Oct 27 2019

Fuji DL mini


Perhaps I should just let the pictures speak for themselves and if your interested in more info you can explore some of my other posts about this camera.

Fuji DL Super Mini 2013, Fuji DL Super MiNi 2014, Fuji Dl Super Mini 2015  Fuji DL Super Mini (The sardine tin)Fuji DL mini (Tiara) 2018,

Oct 14 2019

Kodak Ektachrome E100


Ever since the end of Kodachrome I’ve been using colour negative film almost exclusively. Because of this I’ve become accustomed to looking at developed film that has an orange mask, in addition to being a negative.  That’s why looking at this roll of Kodak E100 slide film was such a joy.  It created a similar feeling for me as getting back a box of mounted Kodachrome once did.  Holding the images up to sunlight and seeing the colour was a pleasure. Once scanned and viewed on the computer some of that charm is tempered.  Its not the fault of the film but reduced to a digital form there is a degree of equalization between it and a digital camera capture.  During scanning I was also reminded of another of the differences from colour negatives.  Anything opaque on the film during scanning shows up as black instead of white.  That too felt familiar as years ago I scanned thousands of family slides (Mostly Kodachrome)


After the scanning and dust removal it was time to evaluate the images.  The colours were accurate if not perhaps a little flat.  I found I needed to add a touch of saturation and contrast but little else to bring them in line with direct viewing. The bulk of slides that I had ever shot being on Kodachrome 64 I was surprised by the details in the shadows.  This emulsion has a much broader dynamic range.  You can see into darker areas without blowing out the highlights.  Back with Kodachrome it was almost a binary decision, you could have highlights or shadows but not both.

“Golden Ears -1991” Kodakchrome 64, Minolta X700 exposure unrecorded.

Yes I’ve been invoking Kodachrome a lot, largely because that is what I was familiar with. In reality though the similarities are primarily around being positive film.  When compared to a digital capture Ektachrome 100 could be considered much like a JPEG, with most of its character baked in, with the ability to only make some small adjustments.  So yes using this film is less forgiving than shooting a modern digital camera in RAW but that’s not a bad thing.

Seeing as you cant put film in a digital camera even if you wanted to its a great excuse to use a great film in a great old camera.  What I’m suggesting by that is this film, while somewhat forgiving, is best used in a camera with an accurate exposure system.  On the downside is the cost, retailing at around $20 a roll, if you add on developing it becomes very close to $1 per shot which is in the same territory as instant film.  Personally I consider it worth it, maybe not for everyday snaps but when it matters I will pull a roll out of the fridge.

I shot this roll in a Pentax MZ6 SLR with a variety of lenses including one originally intended for smaller APSc digital sensors.  Its the DA*60-250.  I haven’t done anything to mine and you can see that there is mechanical vignetting in the corners.  Some people do remove the baffling at the rear of the lens which eliminates the vignette and makes the lens effectively compatible with 35mm film.  I don’t expect to be using it that much for film or a larger sensor so will leave it as is.

Oct 5 2019

Collection Digital cameras (or why not to)

While I primarily concentrate on blogging and using film cameras, from time to time I will come across a digital camera of interest. Some years back Samsung made a couple of models of camera that had an interesting analogue touch. They had gauges with needles to indicate their battery and memory card capacity. I know I know its a gimmick and completely unnecessary but at the same time it was kind of cool and an even more retrograde touch than film. So when I came across the online listing for a Samsung TL320 I bought it. The camera itself is in great condition and it has those gauges but here is where things take a turn.

When I tried to charge the battery after a few moments of apparent operation it would quit and indicate an error. No amount of fiddling or retries had any impact. As a last resort I charged the battery outside the camera with a current limiting power supply like you would find in an electronics lab. This is not a long term solution but allowed me to test the camera and ensure it was otherwise okay. Ultimately I did find a charger for a Canon point and shoot that was the correct voltage and had its pins in the right place. With a little effort this can now be used to charge the Samsung battery. After this let down it made me think more about what cameras I wanted to have and what cameras were worth keeping. The primary problem with older digital cameras are their proprietary batteries and keeping them charged or working. It’s okay for a couple cameras but for any significant number the work and expense of dealing with batteries begins to out way the benefits. And what are the benefits? Unlike film cameras which have the film itself in common old digital cameras just get left further behind every year. So the odd one may have been a landmark in design or operation but the bulk of them are better suited for recycling. Time could prove me wrong but I am betting that the 3rd of 7 iterations of some plasticky 3Mpixel camera just is not going to be of any interest in the future. As a parting note here are some images shot with the TL320 to show that despite its gimmicky nature the camera does take pictures.