Polaroid 4x5 sheet film

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by LFGuy, Jan 14, 2003.

  1. LFGuy

    LFGuy Member

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    Just curious, which Polaroid films do you like the best and why?
     
  2. Jorge

    Jorge Inactive

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    59, love that positive and negative all in one shot.
     
  3. SteveGangi

    SteveGangi Member

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    I think you mean type 55. I like type 54. There is no negative, but the print looks nice and there is no bath, fixing or hardening required.
     
  4. David Hall

    David Hall Member

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    Actually,

    I'd have to go with both of you. That 54 print is glossy and thick and the tones are great, although it's never really very sharp. I've made plenty of those that have ended up in frames and under glass. They're great.

    Oh the other hand, those 55 negatives are great too. VERY sharp, great contrast range. To me it seems like they're at least as sharp as TMX but with the range of HP5 or Bergger.

    I find myself buying and using both.

    dgh
     
  5. Sherman

    Sherman Member

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    I like Type 52 for prints and Type 55 for negatives (of course). I think the grayscale of a Type 52 print is both long and beautiful. I have framed several. For negative work Type 55 is as pleasing a film as I've found. I shoot mostly TMax 100 but there are times I will reach for a packet of T55 because I know it will be better for the subject.

    Type 55 seems to me to be virtually identical to the old Panatomic 25. I usually shoot it at 25 as well. Very fine grain, very long tonal range really nice and smooth shadows. If it weren't so expensive I would shoot a lot more of it.
     
  6. brYan

    brYan Member

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    I like the 54. Not as messy as others.
     
  7. lee

    lee Member

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    I don't use Polaroid at all. way too messy and too much trash to carr out. The film is not sharp enough for me too.

    lee/c
     
  8. Ed Sukach

    Ed Sukach Member

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    Type 672 - ISO 400

    All of my Polaroid film is used in a Polaroid back for the Hasselblad - to check camera operation, and get rough ideas of exposure, composition and lighting.

    At least that is the start. I have been known to occasionally scan the Polariod images and actually *use* them. Come to think of it ... a possible essay: "Images from the `Not-serious' Polaroid check exposures?"

    Recently switched from Polapan Pro 100. 672 has the same exposure index as AgfaPan 400 - my "working" (most of the time... well some of the time) black and white film. Guess how many two-stops overexposed negatives I have.
     
  9. Robert Kennedy

    Robert Kennedy Member

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    Type 52 and 53 as well as any color film. The first two just because I like them. Used in my old Graphic they can give a nice period feel to an image. Something about the tonal range and the contrast of the B/W film just screams "1950s" to me. Any of the color films are nice because I can do a transfer which is my new thing now.
     
  10. chrisl

    chrisl Member

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    Do you guys recommend getting a holder for my new setup? Is it worth the added cost for the holder and film to preview the compostion and check exposure? And even then, how do you know it's the right exposure on the actual 4x5 film (asa 25-400) when polaroid I'd think has it's own film speed. Just not sure how it cross correlates.

    Thanks,
    Chris
     
  11. SteveGangi

    SteveGangi Member

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    I use an old 545 holder for Polaroids. A lot of professionals use Polaroids as a proof before shooting the regular film, and swear by it. The thing to do is use a film and Polaroid of the same speed, or as close as possible. An example would be using Polaroid 54 to proof a shot in TMax 100. Both are nominally rated at ASA/ISO 100 speed. Composition can be tricky until you get used to it... The Polaroid will be smaller than the sheet film. Just compose for film, using the entire groundglass, and then take the Polaroid proof to check exposure and lighting ratios. Polaroids are a great learning tool also, because you see the results in a minute or two. Any mistakes become painfully obvious and can be corrected on the spot.
     
  12. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member

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    59, for the fun you can have getting the emulsion to come off.

    55, for versatility: Either a decent negative, of a strange print. If you let the print sort of float around for some months (or weeks, if on a windowsill) before coating, you get some really amazing split tones. [​IMG]
     
  13. fhovie

    fhovie Subscriber

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    55 is like a photosop plug in if it is old- I got some 10 year old 55 off e-bay and the prints it makes have the most interesting distortions - I am really liking it for that surreal artsy look. I think type 55 is a great underutilized resourse and it is not too bad on e-bay - even for fresh. - Frank