If you want to do portraiture with your lens wide open particularly on medium format cameras Portra 160 is a must. A lot of medium format cameras have a maximum shutter speed of 1/500 of a second. I've gone out shooting landscapes on a sunny day and then decided mid roll to do a portrait and gotten screwed by the 400 ISO. Since I am not a pro I can't just look at the sky and accurately judge what issues I'm going to run into. I use a hand held light meter and just meter and play with some apertures so see what problems I may run into. Then I choose my film speed.
Originally Posted by thegman
Originally Posted by Nicholas Lindan
Provia is E-6. I know you know that but I don't want the OP to get confused.
Originally Posted by ToddB
As you can see color C-41 film is pretty easy to sort through. You have the Kodak Portra offerings which are lower contrast and have a more muted or neutral pallette. Excellent for portraits. Then of you have Ektar with punchier colors and more contrast. And then there are the Fuji offerings which I am not familiar with.
I don't want to be a photography forum troll but I am going to say something that I hate hearing on these forums... My advice is to try a roll of Portra, Ektar, and a Fuji offering. I do a lot of B&W stuff and trying out a different developer involves mixing up a bunch of chemicals and if you don't like it you are stuck. There are also tons of B&W films out there and it would be too expensive and time consuming to try each one out in it's preferred developer.
If you are shooting medium format C-41 experimenting should be relatively inexpensive and straight forward. You only have maybe 3 or 4 emulsions to try out and they are all developed the same way. I use Walmart's send out service for less than 90 cents a roll of 120.