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Will 35mm film ever come back to the mass market?

youmightlikethis Avatar
22 Jul 2019 6:35PM
do you miss shooting 35mm the wide variety of films you could once buy[reala ultra impressa ektar 25] such a shame its just not economic any more
Dave_Canon Avatar
Dave_Canon 17 2.2k United Kingdom
22 Jul 2019 7:15PM
No it will not and I do not miss it. I prefer to move forward with technical improvements. A visiting speaker surprised the club last year by showing conventional slides. It was not a surprise to me that the shadows were blocked up which is all you can expect for 6-7 stops dynamic range; the photographer had exposed correctly just avoided highlight burn out. Many of our members were not familiar with film and had no idea that the results with slides would be so poor. This does not apply to prints as negative film particularly B&W could achieve much better Dynamic range but nowhere near my current DSLR.

pablophotographer Avatar
pablophotographer 12 2.2k 451
23 Jul 2019 3:05PM
I think it will be there for the enthusiasts, the amateurs and the curious novices. No manufacturer to my knowledge builds en mass 35mm film cameras now. Cross fingers that the old cameras we have will keep working! Mostly for personal use rather than professional. I was talking to a keen amateur (and often winning photographer in her club) who said "I can tell your film images and I tend to like them more than your digital ones." It may be the " look" of film that still pleases the experienced eyes. I used to like the high contrast of Kodak BW400CN now I like the mellow softer FUJIFILM Neopan ISO 400 black and white. As always the choice of film has to correspond to the lighting conditions and the subject. Film processing takes time and since people live in a fast pace they may even resist en mass the appeal of instant film and cameras. Printed pictures have an appeal but can not be evaluated as easily in a global context as digital ones can.
JJGEE Avatar
JJGEE 18 8.1k 18 England
23 Jul 2019 3:15PM
Who knows ?

Vinyl records have begun making quite a comeback recently so a film comeback may be possible
altitude50 Avatar
altitude50 19 24.1k United Kingdom
23 Jul 2019 4:18PM
I think that medium format film (120) has more to offer as a revival, much larger image size, no wasted sprocket hole width, (arguably) easier handling in darkroom and a more considered approach when shooting.Wink
franken Avatar
franken Plus
21 5.8k 4 United Kingdom
23 Jul 2019 5:16PM
I can't see it coming back and competing with digital. As long as film remains available then it should continue.

When film cameras first came along, it didn't bring to an end the people who recorded scenes on canvas.

joshwa Avatar
joshwa Plus
13 927 1 United Kingdom
24 Jul 2019 8:04AM
Film prices seem very high for the brands you know.

However, there seem to be some available for reasonable prices: Ilford XP2 (C41 process) still available for under £5.

This site seems to sell a good range.

I think it can be fun, but with the film cameras I've put film it, it's rare for me to actually finish the film and get it developed. And then who knows whether the camera even worked in the first place?
LenShepherd Avatar
LenShepherd 15 4.7k United Kingdom
24 Jul 2019 9:30AM
To the mass market - no.
This huge segment of the photographic market has switched to camera phones.

To a segment of the specialist advanced photographic market - it is already doing this.
Dave_Canon Avatar
Dave_Canon 17 2.2k United Kingdom
24 Jul 2019 10:28AM
Interesting that XP2 is still available. This is the last B&W film I used about 15 years ago. It was very versatile and, being a C41 process, I could use the same chemicals I used for colour negatives.

I assume that most the interest in film comes from more recent photographers who started on digital. I can understand the curiosity but it is like steam engines; we all like to see and photograph them and even take a short ride. However, if we were faced with say London to Edinburgh by a 1930's steam train now it would not be very attractive being smelly, uncomfortable and slow which more or less describes my experiences of film/print/darkroom. I still think the only future is the curiosity market. Of the 120 members of my club I am only aware of one member still using film though he uses digital most of his photography. I would have thought almost all professionals would have to use digital to survive. The local university still includes film/darkroom in their photography courses but I suspect that this will fade as the current lecturers retire.

youmightlikethis Avatar
24 Jul 2019 7:33PM
thanks for replies
pablophotographer Avatar
pablophotographer 12 2.2k 451
17 Aug 2019 3:27PM
And thanks for the site joshwa!
keithh Avatar
keithh 20 25.8k 33 Wallis And Futuna
17 Aug 2019 4:40PM
The simple answer is no.

Even the resurgence in vinyl is vastly exaggerated when you look at the figures in context.
peterjones Avatar
peterjones 21 5.3k 1 United Kingdom
20 Aug 2019 9:57AM
... No.


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