110 film - now vs then

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by IloveTLRs, Nov 25, 2007.

  1. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

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    Since picking up my Auto 110 over the summer I've been getting back into 110 film. I read on some website that the emulsions used these days are far better than they were some years ago.

    Maybe I'm being misty-eyed for the past but I remember in the late 90s using Kodak Gold 110 (I think?) and getting results I was quite happy with. I remember getting prints on nice pearl paper with nice, saturated colors. While there was some vignetting I was satisfied. A few weeks back I had a roll of Super G 110 done by Fuji over here and it came out like crap. The negs were okay but the colors were somewhat boring, there were red borders on both sides and grain that would make Tri-X jealous.

    I've resorted to just getting negs done and scanning them. Even after taping them down to the glass and reducing their size, I get maybe a handful of keepers from a 24exp roll, and of course Newton Rings which are hard to avoid.

    Am I seeing the past through rose colored glasses? Was it this bad back then? Is 110 just being left to die in a field somewhere slowly?
     
  2. DarkroomExperimente

    DarkroomExperimente Member

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  3. k_jupiter

    k_jupiter Member

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  4. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

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    That's the website I was talking about. They say that 110 film today is much better than it used to be (under the sample photo.) I'm not entirely convinced though ...

    I have some photos I took with my Auto 110 on my pbase account: http://www.pbase.com/nickinnagoya/pentax_auto_110 Grain abounds though, as I said. I scan at about 4200dpi then reduce the images.

    edit ... and I just bought some more Super G last night. I've been told that Fuji is still making it, and the expiration date on the box says 7.2009. There's plenty of a Kodak Ultra 400 left, too.
     
  5. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

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    110 photography should be as good as you remember it. What has changed is the labs. 110 is so little used, that labs do not have much experience with it.
     
  6. tony lockerbie

    tony lockerbie Subscriber

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    Don't forget the delightful Minolta 110 zoom slr's, both mk1 and mk11!

    Tony
     
  7. srs5694

    srs5694 Member

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    IloveTLRs, you seem to be complaining mostly about grain and film processing issues. Concerning grain, the samples you posted appear much less grainy than the scans I've made of 110 film from the 1970s. I haven't used a 110 camera since then, so I can't compare to film from the 1980s or 1990s. Note that the Web site you referenced also makes comparison to films of the 1970s rather than the 1980s or 1990s. Your photos look about as grainy as I'd expect, based on my experiences with 35mm film. After all, AFAIK the few remaining 110 films use the same emulsions as the like-branded 35mm or larger format films; it's just cut and packaged differently. Therefore, a 110 photo will be grainier than a 35mm photo on the same type of film.

    As a practical matter, you might just have to search for a lab that can do acceptable 110 work. Alternatively, you could try scanning on a non-flatbed scanner to avoid Newton rings or at least rig some sort of negative holder to keep the negative flat and a short distance above the glass of your flatbed scanner.
     
  8. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    A few weeks back I had a roll of Super G 110 done by Fuji over here and it came out like crap. The negs were okay but the colors were somewhat boring, there were red borders on both sides and grain that would make Tri-X jealous.

    What film speed? A couple of weekends I shot a roll of Kodak 100 Ulra in my 1/2 frame Pen F just to see if the shutter was working. 1/2 frame 35mm is somewhat larger than 110, but I found the 4X6 prints to be rather good. I think a 5X7 would be ok, 8X10 maybe? I think 400 would be a strech.
     
  9. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

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    Super G is 100 speed. Kodak Ultra is 400. I just dropped a roll of Kodak off over the weekend .. I'm a little nervous about the results.
     
  10. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    With 100 speed film you should have gotten reasonable 4X6, it may be the processing and printing. In the past I have seen some 110 prints that look soft which I think was do to the cassette warping in the camera just a little, more of an issue with 125 than 110. If 110 does not work for you try 1/2 frame.
     
  11. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

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    Well at any rate, I have to wait until 12/7 to get my negs back. I'm crossing my fingers until then :D

    I thought about doing half-frame, but half-frame cameras over here are mostly junk having not been taken care of properly. The ones that do work are $150 and up :mad:

    Honestly I'm taking a break from 35mm because getting the @#$% film on the @#$% reel has been pissing my off recently.