Film for Medium Format Questions

Discussion in 'Medium Format & Large Format' started by EZzing, Oct 5, 2007.

  1. EZzing

    EZzing TPF Noob!

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    I got on the internet this evening to look at my options for 120 film.

    I was on the adorama site and noticed that some film was marked made in the USA for international and some was marked USA.

    What are the differences?

    Are there some types that should be avoided here in the U S because of processing or other problems?

    And then another question??? I really like old folding cameras. I'm sure some had to have been made before color film was widely available, or maybe this is a misconception I have.

    Should I avoid using color film in a camera without coated lenses? How can I tell if the lenses are coated?

    Bill
     
  2. Mitica100

    Mitica100 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Bill, a good way to see if the lens was coated is to look at it from a side. If it has a greenish, purplish or bluish cast, then it's coated. Lens coating started sometime during the late 30s and early 40s. Uncoated lenses are equally great performers but they do exhibit some flare. Best bet to avoid flare is to use a lens shade with your uncoated lens and most of all don't point it towards a source of strong light. The first color film was made comercially available by Kodak, in 1935. That pretty much tells you that cameras made around that year and after were built with both BW and color film in mind.
     
  3. Mitica100

    Mitica100 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Example of a coated lens:

    [​IMG]

    Observe the bluish cast.
     
  4. Helen B

    Helen B TPF Noob!

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    Bill,

    I guess that most folders from the 50's and onwards will have single-coated lenses. I don't know much about cameras from before the 50's. Very few medium format folders have multi-coated lenses. Those that do are generally the more expensive ones, like the Plaubel Makina 67, 670 and W67. Single-coated lenses don't look the same as multi-coated ones. I'll post a comparison picture later. I've used plenty of cameras from the 50's with single-coated lenses. They have less contrast than multi-coated lenses, because of the flare, but need not be a problem. As already mentioned, a good lens hood will reduce the flare from light coming from outside the image area, but will not reduce flare from the image-forming light itself. Fortunately many of these folders have fairly simple lenses with few elements, so the small number of air-glass surfaces do not cause a lot of flare anyway.

    www.certo6.com is a good reference for the older folders.

    Both B&H and Adorama sell some film that has been imported instead of being purchased through the official USA distribution network.- ie the same film, but intended for sale in other countries. Because it is the same film as the film intended for sale in the USA, only cheaper, processing it is not a problem.

    Best,
    Helen
     
  5. EZzing

    EZzing TPF Noob!

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    Once again thanks to my new internet friends Mitica and Helen for taking the time to explain some real basics.
     
  6. Helen B

    Helen B TPF Noob!

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    Hi Bill,

    Here is a snap of my Bessa with a modern multicoated 105 mm Nikkor-M lens replacing the original Skopar, the front cell of which is beside it for this illustration. The case doesn't close with the front cell of the Nikkor in place - it simply unscrews for transport. The Skopar itself is a very good lens, but mine has bad separation in the rear cell so it is soft at large apertures. Watch out for lens defects with those older lenses.

    Good luck,
    Helen

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Mitica100

    Mitica100 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Beautiful! Did the Nikkor fit right onto the existing thread or is it modified to fit?
     
  8. Helen B

    Helen B TPF Noob!

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    The shutter appears to conform to the standard #0 dimensions and threads, so the Nikkor cells screwed right in. All I had to do was to remove the front bezel to get the Nikkor front cell to seat properly - it is fatter than the Skopar.

    A standard Copal #0 would have to be modified quite a lot to fit in the Bessa'sa lens mount.

    Best,
    Helen
     
  9. EZzing

    EZzing TPF Noob!

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    I love that camera! I loaded my folder this weekend and shot half a roll. I'm not sure how they will turn out. I set the lens on infinity and my son called out the aperture settings his digital was calling for and I think I was pretty close to the correct shutter speed. I found a lab about 25 minutes from the house that will process the 120.

    They have a minimum order, so I'm going to shoot several rolls taking notes for each shot.

    This was a maiden voyage, just to get used to it.

    I wish you guys lived a little closer !

    Bill
     
  10. Mitica100

    Mitica100 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Awesome! Thanks for the info!:)
     

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