A magnetic resonance imaging magnet has a solenoidal superconducting winding producing a magnetic field and defining an examination region within a bore thereof. The examination region receives a body to be examined. The solenoidal superconducting winding generates a quasi-static magnetic field for aligning atomic nuclei in the body being examined. A two-fold or minimally symmetric ferromagnetic shield has a pair of magnetic flux return paths positioned on opposite sides of the solenoidal superconducting winding for reducing the magnetic field intensity in a region proximate to and outside of the solenoidal superconducting winding. A magnetic field inhomogeneity compensating system reduces magnetic field inhomogeneities introduced into the magnetic field within the examination region by the minimally symmetric ferromagnetic shield to provide a highly uniform quasi-static magnetic field within the examination region.