Choosing Color Negative Film

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    Topic: Choosing Color Negative Film Read 814 Times
  • Michael Kopel
    Michael Kopel
    Participant
    Posts: 11
    Film and Photo Digitizing
    on: March 6, 2021 at 11:56 am

    I have been using an old Leica with Tri-X for the past few years. I’d like to start shooting with color films. I purchased some film presets to get an idea of what to expect and which films I would like to start with. I know they are probably not perfect but hopefully close. I like the Fuji 160NS and Fuji 800Z but it looks like those are discontinued. I was hoping for a recommendation on similar alternatives. I like the color saturation I am seeing with those presets.

    Also, under what circumstances would I want to select Porta 160 or 400? I am thinking in terms of subjects and not available light.

    Thanks.

    Louis Foubare
    Louis Foubare
    Silver Member
    Posts: 286
    Re: Choosing Color Negative Film
    Reply #1 on: February 26, 2023 at 3:23 pm

    Would have answered this sooner, but just getting back into film myself. B&W for now however I am debating using Cinestill color film when I do start with color.

    I have shot some rolls and will start the development process next. Cinestill Monobath is my first try. If not satisfied with it then on to developer, stop and fixer plus Photo Flo at the end.

     

    As for finalizing my negatives, have decided not to go back to the enlarger route, but instead scan. I have a Skier light box and copy stand so will use my M11 to scan. Just image when the M11Mono comes out how good the mono scans will be. Excited to be alive.

    Mark D Segal
    Mark D Segal
    Silver Member
    Posts: 948
    Re: Choosing Color Negative Film
    Reply #2 on: March 21, 2023 at 5:30 pm

    I’m digging into my archives and doing a considerable amount of film digitizing using the set-up I described in my most recent article on this subject published on this website. I think your decision to go the digitization by camera route is well-founded Louis – using good enough equipment and comparing apples with apples it will deliver better quality than enlargers and scanners every time. I should add that the latest improvements to both Lightroom and Negative Lab Pro since the time I wrote that article have reinforced my view that from a technical perspective, this is THE way to go for post-capture processing. The tools have been improving dramatically making it easier to derive superior results from one version upgrade to the next. I intend to be writing more about this at an appropriate time to come. Meanwhile, responding to Michael’s concern about what film to use, from an IQ and post-processing perspective I would recommend selecting one that is fine-grained, unless you like film grain. Mitigating grain while preserving image detail remains one of the biggest challenges in a post-processing workflow, so starting with a fine-grain film is really helpful.

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