I use them - and they are getting better:
But Photo Engineer is right - it shows how hard it is to restart a line. Worst thing that irritates me is that you need to shield picture when is out. With old polaroid films one big part of fun was to look at a picture how is slowly appears in front of your eyes :).
If fuji makes instax in B&W - I would not have need to use impossible films.
According to them they had to change the original formula for environmental reasons so they might have the original Formula but they had to change it with not so great success imho. I wish them well I like some pictures made with their films but it seems to be a hit or miss in terms of film quality.
Actually what PE meant is that having the recipe is not enough to make the pudding. So it's bad to know that they had the formula.
Originally Posted by Worker 11811
I read, also, that they had the formula but one or more ingredients are now not any more in production for environmental reasons. So they are trying to make a workaround and this is, in fact, a research / creative effort, with no guarantee of success.
Fujifilm on the other hand produces instant film with proper colours (not artsy-fartsy).
This leads me to think that sometimes it is easier to start from scratch, or to rebuild the house rather than trying to salvage an unsafe one.
I am genuinely surprised that they find buyers for their products. With all due respect for the firm's generous and risky effort, they are basically relying on buyers of colour material who have a total disinterest for colours ;)
The people who buy their film now are the early adopters. (I'm not completely sure about the correct marketing terms) Paying a premium price for a not too great product. Once that product is good the rest will follow. So if your not happy with their products wait. If your willing to gamble and support their efforts go and buy.
The idea of a product that you don't need to be educated how to use I don't agree with that. Everything has a manual on how to get the best result with a product. The same goes for the film of TIP. If one is used to use Polaroid...well that doesn't exist anymore. But it was a lot easier with those product.
Well, some people got what I meant and carried the ball and others missed my point.
In analog film making, it is not enough to have the formula. It takes a lot of work to re-create a given film. If some of the chemicals are "banned", then it is a job of the chemist to create a work-around chemistry that solves the problem. We have done that more than once at Kodak.
If you make a product that works for years (SX-70 for example), stop making it, start again and it does not work the same way, then you have a problem. Having to teach your customers how to work around this problem is not an option IMHO. It is a failed attempt at that product. It does not meet release specifications. If you sell it, then your customers become alpha testers or beta testers at best, or unhappy people at worst.
We have had that at EK as well and have worked out the problems before any customer ever saw the product.
If a defect only shows up in the field, it means that you yourself did not do adequate field testing. If prints go bad after one year due to failed seals, you did not have release specs and tests up to this task!
IMHO, from most of the results shown, it is not a product yet, and should not be sold yet.
Personally I would have waited before putting out a product on the market. So therefor I have to applaud their marketing people. It is lomography at its best. I like some of the result and some I don't like. But I think that educating the customer how to use the film to get the best results is not a bad idea because people expect it to be Polaroid. And that it is not. That is why Bob Crowley is saying he is not recreating Type 55 film but is developing a Type 55 like film.
However I do understand what you are saying PE and from your point of view I agree completely. But I also do like how TIP is doing their thing and creating a loyal fan base in doing so. With a faulty product.
I agree that many of their early adopters are being treated like beta testers but, from what I have seen, they were mostly honest about this. They do say that they haven't got all the bugs worked out and, from what I have seen, they are getting better. Slowly but steadily.
I am a little put off by the price but, if the product works, I'd say it's worth it. At this point, the price is more than it should be for an "almost working" product.
However, because this is basically a crowd sourced funding project, I'm willing to give them a pass. They produce a product as well as they can, under the conditions they face and sell it for profit which is used to further future research and development. I'm okay with that as long as they are honest about it. So far, they seem to be honest about it.
I also expect to see improvement in the product. So far, they seem to be improving but, as far as I am concerned, it's not quite enough to get me to spring for some film... Yet...
I am watching and waiting. When I see enough improvement and when I have the disposable income, I do plan to buy.
Just not yet.
Kodak did the alpha test in-house. It did the beta test with real customers with free film! Then it sold the perfected product to the customers. That is a POV that wonk Kodak a dual reputation.
It had high quality products.
It had high prices. This was in order to absorb the free film in the alpha and beta tests.
Even with sales, they must be bleeding money. I doubt if they can achieve their goal. I never bought Polaroid products beceause I never thought it was worth the money then. I really can't justify it now, or probably ever.
If you like the medium, buy Fuji, At least they sell a product that works and it would support your activity for time to come. Keep them wanting to make it.
They do ship some film to selected testusers. But different times calls for a different approach. I don't have problems with that. And for a product like film it will not be harmfull for people. For instant film it would be difficult to spent 3 years developing and then selling the perfect product. So the way TIP does it is probably the best way. And again you don't have to buy it if you don't like it. They don't claim to have a finished product. If I have some money to spare I will buy some film from them but not much. Too pricey for me.