PONF

Well, the Reflex won’t be the only new 35mm SLR on the block, it seems (and evidently I missed all the big news with this, because the news broke around the same time).  Also coming soon will be the PONF Camera – Photography on Film is what it’s supposed to stand for.  For more information you can check out their website, https://ponfcamera.com. They have a WordPress blog too, which it might interest you to follow.

Just like the Reflex, they’ll have an interchangeable back, but they’re planning on having a 35mm back and a digital back.  That way a photographer can use the same camera to digitize his/her film–I have no idea what other uses it could have…

Pictures and other thoughts are available here.

So the big question for me, because I’ve heard rumblings about this with the Reflex, is will the camera automatically function with M42 lenses, or will I have to manually stop them down?  Because I could still buy a Bessaflex.  An even better question for me personally, regarding previous thoughts, is if I should continue putting money into the M42 system or if it’s time to start seriously migrating to K-mount.  Or just dump Pentax altogether and get myself a Nikon F2.  I’m at a crossroads and I don’t know which direction is the right one yet.  I of course want to help support new camera makers, but they need to provide the right features on their cameras for me to want to buy it.

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The price is reasonable!

I think when I first was looking into shooting bulk rolls for the intermediate photo class Tri-X in 100ft rolls were going for around $125 which made it cheaper to shoot regular 36exp rolls.  I don’t know exactly when that changed but I’m happy to see it!  Every online retailer I’ve looked at so far is asking $76.5 for a 100ft bulk roll of Tri-X!

It’s almost enough to make me get a darkroom set up!  I’m in the process of finishing my photography minor with a 3D studio class, but if I take another photo class before I graduate you can bet I’ll take advantage of this!

More Kodak super 8 camera news from CES2018

Yup, two years later and it still isn’t out.  And the price has kept going up.  Honestly it’s been extremely frustrating with all the delays and price increases.  I’ll be honest, I was much more into this camera when it was going to be $400-750.  Right now they say it’ll retail somewhere around $2000-2500, with a release date of Summer 2018.  But it does officially exist:

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Although I still want one bad, anymore I’ll have to wait and see just what the final price will be because it seems that even Kodak employees don’t have a final answer.  But if this thing’s gonna cost $2500 I don’t see how I or other students would be able to afford it.  The universities should be able to, though…I hope I can borrow one from mine!

One good thing in there, it seems that if you’re a fan of developing your own movie film (and I’ve met a few who are), you’re not automatically required to buy processing/scanning with the super 8 cartridge so I see that as a plus.  Kodak’s online store has gone back and forth between offering and not offering 16mm and 35mm film, and the price of super 8 film randomly fluctuates, I haven’t seen it advertised at what it should be since summer of 2017.

Good news: Kodak brings back another film

This popped up in my facebook feed this morning.  If you needed further proof that Kodak is confident of the future of film, here it is!

Honestly I’ve never shot this film so I’m glad I’ll get another chance.  Supposedly it’ll be available in March, which means it’ll beat Ektachrome to market. And there’s part of the problem.

Will Kodak actually release it next month?  And where is Ektachrome?  I’m sure it’s a much harder process reformulating E6 films, but I’m getting exasperated having Kodak announce things and still not see anything actually released.  Yet.  Still waiting for the super 8 camera, still waiting for Ektachrome.  Kodak needs to start following through.  I’ll give them a chance but my patience is limited…

edit: They must be really sure of their release date, because all the retailers are accepting preorders!

 

Check out the Reflex, a new 35mm camera

This is everything I love: manual focus lenses, solid metal body, and some impressive new features like interchangeable film backs (like a medium format SLR) and interchangeable lens boards: M42, Pentax K, Canon FD, Nikon F, Olympus OM.  I suppose that these are all in the public domain now and this idea really intrigues me.  I do run across Zuiko glass from time to time and it might be time for me to start investing in some.  Also, it will have a 1/4000sec top shutter speed, plus aperture priority (though how they’ll do that on the M42 mount I don’t know yet).

 

Check out the Kickstarter campaign here.

So the downsides?  Price, for one.  I think if it were $400 I would be more interested, but £375 shipped is about $100 past that.  I don’t like that the electronic system would be powered by an internal rechargeable battery (same problem I have with the Kodak super 8 camera), it seems to me that if you’re doing a lot of shooting it should be possible to drop in new batteries as needed instead of having to find a USB charging slot.  Besides those two things I’m pretty excited about this camera.  The extra features it would give over every other SLR I own is extremely tempting and I’m trying to justify the expense…

edit: they were funded by the beginning of the third day.  Unfortunately I don’t think I can justify the expense right now, but I’ll be following their progress closely and definitely want to grab one of their cameras later on down the road!

Bad news and good news

So the bad news first: according to Japan Camera Hunter, Fuji is discontinuing 5-packs of all their 35mm slide films, plus Natura 1600 and large format Acros 100.  http://www.japancamerahunter.com/2017/10/film-news-fujifilm-end-nigh

Considering that a single roll of Velvia 100 costs $15 and a 5-pack costs $55, it will be costing $4 more per roll.  I’ll be stocking up as much as I can now because I certainly can’t afford a 25% increase and I’m sure neither can everyone else. Now this is only the 35mm, it seems medium (and large) format is safe for the moment.  It might be the beginning of the end, but we probably have a few years left.  Still, I’d say that by 2020 Fujifilm will be making film no more.

While I love Fuji slide film and will shoot it as long as I can, I hope that Ektachrome will be a tremendous success for Kodak and that it will have been reworked for increased longevity.  While Fuji slide film is supposed to be stable for 300 years, Ektachrome has a reputation for fading rather quickly, and this problem had better be addressed in the new formulation.

Also, I learned today that Cloutier Fotographic, local camera store #3 (and run by a friend of mine) will no longer be carrying film and darkroom supplies, due mostly to the bankruptcy of their distributor of Ilford products, but also because of Fuji’s announcement.  I try to support my local camera stores as much as possible, but honestly things like film, etc I’ve been getting from Freestyle Photo for quite a while.  I do hate that so much stuff is going online (especially as Cloutier just started carrying JCH Streetpan recently), but I’d rather that my dollar went further, and I’m really more interested in supporting the film manufacturers than I am brick and mortar stores that mark up the prices.

Now on to the good news: there’s a new black & white film company from Russia called Silberra, and they’re holding an Indiegogo campaign right now.  Please contribute if you can! https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/silberra-b-w-photographic-films#/

Also, don’t forget that the Reflex 35mm camera will be going onto Kickstarter November 7th (originally they said it would be yesterday but they pushed it back). For all the bad news, there are plenty of exciting things happening in the film world.

A new manual film camera?

Well here’s some more good news: a company called Reflex is making an all-new manual SLR, which would make it the first since Cosina-Voigtlander made the Bessaflex (which was what, 13-14 years ago?  Not quite as long as the article is claiming but whatever).  Their Kickstarter campaign will be going live in about two weeks, the original story is here: http://www.film-traveler.com/reflex-1st-new-manual-slr-25-years/

Like the article mentions already, the shots on their Instagram are taken with a Super-Takumar lens, so I do really hope that like the Bessaflex this is an M42 mount camera!  Of course, whether or not I can buy one, that will depend on the price.  I did just get a full CLA for the Spotmatic which cost me $120, meaning that the entire amount of money I paid for that camera body (including the battery) is somewhere around $137.  I doubt that a new manual camera would be less than $400, and also doubt that it will have the same build quality as a Spotmatic.  Hope I’m wrong though!