Kipon, a Chinese manufacturer of lens adapters, is making some waves with its new line of Baveyes Hasselblad-to-Sony E focal reducing adapters. What’s notable about these adapters is that they will allow Sony A7-series camera owners to effectively shoot medium-format images with their 35mm full-frame mirrorless cameras.
Focal reducing adapters like the Metabones Speedbooster line have been around for some time, but in all cases, they have been made to adapt standard 35mm lenses to smaller APS-C or Micro Four Thirds sensor cameras. This is the first instance that we know of in which the adapters have been used to adapt lenses designed for medium-format to a full-frame camera.
“Hasselblad lenses by Carl Zeiss are legendary for contrast, flare resistance, color saturation, bokeh, and are in a class of their own compared to even the best 35mm format glass,” Kipon states in a press release. “Sony and Leica image sensors, in the heart of their robust camera bodies, give new life to the Hasselblad/Zeiss heritage.”
These adapters look and work like any other adapter: On one end you have the Sony E-mount, and on the other you have the (in this case) Hasselblad V-mount. The magic happens in between, where a specially designed lens/optical element focuses the medium-format image and squeezes it down to fit a full-frame sensor.
Sony’s A7R II camera features a high resolution 42-megapixel sensor, and many modern medium-format sensors are in the 50-megapixel range. So while there is still some benefit in terms of resolution for shooting a true medium-format camera, a Sony A7R II could get very close in terms of look and resolution.
A concern with lens adapters that add optical elements is always if they degrade the image quality of a lens/camera combination at all. Kipon claims the image quality remains excellent, but the jury will have to remain out until some reviews on these adapters are published.
The new adapters from Kipon will also be available for Leica SL and M-mount cameras. No pricing or availability was included with the announcement.