Hello APUG from FILM Ferrania (PART 2)

Discussion in 'Industry News' started by Sean, Sep 18, 2015.

  1. mshchem

    mshchem Member

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    I'm certain that a big part of what Kodak is doing is learning how to make Ektachrome with an entirely different supplier landscape. The chemical, plastics, paint etc. industry has changed dramatically in the last 15 years. Bayer, GE, BASF, ICI, DuPont and a lot of others, have spun off basic chemicals. All the changes mean dealing with qualification of new suppliers, in many cases now, off shore. I have a stash of some Kodak sundries, try to find sodium thiosulfate pentahydrate crystals as pretty and clean as the old Kodak.
    I suspect that the folks in Rochester may have some pretty spectacular new ideas of their own as well.

    I think what Film Ferrania has accomplished is nothing short of a miracle. A steady revenue stream is the greatest factor in surviving to fulfill the dream of motion picture and still film. Hopefully it is a product that has a flavor all it's own. Anything that increases the use of E6 will help insure business for everyone.
    I'm hoping by Christmas I have both Ferrania and Kodak E6 offerings under my tree.
    Best Regards Mike
     
  2. Nzoomed

    Nzoomed Member

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    You are not paying attention to any of the Ferrania videos and kickstarter updates.
    See this here:
    http://www.filmferrania.it/news/2016/ivanos-world

    Ivano is their only person capable who is currently employed that can make the correct sensitizers and chemistry etc.

    He is busy working away at making the components for the colour emulsion.
    Some of these sensitizers take weeks to prepare, and the colour film uses several of them.

    The P30 alpha program is putting the coater through its paces and will show up any faults, which is good because if a colour batch was made there may be lots of flaws that have not come to surface as we have already seen, so getting tons of people shooting the P30 as guinea pigs will only help speed up the testing phase of the coater as any problems will soon be reported and rectified when the colour emulsion is all prepared.


    Im sure Dave Bias will be able to back me up here :smile:
     
  3. Agulliver

    Agulliver Member

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    Yes....this...

    Honestly people, read the updates from Film Ferrania. All the information you need is there. It has all been released before. Ferrania have been very clear about the processes they have to go through in order to end up with a viable E6 film. And they are precisely following their revised plan...the plan put in place after their window of opportunity to make the kickstarter rewards from the old 3M chemicals disappeared.

    I would also hazard a guess that funds are now low, and the sale of P30 Alpha will help fill the coffers to enable them to better progress on the E6 programme.
     
  4. Berri

    Berri Member

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    I am though, the thing is that I am not so optimistic. All I'm saying is that it will take a long time to produce transparency film, more than what they make it sound like.
     
  5. TheToadMen

    TheToadMen Subscriber

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    If .. if Kodak would release a new colour reversal film before Ferrania can start producing & selling, then Ferrania might have a PR problem indeed and loose momentum in the market.
    So it would be nice for Ferrania to be able to announce and sell before Kodak can ....
     
  6. Redfox61

    Redfox61 Subscriber

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    One can fully understand their excitement and optimism. It's great that their morale is high. But they need to be cautious with their predictions. With a project as complex and difficult as this, it's simply sensible practice to make ample allowance for unforeseen setbacks.
     
  7. Redfox61

    Redfox61 Subscriber

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    It will be worse PR if they keep making over-optimistic announcements, create anticipation and then fail to deliver.
     
  8. Agulliver

    Agulliver Member

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    I don't see a PR issue. Remember...ultimately we here at APUG are not the full intended market. The people who Film Ferrania hope will be buying their product mostly don't even know about it yet. We here have been following .

    As far as the wider public goes...there has been no PR. E6 slide film is a niche market and I am sure a lot of potential shooters *are* here on APUG and similar...but not the majority. What they'll see is another option enter the market, and learn the story behind the rebirth of Ferrania anew. No major announcements are going to be made until they're sure their product is good and ready.

    In the meantime we will buy and test Alpha films...as I am sure there will be an Alpha E6 product at some point.

    Remember the saying..."There's many a slip between cup and lip".
     
  9. Richard Eaton

    Richard Eaton Member

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    I wonder what the potential market for E6 films really is ? There's undoubtedly a niche market amoungst the older age group (like myself) who can remember family slide shows and the time when pre-digital colour printing was expensive and time-consuming. But transparencies are no longer the preferred source for magazine and publishing generally, so I can't see much, if any, new demand from professionals. It may be difficult to give new or younger analog users any good reason to take slides as compared with B&W or color negs ? And, finally, the question of ongoing viable and reliable E6 labs ? Not everyone is happy with the idea of home processing, and potentially using what are seen as nasty chemicals in a household environment.

    I know the economic and technical reasons suggested as to why Kodak discontinued Kodachrome, but the fact is that the film was iconic, a name well known to photographers and most other people, readily available in many shops, yet, in the end, the demand was not there. I know that Ferrania are relying on a scaling-down of the level of production, but will the demand be there.....P30 seems to be selling fast, but is this temporary interest from just we enthusiasts who can't resist trying a new film ? Are those of us who have used Ilford (or Kodak, or Fuji) films since the days of the School Camera Club and are used to every querk of these products, going to change suppliers just-for-the-sake-of it ?

    IDK the answers.
     
  10. Brady Eklund

    Brady Eklund Member

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    E6 is valuable for a variety of niches. Color motion-picture film is one of them. Stereo photography on the old stereo slide cameras. Normal 35mm slides. Larger format transparencies. With printing being almost entirely digital these days anyway, there's no disadvantage compared with color negative film(processing availability aside) for normal use and you have the added benefit of the film itself being a finished product so to speak. That collection of niches should be enough to justify someone continuing to produce color slide film, even if demand in all of those areas will ultimately decline. Whether it's enough to support three companies making it is another question.
     
  11. Prof_Pixel

    Prof_Pixel Member

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    An interesting point that I haven't seen others make.
     
  12. Berri

    Berri Member

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    TRue, but sad; printing colour film in the darkroom is fun and easy! And the results ar MUCH better than digital prints!
     
  13. Agulliver

    Agulliver Member

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    If you don't wish to use nasty chemicals in the home.....throw away all your cleaning products and never, ever unblock your drains.

    The folk behind Film Ferrania reckon that the film market has stabilised, and that a smaller manufacturer which is able to be flexible and produce various products in small/medium volumes is in a great place to operate in the current and future market.

    Today, E6 slide film is perhaps more practical than 20 years ago. It's a bit easier/cheaper to home process than C41. Printing is mostly digital these days (I know....I know...) so with reversal film you have the possibility of direct viewing of the positive image, slide projection, scan/print and scan/upload/publish. It's also great for 8 and 16mm motion picture film, and some might still use 35mm motion picture reversal film.

    There's a market, and it is probably no longer shrinking. When the market for E6 film pretty much imploded during the 2000's, large companies weren't really able to quickly downscale...leaving just Fuji eventually. What Kodak can do in it's current guise, and Film Ferrania can do, is profitably make smaller runs of such products.
     
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  15. Nzoomed

    Nzoomed Member

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    Im new to shooting slide film and have never done it to make slides.
    I like looking at the film strips over a light table and it also has a unique feel to the image that ive never had with c41 films.
     
  16. 1L6E6VHF

    1L6E6VHF Member

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    Really, toward the end, Kodachrome products were not readily available, certainly not at local brick-and-mortar stores.

    Remember in that era, Fujifilm and Kodak were bringing new emulsions out almost monthly. Each of these, Reala, Ektachrome Elite 50, Superia 100, Gold Max, Acros, T-Max 3200, Astia, Lumiere.....APS film format....single use cameras...all needed a peg on the pegboard.

    126 size, tungsten-balanced slide film, Panatomic-X, Kodachrome 25 and eventually Kodachrome 64 would lose their space to make way for the youngsters
     
  17. Richard Eaton

    Richard Eaton Member

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    Of course.....and petrol/gasoline isn't all that nice either. However people are familiar with regular "household" chemicals and (hopefully) how to handle them, but what I said was that unfamiliar photographic chemicals might be perceived as something which doesn't belong in a household environment. Not logical, I know, but since when are human beings logical.
     
  18. Richard Eaton

    Richard Eaton Member

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    If I'm correct, all but two of those new emulsions (and a few single-use cameras) have also disappeared through lack of buyers.
     
  19. Berri

    Berri Member

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    I wouldn't store C41 in the cupboard among the other useful kitchen stuff, like acetic acid, sodium hydrogen carbonate, glycerol triesters, or the scariest (2R,3R,4S,5S,6R)-2-[(2S,3S,4S,5R)-3,4-dihydroxy-2,5-bis(hydroxymethyl)oxolan-2-yl]oxy-6-(hydroxymethyl)oxane-3,4,5-triol aka sugar.
     
  20. Redfox61

    Redfox61 Subscriber

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    Very true. But I do believe that Richard Eaton has a point: the general perception of these chemicals is uninformed and biased.
     
  21. Agulliver

    Agulliver Member

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    He's right, if the perception is the thrust of his point. The hazard symbols on photo chemicals are less frightening for the most part than those on your average drain cleaner...but the word "chemical" freaks people out.

    As does the word "nuclear"....again often for totally illogical reasons.
     
  22. Henning Serger

    Henning Serger Member

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    Dear Brady,

    your lab owner is misunderstanding what is normal and standard production method in film production: Film production is not like e.g. car production where each model has its own production line and is produced every day.
    Film production is very different: It is batch production. A (bigger) batch of a certain film (or photopaper) is coated, and the produced master rolls / parent rolls / Jumbo rolls are then cold stored. And from these cold stored rolls in the following weeks / months / years then the film will be converted / finished to 135 / 120 / sheet film. When the stock of cold stored master rolls is depleted, a new batch will be made (emulsion) and coated.
    And the time between new coating runs is quite long. Example: Even at peak film sales in 1999 / 2000 Agfa (Leverkusen, Germany) coated BW film and paper in a 1.5 year schedule. So 18 months between coating runs!
    That was and is just normal business at film manufacturing plants.
    Lots of films (and BW photo papers) we use today are coated in 2 or 3 year schedules. It's just standard current business in the industry.

    I visited the Harman technology / Ilford Photo factory in Mobberley in 2013 (Simon Galley being our tour guide; Simon, you are missed!). At that time only on three days per month the coating machine was operating (and then in a 3-shift 24h mode). The rest of the month: no coating. But of course finishing of products.
    As since then the demand for Ilford film and paper has increased (confirmed by them), they may be running their coating machine perhaps 4 days per month now (but that is a guess).

    And there are no separated "colour negative film lines" and "reversal film lines" and "BW negative film lines": Kodak is coating all its films on one coating machine. The same is valid for Fujifilm. Ilford, Foma, InovisCoat and Adox are even coating film and photopaper on the same machines (Kodak Alaris RA-4 silver halide photo paper is coated by Carestream for Kodak Alaris; Fujifilm has its own separate RA-4 production plant in Tilburg, Netherlands. The annual RA-4 production volume is much bigger than the annual film production volume).

    The higher the demand, the more often coating runs are made. Look at the excellent film documentation about Fujifilm: Their finishing line for Instax is running 24h a day in 3 shifts. To "feed" such a huge production volume you need several big coating runs a year for the colour negative film base used in Instax films.

    Don't worry too much. That is very unlikely, because of several reasons:
    1. Reversal films are not homogeneous products. They are not identical, they have all different characteristics. Fujifilm told me that the production stop of Ektachrome in 2012 has not influenced their sales very much. Surprising? No, because
    - those who used Ektachrome in 2012 were mostly Ektachrome lovers: They have tested Fuji reversal films in the past, but preferred Ektachrome
    - and these real hardcore Ektachrome lovers filled their fridges and freezers with Ektachrome stock for several years and continued using it; that is the majority of the user base
    - those who don't loved Ektachrome so much switched to either negative film, Fuji reversal or digital.

    If now Ektachrome comes back, mostly the former hardcore users will use it again (lots of the fridges are probably now empty :wink: ).
    And certainly also some of the young guys which are now discovering film the first time in their life ("digital natives") will try it (and Fuji and Film Ferrania reversal film, too).
    They are a very important factor in the film-revival.

    2. We see an increasing demand for BW and professional colour film in the main film markets. Why should all these films rises in demand, and only colour reversal film decline in demand? Quite unlikely. The tide raises all boats.
    Especially if we start a good marketing for reversal film again. From my numerous talks with Dave Bias I am convinced Film Ferrania knows the need for that and will do it. And the first activities of Kodak in January concerning Ektachrome let me hope that even Kodak has understood the unique advantages of reversal film and the necessity for a proper marketing of them.

    3. Those who love Provia and the Velvias will continue to use them. Ektachrome or the new FF film are very different and cannot replace the Fujichromes. They are unique.
    I've recently talked to Fujifilm film representatives and they told me that they continue reversal film production.

    There is a really good chance for a sustainable long-term film-revival that also includes a sustainable reversal film revival!
    It is in our hands!!
    Just let's do it!!
    Shoot more reversal film, show your brillant results to other photographers and motivate them to start using it, too.

    Best regards,
    Henning
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2017 at 12:24 PM
  23. Henning Serger

    Henning Serger Member

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    Hello Richard,

    the potential is quite big.
    Because reversal film has lots of advantages and unique characteristics. Have a look here: A 6-page document made by several professional film photographers and photo technology experts listing all unique characteristics, technical and economical advantages as well as emotional characteristics of reversal film:
    https://www.aphog.de/wp-content/downloads/Diapositiv/Ein einzigartiges Bildmedium-das Diapositiv.pdf
    (English translation is in the works).

    I am shooting both colour negative and reversal film for decades (and of course BW negative/reversal and instant film, too). Professionally and for my own pleasure as an enthusiast. And for more than 25 years now I am doing scientific film tests in my own little independent optical test lab.
    Comparing colour reversal and negative film in a neutral side-by-side comparison, there are indeed more advantages for reversal film.

    What is absolutely needed to exploit this big potential is a much better marketing for reversal film.
    But that is also partly in our own hands.
    Just let's do it!

    Best regards,
    Henning
     
  24. flavio81

    flavio81 Member

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    Gold award for Henning Serger! Excellent post!

    Of course, at the prices they charge for their reversal films, it's obvious that they will keep making them as long as there are buyers there...

    (I have a love-hate relationship with Fuji. I love their films, i hate how they raise prices constantly.)
     
  25. Redfox61

    Redfox61 Subscriber

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    I'm sure price is a major deterrent in the wider adoption of slide film, especially among new and younger film users. Those who haven't grown up with slides, don't know what they're missing. With some good marketing, it should be possible to awaken their interest -- but it will be a hard sell if the price remains several times that of colour neg. Not to speak of the cost of processing and the difficulty of finding somewhere to have it processed. These issues will have to be addressed by the Film Ferrania project for their E6 film to have any chance of becoming viable.
     
  26. Henning Serger

    Henning Serger Member

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    Thank you.

    Well, Kodak has done the same (e.g. Kodak colour negative sheet film is now much, much more expensive here in Germany than Fujichrome sheet film). Both had to do it to keep production running. No company can survive by making losses.
    I prefer having the films I like at a bit higher price compared to not having my favourite films at all.

    Best regards,
    Henning