Looking for options in the aftermath of the demise of Kodak Supra Endura....

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by frotog, Oct 20, 2009.

  1. frotog

    frotog Member

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    I suppose I should have seen it coming but nonetheless, losing Supra Endura is devastating news. A large portion of my income is in printing for other photographers - about half b/w and half color. All of my color clients prefer Supra Endura. I only use Ultra on that rare occasion when a neg. is grossly underexposed. Now that it's gone, what's left? Looking at the fuji website it shows crystal archive professional paper super type C to be available in rolls of numerous widths from 4" to 60". No mention of sheet size availability. Am I right in thinking that all that's left for the optical user is Kodak ultra in sheets and rolls and fuji ca type C in rolls? (Mr. Carnie, hoping you'll chime in here)...
     
  2. Ben 4

    Ben 4 Member

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    Ultra in Sheets?

    I've been a happy Supra Endura user for the past year and a half (the length of time I've been printing color), so this is unhappy news. I'm not sure there is any readily available Kodak alternative.

    Is Ultra available in sheet sizes in the U.S.? Where? All I've seen in the past at the usual places (B&H, Calumet, Freestyle) is Supra.

    --Ben
     
  3. smieglitz

    smieglitz Member

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    Yikes! I was not aware of the discontinuance until this thread. This is not good news regarding optical printing. From Kodak tech publication E-4021:

    Product Discontinuance
    KODAK PROFESSIONAL SUPRA ENDURA Paper will be
    discontinued by year end 2009 or when stock is depleted. KODAK
    PROFESSIONAL SUPRA ENDURA VC Digital Paper is the
    alternative replacement. KODAK PROFESSIONAL PORTRA
    ENDURA Paper was discontinued in late 2006.​



    The following is from the Kodak product information webpage on the replacement paper (Also in Kodak tech publication E-4042):


    SUPRA ENDURA VC Digital Paper:

    What are the key features of KODAK PROFESSIONAL SUPRA ENDURA VC Digital Paper?

    * Designed for pro labs using both internal and external color-managed digital exposure systems

    Can I use SUPRA ENDURA VC Digital Paper for optical printing?
    Yes. When exposed optically the image will be high in contrast. If balanced on flesh tones, the neutrals will appear cyan.

    What sizes and surfaces are offered?
    SUPRA ENDURA VC Digital Paper is available in a variety of roll sizes in E (lustre), F (glossy), N (matt) and Y (silk) surfaces. Availability of specific size and surface combinations varies by region. Contact your paper supplier for availability.

    Sheet format is not available.​

    Joe
     
  4. frotog

    frotog Member

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    Just got off the phone with Peter at Kodak Professional (1-800-242-2424 ext. 19). He confirmed that Supra Endura in all sizes, sheets and rolls, is currently scheduled to "transition" to the new digital stuff. I also got him to admit that kodak's use of the word "transition" is a euphemism for "phase-out" (does this ring a bell? Remember all the folks here who were in denial when Portra was in the dark limbo of "transition"?). I mentioned that many fine art photographers are dependent on this paper. Two friends of mine have shows up right now in prominent nyc galleries and they are currently unable to print the remainder of their editions. Equally effected will be the teachers and students (of which there are many) who use these materials in college color photography courses. Peter was sympathetic. Told me that each call he gets regarding this has an impact on executive decision making. So, in the interest of keeping the last full gamut, normal contrast paper alive call the number above or email....kprotraditional@kodak.com. Perhaps it's a bit quixotic of me but please, act now...I don't think it's an overstatement to say that Supra Endura is as integral a part of the traditionalist's craft as is Tri-x!
     
  5. frotog

    frotog Member

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    Oh yeah, Ultra is no longer available in sheets... If Kodak can only produce in rolls that's no problem as I can set up a repackaging service for sheets. Would not consider this for Ultra but definitely for Supra..
     
  6. RellikJM

    RellikJM Member

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    What would your cost be on a box of 100 8x10's ?

    Otherwise I wouldn't start a repackaging business. I started a thread asking if people were interested and I've had no replies so I'm guessing that everyone has already figured out a contingency plan when sheet paper is no longer available.
     
  7. frotog

    frotog Member

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    My guess is that people do not have a contingency plan and no one is really thinking that way as long as it's still out there. Just wait until it is gone completely. As for cutting and repackaging...although I have a meteor-seigen automatic roll paper cutter I would never undertake this task myself. Instead I'd have a friend who runs a photographic material handling co. set this up with Kodak or with pre-orders placed on a website devoted to this purpose. I'm not interested in making money off of this, just wanting to facilitate the consumption of the paper so that if Kodak changes their mind the marketplace will be fluid and less likely to dry up.
     
  8. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    I was thinking about getting into color printing too. Damn. I guess that not enough people used enough of it in sheet form?
     
  9. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    We all need to go crazy with calls, e-mails and letters to Kodak to show them that there is still a market for it. Unlike Kodachrome, it's not like there is only one place in the world to offer it so maybe there is some hope. They listened with the Ekar 100 in 120.....This is great stuff. I have had quite a bit printed on it for me.
     
  10. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

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    I just bought $300 worth of paper to freeze. It took me a year to figure out how to do this well and the first thing they do is can my paper.

    Is it possible to use these papers but light the enlarger with a strobe light to achieve the short exposure times needed to get correct alignment of all the color and contrast curves?
     
  11. frotog

    frotog Member

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    That's the spirit Ektagraphic. Everyone needs to email and call before it's too late. It should be stressed that there are no other normal contrast papers on the market. Apparently the good folks at big yellow don't know how many students, hobbyists, serious amateurs, editorial photographers and career artists use this stuff. Despite the small percentage of sales that these five groups comprise they are nonetheless important players to the prestige of the brand. I'm assuming that whoever made the boneheaded decision to keep ultra and let go of supra did so under the assumption that the bulk of analogue sales is for commercial purposes (read advertising) and that these folks naturally want more vibrant, saturated colors. But given the fact that only a small amount of this kind of work is still done the traditional way while the vast majority is with lightjet it just doesn't add up. If kodak needs to lean out their traditional catalogue it only makes sense to let ultra go.
     
  12. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    frotog. Thanks for the e-mail link. E-mail to Kodak sent.

    pentaxuser
     
  13. rphenning

    rphenning Member

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    email sent. what a bummer.
     
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  15. David Brown

    David Brown Subscriber

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    Apparently, not enough to keep it in production.
     
  16. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    Here's the scoop. I called Kodak and told them that I was upset. I spoke to a man who apparently works with this stuff. I told him how unhappy I/we were....He didn't have much to say but that basically this paper will work for us if we work with it......Then I called Edgar Praus of Praus Productions whom I have used for a good amount of custom color prints. I know he has a close relationship with Kodak...I would consider him a master printer. He said that he is testing the VC for Kodak using optical printing and he said in some cases he is able to get better prints with it than before. He also said that it probably will be available in sheets. I think we should wait to see what time tells us. I am still going to write a letter and actually mail it to Kodak because lately people take physical mail much more seriously. It is like they listen because they know you care because you spent $0.44 to mail it to them....My two cents. I really want to get printing color!
     
  17. StorminMatt

    StorminMatt Member

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    And I thought it was just slide shooters who were getting hosed by Kodak.
     
  18. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

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    He's been using the new endura? That's very good news actually. I'm still going to cherish the giant stock of regular Supra that just arrived in the mail. But that's good news. The only thing that scares me is the "crossover" which just makes me cringe having seen "crossover" manifest itself in my crystal archive work in the form of utter unacceptably nasty magenta highlights.
     
  19. mikez

    mikez Member

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    Very pissed. I am new to color printing and liked this paper a lot. I will send a written letter to KODAK too, what address are you sending it to? Still at this point I am going to figure out which FUJI paper works for me and adjust my exposures/processing accordingly for the look I want.
     
  20. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    Well, you can simply address it to Kodak, Kodak Customer Serivce, or Chuck Lang who works very closely with Portra and Ektar. I have been trying to reach him as we talk fairly often but have not gotten through with sucess. I'm not sure if he is also the main guy for color paper too. He would definatly try to help us. The address to Kodak is 343 State Street Rochester, NY 14650
     
  21. DanielStone

    DanielStone Member

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    well, I'm in the process of drafting a letter as I'm typing this.

    I will be posting a sign tomorrow in the photo lab at school with a copy of Kodak's announcement of the discontinuance. Along with it, I'll put the address listed here for Kodak, as well as the 800 number to call x-tension 19.I know that there are a lot of people who like to use the Kodak S.E. paper at my school. I've decided to use Fuji myself, but there are certain negs that I think just print better on Supra Endura, so I keep a box in the fridge for when I want to re-print them.

    I've also been considering putting a petition (names, city, and state, etc.) so we can get names on the list to include with my letter. People could sign it if they wanted. Maybe Kodak would take this more seriously if we petitioned :smile:.

    -Dan
     
  22. frotog

    frotog Member

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    Way to go Dan! I've been canvassing all my photog. friends and lab owners to call, send emails, and write letters. When I spoke to Peter in pro imaging I stressed how many internationally renowned photographers still use analogue color materials. He agreed that despite the small percentage of overall sales that these photographers' consumption represents, they are nonetheless a tremendously important part of the brand identity. Same goes for students and serious amateurs. Let's barrage them with letters, petitions, emails, phone calls!
     
  23. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    We should start a petition :smile:
     
  24. frotog

    frotog Member

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    I've never tried to do this via the web. Do you have any ideas as to the most efficient way to do this? I wonder if we could somehow start a petition here on apug? Or would it be better to link to a separate website?
     
  25. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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  26. ajuk

    ajuk Member

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    I'm not familiar with color printing, although I would like to try it some day, am I right in asuming colour paper is graded and VC, and that all the low contrast papers by kodak have gone, how many grades do Fuji make?