why won't film just die already?!

chuasam

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I was casually browsing the eBay and noticed that old film cameras are commanding ridiculous prices.
an old Olympus Muji II going for $200, Yashica T4 (zeiss) trading for $400...and the Contax T4 (my old love) going for $1500 to $2000.

Why are people still clinging on to film in the age of far better digital technology?
 

waday

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Funny, I just started actively using a film camera I bought on KEH for $10. So far, I've only developed 2 rolls, I have two waiting to get developed, and I plan on taking at least two more rolls this upcoming weekend.

I find that with a limited number of exposures, I am quite literally forced to think through each photo before just snapping away.

It's a hobby, just like any other. If you don't like it, you don't have to partake. :icon_thumright:
 

Peeb

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Digital is clearly technically superior in most every way.

Still- it is inherently fun to shoot old school sometimes.

I've been shopping for just the right Nikon F2 recently, btw. ;)
 

Derrel

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There is a certain appeal to vintage everything. Vintage clothing, vintage vinyl records, vintage automobiles, vintage furniture, etc. As far as those extremely high prices on cameras, aren't some of those Buy It Now, or asking prices, and not actual completed sales?

There are a lot of people who have never shot film, and these people are very interested in the process. One of the nice things about shooting negative film is that it is very easily made into wet darkroom photographic prints, at a reasonable price. Film also creates a tangible copy of each exposure on a permanent base, and that is very nice to have. Film can also be scanned as well, and thus brought into the digital realm quite easily.

Yes digital is a superior imaging medium in most respects, but not in all respects. Just as the CD-ROM music disc is better than a vinyl album, there is a certain appeal to that large black vinyl disc in the very large envelope which contains liner notes and a big cover and reverse photo. Film is also a permanent basis, in which the image is fixed permanently, and has a tangible form, whereas digital is nothing but numbers and cannot be held up to the light and looked at the way a negative or a slide can be looked at, and the digital image really has no one finite final form, but is easily edited,or re-edited, ad nauseam.
 
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Digital Matt

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I think it's unwise to say that digital is far better technology. Film has a quality that digital cannot replicate, not to mention, the process of shooting film forces you to take your time, think a little more, dare I say, take it a little bit more seriously? It's a wonderful, wonderful tool in an artists toolkit. I have a Mamiya m645 with 6 lenses, a 4x5 field camera, and I use them often. The process is amazingly fun and rewarding. Also, the difference in quality from 35mm to medium and large format is gigantic, and when you look at digital alternatives, the majority of us will never afford MF or LF digital. It all depends on why you take photos and what you do with them. For me, film is not dead and never will be. If you don't dig it, don't shoot it, but don't condemn it.
 

limr

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I was casually browsing the eBay and noticed that old film cameras are commanding ridiculous prices.
an old Olympus Muji II going for $200, Yashica T4 (zeiss) trading for $400...and the Contax T4 (my old love) going for $1500 to $2000.

Why are people still clinging on to film in the age of far better digital technology?

Oh, just hush yourself and stop worrying about what other people are doing.

giphy.gif
 

jcdeboever

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I really think @Derrel hit the mark. I was curious about photography as a whole. Two and a half years ago ( I was a virgin), he suggested some 1970's books authored by John Hedgecoe to help me into my journey of photography. Derrel never suggested shooting film and did mention that the lessons learned would translate to digital. He was right. At that point, I felt confident and decided to purchase a film camera and compare what I learned and see if it could enhance the learning curve for me. I was inspired by @limr and @Gary A. film work. I personally fell in love with the image, the look, a destiny. This is going to sound real stupid but the people mentioned, transformed my photography experience. I love them for introducing a medium that I can work within.
 

480sparky

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Who says it needs to?
 

john.margetts

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Why are people still clinging on to film in the age of far better digital technology?
Better in what way?

Film has two big advantages for me. First, film is not a surface like a digital sensor is so a film image is slightly three dimensional - it has thickness. This has a significant impact on the aesthetics of the image - it is less 'perfect'. It is rather like a painter using a fine camel-hair brush for one picture and a pallet knife for the next picture.

Secondly, with film, I use leaf shutters which again have a significant impact on the image - that continuously variable aperture you get as the shutter opens and closes, giving you soft-edged circles of confusion (I am aware I could achieve this with a digital Hasselblad but I wish to remain married).

A further small advantage: I get to use my nice film cameras.

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dxqcanada

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I think people who take pictures want to experience different forms of it ... and not always requiring a "better" tech to achieve it ... mostly the experience of the picture ??
My guess is that most film shooters also have digital equipment ... I do.

Though it would be great if everyone just stop jacking up the value of old film cameras ... it makes it harder for me to get them cheap (I'm still waiting to get a Rolleiflex 2.8 for under a hundred bucks).
 

john.margetts

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Though it would be great if everyone just stop jacking up the value of old film cameras ... it makes it harder for me to get them cheap (I'm still waiting to get a Rolleiflex 2.8 for under a hundred bucks).
I was in Cambridge today and found a photography shop that had a film camera section. Their prices were about 5 times what I pay for the same model cameras. And there were people seriously looking at them!


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ac12

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Darkroom work is MUCH more relaxing (to me) than editing on the computer.
 

480sparky

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Darkroom work is MUCH more relaxing (to me) than editing on the computer.

And I just cannot get Photoshop to emulate the smell of stop bath.
 

photoflyer

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Perhaps for the same reason photography did and has not replaced painting. In the end they (paining, film, digital) are just different ways of capturing and expressing the world around us. Each of us has our preferred way of doing so and sometimes the act is more important than the result.
 

Vtec44

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I use both film and digital for paid work and there are pros and cons for each medium. I prefer film (Portra 400) for outdoor portraits because of the colors and highlight retention. You pretty much nail the colors and skin tone right out of the box. Also, the look and feel of a 6x7 negative is hard to duplicate on full frame digital sensor. Digital is far better for low light and moving shots. Pushing the ISO ridiculously high and virtually unlimited number of shots. But that encourages the spray and pray technique. LOL A lot of high end portraits and wedding photographers still shoot film.
 

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