Future of 220 film??
Old 08-02-2014   #1
ray*j*gun
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Future of 220 film??

I am almost afraid to start this thread but i need some advice. I have only one camera that will swallow 220 film that's my trusty c220. I am contemplating buying a 220 back (A24) for my Hassey c/m500. They are cheap these days but I can only fined Kodak Portra in this film size. I want to get opinions of the remaining life span of 220 before I buy a "new" back for my Hassey........what do you think?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 08-02-2014   #2
Trooper
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I don't get an optimistic feeling about 220, but I'm still buying 120 backs.
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Old 08-02-2014   #3
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I think your right about 120.... I don't see that going away...its still the best film format IMO, but 220 seems to be getting close to buying the farm....
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Old 08-02-2014   #4
Tijmendal
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I doubt 220 will survive more than 2 years. It's a shame. It would've made so much more sense for 120 to kick the bucket instead of 220.
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Old 08-02-2014   #5
ray*j*gun
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I cant even find B&W film in 220 anymore. Does anyone have a source for that?
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Old 08-02-2014   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tijmendal View Post
I doubt 220 will survive more than 2 years. It's a shame. It would've made so much more sense for 120 to kick the bucket instead of 220.
At the professional level, yes. But 120 will work with red window cameras like the Holgas, as well as professional cameras. It's a more versatile package.
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Old 08-02-2014   #7
kuzano
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scrambler View Post
At the professional level, yes. But 120 will work with red window cameras like the Holgas, as well as professional cameras. It's a more versatile package.
I agree on this statement. 220's actual count of camera's that can use it are way too limited. Ruby window camera's are in vogue with many, and the frame count is not attractive to me with 220.

If I shoot a 6X9 camera, I don't want 16 shots in the camera and the caution I just take on changing rolls.

I just don't think 220 is a desirable film format. It seems clear that the demand in the market is reduced somewhat over 120.

Now if 120 starts to lose emulsions, I will be concerned.

I shoot a Fujica GL690 and can use both 120 and 220, but I just don't want to have to find 16 subjects to shoot before I can unload the camera and send the film for processing.
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Old 08-02-2014   #8
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Does any manufacturer even package 220 film anymore?

I've been selling off my 220 backs, and only using the last few rolls (some old Tri-X) in my Mamiya Press, which handles 220 and 120 with the same back.
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Old 08-02-2014   #9
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A 220 back is not a complete waste, you can always shoot 120 film in it as long as you remember to stop after 12. So you can enjoy 220 film now and use it as a handy extra 120 back when 220 is no longer.
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Old 08-02-2014   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hamradio View Post
Does any manufacturer even package 220 film anymore?

I've been selling off my 220 backs, and only using the last few rolls (some old Tri-X) in my Mamiya Press, which handles 220 and 120 with the same back.
Kodak Portra is the only 220 I have been able to find for sale new.

....and good point about using the 220 back as a 120 is there any issue doing that say with film thickness etc.?
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Old 08-02-2014   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ray*j*gun View Post
Kodak Portra is the only 220 I have been able to find for sale new.

....and good point about using the 220 back as a 120 is there any issue doing that say with film thickness etc.?
Yes, there is. The pressure plate setting for 220 film does not have enough clearance for 120 film backing paper. It can cause jamming and stresses the drive mechanism.

Some people just do it anyway, I'm sure.

220 has basically been out of production for several years except for the one or two emulsions (mostly geared to wedding photography, the major user of 220 format to the tune of 90% according to some industry statistics I remember from the 1990s). Since the vast majority of wedding photography is now done with digital cameras, there's very little potential for a resurgence of 220 film supplies.

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Old 08-02-2014   #12
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In Japan you'll find fresh Pro400H in 220.

Together with the Portra that's all the choices we've got.
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Old 08-02-2014   #13
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I keep shooting it. As long as it is available I enjoy working with it. Pro400H and Portra are terrific films in 120 and 220. 220 just gives me twice as many shots. In 645 it is just like working with 35mm.

I have no doubt it will go away eventually. It was born from the needs of the wedding photographer, and it will likely die the same way. But, until it does, shoot on!
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Old 08-02-2014   #14
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I still have six good working Hasselblad A24 backs, from my days doing Weddings. Shooting a wedding with 120 film is not pleasant, I can tell you from experience. I have done it, but only in smaller venues.

I stocked up on 220 TXP just before it went off the market. Still have some 220 HP5+, Fuji NPH and Fuji NPZ, in the deep freeze. It should still be OK for awhile.

Now, 70mm, that is quite a story. I still am a believer in 70mm photography.
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Old 08-02-2014   #15
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I like 220, though I don't currently have a camera that takes it. It's a very useful size.
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Old 08-02-2014   #16
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Great info all...... guess I will continue to use my C220 for 220 shooting.
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Old 08-02-2014   #17
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I like 220 too. It's a shame that you can't find so much fresh 220 anymore. It makes photographing easier for weddings, events and people in general.

This is why I still always search and buy expired 220, just for the convenience. But I wish they would continue to supply 220 in TriX 320!
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Old 08-02-2014   #18
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IIRC the most available are Portra 160 & 400. As someone above said, in Japan you can get 400H. Recently (a year ago) japanexposures still listed Fujichrome in 220.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kuzano View Post
I shoot a Fujica GL690 and can use both 120 and 220, but I just don't want to have to find 16 subjects to shoot before I can unload the camera and send the film for processing.
I tend to agree with this statement.
I am too a Fuji 6x9 shooter and travel would be the main use I'd have for 220. It doubles the exposures and/or reduces the volume of rolls to carry. Quite good with a bulky MF, and a not that big packing space.

I have found 220 to be very hard to find though, with few dealers carrying it. Too bad that it is more than 2x the price of 120 too.
I have not been an user of 220 but it will be sad to see a nice option go.
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Old 08-02-2014   #19
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Here in Japan you can also get Provia 100F, Velvia 50 and 100 in 220 format.
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Old 08-03-2014   #20
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I could tell the state of 220 by the fact that KEH prices for 220 Hassey backs were roughly one half the price of 120 backs.
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Old 08-03-2014   #21
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Because I don't shoot events, or documentary using medium format, I have no use of 220.

In fact, I like the immediacy to be able to develop and choose from 12 or 16 frames for darkroom printing, rather than 24 or 32 frames.
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Old 08-05-2014   #22
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220 in MF is for wedding or event photographers. As long as they are still using some of it, it will remain. Otherwise, 120 is fine for most other MF users.
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Old 08-05-2014   #23
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Don't use 220 anymore. I have a few backs that I have to open up a small door, revealing a window that I wind until I see #1 appear. Then click and I'm ready to use a 120 roll!
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Old 08-05-2014   #24
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The good news is that 12/24 Rolleiflexes will get cheaper.

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