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Is Film Dead?

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- My girlfriend is peeved about losing the crisper drawers in our fridge.

 

Mine was too, so I got a medium sized freezer...but now that is full too ( Techpan, APX 25, KM-25, KR-64 and KL-200 ) so I am back in the crisper and the freezer again with a few hundred rolls..:-)

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My girlfriend is peeved about losing the crisper drawers in our fridge.

 

You'll probably find they've been pushed to the back behind that old jar of mayonnaise.

 

In the meantime I suppose she's got used to the less crisp ones.

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Now don't read the below wrong for I own a 1DS3 and a M8... but I also have a 612/7 technorama and refused to sell my M6 (she tried to persuade me).

 

I'm not so sure that film iss dead, I would hasten to say that it's becoming rather "in vogue" in certain circles.

 

The problem with a digital life is humans hanker after, and are, analogue. The best watch in the world is still a Rolex, not a electonic circuit in sight. But these are masterpieces and everybody must learn first - the best method to learn in the unambigious 0 or 1.

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I work with camera and photofinishing dealers. For decades, the Lab in the back of the shop generated the money that allowed the store to stay in business. The camera sales were a nice to have thing, but didn't support the store. The death of your local camera store, and the closure of Mom and Pop labs is due to the movement of people to go to digital over film.

 

Is Film dead. About the same a vinyl LP's are. Those who crave the medium, over the music have kept some specialty stores alive, but it is almost impossible to stroll into a store that sells the latest music to have an LP sitting on their shelf, or orderable for that matter. While some of the Hip Hop DJ's like LP's, I think it could be proclaimed as dead.

 

Look at VHS tape. As a video producer, I work with a tape winding company. They make the tapes that are a certain length. He tells me there is only one manufacturer of tape in the world, and he is having a hard time getting it. He still sells some of it, but the majority of his sales are blank DVD. He really only sells Tape to a few Casino and security companies, who have not spent the money to move to digital yet. I would proclaim VHS as Dead.

 

I am guessing that over 95% of people have made the switch to digital photography, leaving film behind. Personally, all I have left that shoots film is a Pentax point and shoot that I bought some 10 years ago. I also have a film based underwater camera, but I also own a couple of underwater housings for some current digital cameras. Sometimes I think about buying something like an M7 or a Nikon F6, just to have one for my collection of cameras. I really couldn't imagine using them for my day to day life, either in the studio, or personally.

 

Is Film Dead..... Most likely. Little development on new formulations are being created, and labs are also closing. Pro's are moving to digital, either because their clients are telling them to, or the workflow is better for them. Canon's 21 mp 35mm camera produces results that rival medium format by many accounts. It's only a matter of time before that level of resolution is available to the average SLR pro and hobbiest. Point and Shoots are now under $200 that provide pretty good results. Unfortunately the younger generation thinks the quality of Cell Phone cameras are good enough, and the web has replaced paper for showing and sharing photos.

 

I've been getting a kick out of the debates raging over the D3, vs the Canon 5D, vs the Canon 1Ds Mark III. Everything is being judged by images compressed to nothing on the internet. I kind of think the camera is supose to be judged by how the finished print looks like.

 

Sorry for being so long. I guess I would say I think film is close to death.

 

DBK

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Not quite dead - I still have K64 in my M3 .. but in my case rather comatose.....

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With film usage on a steady decline, which it undeniably is, I can't help wonder how much longer good scanners will be available. For several years, new and better models were being introduced on a regular basis, but it's been quite some time since any manufacturer I'm aware of has brought one out. I also haven't seen anybody trying to market new loupes or lightboxes lately.

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... Is Film dead. About the same a vinyl LP's are. Those who crave the medium, over the music have kept some specialty stores alive, but it is almost impossible to stroll into a store that sells the latest music to have an LP sitting on their shelf, or orderable for that matter. While some of the Hip Hop DJ's like LP's, I think it could be proclaimed as dead.....DBK

 

Interesting analogy. But vinyl records are far from dead. I read that last year vinyl sales increased, while CD sales plummeted. (Digital music sales really increased.) There are tons of sources of new and used vinyl records, both internet and bricks and mortar. With CDs, perhaps like many digital cameras, convenience was the thing. But MP3s have proven even more convenient. Perhaps like cellphone cameras eventually.

 

I just like film better, and I'm glad it's not dead.

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...The best watch in the world is still a Rolex...

 

i appreciate the point you're trying to make, but please don't think the above is true.

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i don't care about my local photo store. i wish it would go out of business soon, because the irony is that he's probably killing film to people with his idiotic prices. b&h, adorama stock plenty of cheap film. the local guy charges $7+ per roll and treats you like he's doing you a favor. same guy is also selling 1500$ M3's that are beat to hell. when i told him that was quiet a lot he said "maybe you should stick to your nikon". i didn't even bother to ask how much he charges for film development because i'd probably have said something rude in return and he surely doesn't beat $5.36 that walgreens charges to develop and scan a roll. for slides there are plenty of fuji mailers available for under $5.

 

film will be dead when no one makes it anymore, until then, it's not dead. call it in-decline but it really isn't dead.

 

 

I work with camera and photofinishing dealers. For decades, the Lab in the back of the shop generated the money that allowed the store to stay in business. The camera sales were a nice to have thing, but didn't support the store. The death of your local camera store, and the closure of Mom and Pop labs is due to the movement of people to go to digital over film.

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film will be dead when no one makes it anymore, until then, it's not dead. call it in-decline but it really isn't dead.

 

And even that is debatable. Rodinal, Technidol and other chemicals stay good if un opened for decades. Photographer's Formulary keeps the recipes out there, providing the "Homeland Assinine Act" does not further preclude the purchase of the basic stuff.

 

In my lead lined freezer, low speed black and white films could possibly outlive me if I were to never use them.

 

I think that is the bottom line: film could very well outlive the photographers who like to use them.

 

But, lately, I have met increasing numbers of youth who want to shoot film because they are, and I quote: "Sick and tired of every part of their lives being dealt with on a bloody computer".

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But, lately, I have met increasing numbers of youth who want to shoot film because they are, and I quote: "Sick and tired of every part of their lives being dealt with on a bloody computer".

 

AMEN to that!!!!!

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Interesting analogy. But vinyl records are far from dead. I read that last year vinyl sales increased, while CD sales plummeted. (Digital music sales really increased.) There are tons of sources of new and used vinyl records, both internet and bricks and mortar. With CDs, perhaps like many digital cameras, convenience was the thing. But MP3s have proven even more convenient. Perhaps like cellphone cameras eventually.

 

I just like film better, and I'm glad it's not dead.

 

I still buy used vinyl and there is no CD system on the market that can compete with my vinyl system. Not for the masses at the cost for high end vinyl playback but the best nontheless IMHO. YMMV

 

And guys like Neil Young still bring out the first release of a new album on vinyl, not CD.

 

Film is not dead but like vinyl, not for the masses any longer. Not when you can buy a high quality point and shoot like the Ricoh GRD II and be in control of your own output.

 

Woody

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I'm not too worried about film, I'm more concerned about future supplies of film scanners should mine break down sometime.

 

I foresee film processing houses disappearing in some cities, but this does not bother me personally

as I prefer developing my own B&W films and scanning the "picks" only.

 

Using film cameras gives me a most pleasant break from using digital, although it's obvious to see all the merits of a good digital print!

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Is Film dead. About the same a vinyl LP's are..........................

Look at VHS tape. As a video producer, I work with a tape winding company. They make the tapes that are a certain length. He tells me there is only one manufacturer of tape in the world, and he is having a hard time getting it. He still sells some of it, but the majority of his sales are blank DVD. He really only sells Tape to a few Casino and security companies, who have not spent the money to move to digital yet. I would proclaim VHS as Dead.

 

CD's and LP's offer something different to each other. A good LP played on a high end audio system will always sound better that a CD but the average punter isn't interested and only wants something that makes a sound. In fact CD's are already on the decline as most people now download MP3's which are even more compressed than CD's. Convenience over quality rules.

 

The example of VHS v DVD isn't valid. There is nothing that VHS offers which is an advantage over a DVD therefore its fair to assume that the VHS recorder and tapes will soon be a thing of the past.

 

Film is different because it offers a totally different approach and end result to digital. That's why it will always exist.

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Is Film dead. About the same a vinyl LP's are. Those who crave the medium, over the music have kept some specialty stores alive, but it is almost impossible to stroll into a store that sells the latest music to have an LP sitting on their shelf, or orderable for that matter. While some of the Hip Hop DJ's like LP's, I think it could be proclaimed as dead.

 

Look at VHS tape. As a video producer, I work with a tape winding company. They make the tapes that are a certain length. He tells me there is only one manufacturer of tape in the world, and he is having a hard time getting it. He still sells some of it, but the majority of his sales are blank DVD. He really only sells Tape to a few Casino and security companies, who have not spent the money to move to digital yet. I would proclaim VHS as Dead.

 

Equating film to vinyl is not a useful analogy because the pro-to-amateur user ratio is inverted between the two. There are similarities - both represent niche markets, both are "mature" products in the eyes of their respective industries.

 

For all the benefits it brings, most professional photographers have rightly moved from film to a digital workflow. However there remains a substantial worldwide community of professional DJ's and producers who still spin and master for vinyl. Not only for Hip Hop, but House, Breakbeats, Minimal, Drum & Bass, Tech Step, that catch-all phrase - Techno, and others too numerous (and specialized) to mention. Audiophile aficionados are in the minority here. The dance music arena too is changing, but the larger "threat" to vinyl is the same threat posed to CD-based DJ's - the emergence of laptop-based performance software and the new approaches to mixing and arrangement it makes possible.

 

I absolutely agree that VHS tape is dead. The difference here is that no one laments this "loss". Has anyone ever heard someone speak of "That great picture quality" or "The awesome sound reproduction" of a VHS tape?

 

In the long run, film will become a boutique commodity. Even as the major manufacturers bow out of the market, I imagine that equivalents of Photographer's Formulary will emerge to service the demand for supplies, even if innovation in the processes ceases altogether at some point. Such is the way of things.

 

Respectfully,

 

 

-J.

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i appreciate the point you're trying to make, but please don't think the above is true.

Ok - just substitute Brequet or IWC.

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i appreciate the point you're trying to make, but please don't think the above is true.

 

Interestingly, on a watch forum (I'm sure they exist, as there are nearly as many rabid watch fetishists as there are camera fetishists) an analogous thread could be posted titled, "Are Wristwatches Dead?". Young people today shlep phones and Blackberries everywhere. They need wristwatches like a bull needs a teat...and sales are really slumping.

 

Still, analogous again to cameras, pricey watches ($20,000+) are doing pretty well. But I doubt that telling time is their primary function.

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I confess I wear a Rolex - though it was just about the cheapest in the range when I bought it. However my £30 Swatch keeps better time.

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