Montag, 15. Dezember 2008

New products out

Huuh, what a lot of work this was ! Now shortly before Christmas we have some rest and take a look back to this year. We were establishing our relationship to Phase One and I have to say it´s a really good and productive "One". Thank you Espen for your patience with us, we have now delivered the final product and it can be shipped away to Phase customers, we did all this in 8 months from our first meetings until the finished product. We changed nearly anything from the first prototype to now and I think we can be proud on the product - so also thank you Sergeji and your crew in Kiev.
We had a lot of difficulties to solve from the exchange rate crashing down on the Grivna up to Banking problems with Ukraines suffering economy.
But nobody should underestimate the will and improvisation that EX-GUS People are capable of. I think we could all learn a lot here in cosy old western world.
I believe the Ukrainian Economy will come back and be stronger than ever,they still have growth, lets wait where _we_ go next year here in Euro land or US or Japan.
Then we also managed to prerelease our new improved 35mm Models, to the dealers and already tested by some key users, getting nice results and a lot of feedback.
And now we officially launch them to the website and the endusers.
I will do some finetuning to the german and other language sites the next days, so please don´t wonder if there´s content appearing and dissappearing. Tomorrow hopefully i will redo the flyer in german and english, if anybody finds a mistake on the website you´r welcome to send me an email,slowly I´m getting blind on too much detail.
It´s time for a break now.

Yup- a little tired Stefan sends you greetings from Munich
I hope you all have time now to lean back and see wht this year was all about for you, for your families and friends.

Merry Christmas and a happy new Year


Dienstag, 2. Dezember 2008

Full Format is coming heavily!

As I write this the new Nikon D3x has appeared. See here When we were starting the Hartblei Superrotator project over 3 years ago, I knew this would happen. The consequence was logical, the advantages too good to not go there. We have now 4 Over 20MP Bodies available from Canon,Nikon and Sony. We do lenses for all of these mounts and they work very well , especially with high resolution, where many lenses show they simply fail to resolve what these cameras can do.

I have today uploaded some samples of pics I did recently, there is a panorama and a cutout here , I will do some more stuff with the 5D II as soon as I get mine (hopefully soon!) as well as with the new Nikons and the Sony.We are working right now with some pretty good and knowledgeable dealers, in this connection I want to welcome Andreas Tischer from Digitalstore Vienna who will also sell our lenses in Austria.

I have been on the Photoadventure in Vienna a week ago and did like the concept of the fair pretty much, combining outdoor photography and travel with trendsports.
Cool concept and nice people visiting to the booth, learned some new austrian words
(bad lens synonym: "Gösser-lens" - Explanation for the non austrians- Gösser is the biggest brewery in Austria...;-) whereas this was not attached to our lenses but after a look to my samples the customer declared compared to this most others are GL´s.......

Good as always: Austrian cooking, I´m lucky I do not live there, I´d gain 20 kilos in a month I bet.....Vienna what a city.

So this is maybe a perspective, maybe one day I´ll move there, but then I have to diet ;-)

Greetings from Munich


Montag, 17. November 2008

A long summer break...;-)

Welcome back to my blog, which was kindof deserted for some time.Shere lack of resources I´d say and being flooded by work.
Actually I just returned from the Canon Roadshow 2008 running through 8 german cities.
We are launching new products right now- wait a little for the website to catch up (see sentence Uno por favor...;-).
We also launched a new 45mm medium format TS Superrotator for the Phase One sales channel exclusively. There will be more to come from that cooperation, we are now delivering the announced lenses, kinda hercules work for such a small company.

But some thought to existing readers. Hartblei is slowly getting into the knowledge of photographers. They are realizing that their new full format chips will not get them anywhere if there is no decent glass delivering detail.

We are going a long way for that purpose, making no compromise not for quality nor for economy, yes the prices are "substantially" but I think (and a growing number of happy users does the same) there can only be ONE "the best possible Quality".
Maybe we are chasing an ever moving target here, but we get closer.

I also wish we could do this kind of quality for a budget and deliver this to thousends and thousends of Photograpers making them happy. But right now we can´t.

My apologies to them, for the rest who decide to buy us anyhow:

Thank you for your trust and your pictures you take with our lenses.
This is the best reward for us !

Balschoi spassiba


Donnerstag, 24. April 2008

PCP Dealers and Tryouts

After the PCP Tour is over now, my resumee is absolutely positive. We have now got good contact to all the PCP Group Members, won most of them as our dealers and thus enable potential customers to take a look at our lenses and try them out.
This will tell more than words and all demo material made by us, the customers can directly decide if they like it or not, for their kind of work and their needs.

On the tour we got direct contact to many companies who are now aware we are doing our thing, yes we even got an invitation to join the Canon roadshow for autumn 2008.
The cooperation with Apple was a big success, my demos on Aperture and the MacPro with a 30" cinema display were giving many people an idea of what these lenses can do if you connect them to the right workflow.
This was combined with a real content demo tethered shooting with our lenses and immediate manipulation and correction of the resulting files with Aperture, blazingly fast and uncomplicated.

I want to thank all the PCP Members for these shows, their work and engagement and preparation. Special thanks to Melanie Grage from Probis Hamburg who was looking after all and everything at the same time.

There were a lot of real Pro´s attending for the shows, I answered many questions and met some of our new customers, who sometimes took over the demo and enthusiastically told their colleagues about their experiences with their new lenses (Frankfurt...;-)

Again : because I want to say this is only possible with the good work my partner Sergeji is doing in Ukraine - ochin priadna - very much pleased - and balschoi spassiba - many,many thanks. I think we are on the right way !

Greetings from Munich


Mittwoch, 2. April 2008

360 degr. look to Mumbai fair and PCP first impressions

Thanks again Vivek Dev Burman - he has sent me a little present, a 360 degr. panorama of our booth on Mumbai Photofair 2008. you can take a look here :
By the way my Girlfriend was pleased Vivek, no not what you think about, for the Indian dress.....;-)))

I´m writing this in Hamburg evening after the first PCP event in a nice location called "Edelfettwerk" which is a club, event center and disco, kind of stylish, just right for Photographers. Hamburg was rainy outside but inside the People were curious and asking a lot of questions, about our lenses and about aperture. I have a nice 30" Cinema display to showcase my pics with a superfast MacPro with 6 Gigs and quadcores - whew... Again people look to the Hartblei demo pics and are blown away. The new 2.1 Aperture does it´s own to support this, actually I think this is the best demo software available for Photographers to impress a customer.

Tomorrow I will go to Berlin and get close to were the friday show will be. I can walk to there , a little comfort after all this travelling. But one thing about the hotel booking engine - why oh why do they also start to change prices now if you book longer which actually should be cheaper for the Hotel ? This kind of pricing is a result of analysis of the customer who is driven as far as possible and squeezing every single euro out of them, similar to what the gas stations do now , rotating the prices sometimes several changes a day, or flight companies who have minutewise changes for their booking machines on the internet, to prevent customers to get a clear sight on price comparison. My comment: may be this gets you some extra buck for the moment, but this makes me angry and I´ll look elsewhere at the next chance I can, no happinesss factor for the customer, my comment for and Ibishotels : I will not book this again if I have the chance to change !

Greetings from Hamburg


Sonntag, 23. März 2008

Mumbai-India Photofair 2008 + PCP TOUR 2008

It has taken some days for me to settle with all these new impressions. I have seen a country in movement, enthusiasm for photography like 30 years ago in germany on my first photokinas. There are real Pro´s in India and they seem to like our lenses. Most of all they listened very carefully on the cost savings you could expect when using hartblei Lenses compared to a viewcamera/Medium format back setup. For the show I had done a new poster which made a lot of people look closer, shot with a 5D and the 120mm makro, a full Din A1 with real nice sharpness and depth of field.
I had the most warm welcome from Jaswant Vaghela and his Partner Saikat Adhikari, thank you both for your hospitality, this was more than business I think I found some friends there. And special greetings go to Kolkata Photographer and 360 degree specialist Vivek Dev Burman ( . Thanks for all the cold beers and your company I really enjoyed these days in Bombay. There are schools like the Shari Academy, who do a nice work and give birth to a new generation of Indian Photographers. I met so many interesting people, I´m sorry if I do not list all of them here.
Ochin Priadna India - this will not be my last visit - I promise.

PCP Tour 2008 is a big thing in Germany. Many of the largest and most competent Pro Photo dealers arrange for a 7 largest city tour through germany, showcasing the latest and greatest of actual Phototechnology. Hartblei has joined the tour by a cooperation with Apple Germany I will demo our lenses on the newest Apple equipment with Aperture 2.0 - I happen to be Apple ADP for Aperture, so this was an easy match after the idea rose to join our two efforts. I will do the demos in close cooperation with Apple who made it possible for us to get into the show on a very late date with full appearance in advertising and coverage. Thanks to Jeso Olgar and Rebecca Strauss from Apple Germany for this. from 2nd to 17th of April we will tour all over Germany and everybody who wants to see what a Macbook Pro , aperture 2.0 and a Hartblei-Zeiss Superrotator are able to produce is invited to take a look and visit us there.
more infos´s here:

To morrow I will go to Kiev again for a week, our new office has to be equipped, telephone, fax, internet and a serviceline to be set up. thanks for showing in and reading my blog

See ya folks


Donnerstag, 14. Februar 2008

Freelens, India and Aperture 2.0

Yesterday evening I was attending a meeting of german photographers association Freelens in Munich. Besides meeting some interesting guys who told a lot of stories on todays job of a photographer, I had the chance to showcase my lenses and get some reactions. Most were I´d say very positive, only the price of our products is making the people stop buying them immediately. Well - that´s were our dealers come in. You can now rent our lenses at several places in Germany, Austria and Switzerland (more to come soon). So it´s fairly easy to find out if it´s worth owning them or if you only need them once in a while.
Besides that pro talk, it was a nice evening and we discussed a lot of things, about motocycles (did I mention I ride an old BMW ? ;-)))) and funny stories which happen in this crazy job that we all love.
For Photographers interested

Tuesday afternoon 4.00pm was an important date for Aperture users worldwide. Version 2 popped up on Apples website (store first....:-))) and after some quirks with sent out 1.5 activation numbers.... I finally managed to run the new prog.
Huuh - There must be pain now in Kopenhagen, Göteborg, Rochester and Jena. Aperture 2 features the coolest built in tethered shooting mode available for any usual DSLRs. It´s fast, it delivers full control on your camera- the features do match a leaf-capture, capture one or sinar software,if not surpass them (database wise) and the package goes for 199 €......... autsch/gotcha.

An announcement on new Hartblei activities: we will attend the Mumbai 2008 Photofair 13-16.02.08 in India which is the largest Indian show for this fast develloping market. So anybody in asia interested to see us - come there to the booth of Even systems , all info requests about the show and hartblei in India send to Jaswant Vaghela Telefon/Phone +91 22 67103383 Mobile +919867181921.

Greetings from Munich

Samstag, 26. Januar 2008

PMA and confidence for the USA

Well - in my last blog I was quite shocked about the devellopment in the USA regarding the subprime crisis. In the meantime there are also banks concerned about this with losses of billions and billions.

I think this is a chance. We need to remember that value will not appear from out of nowhere, it´s always a result of hard work and spirit. I think there are a lot of photographers in the USA who are among the best in the world, they are working hard and they are demanding to get the best tools they can get to do their daily jobs.

As we think this absolutely right, Hartblei will showcase their lenses on the PMA 2008 in Las Vegas from 31.01. until 02.02.2008. Visit us on the Carl Zeiss Stand in the German Pavillion, LVCC Level 2 , Section 16/S2.

There will be Richard Schleuning from Zeiss USA who will show you the lenses,I say thanks for this and that Zeiss made this possible in such a short time.
I know that they will do a good job and Zeiss has taken a new way of direct customer contact with their own sales channel which I think will be of great value for them.
Stick to your customers wishes and listen, listen a lot......;-)

Hopefully you will like what you see there, if there are any questions left, please contact me by email

Thanks for reading this
and greetings from Munich


Freitag, 11. Januar 2008

Dollar low and exchange rates

Well, I hope you are not personally concerned of the actual subprime US crisis. Today American Express has reported 300 mil $ losses, 2 swiss banks have been hit recently and also today Rolls Royce states, they will lay off workers, because the actual low dollar. We had this before with Airbus industries and german car makers, stating they either need to lay off personal or switch production to happen more in the US.

I understand that large multinational companies have other intentions, also competition and price wars. But to go bankrupt just to deliver to that US market ?

Now also my Ukrainian partners have finally changed their money transfers from $ to €.
We produce and buy parts in Kiev/Ukraine and Munich/Germany. Hartblei will not support the mistakes of the american banks as well as the Bush war policy that sent the dollar down. So this means our prices are in € and due to the actual exchange rates may vary in Dollars.
I know some Americans may not like to read that, but we will not lay off staff although we have enough work, just to keep our products cheaper in the US.
I pay our Zeiss Glass and the elox work in Oberkochen with Euros.
I know that this is a difficult situation also for our potential dealers in the US.
But I think in Your and Our interest, we want to build these lenses with no compromise, as good and as valuable as we can.

Greetings from a winterly and cold Kiev