My Journey with the Hasselblad X1D By Ettore Causa

My Journey with the Hasselblad X1D

By Ettore Causa More of his work HEREHis Instagram HERE. 

The Hasselblad X1d. A tool I consider to be a life changing experience.

Traveling with a camera system so small and portable that produce this level of image quality is simply revolutionary.

Time has passed but I am still completely blown away by the results.

The amount of details, the micro-contrast, the natural color transition and the pronounced separation of planes between the subject & background are a big factor, but most of all is the richness and the flexibility of those incredible files, which you appreciate as soon you start editing your images.

The feeling you get holding this camera is absolutely unique: It’s comfortable yet solid, its unintrusive, inspires confidence and it’s truly a beautiful tool to look at.

The body design, the simplicity of the menu system and the overall tactile experience took me to a completely new dimension of capturing photos.

A slow camera that forces me to think, learning to take better images and became a better photographer.

The autofocus is extremely precise, with my previous cameras like the Pentax 645Z and even the Canon 5Dsr, I often got very frustrated when focusing off center. With the X1D, every single frame is track sharp.

The XCD lenses are absolutely stellar, in my opinion the performance of the 30mm and 90mm are on a similar level to what I have experienced owning the Zeiss OTUS lenses that for me are the absolute benchmark of optical quality.

All the images you see in this page are exported straight out of Capture One.

As you know Phase One won’t support Hasselblad raw files, and they intentionally block even the DNGs (a format that C1 officially supports) from any Hasselblad Camera.

There is a little trick which allows to make it work, and despite you don’t get the custom color and lens profile Capture One is famous for, the rendering of the Hasselblad files in Capture One is very similar and in my view as good as what you archive with the Phocus software, plus you get all the other tools and functions which are vastly superior.

Here is how it works:

Convert your raws in to DNGs using Phocus, then use an app like exif editor and remove the letter “d” from the name “Hasselblad”

Voila’ !!

Despite having to go through this extra two steps, I can assure you that it’s totally worth it!

I am so much looking forward to get the new XCD 80mm which I suspect will probably became my favorite lens ever 🙂

then when the X2D will be out and if the rumor are true… I am extremely curious to to see what 100mp + real 16bit Raw can do for me !


  1. In the b&w picture with the trees in the mist, there are many, many glowing pixels. Why is that? Was this a very long exposure? Or is the sensor bad?

  2. Very nice images. I too love the X1D. I’ve had great success doing simple RAW conversion in Phocus and exporting the image in a 16 bit TIFF for post processing in Photoshop. However, the files from this camera seem to need very little post processing.

  3. Well, I think these are quite “eye-blowing”! I think in many ways my favourite is “the hug” – wisps of hair, bitten nails, everything so quietly eloquent. But really I don’t need to choose! I’d appreciate it if you could find time to answer some of the questions people have put, tho’ Steve’s comments are as always relevant.

  4. Good photos, but waytoo much post in some shots. Really nothing extraordinary apart from the shot with the 2 kids.i do not understand why soo many comments go crazy like wow and special. As i said good amateur photos. Maybe they all go over the top because of the camera…. there have been much better pics on this side.

    • Those are really exceptional images!
      So much variety, astonishing quality and great story telling.
      Thanks for sharing.


    • I totally agree. Very bad postproduction, you see the brush in every picture. Astonishing how easy you can impress people with an overdone Lightroom treatment. While being far from extraordinary, the pictures themselves are quite good though.

  5. Ettore, these are the best photographs I have seen for a long time on this site. They even made me post a comment 🙂 You put the camera to great use.

  6. Priced way beyond my wallet!
    The images suffering from “darkness”, no dynamic framing..
    A good photo should be more than technical proficiency.
    The body looks stunning but each new model elsewhere will eclipse it..

    • On my 5K Eizio screen all the images look sublime, both technically and emotionally.

      We have rented the camera several times, i can tell you, it’s an incredible machine for photographers looking for the ultimate IQ.

  7. These pictures are great!! The combination of an excellent professional with the right tool. Another tip for using Hasselblad files in Capture One: I use the tool “CaptureFix Fast Hasselblad” from . Works fine.

  8. I know we’ve heard it hundreds of times that the camera doesn’t matter. To a point this is true, but I think this shows how in the right hands and in the right context, the camera can take an image to the next level. The details you can capture and purity of the image really invites the viewer to get immersed in the scene. Great photos and great camera. There are a lot of real winners here.

  9. Extrordinay images !!!!
    Thank you

    What can you tell me about the IQ difference between the X1D and the Pentax645Z?


  10. The web has so much negative press against this camera, but I like the look of the files more than anything else over and over. The files truly wow me. Thanks for the post.

  11. I think the XD1 (or2) is about the only camera on the market that could wean me off my Leicas. Wonderful photos, thanks for the write up.

  12. Stunning photographs, really impressive!
    Not sure one can get this level of depth and quality from any camera…
    I am totally sold with this camera.


  13. Nice pictures.

    I still don’t like the X1D. Tried it extensively. Frustrated me considerably.

    IMO. New Fuji R is a better all round cam. YMMV.

    • Hmm. I have never had one ounce of frustration with the X1D. Does what I need, when I need it to. Every time. I am not a fan of the Fuji MF cameras, just shows we all have different tastes and likes!

  14. Wow!
    Amazing images, really inspiring !!
    its clear to me that the X1D has something special to offer…
    if I just had the budget 🙁

  15. Incredible pictures – I am sure the camera supported you, but take my old Fm2 and you could create the same impact (even if technically inferior)…

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