The end of film photography near?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Chip NoVaMac, Jan 12, 2006.

  1. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

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    #1
    Did a search and saw nothing about Nikon's announcement of the end of production of all but two 35mm film cameras; the F6 and the FM10.

    Can't say that I am surprised. I sold just two 35mm SLR cameras this past Holiday season.

    I am glad that the FM10 from Cosina will continue. A great student camera. I am surprised that the F6 was chosen over the F100.
     
  2. clayj macrumors 604

    clayj

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    #2
    What is the "resolution" of film, anyway? DPI, absolute resolution, whatever. And how does that compare to commercially-available digital cameras?

    I knew that digital cameras were catching up to film in terms of the amount of information captured in each frame, but I didn't realize they were quite so close already.

    Myself, I abandoned film long ago... it's too expensive and you have to pay for every shot, whether you like it or not. Digital is MUCH cheaper. But then again, I'm not any sort of professional photographer.
     
  3. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

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    #3

    I have seen the 20mp number passed around. But it is more than that. It is like trying to say whether slide or negative film is better. Or 35mm vs. MF or LF. Each has its own feel.
     
  4. e²Studios macrumors 68020

    e²Studios

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    #4
    I still love 35mm photography, the level of detail still cannot be beat, not even by my Canon 1D Mark III. Nowadays im quite weighted down.. I have the DSLR the SLR and the XL1... My family has told me when they see me coming in the door for a family event they keep wondering where the van with a huge mast and satellite is.

    On the everyday outings i at least have my DSC-T1 and at times a ZR-60 (set to wide screen mode of course) somewhere near by. One day i aspire to be as good as iGary at color correction...

    *starts cleaning lenses*

    Ed
     
  5. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

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    #5
    LOL

    After 1K+ images in SF this past summer for 6 days, friends and family are wondering why I just don't have a camera surgically implanted to my eye.
     
  6. ----Bowie---- macrumors regular

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  7. joker2 macrumors 6502a

    joker2

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    #7
    I don't think film cameras will quite ever disappear, but think they may become more of a niche market, something for professionals and enthusiasts. I'm already seeing that most of the point-and-shoot market is heading toward low-end digitals, even "disposable" cameras from CVS pharmacy are now digitals -- both still and movie. Granted, I think the "camcorder" is limited to 20 minutes, but that will eventually change, I think.
     
  8. technicolor macrumors 68000

    technicolor

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    #8
    I hope so!

    Didnt Kodak stop production on most of their papers as well?
     
  9. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

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    #9
    Just their B&W papers.
     
  10. joepunk macrumors 68030

    joepunk

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    #10
    I always thought that those disposable digital cameras were really just had film inside and the photo processor's just gave you a CD. Sadly, Walmart is the only place that I can find film for a low price. I will still continue to use film if only for special occasions.
     
  11. iEdd macrumors 68000

    iEdd

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    #11
    I was told by a guy in a camera shop that a digital camera with a res. of 6mpx was film quality. Maybe at 6x4" prints, but an article I read awhile back suggested at least 12, if not 20mpx is needed for film quality.
     
  12. ibilly macrumors regular

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    #12
    I'd sat somewhere between 10 and 15 MP. In a fairly recent article, the Canon EOS 1Ds Mk II (1D or 1Ds?) beat the resolving power of 200 speed premium film. It's the highest resolution dSLR out there, at a whopping 16.7 MP. In the test, both cameras were fired at the same time, and primo Canon L lenses were used on both cameras.

    It was close, but the digital was clearly better.

    Another note: digital has pikels, film had blob like grains. I believe taht Kodak uses T shaped grains. Compairing the two is difficult when splitting hairs over image clarity. Also, the grain size varies greatly with film speed. In the past, films slower than ISO 50 were common. Nowadays, your disposable comes with 800 pre-loaded.
     
  13. dogbone macrumors 68020

    dogbone

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    #13
    The end of film photography near?


    Think....vinyl records.
     
  14. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

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    #14

    If low price is your only need, then take what you can get from Walmart. Most photo stores have a great selection of all films depending on your needs or desires. Price alone is not the only criteria. Grain structure, color, contrast are many other factors for those that have tried other films.

    One can not directly compare film to digital. Much like one can not compare large format to 35mm. We have a 24x36 print from the Nikon D50 in our shop, that viewed from a proper distance - looks very sharp and detailed. Looking t it close one can see that it is digital. Much like looking at similar prints from 35mm or medium format. There will be a difference there too.

    What are vinyl records???!!! :D
     
  15. e²Studios macrumors 68020

    e²Studios

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    #15
    I have the 1Ds Mk III (L Series Lense), I took a photo from the same angle same place same light, etc. The SLR was a 1nRS, L series Lense and had Kodak Portra 160 and then Portra 400 NC 35mm film loaded and I could clearly tell the difference between them. Yes digital has come a long way but it still cannot match what 35mm can get you.

    Im sure the day will come when digital may be able to match 35mm but that time isnt here yet. I like the instant gratification of digital, but i still love using my 35mm SLR whenever i get the chance.

    The quality of a 35mm shot is not only in the type of film you use, optics, that kodak max and other consumer stuff is crap and if you are going to compare a professional digital camera to a SLR you need to use a pro 35mm SLR, professional film and just as important let a professional with experience process the film.

    Film wins hands down :)

    Ed
     
  16. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

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    #16
    It may win hands down but for the majority of people the battle is already over.

    And while pro-level digital SLRs are still prohibitively expensive for many people, the rate of technological progress is such that within 5-10 years the point of this discussion will be moot. Anyone remember the cost of a 4mp camera 6 or so years ago? Now camera-phones are getting close to that and while there are physical and cost restraints on optics, the rate of progress has been staggering.

    Of course, there will be those who will continue to use film as there are those who still dabble in setting cold type for letterpress but it will be relegated to a fringe activity for those who still have access to a darkroom which will always be a magical place to be in (past Ilford fan here).

    I think the analogy of vinyl records is too conservative. In 20 years' time, wax cylinders would be a more appropriate analogy.
     
  17. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #17
    Some would still argue that vinyl is still superior in sound quality to cd's. Somehow I don't think that wedding photographers will ditch the film just yet.
     
  18. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #18
    Those people spend exhorbitant prices for tube equipment, too, when they can't hear the difference most likely.

    I think everyone has heard my story of working for 6 hours to repair one film negative and how it felt really negative to do that. I have two year old film in my 35mm camera and don't care. The thing does a great job but digital cameras are good now--at all levels.

    Obviously, you can't take a $99 digital camera and replace a 35mm SLR but, if you look back at the cameras that took 620, 126, 110, or APS film, in most cases the digital camera wins easily.

    For Nikon to put nails in the 35mm coffin is surprising but their digital lineup is becoming pretty good. Other companies will take longer, just because they'd consider taking up the slack that Nikon have left. I think that it's a good decision to let go of film, especially at the rate that digital technology is improving.
     
  19. pseudobrit macrumors 68040

    pseudobrit

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    #19
    Pro level 35mm stuff will take 50MP to get it right.

    Average user stuff will take about 10-15MP to nail down 35mm quality. I'd say the price/performance of current 8MP is breathing down its neck.

    Large format 8x10 film would take up close to a gigapixel. :eek:
     
  20. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

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    #20
    Do Digital Back cameras not count as dSLR? I've seen whopping 22MP Digital Back cameras and my guess is that there are much higher resolution ones.

    Film will always be here but digital is taking over. its like renewable energy vs. fossil fuels. Renewable costs more to start off with (dSLR camera's cost a bomb compared to film) but the running costs are less, fossil fuels are cheap but have a high running cost.

    Me? I prefer Digital. just that I'm new to photography and don't have the money to splash around experimenting with shots. perhaps when I know what I'm doing I'll get a film SLR. but not until then.
     
  21. Lau Guest

    #21
    I still love the old film cameras, but I use digital so much more often these days just because it's convenient.

    Having said that, my £350 digital camera still can't match my £50 Pentax SLR (old screw thread lenses, etc) for quality of photos. For a beginner, I'd still recommend an old manual SLR, as film means you think more carefully about each shot, and I definitely take better digital photos having used a manual SLR in the past.
     
  22. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #22
    except real Pro equipment i don't see any reason to own films anymore... and i guess over the next few years it will disappear more and more


    for the MP amounts i think i've read something along 39 MP for the new Hasselblad ... but after all who can afford a Hasselblad ;) even i as somebody who doesn't own a camera know that i don't have to look at the prices...
     
  23. kwajo.com macrumors 6502a

    kwajo.com

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    #23
    you folks have to remember that it's not just the resolution of film, but the resolving power of each area of the frame. Sure a lot of consumer cameras have 6,7,8,9 or more megapixels, but they still have very small frames and don't have anywhere near the resolving power of a 6 MP camera with a APS or 35mm sized sensor. That's the main reason large and medium format cameras are so good, they have a lot of physical area for the light to hit so you get details and very accurate light recording. I say it's impossible for a consumer camera to equal the quality of film if they have the same sized sensors as they do now, which are being crammed with more and more tiny pixel and suffer form diminishing returns. on the other hand, a 35mm sized dSLP sensor could equal film quality at maybe 20 or 30 MPs, but they will never have the same feel, simply because they react differently to light. I'm not saying one will end up better than the other, but there will be a personal taste issue.

    as for myself I have moved to digital for the most part because of the cost savings, but I do own a couple film SLRs that I very much enjoy, the experience just seems more organic and enjoyable, and the pictures look fantastic
     
  24. Lau Guest

    #24
    Also, I think if you blow up a 35mm negative a too big, there's a softness or a graininess to it that maybe isn't as crisp, but still looks good. An digital picture only needs to be a half a centimetre too big, and the pixels look bloody awful. Even some shots at the right size seem a bit over sharp and pixelly in digital.

    Does anyone else have a complete phobia of jaggedy pixels? Ugh <shudder>.
     
  25. joepunk macrumors 68030

    joepunk

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    #25
    *raises hand* Here. Especially when looking at posters on the campus walls and seeing pixelated photos or B/W hand drawings. If those student designers at the Associated Students Publicity Center are going to use a photo that looks pixelated at 11x17, IMO turn it into a halftone for fracks sake.
     

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