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  1. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by zsas View Post
    Quality as a discipline began in Asia (Japan) post WWII (ie Juran/Demming)
    Actually the Japanese have a very long tradition of craftsmanship, their carpentry was done to a mind-bogglingly high standard centuries ago.
    But you're correct in the context of "western flavored" goods, and don't forget they were making cameras and lenses in the 20s and 30s.

  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by E. von Hoegh View Post
    So true. And it should be pointed out that the Chinese can and do make world-class products, when they want to. It comes down to what the buyer wants, specify crap and that's what they'll deliver.
    As the Japanese did in the past the Chinese are only getting their foot in the door at the moment in the cheap end of the market, but they aren't going to be satisfied with that for long they will soon be after the quality and luxury end of the market.
    Ben

  3. #43

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    Although I understand what Gerald is saying I do not agree completely. I have bought 18x24 cm x-ray film because I cannot afford to buy Kodak 8x10. I do buy Foma which is also a manufacturer of x-ray film. To my knowledge they are not owned by Kodak or Fuji. People buying x-ray film of those are actually helping to support the photographic film division of Foma. As far as i understand photographic film is not the core business of Foma. 35 mm film I buy mainly Kodak t-max. I like that film and I buy it. Paper I buy from Ilford and Foma. I like both. i believe that by supporting smaller factories which don't have the standards as Kodak, Fuji or Ilford you give them a change to improve their products. Smaller companies can cope better with smaller production runs than the bigger companies. So I believe yes quality products may disappear buy buying cheaper products. But bigger cashflow to the smaller companies will give them opportunities to improve the quality of their products. And I don't believe for a second that us as a group buying cheaper stuff is a really big part of losing quality products. I think it is one off the many reasons big companies decide to cancel a product line.
    Last edited by Peter de Groot; 09-30-2013 at 01:03 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    Reality is whatever stays when you stop believing in it.
    darkroomninja.blogspot.com

  4. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter de Groot View Post
    People buying x-ray film of those are actually helping to support the photographic film division of Foma.
    I am not familiar with Foma's corporate structure. But I am familiar with the structures of other large companies. For other companies x-ray film is manufactured by a separate division or company. In these cases buying x-ray film does nothing to profit the division making ordinary photographic film. Large companies do not usually comingle the profits of their separate entities. So believing that buying x-ray film somehow benefits the production and sale of regular film is a bit naive.
    Last edited by Gerald C Koch; 09-30-2013 at 08:08 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.

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  5. #45
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    I think the global economy and the Wal-Marting of everything brought about the demise of the care about quality.

    That along with corporatization, mass marketing, the throw away economy and the hype of the need to have every toy on the market, made people care about quantity over quality.

    Almost nobody believes ANYTHING should last more than 5 years any more. OR even care if it does because they have such a short attention span they become bored with it.

    I think it's a pervasive mindset that has permeated every part of modern life.
    I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.

  6. #46
    rdg
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    A few simple questions then

    Do you buy all of your film, camera equipment, and assorted other things from local suppliers or do you look for cheaper alternatives, such as the large mail order stores? Do you have your film processed locally and prints made locally?

    By looking for better deals from mail stores and not supporting your local photography distributor you may be buying the high quality products from manufacturers but you are gutting the supply chain and denying local jobs, jobs for people that may be able to support your photography, or to at least support the local economy.

    Developing your own film means that there is less film to be developed locally and so those places will shut down. It does not matter that you enjoy developing your own film or that you feel that you have a better process. And because the local photography labs are not printing your photographs they are also closing down, regardless of the pleasure that you experience processing and printing your own photographs.

    I do not have any issues with people finding alternatives. I for one, as with most people, have limited budgets for hobbies and I have several expensive hobbies I want to play in. For a professional photographer, and I have done that in the past the client usually also has a limited budget and if your prices are going to greatly exceed that budget then the project will not happen.

    Saying that we need to support film based photography by buying high priced commercial products from companies that are too big to reduce their product lines to an economically sustainable level is uncalled for. Why are we happy to just save the film industry and why not go back to demanding that those same companies resurrect old and outdated technologies like dry plate photography as well. And lets also demand that they provide the supplies necessary for us to make our own wet plates. Progress happens. Within a fairly short time frame film based photography will indeed be a real niche area where very few venture. It will be filled with artists and those wanting to do radically different things with a tangible object at the end of the process.

    I regret the demise of so many films, but that has been going on to some degree even before digital photography happened. There has always been films discontinued while new films appeared. Although I am again starting to play with 4X5 I do not expect that everyone should be shooting large format nor do I deplore that people have gone to smaller formats and so destroying the rich heritage of large format films. Nor will I move to 5X7 or larger because I get what I want from 4X5 and do not want the weight and bulk of a larger format.

    Richard

  7. #47

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    my nearest "local photographic distributor" is about 100 miles away; There are a only a large handful of "real" shops left from which to buy film or other photo materials in the UK, and I expect most of those are doing most of their business online.

    The chain is "gutted" already.

  8. #48

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    yep - the question is who makes Adox films? Would that be Ilford too?

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by waynecrider View Post
    In my own job I stress the the difference between this product being American made and costing a little more and that same specification product being Chinese produced and costing less. I am happy to remark that many will buy the American made product when it is promoted to support American jobs, and many of those buying it are people who have fought in our war's from Vietnam to present day. Those who buy the Chinese made product are generally those not born in the U.S. or where there is no onshore American made product.
    What about if the Chinese product is better more reliable and half the price what would the public do then ?, because I have never seen a Chinese product in recent years that I can say in all honesty that at an equivalent price to a Western made one that it was inferior. The Chinese are doing what the Japanese did after WW11 to getting their foot in the door of Western markets by going for the cheap end of the market first, but they won't be satisfied with that for long, because they are capable of manufacturing high quality goods, and while people console themselves that their home grown products are superior, unfortunately the public are voting with their wallets.
    Ben

  10. #50
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    The Chinese didn't really get into the "western" manufacturing business.

    American companies went there for cheap labor and set up plants in conjunction with the Chinese.

    Almost every product in the marketplace is now Asian made because American corporations moved offshore and wanted cheap labor costs.

    If the quality sucks, its because American companies went the cheap route. Chinese can make as great a quality as the manufacturing specs specify.
    I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.

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