Differences in film quality?

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by Petej, Apr 23, 2011.

  1. Petej

    Petej Member

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    Yes, I went there.... :laugh:

    What do you guys use for the shots you get and where do you get it?

    I've been using Grocery store bought Fuji film for my testing and dial in, but I want some better quality media for after I'm done learning the camera.

    I've used Kodachrome in the past.....
     
  2. Klainmeister

    Klainmeister Member

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    You use the film for your purposes. I'm sure, depending on your intent, Western Family branded film would do just as well as a $8 roll of Vevlia or something. It's all about using the right tool for the job, not about one being better than the other.
     
  3. Ottrdaemmerung

    Ottrdaemmerung Member

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    It all depends on what you'll be shooting and whether you want color or B&W. Is the color film you bought Fuji Superia? If so, it's an outstanding film for the price. For a truly "pro" film, Kodak Portra (especially the new Portra) is getting raves.
     
  4. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    Kodak, Fuji, and Ilford are the "big three" that remain. I've never had a quality issue with anything from one of these companies. Rollei also sells pretty technically sound film based on the fact that I have only had one issue, and it was an assembly issue, not a problem with the base or the emulsion. I had several rolls of 120 in which the film was taped in the wrong place on the paper, resulting in my shooting on to the backing paper for about one frame. Other films worked correctly in the same film back, and I got the rolls replaced by Freestyle. I'm not really sure about Foma. Efke/Adox are not up to par with the big three in terms of quality control IME.
     
  5. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    grocery store, drug store, ebay and from people here
    some fresh but mostly expired, i haven't noticed a difference.
     
  6. Petej

    Petej Member

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    Generic Fujifilm. 200 ISO. I'll probably save the good stuff for when I'm filming friends babies or weddings.

    I'm desperate to see how these come out, but I'm gonna wait until I'm established in Bellingham first before I get them developed.

    Now the next question, any one place better than another for developing than another?

    One day I'd like my own dark room, but that's not gonna happen for awhile.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 23, 2011
  7. markbarendt

    markbarendt Subscriber

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    As long as the film is fairly fresh and have a Kodak or Fuji lable I doubt you will have any issue with the film.

    The lab is a different issue.

    For paying work I like Richard Photo lab in LA.

    Regardless of who processes for you the single most important thing you need to establish with a lab is good communication.
     
  8. Petej

    Petej Member

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    Guess I'm not using Wal-mart then! :laugh:

    My local downtown shop/lab here isn't here anymore, so I'll have to I'll have to find I lab I like in Bellingham.
     
  9. Wolfeye

    Wolfeye Subscriber

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    Why do you think your Fuji 200 wouldn't be perfectly fine for weddings and babies?
     
  10. Petej

    Petej Member

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    I dunno why it wouldn't be, just personal preference, I guess?

    I was gonna see about the differences between the films. Run a roll of each thru at the same event.
     
  11. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    I always figured we get what we pay for. I use so little color film that I don't really know the difference between them all. But Kodak's Portra 400 line of films have always served me well. They are a bit more expensive, but the results are amazing. Sharp, beautiful colors, and surprisingly fine grain for ISO 400 film.

    In black and white I always use just three films: Fuji Acros, Kodak Tmax 400, and Ilford Delta 3200. TMax 400 gets 80% of the attention, Acros is a current 'fling' of mine that I use for 35mm landscape and pinhole work, and Delta 3200 is for a specific project.

    I'm prepared to pay a bit more for my film, shoot more carefully, and always have great results.

    But there is absolutely nothing wrong with using Fuji Superia, or Kodak Gold for serious work too. If you know where to get it guaranteed fresh. Past expiration date, I notice color films sometimes get coarser grain, and the colors can get strange tints.

    - Thomas
     
  12. Petej

    Petej Member

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    Hmmm..... I'll have to keep that in mind. All I can seem to find over here is Fuji, which has worked well in the past. When I was taking my high school photography class (almost 20 years ago) we used Kodak, which became my preference.....

    Freshness seems to be the key more than brand at this point.

    Makes me wonder about the yet undeveloped four rolls that I have in storage....they're all a few years old.... :blink: I discovered them in a box that I had stored. If they develop, they develop..... I'm hoping because they were stored in a cool, dark place that they come out fine...
     
  13. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    Fuji Superia is good stuff. I would not feel leery of it in any way. What I would feel leery of is "no name" or "house brand" film. You might get some good stuff one time and some not so good stuff another time. Consistency goes a long way, especially for project- or series-oriented pix. You want the same product every time, and you want it to be of similar age. I've probably shot more Superia than any other color negative film (almost all 800 speed), but I got it in emulsion-matching press packages from pro photography shops, which took care of it and kept it together with film of similar age.
     
  14. Petej

    Petej Member

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    What I find here is 200 speed for the most part. That seems to be universal for most projects....

    I want to find a place where can buy rolls in bulk, besides Costco (no card)....

    I wonder if the box of four rolls I picked up are emulsion matched? How would I know?
     
  15. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    Hi,

    The film should have an emulsion number on it. Similar storage conditions are also important. Film with matching emulsion numbers from two difference places may be slightly different.

    The best way to make sure everything is consistent is to buy in batches from a pro photo store. Try Freestyle, B&H, or Ultrafine. Many of the Superia products appear to be gone, so Ultrafine, which buys and cold stores trucks of film to be sold later, may be your best bet for getting Superia Press packs.
     
  16. Petej

    Petej Member

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    Awesome. thank you! I'm gonna do some research on Film shops in Bellingham. It's a college town, so artists of all sorts abound. :smile:

    My local store (now, sadly, gone) used to keep film in a refrigerator. Which at the time I thought was odd. Now I am beginning to understand why. (Quality control)

    I usually only bought a roll or two at the time, so I never thought about asking for pro quality and bought off the counter stock... Now I'm thinking differently.....