Which film do you use?

Discussion in 'Film Discussion and Q & A' started by Vautrin, Apr 7, 2010.

  1. Vautrin

    Vautrin No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    So over the past few months I've gotten into film. I bought a holga, then a mamiya, and in total I've shot maybe 20 rolls of 120...

    I've been using Rollei Retro and Kodak Ektar / Ektachrome because that's what they sold in the local shop.

    But looking online there's all sorts of different films -- fujifilm, Ado, rollei, agfa, kodak

    What films do you shoot and why?

    WIll the Kodak B+W look much different to Rollei and will that look different to the Fuji B+W?

    Or should I just buy film based on ISO I need?

    Also, I've noticed some "special films" -- sensitized, or panchromatic, or digibase.

    Are they worth it? Will I really get that much better of a shot with digibase?

    I ask because I'm about to place another order, and I could spend hundreds just to try each different film...
     
  2. Goontz

    Goontz TPF Noob!

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    In my Holga, I have recently used with no complaints:
    15341033 Fujifilm Neopan 100 Acros Black & White Film ISO 100, 120 Size
    1629017 Ilford HP-5 Plus 400 Fast Black and White Professional Film, ISO 400, 120 Size

    Right now, I have a roll of: P400H120U Fujifilm Fujicolor Pro 400H Color Negative Film, ISO 400, 120 Size USA in it, but obviously don't know the results yet.

    In all honesty, I don't think the film you use in a Holga matters that much, seeing as how it's not going to be the greatest quality shot anyways, solely based on the quality of the camera itself (afterall, that's part of what makes the Holga so fun, right?). Your Mamiya might be a different story and more worthwhile to try better films, but for my Holga, I pretty much stick to something cheap and simple.
     
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  3. Christie Photo

    Christie Photo No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I haven't shot film for more than 5 years, but I always used Kodak. If you'll be shooting any black and white, Ilford is another fine choice.

    Panchromatic simply means the film is sensitive to all visible light. (Pan = all)

    -Pete
     
  4. Mike_E

    Mike_E No longer a newbie, moving up!

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  5. 1986

    1986 TPF Noob!

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    I shoot with kodak TMAX...because well I like the way it looks and feels :)

    I have also used some ilford that I enjoyed but I liked the tmax better (just my opinion)

    I was film shopping too a while ago and you can spend hundreds but I just stick with Kodak because of the price and quality. I do, every once in a while, pick up a roll or two of something new to try but I haven't found anything better yet. I would suggest trying Kodak TMAX, Ilford HP-5, and Fuji Neopan. They are all great quality films.
     
  6. SoonerBJJ

    SoonerBJJ TPF Noob!

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    I shoot mainly Kodak Tri-X 400 in 135 and 120. Occasionally I shoot Ilford Delta 3200 and I've got some Rollei Retro that I haven't used yet.

    Most any Kodak or Ilford film is going to have a different character than your Rollei Retro.

    Pick 1 or 2 films and shoot a bunch of it. Get to know your film in and out.
     
  7. JamesD

    JamesD Between darkrooms

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    I've historically used a lot of TMax 100, TriX, and PlusX, but primarily the first two. There are subtle grain differences between them, especially the TMax films, and I personally find that the TMax films are easy, comfortable, and consistent, but I like the TriX and PlusX better in the final print.

    For color, I've usually used 400UC because of availability, and nice saturation, although I started using Portra 160VC when the 400UC became unavailable to me. I'd like to try this newfangled Ektar everyone's talking about (I've been out of the photography loop for a year or three); and, of course, slide films are always beautiful, if somewhat inconvenient.

    I use a tripod almost all the time when I'm not shooting in daylight, and often even when I am, so I tend to select a film speed to shoot based on how visible I want the grain to be in the final image. If you're going to be shooting with zooms and/or telephotos at other than full daylight, you may want to select a faster ISO film to keep shutter speeds down.

    The more common BW films are all panchromatic; basically, unless it says orthochromatic or something else, it's going to be a panchromatic film. Panchromatic films are sensitive to the entire spectrum of visible light, from red to violet, while ortho film, for instance, is not sensitive to the lower (redder) end of the spectrum. I'm not familiar with "digibase," so I can't comment.

    But yeah, if I were going to buy two boxes of film right now, it'd be TriX and Portra 160VC. I'd specifically avoid Forte films because I've found them to be flimsy, squirrely and difficult to manage in the dark, although I know a few people who swear by them. Ultimately, though, you should try a roll or two of several films, pick the one you find the most pleasing, and stick with it for the most part. Familiarity can lead to consistency, and that's a good thing :)
     
  8. mighe79

    mighe79 TPF Noob!

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  9. JamesD

    JamesD Between darkrooms

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    Do you mean the frame numbers on the edge? It's possible that the emulsion was smeared due to friction against the reel during winding.
     
  10. Mike_E

    Mike_E No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    "CHS stands for Cubiccrystal Heterodispers Single-Layer, which means the emulsion is made up of classic cubic crystals which are mixed in different sizes and coated in one layer."

    JamesD has it I think.
     
  11. Professional

    Professional TPF Noob!

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    I am new to film, and when i was in USA last October for vacation i bought plenty of film from there, Kodak B&W/color, Ilford, Fuji color, Rollei Retro, and then i ordered online last weeks ago few film rolls as well and i will order more.
    I have shoot with color film only for now [7 colors] and only one B&W but i didn't develop that B&W because i want to develop it by myself as my first B&W ever, i just send the color one to the lab because developing color film is a bit pain and not friendly process as B&W, and all of them are in 120 format except one pack [5 rolls] of Fuji Pro 160 [i have to check if it is C or S].
     
  12. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I've always preferred Fuji...

    Color or B&W... I still love Fuji, lol. And slide - Fuji is pretty much all that's left.

    Fuji always seemed to have more accurate color and more WB forgiveness than Kodak...
     

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