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Hasselblad and Sony partner in interchangeable model

Hasselblad has announced a premium model mirrorless interchangeable camera, the ‘Lunar‘, based on the Sony NEX-7.

The Hasselblad Lunar in brown leather.

The Lunar is set for launch in the first quarter of 2013, and will be priced around 5000 Euros ($6200). It will be available in a choice of standard models, with a selection of exclusive hand grips and precious materials on special order.

Hasselblad showed prototypes and mock-ups of the Lunar on its stand at Photokina last week.

‘ We’ve developed this model in the traditional way, using handmade wooden prototypes to ensure superior ergonomics and functionality. This is a camera for both serious photographers and enthusiasts who aspire to shooting with a Hasselblad,’ said Luca Alessandrini, Hasselblad’s new business development manager.

‘…For the first time ever we are using carbon fibre, titanium, wood, leather and precious metals – including gold. The camera grip itself offers unparalleled ergonomics and has been developed to embrace both compact E-mount and the larger professional A-mount lenses.’

In terms of specifications, the Lunar is a NEX-7, but its retro design and of course, the Hasselblad badge, distinguish it.

Feedback so far has been fairly negative, with Hasselblad coming in for criticism on the price, on the lack of technological developments to take it beyond the Sony NEX-7, on the bulk of the camera body with its elaborate grip, and on the overall design.

Mr Alessandrini responded to the critics in a BJP interview: ‘This [the Lunar] is not a NEX-7 camera, just because we are buying components from Sony,’ he insisted.

He said the Hasselblad-Sony partnership was something more than the ‘rebranding’ arrangement between Leica and Panasonic. He also volunteered that the NEX-based camera was the first of three cameras which will have a similar styling. ‘What we’re doing is designing three cameras – a compact camera, a DSLR and a mirrorless – with the same style’. He said there may be more technological departures from the Sony base camera in future models.

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