The Hasselblad X1D Unboxing and First Look Video!

The Hasselblad X1D Unboxing and First Look Video!

Man, that was fast! The X1d arrived this morning, I filmed an unbox and first look video and then charged the battery, updated the firmware and fired off only five test shots in low light and outside. The video below is the unbox, minutes after it arrived with some thoughts.

What is not in the video are my 1st thoughts of it in operation. But I will go over a few of those things after the video…check it out below:

So if you watched that video you could probably tell I was excited ; ) After charging it up and firing off some test shots to see how fast the AF is indoors and out, to see how the start up time is, and to see if this camera is as awful as a couple of reviewers have said it is, well…with my low expectations I am already blown away.

First of all, the weight with the 45mm lens is amazing. It’s LIGHT, much lighter than the Leica SL with 50 Lux. End of story. It feels featherweight yet with a solid build. The design, well, it’s gorgeous.

Start up is nothing like a pro DSLR or Sony A9. It does take a few seconds to boot up, but I expected this as this is no run and gun machine gun style camera. Its sort of Leica M like in its speed ; ) Which for me, is a positive.

As for Auto Focus? No problem-o. It focused very quickly indoors and out but that is not to say I will not be frustrated with it when I take it out in the real world. I just do not know, as these were five silly tests shots so I could hear that metallic click of the shutter, to see the AF speed and to peruse 50MP of medium format quality.

SO far:


Design: SEXY

Size: Smaller than I thought, much lighter than I thought

AF Speed: Quick, but no Sony A9 or Pro DSLR

Output: WOWZERS in color and smoothness of the tones and detail.

I can’t wait to get out and shoot. When I do, you guys will be the 1st to see the results.  This is the kit I purchased at B&H Photo for anyone who is curious. 


  1. Hi Steve did you get a GPS attachment in the box, not sure if it’s an extra or included. I thought it was included nowadays (recent) if not might be worth calling BH or Hass or it might be a European thing only. I loved that camera when I held one, M3 I loved, SL, M240 etc I liked X1d loved. Been following since the old site can’t wait to follow your journey.

    • It will be shipped. I had fill out an online form for the GPS, and the free $350 bag and extra battery. So they should be shipped within a week or two.

  2. I am so jealous!! Just looked at some images on Flickr (Congo shot with 90mm) and my mind is blown….now, what must I sell and how can I make this a tax write-off…Enjoy mate!!

  3. Congratulations, Steve, on this awesome system purchase!! I hope it meets your expectations, and what I’m most interested in, is how it handles landscapes and/or product photography! As a Fujifilm X-System user (X-Pro2 with some stellar Fujinon optics), I recently created a 9″x36″ custom panorama poster print using a 3-exposure tif totalling 90 MB, and the sharpness/detail is rather nice! So, I’d imagine this would be even more stunning, with careful eposure (tripod-mounted, of course)! Looking forward to your 4-part review!

  4. If I could have any 2 cameras I want, I would go with the Hasselblad for the Joy of shooting & Maximum Image Quality, and with the a9 for versatility. The Leica SL falls in the Middle so if I could only have one I would pick that one.

    • It has always been associated with that due to size, plain and simple. With this camera, one can carry it anywhere, and the AF is quick, and the camera is very useful. Street portraits, one example. Carry it in a small bag for landscape, there are many situations one can use this in. It’s not much larger than a Sony A9. BUT, and this is a big one…in all reality we may not see the difference when used in these scenarios. I go for three things. The usability, or how a camera feels and is it small, light and easy to use? Simplicity in menus? Does it have good AF and low light performance? I also go with design and build..this one is quite special in that area. I also go for “does it motivate me to use it, and does it work for what I use it for”? While things such as street, and on the go shooting one would be better off with maybe a Sony or Fuji or Olympus or Leica. BUT, I have also been enjoying the Leica SL and with that 50 Lux I was getting MF style images. SO I wanted to see if this solution would bring that to me with better color, and better DR in a smaller lighter package. If so, I will be happy. But the reason this camera is so special IMO, is the size and weight. We are no longer constrained to studios to use a camera such as this. At the price, it’s not something I would recommend to anyone really, unless they appreciate the things I do. But I am nuts ; ) I’ve owned more expensive setups in the past, via 35mm full frame. So far this camera is VERY interesting. Different. I’ll know soon if it will be something I love and adore or get frustrated with.

  5. This is a very interesting camera. To me the comparison point is the A7r II. Could you show the size difference, and maybe take a couple of raw files with each so that we can see the difference in DR?

  6. Congratulations! Very curious to see how you like it – might be a great compliment to the M10…thought at first it might make the SL redundant, but that’s a completely different beast…
    Looking forward to your review… I’ve been following your site for over 12 years (incl. your first iweb one) and you’ve prompted my journey from a M8.2 to an ME to MD to SL… and similar to your experiences, I’ve moved between many camera systems but somehow came back to Leica for the build and lens quality. Let’s see how Hasselblad compares… now if they only had a greater lens selection…

    • Wow, thanks for following me all of these years! The SL is a special camera IMO, I still love that thing, though I did have to sell it to help fund this (along with some bags, a few lenses, and other things) but we shall see. Thank you!

      • Uh oh… no SL anymore – don’t tell me you also gave up your M series? That makes this experiment interesting though – Let’s see if you’ll miss the SL once the novelty has worn off on the Hasselblad. I justified the SL in my mind with it being a ‘platform’ camera that can take a lot of my lenses (with adapter).
        Also wondering if 50MP are helpful or be more of a hindrance in terms of filesize, processing speed etc. for the type of shoots you do.
        Anyways – thank you for all your advise and enthusiasm throughout the years…

        • I gave up the M a week after I owned the eyes could not focus the RF accurately anymore. I then went to the SL (again), but had to sell the SL to fund this. After a night of shooting at ISO 25k tonight I am blown away. ISO 25k is like ISO 6400 on my SL in low light conditions. I have never needed speed, which is why I used to shoot with an M. I pace my shots, never use continuous AF or anything but 1FPS. So the Hasselblad is perfect for me. Shooting it tonight, blew me away actually for what it can do handheld in low light.

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