilt-Shift Report is constructed upon KEH’s proprietary knowledge on these merchandise. Being that our purchase/promote costs are based mostly on demand and provide inside and outdoors of KEH, the tendencies seen right here mirror what’s happening out there as a complete, whether or not it’s non-public gross sales, public sale websites, or different resellers.

First, let’s take a look at the common physique purchase worth during the last three years.

As you possibly can see, physique costs for each techniques have been declining during the last three years, with Fujifilm seeing a 29% drop and Hasselblad a bigger 47% lower.

General, that is an indicator that it pays to not be an early adopter, at the least in relation to saving some dough on shopping for in. Our bodies all the time take the brunt of depreciation, so no surprises. Having mentioned that, Hasselblad our bodies have seen a much bigger lower in worth over time.

On the opposite facet of issues, let’s take a look at the common physique promote costs over the identical time period.

Right here, the drop is comparable, with Fujifilm dropping by 49% compared to Hasselblad’s 42% drop. So, whereas Hasselblad has seen a much bigger drop in purchase worth, they’ve managed to retain resale worth a bit higher than Fujifilm, at the least in relation to our bodies.

Could possibly be that Fujifilm has merely launched extra our bodies over this span of time, and up to date their product strains extra typically, giving customers extra shopping for decisions and therefore driving down market worth on older merchandise.

Subsequent, let’s take a look at the identical knowledge for lenses. Right here’s the common lens purchase worth.

There’s a bit extra of a pronounced hole in worth between the manufacturers. Fujifilm lenses are typically extra inexpensive than Hasselblad’s, however the pattern strains are reversed so far as worth.

Fujifilm lenses have elevated in worth over time by 19%, whereas Hasselblad lenses have decreased by 13%. That hole could possibly be narrowing for plenty of causes, however I feel it’s principally as a result of totally different methods in filling out their every respective product strains over time.

Let’s see if these tendencies are additionally mirrored within the common promote costs.

To a big extent, they’re related right here as nicely. The typical buyback worth for Fujifilm lenses has elevated by 22% during the last three years, whereas Hasselblad’s has decreased by 23%. This might imply that there’s extra demand for Fujinon lenses, maybe as a result of extra photographers are utilizing the system general.

Our bodies and lenses aren’t the one issues that matter in relation to investing in a system—what about equipment? The fee on issues like batteries, lens hoods, and straps add up rapidly.

Right here’s how they stack up.

Not an enormous change for both model right here. Fujifilm equipment have on common elevated by 5% during the last three years, and Hasselblad have decreased by 3%.

Let’s take a look at the common purchase costs subsequent

Once more, nothing too main right here. Each manufacturers have seen a drop, Fujifilm by 5% and Hasselblad by 11%. General, the distinction doesn’t add as much as a lot, however it’s one thing.

So, general, I’d say that when you’ve been ready to get into mirrorless medium format, proper now is an effective time to be shopping for used, as costs have come down fairly a bit from launch right into a extra palatable vary.

Plus, costs have additionally seemingly stabilized in the intervening time, so there’s most likely not going to be an enormous change over the following few years.

So far as which system appears to be more healthy, I’d say Fujifilm most likely has a slight edge. And judging by the lens purchase/promote costs, it appears to be the system that extra folks have embraced, which is according to gross sales knowledge. However that doesn’t imply that Hasselblad has been slouching, and general, I are likely to favor the dealing with and construct high quality of their X-mount merchandise.

Finally, there’s by no means been a greater time to make the leap into mirrorless medium format. The query is extra alongside the strains of how does it stack up in opposition to very succesful full-frame mirrorless techniques? Is it price making the swap? However these are questions for an additional day.


In regards to the writer: Luca Eandi is a Brooklyn-based avenue photographer, artistic director for KEH Digital camera, and a board-certified human individual. He just lately revealed “Indicators of Japan,” a long-term pictures challenge documenting illustrated Japanese avenue indicators within the Tokyo space. He posts his each day avenue pictures work on his Instagram profile. This text was additionally revealed right here.



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