Digital color outlast Analog color?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by chip j, Apr 4, 2014.

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  1. chip j

    chip j Subscriber

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    I'm a firm believer in analog B&W, both for permanence & beauty. But out side of (no-longer-available dye transfer), digital pigment prints are said to last upwards of 300 yrs. Not so for film color, I believe. Any Facts? Thanks, Chip
     
  2. Mike Crawford

    Mike Crawford Member

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    Oh blimey, here we go.......
     
  3. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    THEY WILL BOTH OUTLAST ME.
     
  4. sandholm

    sandholm Subscriber

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    you have to divide it up,

    B/W film, last for a long time
    B/W fiber paper, last long time (depend on process, storage...)
    B/W plastic paper, shorter then the fiber paper
    B/W platinum print, the paper will decompose before the platinum/palladium

    Colour plastic paper, I have prints that start to show heavy colour cast
    Ilfochrome prints, last for a long long time, guess the paper will decompose before the pigments
    pigment prints ... I would guess somewhere between RA4 paper and Ilfochrome
     
  5. Peltigera

    Peltigera Member

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    Why does it need to last? Any picture (paintings as well) needs to be durable enough to be worth having. Our colour family snap-shots from the 60s are still fine but they are kept in a box in the dark - grandchildren will not care if the colour has a cast. Pictures on the wall? I am going to get bored with them inside of 100 years never mind 300 so as long as they last me twenty years or so, I will be happy.
     
  6. AgX

    AgX Member

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    Ilfochrome prints consists of dye- not pigment-images.
     
  7. David Grenet

    David Grenet Member

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    Also, it isn't on paper but on polyester.
     
  8. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    You got that right! Not only my prints but my equipment would out last me too!
     
  9. MDR

    MDR Member

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    They are supposed to last very long there is just no real proof those accelareted aging tests are not really proof of anything. If you want truly permanent color prints use the fresson process, the four color gum, or four color carbon process these have proven to be permanent unlike newer so called archival processes. Also the problem with modern color prints is that they are not washed long enough and the fixer is often not new or hasn't been replenished by the lab. Mini and quick labs are the worst offenders in killing image permanence. So I would say a good pigment based print (inkjet) should keep longer than a machine processed (mini/quicklab) color print. Analogue materials if correctly processed should keep just as long as those inkjets but they rarely are.
     
  10. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    digital images uploaded to the internet are indexed nearly immediately and will last forever.
    physical images ..
    well no one knows, the interweb is the image of the future anyways ..
    tangible, is so old timey ..
     
  11. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    Is it just me or are we getting more of these kinds of threads in the last couple of years? I cannot recall much, if any, of this when I first joined APUG back in 2005.

    We just didn't seem to be so concerned with what the future held for us.

    pentaxuser
     
  12. mr rusty

    mr rusty Member

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    I think it is more a realisation that most images these days are transient and exist for only as long as they are on someones pc, phone or facebook or whatever, and that unless some people take a long view, in 100 years time most of what is shot today will have been lost decades before. In the past, when everything was printed, the question of longevity wasn't really considered, as most people already had access to photos from previous generations, and people just accepted that photos had an almost indefinite life. Now people are thinking about archiving for the future, the issue of "what is the best archival method" is part of this deliberate thought process.
     
  13. AgX

    AgX Member

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    There was indeed Ilfochrome coated on PE-paper base. Though it most likely was not the typical Ilfochrome material one thinks of in hindsight.
     
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  15. bvy

    bvy Subscriber

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    We need a Dead Horse subforum.
     
  16. Ken Nadvornick

    Ken Nadvornick Subscriber

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    Think so?

    Go ask those true believers who converted their life savings into bitcoin. They might have a slightly different take than you on the meaning of "forever".

    And "tangible".

    :sad:

    Ken
     
  17. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    Now you tell me Ken:sad: How expensive will it be to get to the top of the Empire State building?

    pentaxuser

    P.S. I will be with-holding your Wall Street fee before I jump:D
     
  18. Ken Nadvornick

    Ken Nadvornick Subscriber

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    What did the person who jumped off the Empire State Building say to the fellow standing inside the open 50th floor window?

    "So far, so good..."

    :wink:

    Ken
     
  19. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    +1

    Jeff
     
  20. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    As the saying goes, a little bit of knowledge is dangerous - or in this case, misleading. This is a big subject, and not likely to be realistically
    answered generically. People spend entire careers trying to figure out the permanence issue. There are an awful lot of, "it depends".....
    The first thing one needs to learn is the distinction between marketing hype based upon extremely brief "accelerated" fading tests, and a real
    world track record which requires real time. Anyone who goes around predicting how many centuries some media will last is, frankly, a snake
    oil salesman.
     
  21. omaha

    omaha Member

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    I'm quite certain that analog color prints will outlast a dead horse. Digital color? Who knows. Very doubtful.
     
  22. yurisrey

    yurisrey Member

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    it make sense if a photographer's work is worth saving it'll be saved for generation to generation in some fashion or another. For people like myself, I'm happy that my prints survived the moment I turned on the lights after washing.
     
  23. L Gebhardt

    L Gebhardt Subscriber

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    The pigment based inkjet prints should last very well, based on the accelerated aging tests. I've also had some on display for over 10 years in sunny areas with no noticeable fading. So it lasts well enough for my purposes. Same with Fuji's Crystal Archive papers. None of my Kodak Endura paper has shown fading either, but those aren't on display. The upshot of it for me is I don't feel it's worth the effort to worry about it anymore no matter which of the newest materials I use.
     
  24. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    Well yeah, prints digitally made by laser exposure on chromogenic papers have exactly the same characteristics as those optically printed on
    these same papers. So it's a wash. Inkjet is a much more complicated subject because the inks themselves are complex blends of dyes and
    pigment (and not true pigment prints whatsoever), and there are lots of variable regarding choice of papers which are not particularly well
    tested. So time will tell. The industry must be given credit for making permanence a priority and doing tests which might indicate RELATIVE
    superiority of one type of colorant over another. But the mere fact these have to pass thru tiny nozzles inherently limits the choices involved.
    But ten years isn't very long to judge something. Better than nothing, however.
     
  25. chip j

    chip j Subscriber

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    To be considered, artistically & financially, as a FINE ART print!
     
  26. Poisson Du Jour

    Poisson Du Jour Member

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    And now for the next bogey...
    What constitutes a fine art print ? :smile:


    I receive a lot of enquiries and discussion about the relatives merits of high-end art inkjet printing and the many different media offered vs traditional wet-darkroom prints. There are a few landscape photographers here in Australia doing well selling inkjet prints from LF work up to about AUD$750 (unframed).

    There is still some way to go before inkjet printed media reaches the longevity of say, Ilfochrome Classic, despite the two being vastly different media types. Chromera ink lead the way more than a decade ago and is still the standard. Untreated finished prints will degrade over time. Accelerated tests in-lab are not a reliable indicator of real world storage, handling and viewing.

    Stable inkjet dyes used on a variety of grades of art media are recognised as having very long archival life when they are afforded the conservation preservation e.g. framing that many artists/photographers recognise is necessary for this media. Leaving prints lying around to gather dust and airborne pollutants which exist everywhere isn't going to do you or the print any favours. Most of my work is RA-4, but I do regularly have images printed to cotton rag media and these are, as always, conservation framed. RA-4 metallic prints are afforded the same treatment but only for the consistency throughout my work on display, rather than necessity. At this time I see no reason for people to shirk away from inkjet; it is economical for sampling of your work before going to a more expensive media.
     
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