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Photo Engineer
08-11-2006, 09:52 AM
The most important advantage of it, however, was that in order to make it work, a lot of work was done to maximize film resolution, and to minimize grain. We have all benefited from that work.


Yes, this was one of the first films to use the most advanced Kodak technology in color films. It was then applied to the other size films, both professional and consumer and let to a big improvement in grain and sharpness.

And, the batteries were a problem, IIRC.

PE

Michel Hardy-Vallée
08-11-2006, 10:12 AM
The up side of the disk film was that it didn't suffer from the problems with "complexity" inherent with 35mm (some customers just couldn't handle that loading and rewinding process). It also didn't have the film flatness problems that 126 and to a certain extent 110 suffered from.


Was simplicity the only upside of the Disc film? I never understood what plus-value the customer would get with those, compared to Instamatic. For snapshots, film flatness is an afterthought at best. Or maybe it was just a silly attempt at building a better mousetrap. They could have improved Instamatic cartridges instead.

Photo Engineer
08-11-2006, 10:59 AM
Kodak wanted to market a pocket sized camera. That was the point of the CEO pulling it out of his shirt pocket in the first public demo to Kodak workers. It was to be a major selling point, and the film format was to have nearly 35 mm quality. The film was very good, but did not achieve that latter goal. The results were very poor IMHO, but my kids loved their cameras.

don sigl
08-11-2006, 12:03 PM
Disc cameras. My first professional shooting job was to photograph Kodak disc cameras. I worked for a production company right next to the State St. office in Rochester, NY. I thought they were pretty cool looking, and at that time (1983) they were gaining popularity in the retail market. A lot of my family member had one. I was using a Canon F1 by that time.

srs5694
08-11-2006, 12:04 PM
As a "plate of shrimp" sort of comment (that's a Repo Man reference, if you don't get it), I dropped into my local Salvation Army today to see if they had any interesting bargain cameras (they didn't). They did have a single box of disc film, but no camera to go with it. I didn't check the expiration date or price.

Michel Hardy-Vallée
08-11-2006, 12:24 PM
Kodak wanted to market a pocket sized camera. That was the point of the CEO pulling it out of his shirt pocket in the first public demo to Kodak workers. It was to be a major selling point, and the film format was to have nearly 35 mm quality. The film was very good, but did not achieve that latter goal. The results were very poor IMHO, but my kids loved their cameras.

Oh, but wasn't that something they offered a long time ago?
http://www.cosmonet.org/camera/vestan_e.htm


;)

Photo Engineer
08-11-2006, 02:58 PM
Oh, but wasn't that something they offered a long time ago?
http://www.cosmonet.org/camera/vestan_e.htm


;)

Look at the post by Don Sigl. It was about 1983 and I had just wrapped up putting similar technology into Kodacolor Gold 400.

PE

DKT
08-11-2006, 05:01 PM
I worked in a lab in the 80s--processed a lot of film & prints in a couple of noritsu machines. the film processor was a leader card type machine, but for disk film, it had this little door on the side, that had a light trap of sorts. you took the disk and loaded it on this hanger type thing and loaded that into the machine....I remember one particularly busy day, running around the lab trying to do too many things at one time....I burned some customer's film right good by forgetting to shut the disk lightrap door....it's a painful (bad customer service experience) memory. the noritsu printer also had this little carousel tray of sorts to hold the disk negs and there was a flip down magnifier as well. I saw more 110, 126 etc. than disk film though, to be honest, which is probably why I left that door open by mistake.

jnanian
08-11-2006, 05:03 PM
Dogs also like TV remote controls because, I believe, they are crunchy. I've often thought that they should make these things out of plastic that tastes bad. Maybe then the dogs wouldn't eat them.


yeah, our dog ate everthing he could - books, food, watches, cameras ... but he also taught the neighbor's dog to drag trash onto his own lawn, now THAT was funny :)

Photo Engineer
08-11-2006, 06:27 PM
Oh, but wasn't that something they offered a long time ago?
http://www.cosmonet.org/camera/vestan_e.htm


;)

Sorry Mike. I should have followed up by saying that the disk cameras did not fold up, and they were smaller (I think) than the VPK folded with a better lens (and that too is a matter of opinion).

I don't remember the film size of the VPK though.

PE

Petzi
08-11-2006, 09:14 PM
Kodak wanted to market a pocket sized camera. That was the point of the CEO pulling it out of his shirt pocket in the first public demo to Kodak workers. It was to be a major selling point, and the film format was to have nearly 35 mm quality. The film was very good, but did not achieve that latter goal. The results were very poor IMHO, but my kids loved their cameras.

Pocket cameras for 110 film were available long before disc film was introduced. They could have improved the film and achieved a similar goal. But I guess they just wanted to reinvent the wheel so they could make more money from camera and lab equipment sales, and perhaps licenses.

johndeere
08-11-2006, 10:07 PM
I bought my wife a disc camera in 1985. She loved it because of the small size she could take it anywhere. That was the selling point and a strong one at the time. Now the photograph quality was like an ISO 400 pushed 10 times.

She never complained since she only had small prints made. We still have it in a box somewhere. I don’t remember the film or processing being expensive.

I still play around with my 110 just for the fun of it.

donbga
08-11-2006, 10:25 PM
Pocket cameras for 110 film were available long before disc film was introduced. They could have improved the film and achieved a similar goal. But I guess they just wanted to reinvent the wheel so they could make more money from camera and lab equipment sales, and perhaps licenses.

Well, yeah!

The introduction of a new film format was one of the business models used by E.K. and it worked very well (the 126 and 110 formats paved the way for validation of this method of marketing). It helped spur new sales of film, cameras and lab equipment. What may not be realized about the production of the disc camera was the level of design, planning, and integration of division resources to produce this camera.

The initial disc cameras made by Eastman were very good. The lens production was quite a break through then, since it was made of plastic, held to very tight tolerances and was highly corrected.

Another one of the appeals of the disc format was that photo finishing was less expensive. Pre-splicing of film wasn't required, film wasn't cut into strips reducing the possibility of the film becoming lost, printing full rolls became faster and more efficient. Reprints were easier to handle and a unique id was encoded with each disk making the filn easier to track while in lab. One has to recall that during this period photofinishing was done primarily in large operations involving thousands of rolls of film everyday. Remeber Fotomat?


If the film technology of today was available then there might be the possibility the format might still exist today. What killed the disc format was the introduction of less expensive and more user user friendly 35 mm SLR and automatic P&S 35 mm cameras. The quality of 35 mm had a broader appeal to a more affluent consumer base in subsequent years.

The Kodak CEO at the time was Walter Fallon after he left the company the company went downhill, IMO.

bart Nadeau
08-11-2006, 11:26 PM
Disk cameras seem along time ago but recently enough that JOBO had a drum for their CPP series processors for the disks.
Bart

Photo Engineer
08-12-2006, 09:37 AM
Well, yeah!

The introduction of a new film format was one of the business models used by E.K. and it worked very well (the 126 and 110 formats paved the way for validation of this method of marketing). It helped spur new sales of film, cameras and lab equipment. What may not be realized about the production of the disc camera was the level of design, planning, and integration of division resources to produce this camera.

The initial disc cameras made by Eastman were very good. The lens production was quite a break through then, since it was made of plastic, held to very tight tolerances and was highly corrected.

Another one of the appeals of the disc format was that photo finishing was less expensive. Pre-splicing of film wasn't required, film wasn't cut into strips reducing the possibility of the film becoming lost, printing full rolls became faster and more efficient. Reprints were easier to handle and a unique id was encoded with each disk making the filn easier to track while in lab. One has to recall that during this period photofinishing was done primarily in large operations involving thousands of rolls of film everyday. Remeber Fotomat?


If the film technology of today was available then there might be the possibility the format might still exist today. What killed the disc format was the introduction of less expensive and more user user friendly 35 mm SLR and automatic P&S 35 mm cameras. The quality of 35 mm had a broader appeal to a more affluent consumer base in subsequent years.

The Kodak CEO at the time was Walter Fallon after he left the company the company went downhill, IMO.

Yes, you have it all right. Now I remember Fallon standing there taking it out of his pocket with Colby Chandler beaming next to him. I met them both personally during a particular product review meeting. I wouldn't say it went down hill after he left though. Chandler did a respectable job. The downhill slide is a long tortuous story that involves a lot of people.

BTW, one thing you can add is that APS tried to capture some of that processing convenience and 'data capture' that disk went after. It too was doomed but for different reasons.

PE

Michel Hardy-Vallée
08-13-2006, 10:02 PM
Sorry Mike. I should have followed up by saying that the disk cameras did not fold up, and they were smaller (I think) than the VPK folded with a better lens (and that too is a matter of opinion).

I don't remember the film size of the VPK though.

PE

I think it was 127. I just find the notion of "pocket" to be so extendable over the 20th century: the original Livre de Poche, the French collection that gave us the word for pocket books, is of a size that can barely fit a jeans back pocket. On the other hand, it is at ease in the side pocket of my lapel jacket.

DBP
08-13-2006, 10:13 PM
I think it was 127. I just find the notion of "pocket" to be so extendable over the 20th century: the original Livre de Poche, the French collection that gave us the word for pocket books, is of a size that can barely fit a jeans back pocket. On the other hand, it is at ease in the side pocket of my lapel jacket.

The Vest Poclet Kodaks were 8 on 127 and fit nicely in a shirt pocket. Nice format.