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Hasselblad Medium Format Film Back and Holder

Common Questions When Choosing a Film Back and Holder

For over 150 years, the Hasselblad company has manufactured cameras and photographic equipment, including products used in the first moon landing. You can purchase their traditional, medium format cameras and film holders in a variety of styles, sizes, and specifications. If you are looking for a film camera in the medium format range or an accompanying film holder, understanding the types, sizes, and possible features available may help you find the model that is right for you.

What is a medium format camera?

A film camera that is medium in format refers to a specific type of photographic equipment and the stills it can produce. For a camera to be considered medium-format, it will usually meet the following specifications:

  • The camera will produce imagery that is larger than 24 millimeters by 36 millimeters.
  • It will produce film that is smaller than 4 inches by 5 inches.
  • Many cameras that work with medium film are manufactured in 6-centimeter 120 and 220 industry sizes.
  • Film that is larger than 4 inches by 5 inches is considered large-format photography
Are there different types of film holders?

A holder is a photographic device that keeps photo negatives ready for insertion into the unit of your choice. Although medium-format photography is already itself a type, you may wish to use a particular type of film holder with your photography equipment. Some of the most common types of film holders include items such as:

  • Sheet film or dark slide holders are one of the more common varieties of this product. They are flat and slightly larger than the imagery they hold.
  • Film backs Usually hold sheets that are adapted for photographic rolls and their associated devices. You may find some that are interchangeable to accommodate multiple photograph sizes.
  • SLR holders use a lens that has single-reflex properties. A single-reflex lens uses a mirror and a prism to show you a precise image in your viewfinder.
How do you load a medium-format photographic back?

The specific process for loading photographic slides into your SLR holder will depend on the specific model you wish to use. However, many of the companies backs and holders accept sheets in similar ways. Therefore, you can use the basic steps below as a general guide when you are ready to load your device:

  • Thread the film onto the spool inside the device. A dotted line on the protective paper should line up with the center of the spool.
  • Set the window of the exposure counter to 1.
  • Look through the viewfinder or lens in order to locate your subject and expose 12 frames.
  • Reset the counter and expose another 12 frames.
What photographic equipment sizes use these backs?

Backing devices for medium-format photography may be compatible with several sizes of photographic equipment or tools. However, some of the most common sizes are:

  • 6 centimeters by 4.5 centimeters.
  • 6 centimeters by 6 centimeters.
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