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Anyone still using film?

408 Views 28 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  mbodell
There's been some good discussion about DSLRs on this forum but I was wondering whether people on here are still using film. My brother recently gave me his EOS 350D, which I've been using with a Canon 50mm F1.8. Maybe I just don't get digital SLR photography but I haven't been too happy with the results. A little too soft for my liking (see an example below). Could be the lens - I heard that the 50mm Canon is a bit hit or miss (what do you expect for $100?)

Anyways, I dusted off an old Canon A1 kit which I've had in my cupboard but never really used. I have the standard Canon 50mm F1.8 FD lens, a 70-210 f4 and a 35mm f2.8. Also using the Motordrive MA and have a Canon 199A Speedlite, but haven't taken any indoor shots yet. I love the feel of the camera. My dad has one and as a kid I used to sneak it out of his cupboard when he was out of the house so I could play with it. Thank god I didn't break it! :) I took the A1 out yesterday and took some shots in a local park, without the Motordrive and with just the 50mm + a Hoya Skylight 1B. Gotta, say - great camera for photojournalism. Unobtrusive, lets you blend into the background.

Since I have a decent set of FD lenses, I'm tempted to pick up a used T90 body. B&H has one for about $180, in 8+ condition. Still have a long way to go towards refamiliarizing myself with film, but I'm thinking about using the A1 for black and white (am currently using some Ilford Delta 100) and using the T90 for color. Thoughts? I don't really care about the 1/4000 shutter speed, though having something faster than the 1/1000 on the A1 would be nice. Am taken with the idea of the 1/250 flash sync, though, and I've heard good things about the multi-spot metering, but would love to hear how anyone else found it.

Also, any comments on film choices would be great. I've always used Kodak Gold 100 / 200 in the past, with mixed results.

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I'm with you that there is more enjoyment in the whole process with film, but I just can't do it myself. The chemicals are nasty, the equipment requirements are big, and if you're going to get it developed at a lab it gets expensive very quick. Still nice, and I'd like to eventually get one of those old time large format view cameras. With matching photog clothes and magnesium flash :D

Until then I'll stick to my D50, 3 TTL flashes that go manual if I want, lenses that autofocus if I want, the ability to shoot HDR, stitch seamless panoramas, instant exposure and focus confirm so I know I didn't miss a shot I can't retake later, spray-and-pray for fast action, ability to adjust ISO for every shot, and not having to worry about getting film in remote locations.

If you didn't get a sharp shot with the Rebel it sounds like either the lens is poor or the AF is off. Did you check on a print or on the screen? You'll never zoom in on film as close as you will on digital, and expecting total sharpness when pixel peeping isn't fair to a Bayer sensor cam. You should be able to get sharp shots with a nifty fifty, though, Canon's quality control can't be that much worse than Nikons. There are FD to EOS adapters, too.
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