Kodak GC vs Portra vs Ektar in 35mm

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by Sepia Hawk, May 26, 2014.

  1. Sepia Hawk

    Sepia Hawk Member

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    I've recently shot a few rolls of Kodak GC. It is so cheap on B&H website that I ordered some rolls with my regular B&W film and paper. The results are mixed - I am very happy with some portraits and quite unhappy with some other shots (including portraits). I am shooting mostly outside but sometimes inside, without a flash.
    I'm going to try Ektar and Portra, but in the mean time I would appreciate if those of you who use them could give your opinions. Why do you like them? How are they different from one another?

    Thank you!
     
  2. j-dogg

    j-dogg Subscriber

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    Until I get my E100VS and Kodachrome back, I refuse to shoot color Kodak film.

    I've got almost an entire freezr filled of Tri-X and Tmax though
     
  3. Nuff

    Nuff Member

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    If you shoot portraits, use portra. You don't say what you are unhappy with, so it's hard to recommend anything.
     
  4. nworth

    nworth Subscriber

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    Kodak amateur films, like GC, tend to have somewhat higher saturation than Portra. That can sometimes cause some problems in portraits, although these films are generally excellent. Ektar has somewhat high contrast. If you can control the lighting (perhaps with reflectors) and are careful with exposure, it is an excellent film. (Expose it as if it were a reversal film, like Ektachrome.) Portra is the easiest to use for this kind of work.
     
  5. Sepia Hawk

    Sepia Hawk Member

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    Thank you for your opinions. I think I should reframe my question: How are the three different in practical terms? And why would you prefer one over the other? Let's assume differences in price do not matter.

    I was unhappy with colours on some shots - they were muddy on one film and too green on another.
     
  6. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Like as not, the variable quality you see is a function of the scanning/printing, not of the film itself.

    Although exposure errors might also contribute.

    The Kodak GC will have higher contrast and saturation.

    The Ektar will have higher saturation.

    The Portra will have relatively lower contrast and saturation, and will be strongest with flesh tones.
     
  7. lhalcong

    lhalcong Member

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    The best way you can tell is to try all of them yourself with the same subjects at the same time under the same conditions. Then choose what you like best. in my own opinion; Portra is the best film all around. it scans amazingly very well. It is even excellent for landscape although Ektar is designed for that. I personally did not like GC , particularly for scanning.