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05-03-2007, 08:00 PM   #1
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120 Negative Film Recommendations?

I just got myself a 645N and a 75mm FA lens for it, and I was wondering what film to use in it. There seems to be a wide variety of negative films from both Kodak and Fuji. What are your recommendations and experiences with different films?


EDIT: I did manage to get some Kodak Porta 160VC locally, which is for more vibrant colors according to the kodak website. I assum that this means greater color saturation. Any color cast to this film? How is the grain? Thanks.


Last edited by HawaiianOnline; 05-03-2007 at 08:02 PM. Reason: Did not want to double post
05-04-2007, 01:25 AM   #2
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If you look in magazines like Outdoor Photographer, many of their best shots have been made with Pentax 645 and 67 cameras using Fuji Velvia and Provia film, which are slide films. Jeff Grant, an Australian landscape photographer uses Fuji Astia slide film. I've used their Fuji Pro 160-series negative films with great success on my rangefinders. Many prefer the warmth and vividness of Fuji over other film brands and have been turned off by Kodak's lukewarm commitment to film over the last few years. Another option, but one I've not used except with B & W film, is Ilford.
Rob W
05-04-2007, 03:12 AM   #3
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Hullo HawaiianOnline!
Have been using 645/67 for quite somtime before recently dabbling in digital. These less than fullframe SLRs are outclassed at the weighing-in itself! I quite agree with macdaddy's comments above. Fujichrome Provia (Velvia if you want more contrast/saturation) will really make you happy. Make sure you have access to a reliable/consistent lab and a good film scanner.
Maybe you should consider investing(?!) in some lenses before the introduction of the digital 645 has 645/67 lens prices shooting the sky.
The very best.
Bharat
05-05-2007, 01:30 AM   #4
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Thanks for the opinions! I bought it with the SMC PENTAX-FA 645 75mm f/2.8 and an thinking about getting the SMCP-FA 645 45mm F2.8 and SMC PENTAX-A 645 120mm f/4 macro lenses.

Went out with it today and used 2 rolls of Portra 160VC. Unfortunately, I've only been able to find that particular film around here. If I want to get Velvia or the Fuji Pro films, I guess I'll have to order it. The lab told me that I'll get them back tomorrow. So I am anxiously awaiting the results.

05-07-2007, 08:50 PM   #5
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I find the 45mm 2.8 to be a bit soft on my 645n, the FA 75mm 2.8 very sharp, the 200mm 4 very nice and the A* 300mm 4 extremely sharp.

Tom
05-08-2007, 01:52 AM   #6
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Depends what your doing with the negative. If your just going to get lab prints straight from the neg then something quite contrasty & saturated like Fuji Reala. If your scanning then you can bump up the saturation & contrast in Photoshop - I use Fuji Pro 400H most of the time in the UK because I often need the extra speed.
05-26-2007, 10:54 AM   #7
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No doubt the Fuji Velvia and Provia are great films and worth using, even if you must order it. That is if you can deal with the positives. They really shine if you use them to scan to a digital file.

If you ever do portraits, weddings, events or anything were people are the main subject, I recommend Kodak Porta160-NC and 400-NC. These are the Natural Color versions of the Porta films. They do very nicely with skin tones. The Vivid Color and the Fuji (almost all of them) saturate the reds too much to be pleasant for skin tones. Of course, this is just my opinion and others may like other stocks better.
06-04-2007, 10:46 PM   #8
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I just got a 645N too

Any suggestion on B&W 120 film??

I have done some B&Wdarkroom beofre so would like to do that again (6 USD per hour at the local rental lab !!! )

Thanks in advance


Thanks

06-05-2007, 05:58 AM   #9
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While we're on the subject of 120 film, which I have just recently started using for the first time in my life.....

Does anyone know if the frame number markings for all the various image sizes are still printed on the backing paper? Specifically on Fuji films?

I have run a couple of rolls through a 1951 Aires Reflex YII TLR (which for some odd reason has a green window instead of a red one) and when I went by the numbers that lined up with the window I got only 8 shots. So I assume that they were the markings for 6x9 negatives. Problem is, the TLR is, of course, 6x6. Solution so far has been to do some measuring and figure out that 1 1/2 turns of the winding knob ought to advance film at least 7cm at first, and a progressively greater amount as the take-up spool fattens up with exposed film. I figure I ought to get at least a couple more exposures that way. I won't even talk about what that damnedable green window did to ISO 400 film.

I'm also using 120 on a 1930ish Kodak Hawkeye Cartridge Brownie Model C, which takes 6x9 negatives. The numbers line up, but not having finished the first roll yet I have no way of knowing how it is going. Should still have about 4 exposures left out of 8.
06-05-2007, 06:03 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by dantuyhoa Quote
Any suggestion on B&W 120 film??
Any species of ilford would be fine. There is also a few types of kodak b/w that isnt too bad (in my experience)
06-05-2007, 06:08 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mike Cash Quote
Does anyone know if the frame number markings for all the various image sizes are still printed on the backing paper? Specifically on Fuji films?
They should be. But my yashica mat doesnt have a frame counter window on the back, just a dial thing on the side

QuoteOriginally posted by Mike Cash Quote
I have run a couple of rolls through a 1951 Aires Reflex YII TLR (which for some odd reason has a green window instead of a red one) and when I went by the numbers that lined up with the window I got only 8 shots. So I assume that they were the markings for 6x9 negatives. Problem is, the TLR is, of course, 6x6.
hmm... is the window on the right hand side of the back part of the camera? Sort of just under the middle?

We have run a few rolls through my dads Yashica A that has a window and it has lined up with all the numbers on the 120 film (we have used several types of kodak as well as ilford)

Dont worry about the colour of that window. The backing paper on 120 is completely light proof. You would only start to have problems if the film wasnt winding on tightly and there was some slack in the film.
06-05-2007, 09:16 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by HawaiianOnline Quote
I just got myself a 645N and a 75mm FA lens for it, and I was wondering what film to use in it. There seems to be a wide variety of negative films from both Kodak and Fuji. What are your recommendations and experiences with different films?


EDIT: I did manage to get some Kodak Porta 160VC locally, which is for more vibrant colors according to the kodak website. I assum that this means greater color saturation. Any color cast to this film? How is the grain? Thanks.
Kodak 160VC is what I use in both my 645 and 35mm cameras. The colors are great and there is virtually no grain- I love the film!

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06-06-2007, 12:11 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mo Quote
Kodak 160VC is what I use in both my 645 and 35mm cameras. The colors are great and there is virtually no grain- I love the film!
I agree, I used 5 rolls of Kodak 160VC and it looks really nice after scanning it on an Epson 4490 using the latest version of vuescan. MF film is so fun. Totally different pace compared to digital, and even to the 35mm film. No loading from the card or one hour developing here. Even the scans take much longer, and such beautiful and big negatives. I've only been able to use some Fuji Astia 100F as far as positive film goes, and it's kind of disappointing. I'm getting ready to go to Maui in a couple of days, and I've got a few rolls of Velvia 100F & 100, Reala 100, Pro 160S, Kodak Ektachrome 64, and some Kodak 160NC. I'm going to pick up some more 160VC tomorrow. This is so much fun!
06-06-2007, 05:34 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by -spam- Quote
They should be. But my yashica mat doesnt have a frame counter window on the back, just a dial thing on the side
The camera is of a vintage not to have any sort of frame counter. Just the window.


QuoteQuote:
hmm... is the window on the right hand side of the back part of the camera? Sort of just under the middle?
Get this....it is on the bottom, next to the tripod screw. Talk about poor design....

QuoteQuote:
Dont worry about the colour of that window. The backing paper on 120 is completely light proof. You would only start to have problems if the film wasnt winding on tightly and there was some slack in the film.
Oh, the very first roll I ran through it showed some very heavy green areas from the window. It showed through the paper alright. Now I am limiting it to ISO 100 film and keeping the slide over the window shut at all times. Just going by counting turns on the crank.

I might look at picking up a Yashica (D or 124G) in the future. It would be nice to have a frame counter and the option of using 220 film, which is primarily what my local shop keeps in stock.
06-08-2007, 01:23 AM   #15
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My favorite 120 color negative film is Fuji Pro 800z. This is a very sharp film with dazzling color. Its high sensitivity helps a lot in dimly lighted places yet its grain is absolutely invisible. And it is available in 220 rolls for these situations when you don't want to reload too often.

Cheers,
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