Is Portra 400NC newer tech. film than 160NC + colour neg definitive list

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by sperera, Apr 14, 2010.

  1. sperera

    sperera Member

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    Hi there, been shooting Portra 400NC over 160NC and Im wondering whether the 400NC is newer and improved technology than the Portra 160NC.....not knowing the answer I would say the 400NC is the last Portra colour neg film Kodak have created to date.....why? cos to me it looks like a 100 asa film in terms of grain etc and the palette is superb and dare I say even nicer than 160NC when overexposed to 320 asa.....

    Perhaps this is a good thread to list current colour negative film births and revamps.....
     
  2. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    Well, the Portras (160 and 400) were revamped in late 2006 to version 2. In early 2008, the 400s were revised again, giving us 400NC-3 and 400VC-3. The 160s were not revised at this time. Here's a Kodak document describing the new 400s.

    From what I understand, 800 is on it's 3rd revision, though only two have been labeled (800 and 800-2). 800-2 was supposedly revised at some point, but the label stayed the same.

    So as far as I know, the most recently updated Portras were the 400s. Followed by the 160s, then by 800. As far as generation of tech, it looks like the 400 is out in the lead, with the 800 and 160s on the same level.
     
  3. sperera

    sperera Member

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    just the info i was after....thanks so much....very informative!

    to my eyes Portra 400NC is as fine-grained and slightly diff. palette than Portra 160NC...though i could be wrong of course!!!!


     
  4. sperera

    sperera Member

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    just seen all your tests on Flickr and wanna thank you for taking the time to do it for the people......

    What are your conclusions on the films.....I'm sold on Portra so Im wondering how good the 800 version is too and was wondering what YOU think of the 160 compared to the 400NC's......
     
  5. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    Those were all scanned, so I didn't really discuss them here. But, all of them are pretty consistent in their look. 800 was a bit different, but don't know if that was due to the scanning or the actual film.

    They all handled -1 to +3 exposure pretty well, though proper exposure or +1 looked the best to me. The VCs are a bit more saturated, but they all look good. I'll probably standardize on one of the 400s for my type of shooting, with some 160 thrown in for sunny days. And I like Portra more than Ektar.
     
  6. sperera

    sperera Member

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    Photo Engineer tells me to expose the 160NC at 100 film speed and the 400NC at 320 film speed and those work well for me.....tested the films at said film speeds in these Communion shoots I did for some private clients daughters and son......the girls are with 160Nc and the boy is with 400NC. I purposely sought out high contrast tricky scenes to see how the film handled...wanted to see how blown out it compares with that evil thing digital! hahahha

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  7. kuyman

    kuyman Member

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    Sperera, everything about those snaps you posted reminds me of the reasons I love film. They're beautiful!

    I've always shot 160NC at 100 as well. Even though there's little more than half a stop different, I always felt like that made the skin tones a little better, a little more faithful to the way I always felt my images should look on the film.
     
  8. stevco

    stevco Member

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    Sperera,
    these photographs are brilliant - posing, light, color, bokeh.. everything.
    I'm little curious, did you used external flash?
     
  9. sperera

    sperera Member

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    thanks for the love guys.....
    no flash at all.....on any of them.....hand held metering and reflectors thats it...hence the blown out highlights and no balancing.....purposely done


     
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  10. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    Nice shots.
    Did those shadows go blue/cyan at all?
    Did you do any corrections in the shadows?
     
  11. Joe Dahlgren

    Joe Dahlgren Member

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    Sperera,

    Just beautiful. The second shot just glows.
     
  12. sperera

    sperera Member

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    thanks for the encouragement!!!!

     
  13. sperera

    sperera Member

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    hi there, as you can see the shadows on the girl's white dresses WERE going to blue and cyan..

    actually, the 160NC shows more cyan/blue on the white shadows than the 400NC shots....the 400NC was going towards a green cast on the shadows in question and thus, thinking about it easier to correct that the blue cast on the 160......

    ...talk to me about that guys.....

     
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  14. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

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    I shot a wedding on Fuji 400H last year and in some shots the Bride's dress had a very slight blueness in the shadows. There's a thread about it here somewhere, and the replies I got said that this was a fairly common phenomenon for wedding photographers - apparently the brighteners used to make those dresses so white to our eyes render a slightly blue on film. There were a few other ideas too:

    http://www.apug.org/forums/forum40/68966-ra4-nailing-colour-wedding-dress.html
     
  15. sperera

    sperera Member

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    i notice that the Portra 400H does not yield the blue cast BUT this was a boy's suit as opposed to the girls dress which is exactly like a wedding dress.....interesting....I wonder if anyone else can come in on this......I read the comments on the link thanks a lot!
     
  16. Atavistic

    Atavistic Member

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    sperera: Excellent photos. What program and scanner did you use if you don't mind sharing?
     
  17. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    I read that even if there are no shadows if you pop some fill flash that has non UV correction for the tube the brighteners in the fabric can phosphoresce a bit.

    I should try it because I have some non UV tubes for a Norman 200B.

    Most tubes these days are corrected.
     
  18. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    If you enlarge it enough, you will see that there is a huge difference between 400NC and 160NC. I see it even in 11x14s printed from 4x5 film (about 2.5x linear enlargement). It is plain as day in 16x20s (4x linear enlargement).
     
  19. dynachrome

    dynachrome Member

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    I shot a 36 exp. roll of Portra 800 two weeks ago. It's quite a good film. What worries me is that at $10 a roll it may not be around very much longer. There is a non-pro Fuji 800 film which goes for about $4 a roll. I think the Portra is a little better but it's a lot more expensive.
     
  20. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    Superia 800, the Fuji film you are talking about (my most-used color negative film), is typically only $3 something per roll, and it comes in a pro version in 20-roll Press packages. "Pro" means that the color balance is different than the consumer version, and the emulsions match roll to roll. The consumer version is designed to age into the proper color balance, while the pro version is made right at the proper color balance. I average about one pro pack a month. I really wish this emulsion was available in medium format and 4x5.
     
  21. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    To follow up my post above, I noticed that neither Freestyle nor Samy's list the film online. I went to B&H, and this is what I found: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/search?Ntt=Fuji+superia&N=0&InitialSearch=yes.

    Every Superia film is listed as "DISCONTINUED" except for Superia 400. (36 and 24 exposure rolls remain, as well as an "Evidence Pack" of 20 rolls with 24 exposures per roll.)

    I always get mine over the counter from Samy's or Freestyle, and no one has hipped me to this so far.
     
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