best possible instant film camera to acquire in 2013..

Discussion in 'Instant Cameras, Backs and Film' started by ftngrave, Jan 10, 2013.

  1. ftngrave

    ftngrave Member

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    I've been reading about instant film cameras and wow is it a complicated subject and history.

    there's the discontinued production of polaroid film, apparently fuji has discontinued ?certain or all? instant film, and the impossible project's film seems too rough and unreliable.

    there's the apparent flagship model of polaroid's, the sx-70, where the 680 and 690 seem to be the best. doesn't seem like fuji or kodak ever topped these cameras.

    then there's polaroid backs, which i can find no history of. did polaroid specially make these backs? other companies? are all polaroid backs taken off of previously used polaroid cameras? is there only a certain list of cameras these backs can be put on, or are the possibilities endless? there's holga backs, hasselblad backs, mamiya backs, graflex backs, i think another brand i can't think of at the moment.

    my question is basically the title of this post, but i should clarify a few things. well i basically have three questions.

    1) what is the best camera, or camera with back, ever made that can use instant film in terms of manual features? that is to say, which camera in terms of different shutter speeds, aperture control, manual and/or auto focus, flash, etc.

    2) what is the best instant film ever made in terms of best photo quality/chemical process?

    3) this is my main question, which could vary from the answers to questions 1 and 2. let's say i want to use the best instant film available in 2013 which can be most likely assumed to continue being made. what camera and/or back with what film (that is made in 2013 and will continue being made) would produce the highest quality instant photographs?

    Hopefully there's some polaroid freaks out there. There's a lot of parameters to consider to answer these questions, and I think it would take me hours of research to answer them myself.

    I'm also open to the best possible instant film camera with back that uses the best instant film that is NO LONGER made. that is if it's worth it, to possibly buy the film in bulk from someone who hopefully's kept it in the freezer. that's why i asked question 2 on its own. and even if the answers to these questions would be quite expensive, it'd still be interesting to know if i ever have that kind of money lying around. i can always get the polaroid big shot in the mean time!
     
  2. mhcfires

    mhcfires Subscriber

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    If the film was kept in the freezer it would be ruined. You cannot store Polaroid films in the freezer or you will rupture the pods.
     
  3. Marc B.

    Marc B. Member

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    Fuji still makes (3 X 4), 3.25" X 4.25" pack film (10 shots per pack), in two (2) flavors:
    FP100c, (100 ASA color) and FP3000b, (3200 ASA b&w).
    Still 'produced'...'fresh'...and 'new!' And...at less than one dollar a shot!

    Last year (2011-12), Fuji ended production and/or shipped the last of the 4 X 5 pack film.
    There will possibly be [some] FP10045c and FP300045b on the market, (at a cost), for another year(?).

    The smaller 3 X 4 Fuji pack film fits the Polaroid 405 backs and Fuji PA-145 backs.
    These 3 X 4 film packs also fit Polaroid 100-200-300-and 400 series Polaroid Land cameras.
    Mamiya also made a Press/Universal style camera that was Polaroid branded, the SE-600.

    The Polaroid 405 backs were made for several MF cameras, 4 X 5 cameras, and even some 35mm cameras.
    Both, Fuji PA-145 and Polaroid 405 backs were made for 4 X 5 cameras.

    For the discontinued 4 X 5, [pack film], only backs made to fit 4 X 5 cameras were available.
    Those backs are the Polaroid 550 and Fuji PA-45.

    ***Do not confuse the [single sheet], Polaroid 545/545i film back, for pack film use.***
    ***Polaroid film production ended in 2007-08. The 'freshest,' (now ancient) Polaroid film will be six (6) years old.***
    ***Impossible Project. (No peel-apart pack film). I will let others comment on this product/project.***

    Now that you know what kind of fresh, proven, and quality instant pack film is available today, 'Fuji Pack,'
    and the available backs and cameras that use this pack film, it's up to you to choose which camera(s) to use.

    Marc
     
  4. xya

    xya Member

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    my personal opinion:
    a) mamiya universal / polaroid 600SE, interchangeable lenses, but they are quite heavy.
    b) polaroid 195 /180, depends on what viewer you prefer + close-up and portrait kit.
    polaroid b&w film which gave you a negative. hopefully the 55 project begins commercializing their stuff soon.
    the same cameras, both use fuji fp film.
     
  5. henry finley

    henry finley Member

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    I'd love to get my hands on a brand new roll of film for my Swinger. Just turn it till is says "YES", or pop in an AG-1 bulb, and you're in business.
     
  6. Rice4life

    Rice4life Member

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    Another vote for the 600/600SE, if you can find one. Stunning picture qulatity. Another option is the 180/185/195. Either way expect to pay upwards of $500us.
     
  7. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Aswer to question 2: Polaroid T-52
     
  8. rawhead

    rawhead Subscriber

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    I just listed my Mamiya Universal Press camera with two polaroid backs in the For Sale section if you're interested.

    Answer to Q2 is actually T-55 for 4x5, or 665 for 3x4 :smile:
     
  9. MortyCapp

    MortyCapp Member

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    Polaroid Image/Spectra.
     
  10. Michael W

    Michael W Member

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    Best instant film is Fuji FPC100
    Best camera for that is one that gives maximum image size, which you won't get with medium format polaroid backs.
    I have a Polaroid 110A converted to pack film which has an excellent lens and full exposure control.
    A much cheaper option are the Auto 100 etc models that are auto exposure but were made to take the pack film.
     
  11. filmamigo

    filmamigo Member

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    I get good quality by shooting Fuji packfilm in a Fuji PA145 holder on my Graphic View (4x5) camera. The only trick is needing to mark the ground glass for the smaller-than-4x5 image.