PDA

View Full Version : How long do >>YOU<< think film will be commonly available?


dmr
03-02-2006, 16:05
Adding some fuel to the fire ... :)

ZeissFan
03-02-2006, 16:13
Long time. Just because some nitwit goes digital, doesn't mean every other camera owner jumps off the bridge with him.

Rich Silfver
03-02-2006, 16:13
What is the definition of 'commonly available'? Does being able to order it on-line count or does it have to be available in stores?

Gabriel M.A.
03-02-2006, 16:16
Apparently I'm the only one who has no expletive clue (so far)... ;)

XAos
03-02-2006, 16:17
I'm with Rich. I expect it to dissapear from the grocery store, Wal-Mart, and even Ritz. But I expect it to be available online and mailorder for 20-30 years or more. Just because you can't go down to the corner Ace hardware store and buy a 12x36" metal lathe doesn't mean that you can't surf your way into one in the next half hour.

rover
03-02-2006, 16:19
Apparently I'm the only one who has no expletive clue (so far)... ;)

No, but before I read the choices my opinion was "Long enough"

dmr
03-02-2006, 16:20
What is the definition of 'commonly available'? Does being able to order it on-line count or does it have to be available in stores?

Define it as you wish. (Will stores be common in 50 years?) :)

yossarian
03-02-2006, 16:26
I went for the full C. *** do I care--I'll be worm fodder long before film disappears.

Fred (cheery, as usual)

kmack
03-02-2006, 16:29
It is likely film will still be available long after I no longer need it.

Todd Frederick
03-02-2006, 16:30
Will I be common in 50 years? Not unless they come up with a total body transplant soon!

Regarding film, I think it's totally an economic issue. For the general consumer, who wants everything quick and easy, I'm convinced that digital will totally dominate the market very soon.

For the professional (maybe) and the art oriented photographer, there will still be a market for film, but, as suggested it may be small and "special order."

You can still do platinum prints, but the corner drug doesn't stock the supplies.

In retail photography, money rules.

mitspooner
03-02-2006, 16:34
With over a 5 billion people with out digital resouces and with the recyling time of products to developing nations, film will be a mass produced for many many years to come. Plus major niche markets will carry film and developing into the future past all digital format changes. Prices may go up or down but will still have mass producers and mergers of major companies though spin off's and partnerships will make film production, not the inhouse development, where the majors have already made the change, into the profit making side of film. BLAH BLAH BLAH. Yes even to me I sound like a wind bag and as Paul Simon said "momma please don't take my kodachrome away!"

dazedgonebye
03-02-2006, 16:42
I took "commonly" to mean I can get it at my grocery store or the ritz camera down the street (me definition, I know). Accordingly, I predict no more than 10 years or so, and I think I'm being generous.

ErnestoJL
03-02-2006, 16:49
I hope the expectations of some of Us who say "a hundred years, long after I no longer need it" will take place. However seeing it from the big business side, I´d rather be conservative in extremis, so I expect film to be available more or less the same way as it is today for the next five years or so (that´s my vote).
But, honestly I hope it´ll be available (even as a boutique item) ´till I really no longer need it anymore (may it be another fifty years?).

Ernesto

peterc
03-02-2006, 17:59
Taking commonly available to mean _ on a rack next to National Enquirer at the grocery store _ I chose 20-30 years or so.

Peter

ch1
03-02-2006, 18:01
Who friggin' cares!

If you spent more time shooting film than shooting BS perhaps it wouldn't even be an issue!

BTW: for those "shooters" out there - I'm having trouble uploading to the Gallery.

Any other picture takers notice this?

peterc
03-02-2006, 18:05
If you spent more time shooting film ...
I ran through 100 rolls last year.

Peter

ch1
03-02-2006, 18:08
I ran through 100 rolls last year.

Peter

Peter,

Great. We're on about the same pace.

BTW: do you have some pics to upload tonight so I can figure out if it's me or the site that's "acting up"?

I'm getting all the right "actions" but then I get a message: "User uploads not allowed".

Weird....

peterc
03-02-2006, 18:10
BTW: do you have some pics to upload tonight
I'm at work (spending productive time on the 'net) so I don't really have anything to try uploading.

Peter

arif
03-02-2006, 18:53
I say about ten years, for it to be 'commonly available', in small camera/photo studios/grocery stores. After that, we'd have it on the internet exclusively..

aad
03-02-2006, 19:05
I think the "shrinkage" may level off. It's too easy to develop and print the vacation shots at WalMart whilst buying other thingies.

ed1k
03-02-2006, 20:04
In my understanding of commonly available as freely available at Wal-Mart, No frills and other groceries I think 5 years. For special photo stores, mail orders etc. I think it will be available longer than I need. Actually I think real photopaper will pass away first, and from that point I'm not really interested in film.
Long live classical photography!
Cheers,
Eduard.

ch1
03-02-2006, 20:31
In my understanding of commonly available as freely available at Wal-Mart, No frills and other groceries I think 5 years. For special photo stores, mail orders etc. I think it will be available longer than I need. Actually I think real photopaper will pass away first, and from that point I'm not really interested in film.
Long live classical photography!
Cheers,
Eduard.

Eduard,

You bring up a very valid point. I have a so-so Epson color printer at our house in Tucson. Last week I printed a couple of images on so-called "High Quality digital photo paper".

It looked like crap.

The "problem" with digital is not in the image taking - they've got that part down real good.

But the final output is dismal! Maybe the digi photo kiosks give better prints (at least at the 4x6 level) but I'm skeptical if they match traditional prints.

It is another example of technological advance resulting in a decline in quality! There's no stopping "the future" but it is increasingly evident that much of the future is qualitatively behind the past - which is really weird....

jan normandale
03-02-2006, 20:52
dmr.. who knew this spritely nature was buried in your heart? Not me. I shot 7 rolls this afternoon. I'm buying! So I think if I keep up this volume I may jumpstart the whole industry again. Whaddya think? ;- )

cheers, Jan

RML
03-02-2006, 21:17
For me "commonly available" would mean either regularly available in (semi)specialised shops or over the internet. In that light I think it'll be another 20-30 years before film will no longer be commonly available, only available through specialist shops, probably only over the internet.

julianphotoart
03-02-2006, 21:33
A part of me perversely looks forward to the labour that will one day be involved in ordering exotic ortho B&W film from little ma-and-pa boutique factories in the Czech Republic or such. Yes, I know I could do that right now but I'm too lazy.

In the future, when film is no longer "generally" available, we'll collect it, treasure it (i.e. freeze it), share it and discuss like they do fine wine today.

So, whether or not generally available to the masses, I am confident that B&W film at least will be available from little far-flung places that will gladly ship to us, and we'll all have a better time brewing it up to develop our own negatives anyway. I'm seriously assuming that there will be no big companies making film.

That leads me to something else: What I'm preaching to both friends and professionals is the future disappearance and/or degradation of digital files and images created by regular people that will leave society without a visual record of popular culture. So much of the visual record from the last 100 years or so was not created as art or anything serious. Those interesting old photographs were just a family's private record or a meaningless snapshot. But today, they are treasures. Not long ago B&W Magazine did a piece about vernacular photography. This type of photography is the kind created by regular people. It may be a snapshot now but in 50 years it could have real meaning historically or culturally or artistically.

What will be the case 50 years from now for all those digital files or quicky digital prints made today?

Sorry for rambling; I have the day off tomorrow. Is this a thread-killer??

Julian

vincentbenoit
03-02-2006, 22:05
Adding some fuel to the fire ... :)Film won't die in our lifetime.

John
03-02-2006, 22:32
Why did I guess 20 years or more? Because you drop off your film and pick up your prints. I have to wait a week to get mine back, but they are cheap now. No kiosk. No photoshop. No megabyte storage. You have pictures to show, keep, give. People will get tired of fooling with digital, memory, rechargeables. :rolleyes:

Andy K
03-02-2006, 23:14
According to Kodak (http://www.democratandchronicle.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060225/BUSINESS/602250332) film will 'likely never disappear'.

thafred
03-02-2006, 23:32
I´ve Voted for 20 or more years......

Coming from serious Hifi gear love (Tubes) to Rangefinder obsession i find it quite amusing how much those hobbies have in comon. Like in the 1970ies, transistor amps took over all the world, just like Digital does now with film. Trans amps had higher power than tubes and lower (but uneven) distortion...then, the industry followed with crappy mass produced low sensitivity Loudspeakers (in the 50-60 LS-prod. quality peaked with hand made speakers well above 94db/1w) and now mini Stereo speaker, CD and mp3 and all the other compressed standards exist and make the public believe it´s the best there ever was (and the public doesn´t need more ...like every happy chap with it´s digital p&s)...but ethusiasts exist and they keep the ball rolling...the industry even started to produce Tubes again in the 90ies and many folks all over the world enjoy .... I myself have new produced Type 45 tubes in my Amp (type 45 was an american pre-War standard..they started to manufacture them again in 2k!)
you can even buy needles for your old Grammophone!!! (as long as those are around I think film will be here, seriously :D )

Funny...the more I think about this HIFI vs. FILM the more similarities come to my mind....i think this deserves another thread :-)

Don´t worry....keep shooting

dmr
03-03-2006, 00:00
I'm buying! So I think if I keep up this volume I may jumpstart the whole industry again. Whaddya think? ;- )

Well, I'm buying too, and so are 99.9% of the people here and the people on APUG and all of those non-web people and yes, with the cumulative demand for film from all over the world, the supply should (continue to) support the demand.

Socke
03-03-2006, 00:03
Yesterday a friend, who is a painter, complained that Hahnemühle Aquarell Paper is made from shorter fibres today and can't be used for wet in wet painting, paper for drawing has 40% plastics in it and faber pencils contain so much polymeres that they are closer to wax crayon. She can't get half tones with pencils on paper like she got two years ago.

OTOH, she buys her brushes at a store specialised on cabinet makers. The brushes they use to touch up veneer and such are very good for watercolor.

hth
03-03-2006, 00:15
I voted for 100 years or more.

I thought about myself and while I can see that I use both film and digital capture now, I cannot see that I will ever give up film. It is so wonderfully low-tech for mechanical cameras and it is a must for pinhole photography. If I will not give up film, I figure that there are a healthy number of people thinking in similar ways, so I think it is here to stay.
I guess I will have to buy it by mailorder, but I often do that today to get better price compared to the shops.

/Håkan

Socke
03-03-2006, 00:49
As I just found out, Efke produces enough R50 in eight hours to satisfy worldwide demand for two years.
The coating mashines run at a fixed speed, Efkes are very old and run at 100 meters a minute. One meter is enough material for nearly 1700 36exp 135 films. Newer mashines, like those Agfa had, run at 200 meters a minute.

I don't know what maintenance of 50 year old mashines cost and if there are still spareparts.
The same with raw materials, the problems people have with todays R50 over that from last year indicate that the emulsion changed. It needs increased development times of about 20 to 30%. The film base is different, too.
All in all some photographers ended up with shots intended for negs at 0.65 but got only 0.53.

That's not a problem for me, but I don't shoot white dresses alongside black suits and have to have the faces properly exposed, too :-)

For those who need great tonality while conserving very small grain and high acutance this means extensive testing for every batch of film bought.

Andy K
03-03-2006, 01:00
Having an engineering background I would say a 50 year old machine is a lot easier to maintain than a new machine. Purely because the older machine is likely to be a lot simpler and less reliant on electronics. My Voigtlander Vito CLR or Zorki 4K are a hell of a lot more reliable and easier to repair than any modern camera stuffed full of circuit boards.
There is an old adage in engineering 'Simple machines work best'.

Socke
03-03-2006, 01:22
Andy, as the old adage goes
"With ductape, JB Weld and big enough a hammer you can fix anything!"

We just did this with a Heidelberg offset press which is older than I am :-)

Edit:

The press is from 1957 and we need it for small production runs, the modern 5c presses put out 25000 B3 an hour and sometimes you just need two or three thousand.

nemjo
03-03-2006, 02:24
Really don't know, however voted on 'ten or so'.
When I was young I bought LPs, a little later CDs ... and now I converted all of them into mp3s.
Also have some nice films from the past on VHS... and a lot of DVD... and a few most important (to me) converted to DivX...

Really don't know...

nemjo

dmr
03-03-2006, 02:41
We just did this with a Heidelberg offset press which is older than I am :-) The press is from 1957 and we need it for small production runs, the modern 5c presses put out 25000 B3 an hour and sometimes you just need two or three thousand.

I've never operated a Heidelberg, but I've seen one operating up close. When I was in my teens I worked in a smaller shop and we sent our large runs out to a shop which had a Heidelberg offset and a Miehle (sp?) letterpress.

Unfortunately I'm older than your 1957 press. :(

Impressive machines. (pun intended) :)

Pherdinand
03-03-2006, 02:51
i am sure on my last day i will be able to shoot film. That should be enough (i don't plan dying soon).

Really, there are so many things that could influence this, "going digital" is not within the top ten of the factors. Energy problem, overpopulation, environmental catastrophes, and general human stupidity, to name a few that can really play a role.

Brian Sweeney
03-03-2006, 02:51
I think for quite a while. Much longer than my newest Digital camera will be operating.

Maybe longer than CCD's.

Maybe longer than Digital.

When's the last time you saw a new LED watch for sale?

Pherdinand
03-03-2006, 02:53
the fact that the 100+y wins, reflects a certasin kind of optimism and in the meantime, need for the medium, among rff'ers. This is good, and should be the reason why dmr started the thread:)

projectbluebird
03-03-2006, 02:59
Considering that large format film has been around since 1884, 120 film since 1902, and 135 (35mm) in the form we all know and love since 1934, yet I can go down to the camera store and buy all of these formats in various speeds in color and Black and white at reasonable prices no less. Also taking into account that the two largest film companies recently upgraded their production facilities, not to mention the numerous "boutique" producers of both paper and film... It may get harder to come by, you may even have to pay more and/or travel abroad. But I happen to agree that film will be around longer than I will, and I'm still considered a whippersnapper, by most accounts.

on a related note-
Flashbulbs (remember flashbulbs?) havent been made in the US since the mid-90's, but they are still being manufactured in Ireland, and there is increasing demand for them.

remember too, the U.S., Japan, and Europe mainstream may have gone digital, But most of the worlds population still lives at a level where the basic needs are hard to come by, much less extravagances like computers and digital cameras.

dmr
03-03-2006, 03:12
Flashbulbs (remember flashbulbs?) havent been made in the US since the mid-90's,

Yes, I remember them. I never liked them. They scared the cat and they always annoyed and startled me. :(

I do have a Vivitar flash unit (as well as the pop-up one on the P&S) but I avoid flash unless I absolutely have to.

The thing I >>LOVED<< about my first rangefinder (Mamiya SD) is that I could take photos indoors most of the time without flash!

but they are still being manufactured in Ireland, and there is increasing demand for them.

Oh really? Any particular reason? Do flash bulbs really do anything better than the more modern strobes?

Socke
03-03-2006, 03:19
I think for quite a while. Much longer than my newest Digital camera will be operating.

Maybe longer than CCD's.

Maybe longer than Digital.

When's the last time you saw a new LED watch for sale?

New LED watch? Yesterday! A Fossil Pulsar for 55 Euro :-)

GeneW
03-03-2006, 04:36
The 'commonly available' part of this is the key to voting. If by that we mean grocery stores, drug stores, convenience stores and the like, I give it 5 years or so.

In terms of sheer 'availability' through larger camera stores, online stores, etc., who knows? I'd guess 20 years or so.

Gene

Azinko
03-03-2006, 05:55
Some types of film will probably be in limited production for some years to come but is'nt this the wrong question?

What REALLY matters in my view is how much longer photographers, including everyone here, will WANT to use conventional/film cameras......

Everything is relative, and at the moment digital cameras are probably very crude compared to what will be available in just a few years.......then most enthusiastic and serious photographers, including all of you, will put their film cameras in glass cases.

I am reliably informed that you can still obtain super 8 cine film......

Issy
03-03-2006, 05:57
It's a bit of a self-fullfilling prophecy, isn't it?... if you heard it's going away, you might buy a digital camera, or be less likely to buy a film camera, or stop using the one you have (afterall, soon I won't be able to buy film, so I should concentrate on digital).


I think you'll see a bump back to film in the next five or ten years when CD-Rs and DVD-Rs start to fail, and your average consumer without any formal back-up regiment starts to lose large amounts of images.

It will be a temporary pause, though. :)

Between camera phones and digital cameras, everyone is a photographer, now.

I also wonder what will happen to all the blogs and photoblogs when this (my) generation dies off... will the great server farms be kept and transferred from generation to generation, new media to new media? Might be fun for my 16-month-old daughter to grow up to be a cultural anthropologist, or cyber-archeologist, gently brushing the dust off of old DVD-Rs with a tooth brush... :)

Tougue firmly in cheek...

Issy
03-03-2006, 06:02
That should be my "tongue", of course.... :rolleyes:

Benjamin Marks
03-03-2006, 06:17
I'm with Frank. 20-30. But I have to say that predicting anything technologically over a 20 -30 year span is well-nigh impossible. 30 years ago - no WWW, internet for academics and DARPA types only, no PCs, no hybrid cars, no satellite tv. , no laser pointers, just barely digital watches, no cell phones, no XTOL . . . . 1976? I think leaded gas was still routinely available for cars that got 12 miles to the gallon and folks were wearing sideburns and bell-bottoms; no x-ray at airports (???). In the world of commerce, that's a looooong time baby. Me, I have a chest freezer full of Delta 400 in sizes from 35mm to 8x10.

Andy K
03-03-2006, 06:27
Some types of film will probably be in limited production for some years to come but is'nt this the wrong question?

What REALLY matters in my view is how much longer photographers, including everyone here, will WANT to use conventional/film cameras......

Everything is relative, and at the moment digital cameras are probably very crude compared to what will be available in just a few years.......then most enthusiastic and serious photographers, including all of you, will put their film cameras in glass cases.




Invent a digital camera that does not need to be chopped in for a new model every two years or so, a digital camera which does not need batteries, a fully manual digital camera which gives me a roll of negs every 36 shots or so, and I might, just might think about buying one. But even then I doubt if I would because computers with lenses stuck to the front of them and RAW/jpeg files leave me stone cold, they bore me, they hold zero interest for me.

I do not use film cameras and film because 'digital isn't good enough yet', I use film cameras and film because that's what I WANT to use. because that's where my passion lies.

Socke
03-03-2006, 06:59
I do not use film cameras and film because 'digital isn't good enough yet', I use film cameras and film because that's what I WANT to use. because that's where my passion lies.


Yes, I'm close to that. But we try harder to get our film than most people.

"Commonly available" means to me that I can get it close to everywhere.
Bread and butter are commonly available, Sacher cake not.

ch1
03-03-2006, 07:34
Yes, I'm close to that. But we try harder to get our film than most people.

"Commonly available" means to me that I can get it close to everywhere.
Bread and butter are commonly available, Sacher cake not.

Socke,

You bring up an interest point as to what is meant by "commonly available". Because both my wife and I work full-time and also divide our time b/w NYC (during work week) and a country house (on weekends) we have for many years used mail order (and now "web order") for many items including clothing etc.

So to me, "commonly available" means that I can order it from somewhere and in a couple of days or so it arrives at my doorstep. As a result, so long as I can order film it will seem "commonly available" to me.

For others, my form of "shopping" might seem "uncommon" or "not as available" as going to a shop.

Brian Sweeney
03-03-2006, 11:45
New LED watch? Yesterday! A Fossil Pulsar for 55 Euro :-)


That's amazing! I still have one around here. Got it for High School graduation in 1975. I amazed many friends at the graduation part with it.

An engineer at work has an electronic digital clock. It uses Nixie tubes. My electric clock uses "digital tumblers". It has all the digits on blocks that are geared to turn at the appropriate time. I also have a Nixie Tube calculator. It's about 30 pounds of transistors and other discrete components.

Film! Yes, Long time. Same with the cameras.

zpuskas
03-03-2006, 12:51
Ambrotype, Cyanotype, Platinum, etc. materials are still available today-- long after they've left the mainstream. Film will be here as long as I need it--which is about 30 more years.

kiev4a
03-03-2006, 13:12
The question on film (at least color film) may not be how long it will be available but how long processing will be available? Right now every corner drug store has one-hour processing. But I would not be surprised to see most of the Wally Worlds and Wallgreens shut down that equipment within three years. When processing is less convenient and takes longer, people will shoot less film so less film will be made--and so on. Still, I think film, and processing at some level, will be available for at least 20 years. Some of the larger formats may survive better than 35mm because that's the market digital will hit the hardest.

aad
03-03-2006, 14:49
If "regular" consumer demand is so important, how come I can buy TriX everywhere film is sold? drugstores, WalMart, it's all over the place. Yet you can't get it developed on-site there. Someone's buying it.

Gabriel M.A.
03-03-2006, 15:35
Ambrotype, Cyanotype, Platinum, etc. materials are still available today-- long after they've left the mainstream. Film will be here as long as I need it--which is about 30 more years.

A-men. Or is it A-wo-men? I get confused. But I'm with you. Yet, making predictions about film, well, not even the experts can get it right sometimes.

A few famous predictions:

"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers."—Thomas Watson, chairman of IBM, 1943.

"No flying machine will ever fly from New York to Paris."—Orville Wright.

tkluck
03-03-2006, 17:04
35mm another 50 years.
120 another 10.
As long as someone is buying the stuff.

ulyssescat
03-03-2006, 17:11
I am a DJ by trade,photography is a hobby.We had a similar situation arise with the advent of CD.Will vinyl survive??
Well,it has.Its a bit more specialist,but its still there.In fact,after the initial deluge of CD this and CD that,record companies have actually started increasing their quota of vinyl production again.
I think film will be the same.I don't think it has any more chance of dying out than vinyl.It will just become more specialized.
I mean lets be honest.No one really knows the shelf life of digital media or cameras as they haven't been about long enough for a judgement to be made.
We all know how long prints and film cameras last......I digress.
Somehow,although this is just my opinion,I don't think my little Fuji digi is gonna last as long as my Leica M4p??
Retrospective to all of this though,at the end of the day,its a tool for us to take pictures,whatever we use.We make the picture,not the camera(metaphorically speaking of course),and if I eventually have to take pictures exclusively on a digital,then so be it.
Here's one for you.....
Why does it seem that all companies are trying to make a digital camera that shoots and gives results the same as a film camera......????? go figure!

Iskra 2
03-03-2006, 20:28
Film will be around till:

1. Digital cameras don't need batteries. :D

2. Digital cameras have viewfinders at least as good as my Zorki-4. :D

3. Digital cameras are as inexpensive as my Zorki-4 was ($25). :D

Regards.

jan normandale
03-03-2006, 22:15
@dmr... kinda out there new avatar! I'm likin' the shades.

You ducked my observation. What about the thinly disguised FID thread here. Are you Bill Mattock perchance LoL!

Stephanie Brim
03-03-2006, 23:15
I actually said that I have no [email protected]#$ing clue. To tell you the truth, I don't care. I just use it. I'll use it until it's gone. Once it is gone, I'll mourn it for a while...then I'll be forced to go digital. I don't see it going any time soon, though.

Traut
03-04-2006, 03:47
I still think there are large areas of this blue marble where computer ownership / use / interest is flatlined however they still use P&S cameras or Kodak box cameras from the 50's amd will continue as long as there are wars, births, deaths, proms and puppies. The depressing thought to me is I will have film for the remainder of my days. The good news is - its one less thing I need to worry about.

matti
03-04-2006, 05:10
How long will artists paint be availablw, now when we have cameras?
/matti

dostacos
03-04-2006, 05:33
because we can develop ourselves SOME film will be available
1. not the variety that we currently have but we will have film
2. not in every store in town
3. maybe end up mainly mail order/internet but still available

dmr
03-04-2006, 14:33
@dmr... kinda out there new avatar!

LOL! A few days ago I was playing around with the lighting effects in Photoshop, and I was using a scan of a snapshot taken at (geez, this is embarrassing) a "Pimp-N-Ho" theme party a few years ago. {blush} The photo barely shows the bright pink highlights sprayed into my hair and doesn't show the (fake) nose ring or the (also fake) tattoos. :)

I'm likin' the shades.

Thanks. :) Those are actually my favorite sunglasses. I had prescription lenses put in those frames and I wear them all the time. :)

You ducked my observation. What about the thinly disguised FID thread here.

Ducked?

I was actually very serious in posting this poll. We have so many opinions on how long film's gonna last that I thought a nice bar graph on the opinions might be good to see. I see it also elicited a number of quite civil comments and speculations.

I really don't mind the FID threads except when they degenerate to "Film is dead" "Is not" "Is too" "So's your mamma" "{expletive} you!" and such. :)

The continued availability of film is a subject of some interest to me.

Are you Bill Mattock perchance LoL!

Uh {checking DL to be sure} Nope! :)

XXXGRAPENUTSXXX
03-04-2006, 14:41
Here's the Low Down. They Will Never Put the Kibosh on Film....Film will always be available for 1. X Rays ( Medical) and 2. Aeriel Recon.

wotalegend
03-04-2006, 14:56
I was a bit shocked a couple of weeks ago to find that one of the largest camera store chains in Australia (Teds) has already dropped all film except a small stock of Kodak Gold 400 24 exp. There's still plenty of choice at the pro-oriented camera/processing store I go to, but what concerns me is for how much longer their business will be viable.

ch1
03-04-2006, 15:03
I was a bit shocked a couple of weeks ago to find that one of the largest camera store chains in Australia (Teds) has already dropped all film except a small stock of Kodak Gold 400 24 exp. There's still plenty of choice at the pro-oriented camera/processing store I go to, but what concerns me is for how much longer their business will be viable.

Actually, I think the survival time-line of "camera stores" is likely to be shorter than film.

Haven't been to Oz in a number of years, but here in USA electronic-type stores such as Best Buy are murdering the specialty camera stores. Anyone can sell a digi.

jan normandale
03-04-2006, 15:20
Okay so is it dead? I 'm sort of where Julianphotoart is on this topic. I don't think it'll disappear, maybe less selection. I think the golden days of film are just behind us. I believe that B&W film will always be around 'for a price'. I think it'll become an 'art medium' like linen canvas for oil painters, a few manufacturers supplying a niche market. Colour?? I'm hoping but I'm not certain. Maybe MF and LF users for pro purposes and not a lot of choice. Transparency/chrome film I think it might be a product to go 'long' on.

@ dmr... from a party themed P&H?? That, I would have loved to see. I knew you weren't "Mr M" you knew I knew too.

wotalegend
03-04-2006, 15:27
Yes, it's much the same here. Digital cameras have become another "small appliance" in electrical and discount stores just like MP3 players or juice extractors. I haven't yet seen them on the self-service shelves, but that's only a matter of time. The camera store chains like Teds who rely on volume have their backs to the wall and are only trying to compete. On the same day I walked in to K-Mart and noticed that the digital printing machines had longer queues than the check-outs.

Doug
03-04-2006, 16:46
Here's the Low Down. They Will Never Put the Kibosh on Film....Film will always be available for 1. X Rays ( Medical) and 2. Aeriel Recon.The cracks are showing... My dentist has "gone digital" for all his XRays. Makes it faster, and handy for overlay comparison with older files, and the file can also be sent email to a specialist for consultation or referral.

John Camp
03-04-2006, 17:26
I was in the best pro camera store in the Twin Cities today (the metro area here has a population of a little over 3 million) and the store's film supply could probably be kept in my home refrigerator. On the other hand, people are still making daguerreotypes, so I'd vote for a 100 years plus...

JC

Fedzilla_Bob
03-04-2006, 18:09
I voted but witheld an opinion that wasn't fully formed until now-

I think film will remain >>commonly<< available longer than gasoline. (don't count ethanol as gasoline)

projectbluebird
03-05-2006, 03:19
Haven't been to Oz in a number of years, but here in USA electronic-type stores such as Best Buy are murdering the specialty camera stores. Anyone can sell a digi.

my contacts tell me that best buy is actually on the skids... perhaps it's possible that with lousy customer service it is possible to price yourself out of the market.

On the other hand... My local semi-pro store, named after the man who started it (who still works there by the by) is still going strong. Admittedly it can be hard to tell sometimes, as it always looked like a giant camera jumble sale.

Socke
03-05-2006, 04:25
I was in the best pro camera store in the Twin Cities today (the metro area here has a population of a little over 3 million) and the store's film supply could probably be kept in my home refrigerator. On the other hand, people are still making daguerreotypes, so I'd vote for a 100 years plus...

JC


So what's the definition of "comonly"?

I can get 91 ROZ, 95 ROZ, 98 ROZ, 100ROZ gas and diesel fuel from Shell, Esso/Exxon, BP/Aral, Texaco and three independents within a radius of 5 miles at some 20 stations but only Kodacolor 200 at 5 places, two big retail chains stock slides and C41 and one has T-Max 100 as well. Only two photo stores with a full range of film but no chemistry within a radius of 50 miles.

OTOH, buying gas on the net may be somewhat dificult, imagine FedEX delivering 15 gallons 100 ROZ to my neighbours Freelander and diesel fuel to my Mini Cooper S :)

pvdhaar
03-05-2006, 23:20
Commonly available: 20-30 years. That's when most film cameras in use will be worn out and beyond repair.

After that, I can imagine it becoming a special order product for the rest of the century..

projectbluebird
03-07-2006, 05:14
Commonly available: 20-30 years. That's when most film cameras in use will be worn out and beyond repair...

My leica is from 1960, my Agfa Record III is from 1952, and my Speed graphic is pre-50's... I guess they really don't make them like they used to.

PS - I realize that I may be rising to troll-bait, but it's been so long since I got to brag about my cameras to people who would understand. ;)

Andy K
03-07-2006, 05:24
Commonly available: 20-30 years. That's when most film cameras in use will be worn out and beyond repair.

After that, I can imagine it becoming a special order product for the rest of the century..

Well, I just sent off my ancient Olympus OM-1 for a CLA., I did the same with my QL17 GIII last year.. see if you can do that with a DSLR, or any current digital camera in 25 years time.

Socke
03-07-2006, 05:28
Well, I just sent off my ancient Olympus OM-1 for a CLA... see if you can do that with a DSLR, or any current digital camera in 25 years time.

You can't even get spare parts for a Contax RTS SLR anymore. Mine has eyelashes and dust somewhere in the viewfinder and to clean that they have to get the prism out and can't get it in again.

So I settled for as much cleaning as possible, lube and adjust. Mirrordampers and lightseals custom made from neoprene will keep it going for another 30 years I think.

Or as long as I get batteries for it :)

peterc
03-07-2006, 09:20
I ran into an interesting aside to the film issue yesterday. I was talking to a major Toronto camera retailer and he told me it had been a couple of weeks since anyone had asked to see a new film SLR. He said there'd been some (very small) interest in rangefinders, but the interest in new film cameras was pretty much nil.
Apparently some of the camera makers are even insisting (forcing) dealers to take some of their film camera stock in order to get the digital cameras they've ordered.
Can you say buyer's market?

Peter

Doug
03-07-2006, 11:57
Well, I just sent off my ancient Olympus OM-1 for a CLA., I did the same with my QL17 GIII last year.. see if you can do that with a DSLR, or any current digital camera in 25 years time.Good point, Andy, but it raises the fear that in that time there may be nobody left able to do a CLA on a mechanical camera either. :(

Gabriel M.A.
03-07-2006, 13:13
Good point, Andy, but it raises the fear that in that time there may be nobody left able to do a CLA on a mechanical camera either. :(
Any young blood willing to be a film camera repair apprentice? Hey, I'm looking...if anybody's willing to train me... :D

Issy
03-07-2006, 13:25
I've considered it a few times myself, usually after bad days on the day job.

:D

dmr
03-07-2006, 13:32
he told me it had been a couple of weeks since anyone had asked to see a new film SLR. He said there'd been some (very small) interest in rangefinders, but the interest in new film cameras was pretty much nil.

Why should anybody buy a new film camera at close to full street price when they can get barely-used high end film gear from those who have avowedly seen the light and gone digital?

A quick check at That Auction Site<tm> shows 32,000 and some film camera listings. A lot of film cameras are being bought and sold. There is a demand for them!

peterc
03-07-2006, 13:54
Why should anybody buy a new film camera
Very true. There are many more film cameras that users out there now. And there definitely are deals to be had.

Peter

Socke
03-07-2006, 14:21
Very true. There are many more film cameras that users out there now. And there definitely are deals to be had.

Peter


Not for me! The sister of a friend just ordered a "box" at a samba school for next years carnaval in Salvador de Bahia.
Yeah! I did it! I'm going to brazil! No way to back out of it anymore!

peterc
03-07-2006, 14:28
Yeah! I did it! I'm going to brazil!
Way cool!!!! You should have a blast.

Peter

Mohan
03-07-2006, 18:54
One thing that I don't think has been mentioned yet is the motion picture industry, I don’t see them "going digital" any time soon, my uncle shoots commercials and they get through a few thousand feet of 35mm colour negative film per shoot, although all the post production work is all done digitally nothing comes close to film. I would imagine companies like Kodak will continue producing 35mm film stock for many decades.

Pistach
03-12-2006, 23:47
Another example: Fujii Single 8 introduced in 1965 is still alive 40 years later. I could propose many more cases. On the other hand in my last trip to the States I bought film and had it processed by A & I, because I could not find the film I wanted locally and I do not trust drugstore processing. My hope is that it will survive forever, albeit you have to manage it the way I did with A & I
Regards
Pistach

Socke
03-24-2006, 18:02
All the examples with old formats still available don't show the real picture.

They make film some three feet wide and a couple 100 yards long, the Agfa machines produced 200 meter a minute, that's more than 3300 135 films a minute, some 5 million a day!

The big film is cut and perforated and then spooled. So as long as they produce film and the finishing machines work, they can cut it to any format.

steelheart
03-25-2006, 08:08
It may disappear from the "marts" (Wal, K, etc.) in a few years, buy I expect to be able to get if from places like B&H for probably as long as we want it.

You can still get 4x5, 5x7 and 8x10 format film - even 7x17 and other LF panoramic formats, if you look for it; if anything would have disappeared, I would have expected LF film to, but it still chugs along.

It's a comforting thought that these "ancient" format films are still being made - it gives me hope for 35mm and 120.

Socke
03-25-2006, 08:23
As I said, it's all cut from the same raw material. What's coming from the coating machine is one meter wide and some kilometers long. It takes Efke ten minutes to coat 1 kilometer film. Agfa made enough film in three 8 hour shifts to meet a one year world wide demand.
The problem is, you can't just run the machine one day a year and maintain it for the other 364 days.

Economy of scale is against us here, but I can imagine somebody coming out with a coating mashine slow enough to produce small amounts of film. Efkes coating mashines are from the 50's and too fast for todays demand, they produce in batches and store the material until it is cut to size and sold. Efke 25 for example is produced every two years, they just had the production run for the next two years and the emulsion is different to the last run from early 2004.

Mackinaw
03-25-2006, 09:31
What we need is for a retired (or fired) Agfa or Kodak production engineer, who knows the ins-and-outs of film production, to design a coating machine that could fit in a room and economically produce small batches of film, whenever needed. Any venture-capitalists out there looking to invest some money?

Jim Bielecki

c.poulton
04-01-2006, 00:59
Will I be common in 50 years? Not unless they come up with a total body transplant soon!

Regarding film, I think it's totally an economic issue. For the general consumer, who wants everything quick and easy, I'm convinced that digital will totally dominate the market very soon.

For the professional (maybe) and the art oriented photographer, there will still be a market for film, but, as suggested it may be small and "special order."

You can still do platinum prints, but the corner drug doesn't stock the supplies.

In retail photography, money rules.

I agree with you Todd, film will be available serving the art orientated photographer for a long time to come - just as you can still buy watercolour and oil based paints in specialist arts shops.

Duncan Ross
04-05-2006, 11:26
Film will be available for as long as incandescent lightbulbs. We must all stockpile NOW!

Pistach
04-08-2006, 11:23
Thank you Socke. I should have thought what you obderve, although this is only a first stage of production and it is conforting to see that Fuji is loayal to a small group of customers. On the other hand there is a big stock of film cameras and we may hope that one day, as we saw for rangefinders, the same technology will pass to other companies that will make it profitable on a smaller scale. I insist that summing up all the remarks that have been posted, we can be confident that film will go on for decades, albeit we won't be able to buy it and have it processed in stores.
Pistach

smiling gecko
04-09-2006, 09:56
...in regards to the question itself : oh, puh-leeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease !!!!!!!!!!!

...whew, guess i got that out of my system.

...seriously now, i believe film as we know it will be around for a long, long, long, long time.

...as c.poulton - chris - so aptly reminds us water colour & oil based paints are still available.

...the materials for treating glass plates are still around.

...the materials for black powder weapons are still around.

...there are still forges and the steel to craft swords.

...the english longbow as well as the flintlock musket were improved upon, but not forgotten.

...now, i'm wandering off course.

...as with most commodities - supply will equal demand - no doubt at higher cost at some point.

...maybe the sky is falling, but you gotta admit there's alot of sky still up there.

... with new film cameras being made - mainly rf - there's a glimmer of hope for us all .

hasta la vista, adieu, dazvidanya, fino al prossimo tempo, auf wiedersehen, and later y’all
kenneth
_______________________________________
"...patience and shuffle the cards" miguel cervantes
"nothing can be learned" herman hesse
"everybody knows everything" jack kerouac
"some memories are realities and better than anything" willa cather
" doo-wacka doo, wacka doo" roger miller
"we have met the enemy and they is us !" walt kelly (pogo)
“a mans cartilage is his fate” phillip roth

macnorfin
04-09-2006, 16:11
Film will be here for a long time, but it will be different. Twenty years ago, I could buy 120 Tri-X at the corner photo store. Now, if I go into a store asking for that they look at me like I have three heads. I live in NYC, the photo mecca of the world, but still can't buy 120 outside of the photo district on 18th street.

I don't think film will disappear, but I do think it will be harder to buy.

ch1
04-11-2006, 17:55
Film will be here for a long time, but it will be different. Twenty years ago, I could buy 120 Tri-X at the corner photo store. Now, if I go into a store asking for that they look at me like I have three heads. I live in NYC, the photo mecca of the world, but still can't buy 120 outside of the photo district on 18th street.

I don't think film will disappear, but I do think it will be harder to buy.

Last I checked you can get 120 Tri-X (and Fuji equivelent) at AllKit on 50th and 3rd!

Oh, last time I checked was last week!

KILL THIS THREAD - OH PLEASE ,JOE - KILL THIS THREAD!!!!!