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Old 06-01-2017, 00:02   #1 (permalink)
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Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

To the delight of film enthusiasts across the globe, Eastman Kodak Company today announced plans to bring back one of its most iconic film stocks. Over the next 12 months, Kodak will be working to reformulate and manufacture KODAK EKTACHROME Film for both motion picture and still photography applications. Initial availability is expected in the fourth quarter of 2017.

KODAK EKTACHROME Film has a distinctive look that was the choice for generations of cinematographers before it was discontinued in 2012. The film is known for its extremely fine grain, clean colors, great tones and contrasts.

“It is such a privilege to reintroduce KODAK EKTRACHROME Film to the cinematography community,” said Steven Overman, Kodak’s chief marketing officer and president of the Consumer and Film Division. “We are seeing a broad resurgence of excitement about capturing images on film. Kodak is committed to continuing to manufacture film as an irreplaceable medium for image creators to capture their artistic vision. We are proud to help bring back this classic.”

Kodak will produce EKTACHROME at its film factory in Rochester, N.Y., and will market and distribute the Super 8 motion picture film version of EKTACHROME Film directly.

Kodak Alaris, an independent company since 2013, also plans to offer a still format KODAK PROFESSIONAL EKTACHROME Film for photographers in 135-36x format. KODAK PROFESSIONAL EKTACHROME Film is a color positive film, also known as “reversal,” “slide,” or “transparency” film. Unlike all of the other KODAK PROFESSIONAL Films available today, which are color negative films, EKTACHROME generates a positive image that can be viewed or projected once it is exposed and processed. This makes it ideal for high-resolution projection or presentations. It is also well suited for scanning and printing onto a range of professional-grade photographic media. Availability is expected in the fourth quarter of 2017.

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Old 06-01-2017, 01:58   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

I always preferred Kodachrome to Ektachrome; but if they bring back Infra Red Ekatachrome I'd be very happy. That's one colour film I would be prepared to use in 5x4! 35mm is too small a format for me.

It's still good news though, even if it isn't my "most missed" film as it indicates that Kodak see a future still exists for film.
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Old 09-01-2017, 05:46   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

Good for film guys. But this changes nothing for me.. I've officially sworn off film, and sold off things like my film scanner and film cameras.. All feet (one) in for digital, so to say..
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Old 09-01-2017, 15:12   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

I still have two film cameras but unused for over ten years; I have just not bothered to try to sell them. Nothing would get me back to film/darkroom.
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Old 10-01-2017, 01:20   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

It now seems that Kodak are investigating what it would take to bring back Kodachrome.

As for me, having compared the results from a 42 megapixel Sony a7rII and a 5x4 camera, I don't see me leaving film behind so long as I can physically use it.
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Old 11-01-2017, 14:38   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

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I still have two film cameras but unused for over ten years; I have just not bothered to try to sell them. Nothing would get me back to film/darkroom.
Dave, I am the same as you with film cameras, For all they are worth S/H it is hardly worth the hassle to get rid.
What I do have are boxes and boxes of slides and I don't know what to do with them other than take to the dump. I did have a scanner and projector and screen which I gave away years ago, nobody wanted them. It must be ten years or more since I looked at any of them.
Definitely would never go back to film. In my opinion you will never get as good quality as you get with Digital. If taken in RAW and properly processed in a good converter far exceeds any adjustments that could be made in the darkroom.
I will now await the film buffs to descend on me
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Old 11-01-2017, 20:12   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

Colin, couple of years ago I visited one of the few Monochrome Salons and had a chat with a small group of their club members. All had been regular film users. One had finally just bought a Nikon FF DSLR and was staggered at the performance and could not understand why he delayed so long. Two of them had been using film and digital in parallel for some years and one had remained entirely film. For the Salon, entries were grouped as silver or digital. I asked their views on film v digital and expected them to vote for film. What they actually all agreed on was that neither was better or worse but that they were different. They described the differences in appearance and indicated that for some subjects one can look better but for a different subject the reverse would be true. They also all agreed that the subject, composition and lighting were far more important than whether digital or silver.
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Old 11-01-2017, 20:30   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

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I will now await the film buffs to descend on me
I'm a film user, but I don't see any need to descend from Mount Olympus on a lowly digital user

One thing to bear in mind is that, just as not all digital cameras are equal (if they were, no-one would bother with full frame when 4/3 cameras are available!) so not all film cameras are equal. Or, better, not all film sizes are equal. At a guess, you've used 35mm, which is not withour reason called a "miniature" film. I'll happily concede that a FF digital camera will outperform 35mm. BUT - I moved onwards and upwards via 6x7 to 5x4, with an increase in film area compared to 35mm of 5 times (6x7) and 15x (5x4).

This will make the most difference with large prints, by which I mean greater than A3, and with the ability to crop. There are differences in quality between film and digital for various reasons, and to my eyes even a Sony a7r11 can't match a 5x4 black and white negative - although it comes close when using colour film in 6x7.

I believe in the club and competition world, there is a limit on print size which doen't apply to my prints - I go larger - and so my experience doesn't really contradict Dave's.

I'll just add that I am strongly tempted to move to a larger size, as I'm aware that I would get even better print quality if I did.
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Old 13-01-2017, 13:32   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

Stephen, I agree with your comments that a good big one will always look better than a good small one. But the difference will always be in how good a darkroom worker is the author?To make a quality print. The same applies to digital how skilful is the processor? A simple adjustment can make or break an image. But I would have to add that digital is a lot more convenient and quicker than working in a darkroom as one can quickly go back a bit and make changes at no expense. There was an old gentleman a brilliant darkroom worker in my camera club who like you worked in large format cameras and would think nothing of using a whole box of 20x16 paper just to get one good print.
On a final point remember the old Hollywood B&W photos of the film stars? To my mind nothing has ever equalled the quality of these images since that time, no idea why.
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Old 14-01-2017, 21:13   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

I'm afraid I'm hybrid - I use film as giving the best starting point, but my darkroom skills were never up to the job of consistently producing top quality prints. There were a number of reasons why this was so, which we needn't go in to. I found after fracturing my elbow and being unable to manipulate an enlarger to safely load a negative with one hand, and after getting a printer that could produce good black and white prints, that I could achieve far better results from a scanned negative than I could from a wet printed one.

I could suggest a few reasons for the old Hollywood portraits having a quality you don't see now: use of ortho film (relatively insensitive to red, so dark lips); use of large format cameras (think 300mm lens as a standard focal length, with the depth of field at portrait distances that this implies); the necessity to "hold that pose" and "hold that exact position" for the time it took to insert a film holder in the (focussed) camera, withdraw the darkslide and make the exposure.

You could try to replicate this by using an 85mm f/1.2 or 50mm f/1.2 lens (depending on sensor size), a blue filter, and make the exposure via the self timer to introduce the delay. It might be an interesting experiment.
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Old 15-01-2017, 13:15   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

Stephen is right that club, national and international competitions limit the print size to around A3. In practice to provide a reasonable border on a 500 by 400mm board, the print size is slightly less than A3. On the other hand if you were in the professional world or selling images in a gallery, you would need larger prints and correspondingly higher quality. Of course many Club photographers (and non-Club) do not normally print and display their images on a computer screen or projector at a resolution far less than most cameras capture.

At my club, we had a presentation by a professional portrait photographer who mention the Holllywood era of the 1930's and 1940's. After the image capture by the photographer, a specialist re-toucher took over to "improve" the images. We were told that the extent of the retouching was much more extensive then than would be considered acceptable now.
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Old 15-01-2017, 14:35   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

Interesting thread.
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Old 17-01-2017, 00:36   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

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Stephen, I agree with your comments that a good big one will always look better than a good small one. But the difference will always be in how good a darkroom worker is the author?
Just revisiting the thread to pick up on this point. In the hands of the same printer, working to the same standards (however high or low) the smaller degree of enlargement needed for a large print from 5x4 and 35mm will always mean that the 5x4 print will have greater sharpness and detail, smoother tones and less visible grain. A 20x16" print from 5x4 will exhibit the same technical imperfections due to enlargement as a 4x6" print from 35mm - which just happens to be an old-style Enprint.

Larger negatives mean that you can reduce your standards and still get the same technical quality. Producing an artistic print is therefore simpler from a big negative, in that the technical side will to a large (no pun intended) extent take care of itself. The same naturally applies to scans from negatives - a lack of resolution in the scanner won't be exposed at the small magnifications needed to make a big print.

On time to produce a print - Edward Weston could take three days to produce one of his 10x8 contact prints. Possibly longer - it's just that his son found it a trifle tedious when he was assisting and mentioned the three days figure. I wonder if the ease of digital could work the other way, as it's so simple to make an extremely small local adjustment that would be out of the question in a conventional darkroom. Could this mean that a truly careful and obsessive worker could actually take far longer due to micromanagement of the tones?
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Old 18-01-2017, 16:02   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

Stephen, The answer to your question with a question. How long is a bit of string ?.
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Old 18-01-2017, 19:28   #15 (permalink)
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Re: Kodak to bring back Ektachrome

If we define the length as the shortest distance between the two ends, then the answer is, of course, zero in every case (no-one ever said that the string had to be taught, and you can curve the ends back on themselves).
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