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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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What kind of film are you guys using?
I still use my film cameras on a semi-regular basis. I shoot black and white though, so I don't have to worry about the extra chemicals for color processing. Currently I've got 3 Olympus OM-1's and an OM-2 for film. Also a canon 10D and 450D for digital. The digital is great because of the versatility of the editing software but I still love to work with the film...its just got that certain quality about it that I love.
Nice. What film do you use for B&W? Filters?

Am using some Ilford Delta 100. Never used it before. Just bought a Hoya K2 Yellow filter.

How do you like those OM?
Thanks all.

I'm jealous of you guys who have the time / money / space to do your own developing. I did some when I was in high school (our school had a darkroom to do B&W) so I'm familiar with how the quality of a photograph can be impacted hugely by the production process. Unfortunately I live in NYC now. I don't even have personal garage to park my bike, sigh.

Ah they joys of suburbia.

Airhead - nice pic. Love the slight grainy texture.
This is all good stuff, and exactly the kind of discussion I was hoping would get going. Please keep it coming - learning some good stuff here.

So I used to do film work about 7-8 years ago and then pretty much stopped due to work / grad school / general apathy. Did a bit of digital stuff with a P&S Canon A610 (not a bad little camera). It took some surprisingly good pictures, sharp with good detail. However it was in switching over to a DSLR that I found the lack of sharpness, which makes me think that its partially equipment (though the lens I've got has great reviews for sharpness) but more likely I've forgotten most of what I knew from film. Plus I think I underestimated the learning curve for digital, assuming that if I knew film a little I'd be able to pick up digital SLR work.

Re the film v/s digital debate - while I accept that the move to digital is inevitable, a part of me hopes film never goes away. I find I'm a more focused photographer when doing film work.

User Name - great pics.
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Most 50mm lens will be sharp be design since they are a 1:1 ratio to 35 mm and they are the easiest to manufacture/design.
Pardon my ignorance but is that still the case with a non-full frame DSLR? The 350D has a crop factor of 1.6x, I think so would that impact the sharpness of a 50mm?
So, if you're shootin RAW with your DSLR, and things are looking a little soft right from the start compared to a JPEG, chances are it's because you're not applying your capture sharpening.
Right now I'm shooting both RAW and JPEG (Large format).

Another (possibly stupid) question. Given the fact that you can pretty much achieve any effect in Photoshop these days, why would you use a filter with a digital camera? Or am I being simplistic?
Oh, and of course there's the protection a filter on the front of your lens provides. Nothing PS can do to prevent the front of your expensive lens from getting scratched or cracked.
:lol Possibly the MOST important reason to keep using a filter with your camera.

I've been reading up about the FD 85mm 1.2l / EF 85mm 1.2l, and I have to say I am lusting after that lens. Of course, am a long way away from plunking down big money on one of those babies.

On the other hand, I could buy it now, even though its a tricky lens to use. I figure since I know how to look at photographs, as long as I respect the power of the lens...

I keed, I keed....:twofinger
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