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Film vs Digital Discussions about the relative advantages and disadvantages of Film vs Digital are important as they can help us understand our choices as photographers. Each medium has strengths and weaknesses which can best be used in a given circumstance. While this makes for an interesting and useful discussion, DO NOT attack others who disagree with you. Forum rules are explained in the RFF FAQ linked at the top of each page.

View Poll Results: Do you shoot Film or Digital?
All Film 183 20.00%
Mostly Film, Some Digital 342 37.38%
All Digital 49 5.36%
Mostly Digital, Some Film 341 37.27%
Voters: 915. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-03-2011   #81
brandonmsweet
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100% film, and then some more
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Old 02-10-2011   #82
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Today I took some of my film gear for part exchange, watching the guy hold it and test it, load it with a cheap film and take a few shots... well, put it this way I still have it. I just couldn't sell it, and tomorrow I'm taking it out loaded with Kodachrome, even though I'll never be able to get it processed!

Still buying an X100 though
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40% Film and 60% digital
Old 02-10-2011   #83
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40% Film and 60% digital

My shooting was just the opposite last year but now is going toward the digital side. But I really feel alive when I'm shooting B&W film.
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Old 02-10-2011   #84
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I've had a realisation, I don't like to process film in the winter. And so I shoot digital. In the summer, I really enjoy processing film standing in a sun spot by the window, so I shoot film.

Maybe I should just save it all up for summer
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Old 02-10-2011   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by _larky View Post
Today I took some of my film gear for part exchange, watching the guy hold it and test it, load it with a cheap film and take a few shots... well, put it this way I still have it. I just couldn't sell it, and tomorrow I'm taking it out loaded with Kodachrome, even though I'll never be able to get it processed!

Still buying an X100 though
Process your Kodachrome with regular black and white chemistry. It'll come out a bit flat, but that'll be good for scanning.
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Old 02-20-2011   #86
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Regrettably, I am using film less and less. And only in 120 and 4x5. I betrayed my Leicas completely...
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Old 03-05-2011   #87
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Since the start of 2011, 80% of my shooting is film...
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Old 03-18-2011   #88
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A year ago, 90% film. Today, 90% digital. Why? Digital is so convenient. Having said this, I am getting deep cravings to do a lot more film.
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Old 03-18-2011   #89
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50 -50 since my Olympus gave up on me on a trip to Australia in the Autumn.
It forced me to buy a digital 5010. I still have 15 films left to use on my Trip and my OM 10.

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Old 03-20-2011   #90
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First of all I'd like to say hi to all. Nice forum..
My photography began during my time in Africa (1996-2003) and there I shot slides only. But back in Switzerland, I have started to shoot weddings and soon changed to digital which I still do. BUT, I just received my first Leica (used M7) and still wait for a rather old Mamiya 220 to get back into film and slides. Its all very exiting right now...
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Old 03-28-2011   #91
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3rdtrick View Post
I really like the idea of playing with all the old film cameras. It is just awesome what you can pick up for a few bucks...
Beeing only a hobby photographer, I'm not under delivery pressure from any clients.

Perhaps this is one reason because I can afford the time doing my shots mostly on film and waiting a day for the processing. Or even 3 days if it will be sent to a specialized lab.

For а first survey I like the lab scans a lot. After many tries I did find a lab doing also the scan job very well. Few of them go (with minimal post processing) to my gallery. And for even less of them I go back to the lab and print some good quality copies (from the film master, not the scan!).

I would guess 80 % film is my game.
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Old 05-29-2011   #92
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Digital killed photography for me for many years. Having built up a sizeable SLR outfit (Minolta) that was suddenly unsupported and worthless because none of the manual focus lenses worked on any digital body, I couldn't face starting again.

Digicams give awful results with their infinite DOF and have a "still video" quality, regardless of the resolution or colour accuracy. DSLRs have the same DOF problem unless they're full-frame and I'm not going to buy anything that expensive that will be obsolete that quickly.

I think film is reaching some form of stability. Kodak may stop making it (they seem to have stopped caring) but Fuji seem to be more firmly behind it and there is new stuff coming out of Eastern Europe. Look at vinyl records for an analogy; they're come back very strongly in the last decade. It's just sad that you can't get some of the wacky emulsions that used to be around; Konica SRG3200, HIE, EIR and Technical Pan. I can keep going indefinitely on Reala and Acros though.
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Old 06-05-2011   #93
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Well, last time this poll came around I shot about 50/50 digital to film. Now it's more like 80/20 digital to film (I'm in love with my Ricoh because it's the only digital camera I've tried that gets out of my way and lets me shoot).
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Old 06-16-2011   #94
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What's the difference?
Shooting is shooting, then the remainder is only technology…
Who cares about technology?
Only expression is important!
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Old 06-17-2011   #95
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gekopaca View Post
What's the difference?
Shooting is shooting, then the remainder is only technology…
Who cares about technology?
Only expression is important!
Process is an important part of expression.
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Old 06-17-2011   #96
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Exactly. For example, my patented processing technique (which is easily the worst ever devised) gives my negatives character. I can get yellow colours out of Acros 100 souped in Rodinal. ??

I'm scanning in a load of negs from my Contax G1 days, all out of focus (poor thing's autofocus was crap really) but they look 10x niver than my pin sharp digital SLR shots. They have a real ballsy feel to them.
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Old 08-11-2011   #97
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Film is just lovely, I am shooting it nearly 100% for myself unfortunately my clients want and need digital and that is 95% of what I shoot.
If I had a day job and photography was only a hobby, I can't see a reason to shoot digital.

Kevin.
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Old 08-11-2011   #98
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Canon PS then m43 got me back into photography after a long layoff. Now I have mostly film cameras, and some days shoot nothing but film (and so support our longtime local developer business for negs and CDs).The percentage is still probably weighted 60/40 digital if only b/c I pack a GRD III whenever I leave the house. But my first Leica arrives (+ a Canon P) this week, and I'll devote lots of time to what they have to teach.
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Old 08-17-2011   #99
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90% film, 10% digital. I love the look of film.
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Old 08-17-2011   #100
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Film 100% of the time now. Really not missing the digital world.

Large files and processing would require a major cost in upgrading to a new computer, software and archival equipment. As a full-time photographer these days, I don't have to worry about fast turnaround as documentaries are ready when I say they are ready. Sure a lot less stress!

Reckon I will keep on truckin' with the Leica M and R bodies and my old Dell computer for a long time.
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Old 08-17-2011   #101
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Last film camera I owned went belly up in the late '90s. Been using digital for the past decade.

Recently went to a Photo workshop with 20 people doing street photography and a few people brought a film camera with them. One person only shot with a film camera the whole weekend. It certainly peaked an interest to go shoot some film once again.

. . . . . so I bought a used M7 and put through a half dozen rolls of film and loved the experience. Then a sudden GAS attack when the local camera shop salesman let me know they just got in a new Black MP.

Not giving up digital at all and do hope to get a nice balance between the two going forward.
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Old 08-18-2011   #102
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seakayaker1 View Post
Last film camera I owned went belly up in the late '90s. Been using digital for the past decade.

Recently went to a Photo workshop with 20 people doing street photography and a few people brought a film camera with them. One person only shot with a film camera the whole weekend. It certainly peaked an interest to go shoot some film once again.

. . . . . so I bought a used M7 and put through a half dozen rolls of film and loved the experience. Then a sudden GAS attack when the local camera shop salesman let me know they just got in a new Black MP.

Not giving up digital at all and do hope to get a nice balance between the two going forward.
Dan, you are doomed. I'm gonna shoot some digital later this evening. It will be the first time in ever so long, and the photographs are not even for me.
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Old 09-07-2011   #103
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More digital than film, now. Until about 12 months ago I could safely say I was shooting more film than digital. The problem was, over the past few years I haven't been shooting much of anything except for a few short projects and the usual family stuff.

Now I am shooting a lot, taking the time to do so, but mostly in digital. The X100 has a lot to do with that, since it's always with me and is the first *digital* camera I've owned that I can carry around all of the time that also happens offer creative controls and produce excellent images. More to the point the X100 doesn't come with a darkroom time out penalty at the end of the day/week or dozens of rolls of 120 Tri X and HP5 not getting processed in a timely manner.

Maybe my increased activity will translate to doing more film down the road, maybe not. I have assigned myself a post-renovation project -- do a series of portraits for family and close friends over the fall and winter, and that project I'm going to do on film, jury out on the output format. I rather hope that I'll find some happy balance where working in one medium reinforces a desire to work in the other.
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I'll take quality over quickness any day
Old 10-09-2011   #104
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I'll take quality over quickness any day

With digital, you just exchange one set of problems to be solved for another. I like the set pf problems that film presents.

With film, I never have to worry about hard drive failures. I store my negs and slides and they are there - even 20 years after I made them.

Digital produces quicker results than film based photography - there's no denying that. Alot of people have to have that instant gratification these days. That is a big part of why digital is so popular with the masses.

Film based images produce better quality fine prints without the texture-less plastic appearance found in digital based images. This article ( http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/why-we-love-film.htm ) details many of the reasons that film is preferred by many and why film is experiencing a resurgence in popularity.

David Vestal had this to say about technology:
Quote:
"Compensating for lack of skill with technology is progress towards mediocrity. As technology advances, craftsmanship recedes. As technology increases our possibilities, we use them less resourcefully. The one thing we've gained is spontaneity, which is useless without perception."
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Old 10-23-2011   #105
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since I'm not a pro I primarily use film rangefinders because its just what I enjoy. I am however the resident photographer for my work and my father's business, so I will often use a macro lens on a DSLR...it's just what's easier. So for my hobby shooting it's 95/5 film, and for the rare time I need to take photos for pay it's 95/5 digital.
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Old 10-25-2011   #106
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Any time I go ou to take photographs it's with film.
The only digi shots I tend to take are a snapshot in each location so Incan go back and review the EXIF data later for time and date etc when I'm doing my records.
Usually I use the log feature in the light meter app in my iPhone. Takes a snapshot along with a run down of time and date etc.

I generally have a pocket digi with me when at work or out and about, and of course the iPhone, so I end up taking snapshots with digi and those moments when you dint care how good it is, just catch that rare shot you stumbled on while it's there...
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Old 12-12-2011   #107
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Just made the switch to 100% film plus occasional IPhone snaps.
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Old 12-14-2011   #108
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Right now my shooting is pretty evenly split between my Canon EOS 7D and my Canon F-1N, both of which I love immensely.

Andy
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Old 12-16-2011   #109
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I do use digital, but mostly for recordkeeping purposes. I use film 5 to 1 over digital. No magic to it. At some point I will probably have to move over but right now I like the results I get with film better then what I have been able to get with digital.
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Old 12-23-2011   #110
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I've been shooting digital for the last couple of years, but I've returned to film as I desperately missed working from a slide or neg, something I could get hold of. I find them better for long term archival too, I've got so many friends who have lost digital images through corrupt or lost data.
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Old 12-24-2011   #111
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Both. About equally lately, as I'm not shooting so much right now.
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Old 01-24-2012   #112
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Canon A1 and Leica M2, digital got boring to me. Sorry, not bashing on digital or anything. JMHO
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Old 02-11-2012   #113
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I used to shoot film because there was no digital (back in the day) then I got a Nikon D70 that was my first time to be impressed with digital. Now I shoot with a Leica M8 and a Canon 1DsmkII. I still shoot a bit of film but I have recently been very drawn towards getting myself an old Leica M2/3/4 at some point to revive the passion. There is definitely something sexy about running a roll of film through a camera.. I do miss it.
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Old 02-11-2012   #114
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For photo's I want to enjoy film, photo's for the net or a documentation (model building, taking stuff apart) digital.
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Old 02-27-2012   #115
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I shoot entirely digital, using canon professional equipment. I love the freedom and versatility that digital gives.
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Old 03-14-2012   #116
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digital because I'm a poor student and wouldn't be able to afford the costs of film. someday when I have money I'll go film Leica.
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Old 03-18-2012   #117
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I shoot digital for friends, but film for myself.
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Old 03-18-2012   #118
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Since I wrote on this page in the fall of 2011, I've more or less succumbed to digital entirely. This was an unexpected outcome... I've maintained a darkroom in my office or home for near 30 years. I'm thinking seriously about reclaiming the space and using it for something else unless one of my growing kids expresses a serious interest in analogue photograph making. To be honest, I'm ok if they don't.
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Old 04-20-2012   #119
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90% film for me and when I want to be cheap and quick I shoot digi (mostly volunteer work).
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Old 05-05-2012   #120
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I had a bit of a rage quit earlier on today, after having two bad rolls come back from the lab. It made me think really hard about why I like film, and I can't name a legitimate reason. It burns a hole in your pocket, getting cheap film doesn't really count, your still spending $5+ to take 36 pictures, add all those pictures you've shot in the pat week or two up, add developing, the cost to get them scanned, or the cost of your scanner, then think, your repeating this process weekly (on average). The money you've probably spent over the years on film and developing, imagine it, you could of bought an M9 by now probably!

Oh well, rant over. Here's one image I managed to save from a dud roll from today, enjoy:

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