Film is NOT dead: NEW Film PORTRA 160 Film from KODAK

Discussion in 'Product Availability' started by laser, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. laser

    laser Advertiser Advertiser

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  2. Black Dog

    Black Dog Member

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    that's great news!
     
  3. luca.remotti

    luca.remotti Member

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    True.
    Doing so, Kodak "saves" one production line. One film type for 160, one for 400, cutting away the VC and NC option. Two production lines instead of four.
    L.
     
  4. CGW

    CGW Member

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    I'll take two over NONE any day. Ektar and Portra 160/400 does me fine in 120.
     
  5. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

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    Portra 400 has me convinced away from Fuji, it is amazing. With a new 160.. well, I may go Kodak everything :/
     
  6. laser

    laser Advertiser Advertiser

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    Reducing from 160NC and 160VC to a single PORTRA 160 helps coating a little. Because of the films' design switching from coating PORTRA 160NC to coating 160VC could be done "on the fly". At a predetermined time during coating a changes is made and instead of making 160NC it changes to making 160VC film. This is done with very little lost product.

    The real savings is in finishing/packaging and stocking the film by Kodak and the dealers. With smaller volumes it is expensive for both KODAK and dealers to stock smaller runners.

    As was pointed out in one posting having one film (that is improved over the old one) is far better than none.


    Keep buying your favorite films and it is likely that manufacturers will continue to make the products. If there is little demand (i.e. Kodachrome) the films may vanish. Most companies would have discontinued KODACHROME many years ago. EK didn't want to discontinue the film; the bleeding just became too bad.


    Bob



    The grain improvement is impressive.

    Ag4ever or at least for now.
     
  7. hpulley

    hpulley Member

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    Still a bit odd. It would have been cheaper to simply continue to make 160NC and drop 160VC. Creating a new film, even tweaking an existing one takes some money. Good to see they're still spending some money on film R&D. Hopefully it will continue.
     
  8. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    Bob - thanks for that tidbit about switching on the fly between NC and VC. Interesting. Loved your book by the way!

    I can only hope that Portra 800 gets a makeover too.
     
  9. TSSPro

    TSSPro Member

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    Any project date when it will hit the market- I have a freezer full of 160S, but I want to stock up on the new portra stock when I get the opportunity.
     
  10. hrst

    hrst Member

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    That's a sign they still have some money :smile:.

    You see, the fact that they can market a new product instead of just cutting down products, will cause people to buy more of this new product, and additionally, to trust the future of the company more than if they just cut out some stuff. This will probably make more money than they have "lost" in the R&D of the new product, at least in the long run. And, it's a very good sign that they still can consider the long run.

    For these reasons, and also for the simple reason that we have an even better film now, I'm don't feel gloomy at all. Quite the opposite.

    And yes, Bob, your book rocks! It's a very good book to carry around and show to friends, because of the direct message the pictures give.
     
  11. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    The Kodak site says:
    and:
     
  12. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

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    Oh, well if you push process the new Portra 400, it handles extremely well.. and I mean a proper push process.. an 800 version of that would be even better
     
  13. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    That's great to hear, at least it is not all doom and gloom.

    Jeff
     
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  15. WRSchmalfuss

    WRSchmalfuss Member

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    PORTRA 160 220 roll film

    Good news, now I can use the 220 film insert again for my Contax 645 AF.

    Even better would it be, to get an 220 B&W roll film with 400 ISO again!
     
  16. bestbefore1978

    bestbefore1978 Member

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    Great news, I think I'm now going to settle wholesale on Kodak for everything colour (and 50% black and white)
    Portra 160 / 400 for portraits or flash
    Ektar 100 for landscape (replacing Provia 100F, which is superb but virtually impossible to scan if exposure isn't within 1/3 stop of optimum)
    Tri-X for virtually all Black & White (apart from experimentation with the Adox and Rollei films for interesting effect)
     
  17. Mackinaw

    Mackinaw Member

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    If I recall correctly back when the new Portra 400 was introduced, PE mentioned that the film had a lot in common with Kodak's movie film which greatly simplified Kodak's film production. I suspect that's also the case here with this new 160 film.

    Jim B.
     
  18. bblhed

    bblhed Member

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    Where is the love for Portra 800?

    Lots of talk about Portra 160 and 400, Even Ektar, but Portra 800 is still being made also.

    Has anyone even used Portra 800? Someone must because they are still making it but I would like to know what it's like as I have never used it myself.
     
  19. bestbefore1978

    bestbefore1978 Member

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    I've used it once or twice in medium format, for the indoors shots at a wedding. It was remarkably fine grain for 800 speed, but I did have trouble with colour correction in the highlights (mixed tungsten/daylight inside the church).
    Some other shots, sunny conditions in daylight again gave relatively low grain, and good colour rendition, possibly a good film for handheld colour street photography?
     
  20. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    I use Portra 800. I like it quite a bit. Grainier than the 400 varieties obviously. It works well for me in tungsten lighting though seems to be really sensitive to the green from fluorescents. What's odd about the green though is that it's not a sickly green but a really rich green. As a result, it's been pretty easy for me to correct out (digitally). I also find it to have a bit of a different color balance than the other Portra's and to be more saturated than it is stated to be. Again, I'm scanning, so take it with a grain of salt.

    Here's a couple shots from the most recent version (800-3). If you right click on the photo and select original, you can see them at the full scan size - some are up to 4k x 6k. Portra 800-3 samples
     
  21. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

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    You tried the Fuji stuff for fluro?

    And apparently Portra 400 pushes for better results than 800. I need to give that a go..
     
  22. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    I have tried Fuji a little bit, but it's kind of a moot point now that 800Z is gone. It is quite impressive how their film handles mixed lighting. By mixed, I mean mixed fluoro + tungsten, or fluoro + daylight. Kodak films handle mixed tungsten + daylight, or straight tungsten and straight fluoro very well in my experience.

    My comments on the fluoros though was made with respect to the differences in the 400 and 800 Portras. I have some shots made in the same conditions where the 800 shows the green and the 400 doesn't. I just made two test shots on each film this week to test this explicitly, but haven't gotten them developed yet.

    I don't think that Portra 400 pushed is better than 800. I could see where some people might think that, but they probably think that Tri-X at 1600 is better than TMZ at 1600. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but I'm willing to have more grain for an extra stop of real speed.

    In my testing, the new Portra 400 handles underexposure pretty much the same as 400NC, maybe a hair better. I have not yet tried a true push with it though, but I would think pushability is related to underexposure latitude...
     
  23. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    It is wonderful news. Still have some 160NC to use up, but when that's gone I know where I'm going.

    I really love Kodak films.

    - Thomas
     
  24. laser

    laser Advertiser Advertiser

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    There may be a bit of culture in play here.

    The film R&D and manufacturing people have spent their careers trying to make better films. If there is the opportunity to make an improvement they take the opportunity.



    Will there be additional improvements? Wait and see.

    www.makingkodakfilm.com
     
  25. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

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    Just going off what I've heard, the real speed of it is supposed to be better than the old stuff.

    I see plenty of 800Z around, but I import, even some of the local shops have it (but $$$)
     
  26. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    Yeah I've read the stuff on the internet about the new 400 stuff. I'll leave it at this: I think the new Portra 400 is a fantastic film and represents an improvement over 400NC, which was my most used color film. I'm very happy with the new stuff. At the same time, I feel like it's an incremental improvement, not a 'game changer' or revolutionary improvement like some people are making it out to be.

    Here's a shot of the new Portra 400, 2 stops underexposed in tungsten lighting:

    [​IMG]
    Portra 400 Tungsten -2 by ezwal, on Flickr

    Here's a shot of 400NC, 2 stops underexposed, in tungsten lighting:
    [​IMG]
    400NC Tungsten -2 by ezwal, on Flickr

    While the Portra 400 looks a bit better in my mind, it's not much and it could be potentially due to differences in the scanning/post processing. (I didn't scan these and there was some inconsistency in the files from operator laziness). So, it's a great film, but it's definitely more like 400NC than it is different in my mind.