Anyone Still Using Film Rolls Cameras?

Healer Flame

macrumors 6502a
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Just wondering if anyone prefers or still using film rolls cameras over digital now days?

Its a pain taking pictures with the old film cameras:confused:.
First, you buy the expensive 24/36 Kodak film rolls, then very carefully without burning the film you have to insert it in the camera.

After its finished you have to pay again to process the film and also wait a few days :rolleyes:

Wow, it was time consuming and expensive to take pictures before digital cameras were introduces.
 

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macrumors Sandy Bridge
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Just wondering if anyone prefers or still using film rolls cameras over digital now days?

Its a pain taking pictures with the old film cameras:confused:.
First, you buy the expensive 24/36 Kodak film rolls, then very carefully without burning the film you have to insert it in the camera.

After its finished you have to pay again to process the film and also wait a few days :rolleyes:

Wow, it was time consuming and expensive to take pictures before digital cameras were introduces.
Yes, I do.

I still use (and, for now, prefer) to use film rolls in my film camera.
 

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macrumors 6502a
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Yes, I do.

I still use (and, for now, prefer) to use film rolls in my film camera.
Wow very interesting. So, is there any changes from 20 or 30 years ago? Like do you process it at home or shops?

Do you mind if i ask why you prefer film or digital ?
 

mollyc

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I am currently all digital but would like to buy a film camera within the next year. I grew up in the era of film, although I mostly only ever used point and shoot cameras. Now that I know how to shoot properly I would love to work with film on an occasional basis.
 
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bunnspecial

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35mm, 120, and 4x5 here. B&W gets processed at home, E-6 usually at a local lab(except sheets, which I have to do at home). What little C-41 I shoot gets processed at the lab. B&W is printed on an enlarger, while color is scanned.

Cameras like my F100 and F6 play along very nicely with my D800(and others) although I enjoy using older cameras also. Lately, my Hasselblad 500C has been my most used film camera.

If you're "burning" film when you load it into the camera, to quote the late Steve Jobs, "you're doing it wrong." On small Nikon film cameras like the FM/FM2 I can usually start on frame 00 and get 38 exposures. I rarely get less than 37.
 
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macrumors Sandy Bridge
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Wow very interesting. So, is there any changes from 20 or 30 years ago? Like do you process it at home or shops?
No, I don't process at home, and never did.

Re changes: Paradoxically, the quality of film available is excellent nowadays, or, rather, the market for cheap, poor-quality film has evaporated, - as most people use digital cameras - and all that remains is good quality - or, sometimes exceptionally good quality - film.

And the few companies that make film, have concentrated on producing very good quality (if a relatively limited range) film.

Other changes: The plethora of one hour photo shops that used to be seen on every high street have all but disappeared; there are a few, small, dedicated places where one can get film developed, but not many.

Professional quality film - especially black and white - needs to be sent away as local stores, even camera shops, don't develop it any longer - so, in some cases, it takes a lot more time to have film developed, than it did twenty years ago.

Do you mind if i ask why you prefer film or digital ?
A number of reasons.

Firstly, it took digital technology quite a few years to reach the standard of image/picture produced by a good quality SLR (or rangefinder); I never wanted a cheap digital camera, or to be part of the crowd that experimented with a new format, especially if that delivered an inferior quality product or image.

I understood the convenience; I just preferred quality.

Secondly, when digital cameras of the quality I would have been interested in finally made an appearance, they were massive monsters, incredibly large and heavy: I am a short, middle aged woman - I wanted a very good quality camera but not having to carry, - or stagger around under the weight of - what felt like rocks whenever I wished to venture out of doors to shoot a frame or two.

Thirdly, as mentioned above, paradoxically, the quality of products available for traditional photographers - such as film - improved exponentially.

I have often been struck by how the very best version of a particular product is designed just as that product is about to become obsolete (e.g. suits of armour - the design of which reached incredible sophistication - as gunpowder transformed warfare and replaced the older weaponry of swords, and bows and arrows; the development of the exquisitely beautiful - and powerfully fast - clipper sailing ships, just as steam replaced sail, and so on); anyway, the quality of film improved just as it fell out of use.

Fourthly, as some seriously good photographers made the move to digital, their stunning film equipment became available at affordable prices.

Around a decade ago, my Nikon F100 was stolen, and I debated at that time whether I should consider switching to digital or staying with film, but buying the sort of film camera I had always longed for.

I decided to stay with film, and make the move to Leica, as some seriously good Leica equipment - while still stupidly expensive - was now within reach and I had always liked the size, quality and sheer appeal of Leica.

My current camera is an exquisite Leica M6 TTL, a rangefinder, and it is beautifully ergonomic in my hand; small enough for me to carry easily (yet unobtrusively) yet sufficiently solid and beautifully constructed for it to not readily come to any harm.

And the lenses are superb; small, exquisitely engineered, fast, and phenomenal - I doubt that I will ever want to shoot with anything else, but may consider a switch to digital - with a Leica M10, - when funds permit.
 
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Healer Flame

macrumors 6502a
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The most disadvantage part of the film cameras is the shots are limited to 24 or 36 so every shot is very important and must be done with extra care.

If you're "burning" film when you load it into the camera,
Done it many times and i use to hate loading film in the camera.

I am using my Samsung Note 10+ camera for almost everything but am shopping around for a proper DSLR hopefully by xmas.
 

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macrumors Sandy Bridge
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The most disadvantage part of the film cameras is the shots are limited to 24 or 36 so every shot is very important and must be done with extra care.
Well, that means that you must "think" about how you compose (when studying art, in school, years ago, there was a section of the course called "pictorial composition") and each shot; you might shoot off two or three, but rarely more, of a specific group, or setting.

You think about composition, setting, angles and above all, you think about light, and how the light falls.

It is good training.

Anyway, when (or if) using a roll of 36, if you loaded it carefully (and properly), you could quite often (I used to be very good at this) get 38, or 39, shots per roll. It was very rare for me not to manage at least 37 shots per roll, but I often managed 38, and sometimes, 39.
 
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hawkeye_a

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And the lenses are superb; small, exquisitely engineered, fast, and phenomenal - I doubt that I will ever want to shoot with anything else, but may consider a switch to digital - with a Leica M10, - when funds permit.
They just announced the Leica SL2 a couple of days ago.... full-frame mirrorless. It's based on their new lens system, so you'd need a converter for all your M lenses. Costs as much as a used car, or course.
 

bunnspecial

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Done it many times and i use to hate loading film in the camera.
As I said, you're doing it wrong.

Not that I'd know anything about loading film into cameras, though. I've probably only shot about 50 or 60 rolls of 35mm in 2019(I'm down a bit from 10 years ago, when I'd do double that).
 

mollyc

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What if the target is not? Like people blinking, looking in the wrong direction or or or.....?




How so ?
Not everyone shoots portraits. For those of us who don't, limiting yourself to a roll of film or X number of shots have to be much more mindful and deliberate and actually think about the end result rather than just the shoot and spray method.
 

yaxomoxay

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Due to the expense and the required skills, it should force the photographer to focus on quality, which means that he/she should really get to know how light, contrast, etc. affects pictures. In other words, they should become acquainted with anything that is needed to take a good picture as there are way too many limiting factors.
 

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macrumors Sandy Bridge
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Not everyone shoots portraits. For those of us who don't, limiting yourself to a roll of film or X number of shots have to be much more mindful and deliberate and actually think about the end result rather than just the shoot and spray method.
Exactly.

If shooting portraits, I'd usually shoot two or three (never more than three) to deal with the blinking issue. It worked.

Ironically, and perversely, I'm a serious blinker myself, if and when photographed.
 

yaxomoxay

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What if the target is not? Like people blinking, looking in the wrong direction or or or.....?
Well, the photographer is not responsible for the behavior of the target the same way that the photographer can't control the sun. The photographer has to do his/her best to get the best picture out of the situation, based on whatever is happening. That's the challenge. If it doesn't work out, then it doesn't work out.
 
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macrumors Sandy Bridge
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They just announced the Leica SL2 a couple of days ago.... full-frame mirrorless. It's based on their new lens system, so you'd need a converter for all your M lenses. Costs as much as a used car, or course.
Lovely camera, but both too big (I love the physical size of my M6 camera, - I want this combination of small, and exceedingly well constructed - just as I love the SE iPhone) and too expensive for me.

Needless to say, I'll read the reviews with interest.
 
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Healer Flame

macrumors 6502a
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As I said, you're doing it wrong.

Not that I'd know anything about loading film into cameras, though. I've probably only shot about 50 or 60 rolls of 35mm in 2019(I'm down a bit from 10 years ago, when I'd do double that).
Yep, i was doing it wrong. But still find the whole old system bit annoying .

As soon as digital cameras came out i bought one but picture quality was rubbish because it was only 2 megapixel .
 

bunnspecial

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Modern 35mm cameras-and by modern I mean anything designed in the last 30 years or better-tend to be pretty hard to mess up(below-Nikon F4 introduced in 1988 with Kodak E100 introduced in 2018).

IMG_5706.jpg


If you want lots of opportunity for error, aside from a reverse-curl medium format camera, you can always go for a bottom-loading Leica or a clone of the same.
 

Healer Flame

macrumors 6502a
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Well, the photographer is not responsible for the behavior of the target the same way that the photographer can't control the sun.
Thats where digital cameras become handy because you can delete the bad pics and re shoot hundred times without having to worry how many shots you have left.

Battery was a pain too with the old system.
 

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macrumors Sandy Bridge
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.......

If you want lots of opportunity for error, aside from a reverse-curl medium format camera, you can always go for a bottom-loading Leica or a clone of the same.
Now, granted, yes, there you have me.

I love my Leica, but agree with you that loading the film is a bit of a pain, - er, challenge - which was not the case with the Nikons, or Pentax cameras I had owned earlier.
 

bunnspecial

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Now, granted, yes, there you have me.

I love my Leica, but agree with you that loading the film is a bit of a pain, - er, challenge - which was not the case with the Nikons, or Pentax cameras I had owned earlier.
Have you ever had the "pleasure" of loading something like a Leica IIIc? That's what I'm talking about with "bottom loading" ones-the old screw mount ones didn't even have the door on the back to help you with loading.

Basically, on those, you start by trimming the film to have a "Leica style" leader, which needs to have the "thin" portion a lot longer than modern film is cut(the manufacturers quit cutting that style leader, and went to the modern, more blunt style, in the 70s or 80s). Once your film is properly cut for loading in a Leica, you pull the bottom plate off the camera then take out the take-up spool. The leader gets hooked under a crude metal hook on the take-up spool, and then the film pulled out of the cartridge the exact amount indicated by a line drawing on the inside of the baseplate. You then shove the whole assembly up into the camera and hope that you don't pull the leader off the takeup spool while doing so. With the baseplate back on, you take up the slack in the rewind knob. You then fire off a few blank frames, watching the rewind knob every time you advance to make sure the leader hasn't slipped off. If it does, you open it all back up and keep going.

When I was still dabbling in screw mount Leicas(I've sold all but a Canon 7, which has a conventional hinged back) I'd generally load at home and only shoot one roll while I was out.
 
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macrumors Sandy Bridge
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Have you ever had the "pleasure" of loading something like a Leica IIIc? That's what I'm talking about with "bottom loading" ones-the old screw mount ones didn't even have the door on the back to help you with loading.

Basically, on those, you start by trimming the film to have a "Leica style" leader, which needs to have the "thin" portion a lot longer than modern film is cut(the manufacturers quit cutting that style leader, and went to the modern, more blunt style, in the 70s or 80s). Once your film is properly cut for loading in a Leica, you pull the bottom plate off the camera then take out the take-up spool. The leader gets hooked under a crude metal hook on the take-up spool, and then the film pulled out of the cartridge the exact amount indicated by a line drawing on the inside of the baseplate. You then shove the whole assembly up into the camera and hope that you don't pull the leader off the takeup spool while doing so. With the baseplate back on, you take up the slack in the rewind knob. You then fire off a few blank frames, watching the rewind knob every time you advance to make sure the leader hasn't slipped off. If it does, you open it all back up and keep going.

When I was still dabbling in screw mount Leicas(I've sold all but a Canon 7, which has a conventional hinged back) I'd generally load at home and only shoot one roll while I was out.
No, but I have read about it.

Purity and the preservation of tradition is one thing, but, even as a historian, I'd argue that sometimes, one can take it a bit far, for we can run the risk allowing modernity and easier ways of doing something - in.

However, compared with the utter ease of landing my Nikon F100, or F80, (or even my lovely Pentaxes), loading the Leica - shall we say, requires focus and close concentration.

And yes, while I always have a second roll to hand, most days, with the Leica, I'd confine myself to shooting whatever I had loaded in my room earlier that day.

Of course, this meant that there weren't that many redundant - or wasted - shots.