View Full Version : 100asa or 400asa....

05-30-2010, 10:58 PM
I will be in NZ during July and August. How does the weather usually fare down there with regards to film speed. I am quite used to shooting around 100asa hand held in Australia as commonly there is very intense sunlight, pushing 400asa usage to around f/16-22 and higher with shutter speeds at 1/1000 or higher.

I suspect that in the South Island of NZ when the clouds roll over I will be choking myself if I bring mostly 100 speed film. Perhaps I should load 100 speed into the Bessa L and shoot ultra wide allowing for very low shutter speeds and keep 400 for the standard focal lengths.

Your thoughts?

05-30-2010, 11:41 PM
I'm a native, I'm an Aucklander but today I flew to the South Island for the first time in my life, I'm in Dunedin at the moment.

In Auckland I normally use 400; it's versatile, I can use it indoors too without a worry, especially with the f1.8 Yashinon on my Lynx.

Outdoors 400 can be overkill, but the Lynx 1000 is again quite useful as it has a 1/1000 speed and can stop down to f22. I've never needed both at once though! I lived 7 years in Brisbane, will be going back in July for a wee holiday, so I can certainly understand why 400 might be trouble there ;)

You could probably get away with 100, but there'd be a few borderline situations, especially if you get into the wilderness much. If it were me, I'd go with 400 just to be safe, but then again I'm new to analogue and therefore have a childish love of grain :P

05-31-2010, 12:55 AM
Thanks...I have decided on taking my long time favorite film, Ekfe 100 (Ekfe 50 is better but less practical) since it pushes nicely to 200 and looks great in Rodinal.

Poisson Du Jour
05-31-2010, 01:11 AM
Expect to get very wet and very cold in the South Island in July and August. It's peak for winter and New Zealand will show you that! It can be clear and sunny yet still be close to freezing. On the other hand, at higher altitudes, heavy fogs ("pea-soupers") are common, again freezing. Expect dim light when the heavy rain comes and be ready for bursts of sunlight coming through clouds between "stream showers" (an euphemism for chucking it down every hour or so). Personally I've only ever been more concerned with keeping warm and dry and not worrying about photographic capacity — at least until the rain stops!!

What would you be shooting at 1/1000 BTW?? I'm more commonly down to 15 to 30 seconds...:p

Dunedin and its southerly neighbour, the English-like Christchurch, are both excellent places to chill out (or warm up) when the weather keeps you grounded. Maybe put contingency plans in place for stops in places like either, and also consider a side trip to uber-trendy and photographically-endearing Queenstown (but expect to pay a premium in QTN in winter because it's the peak ski season).

05-31-2010, 01:26 AM
Yep. I lived in the North Island for awhile and traveled to the south briefly. 200speed film with 15 and 21mm lenses should be fine. Perhaps I will try to find a super tiny and light tripod but staying light weight is most important for me. The cold is nothing to me, I enjoy it...my friend however might be a bit uncomfortable...

We have a very detailed plan and maps of locations around each city for hostels, food and services. We will be flying into Christchurch and exploring Tekapo, Queenstown, Dunedin, Blenheim, Nelson, Picton and ferrying over to Wellington to see some friends before the flight home.

Flights and buses have been paid for and we have money for food and hostels in NZD on our debit cards ready. All we need to do is look at what touristy things we want to do an allocate money for them. Museums, hiking and other interesting sites are already agreed on and in the plan.


Mick Fagan
05-31-2010, 03:34 AM
I would be thinking of taking an Australian manufactured cam-pod, not a copy or sort of clone, the real deal. Best portable camera stand, other than a tripod.

Good luck with the weather, you may find it interesting, to say the least.

Once in the south Island we had water tanks of water coming down, not buckets. We decided that about the only thing we could do was to visit the glow worms at Te Anau, well there was a slight problem, the caves were flooded and the punts couldn't fit under. It was wet, really wet.

I would be taking 400 ASA film myself.


05-31-2010, 08:13 AM
Coincidentally, my wife and I will be in the South Island in July also. We are flying into Christchurch from Nadi on our way home from a week in Fiji, so it should be an interesting contrast in weather conditions. Planning to visit Dunedin and Invercargill, both of which we missed last time, and a day on the Tranz-Alpine (both ways). I have a couple of bricks of Legacy Pro 400 waiting in the fridge, and a brick of Ektar 100 also. The only thing not set in stone (or ice if you like) is what gear to take given the trade-off between functionality and the need for low weight/bulk. At the moment I am thinking F3 and FE2 with Arsat 20/2.8, CV Ultron 40/2, CV Nokton 58/1.4, CV Color-Heliar 75/2.5 (one of my favourites), and Nikon Series E 100/2.8. Plus odd bits & pieces like SB-15 speedlight, WLF for F3, polarising filters, graduated filters, light weight tripod and monopod. Oh, and a little digi P&S thing, just in case I run out of film ;-)