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06-09-2009, 11:11 PM   #1
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Newbie SLR film and film develop qestion

I'm currently a DSLR Pentax user, with all my manual lenses and a few SLR bodies. I want to give the ME Super a try on B/W film. I have a few question.

1) Where is the best and cheaper locate place(local photo shop store or big chain pharmacy) to have the film develop and scan to a CD or memory card. I'm not planning to have them print out, because i can do it on my printer and i might want to do some post editing.

2) What is a recommended film for B/W


06-09-2009, 11:28 PM   #2
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1) can't help you here. maybe some other new yorkers can give some advice.

2) since you won't be developing the pictures yourself, unless you find a dedicated/pro lab, it's going to be expensive and costly to shoot "true" b&w film (at least it is here). the good news is, there are two very good and readily available b&w film that can be developed at any film place: Kodak BW400CN and Ilford XP2 Super. Both are great and convenient films; either one would do.
06-09-2009, 11:31 PM   #3
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There are two different types of BW film. True BW that uses silver, and simulated BW that is more like colour film, but without the colour.

If you shoot the real stuff, most places will need to send it out to be developed. The simulated stuff can be developed with colour film, with the same process. This means it is usually cheaper and faster.

If you are just getting started, grab a role of Ilford XP2 and have it developed and scanned at you local one hour lab.

So you are not at the store looking for "simulated" BW film, ask them for BW that is developed with the C-41 process.

I hope I don't start a flame war: Real BW vs. Fake BW, will the fake stuff reduce our integrity?

Welcome to the film forum, and enjoy the ME Super!
06-09-2009, 11:36 PM   #4
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Thanx for the info. I just goolged up a bit, in the US, Walgreens Target and Costco can do cheap film to CD for $2 or so. Any one know the quality of image they scan.

06-10-2009, 05:21 AM   #5
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Get Ilford XP2 film, that can be processed anyhwere and you'll get good results.
I used to give it to Ritz Photo for processing/scanning with good results
06-10-2009, 05:40 AM   #6

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I also suggest Ilford XP2 super. it really is the best choice for C41 process B&W.
06-10-2009, 05:42 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by titrisol Quote
Get Ilford XP2 film, that can be processed anyhwere and you'll get good results.
I used to give it to Ritz Photo for processing/scanning with good results
Good luck finding any Ritz stores still open! Only one left open near me is over 25 miles away, when there used to be 6 in under that same distance.
06-14-2009, 04:46 PM   #8
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Kodak P3200

Hi, I am starting to really like P3200. I know there are some disadvantages, but I can take shots with available light that are difficult any other way. (not only in my ME Super, but also in my Minox which does not allow asa stretching) I think there is also an Ilford eq.

It is pretty much for indoor / evening use, but for the right application, it can be great.

Here is a useful lab in NY. Praus Productions Inc. []

My strategy is to have the film developed at a lab and do my own scans, so I picked up a canoscan 8800F. It is not perfect, but it is way better than I had before. (I am a beginner, not a pro like the rest of these guys)

06-14-2009, 04:51 PM   #9
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If it's worth the trouble for you, developing and scanning your own B&W film is cheap and easier than you think. No darkroom necessary. $350 and you have what you need, including a scanner. It's an upfront, out of pocket expense, but that's about 30 rolls of processing at at a lab. Food for though.

+1 for XP2 C41 process B&W film. It's good stuff.
06-14-2009, 05:01 PM   #10
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In the NY area, I tend to use CVS and Duane Reed for the ordinary CD ONLY dev+scan. If the cahsier doesn't know what they are doing, the cost is $2.99. If they do know what they are doing, the cost is $5.48. When you find a store that does good work and they know you, the results aren't half bad.

Also in NYC there are a bunch of minilabs, some better than others. Again, finding one that is convenient and clean is a matter of trying things out. (This by the way is another reason to start shooting, a lot, with cheap film: you learn the camera's behavior, and you find a decent cheap lab.)
06-14-2009, 07:25 PM   #11
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Another Ilford XP-2 happy user here as well. (I just ordered 10 packs of it)

As for Processing, I have found Target (in my area) to be great.
99cents processing, 99 cents for the cd and 69cents for the index card on their 24 hour service and request my scans be done at 300dpi OR i scan them myself.
06-15-2009, 03:13 AM   #12
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Ilford XP2 is convenient and cheap, but I wouldn't use it in preference to a true b&w film. It just doesn't have the elegant grain structure of a silver-based film. XP2 grain is more like a charcoal drawing or Chinese brush painting - not a bad thing in itself, but it gets tiresome after a while. I'd suggest you try Rollei Retro 100 or 400. It's cheap, comes in nice wooden boxes, and is very, very easy to develop at home using only the most basic equipment.

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