Oct 24 2014

Cinestill 800T and how customer service should work.




I shot a roll of Cinestill 800T in my Minolta X700 mostly of very dark things with bright lights, what can I say I like the halo’s it creates (For an explanation of what and why see this post Niagara at Night with Cinestill).  unfortunately the roll I had may have come from an early run before they say they improved the process or just a faulty roll.  So most of the images on the roll have residual rem-jet coating that makes some of the images appear like you’re looking through a glass of Guinness Stout.


That part is a bummer because some of those images can not be redone but I emailed Cinestill and notified them and they offered to send me replacement rolls for my remaining film in case other rolls are similarly afflicted.  Now you might be thinking well of course that is the right thing to do and I agree but for them to do it so quickly and without further hassle to me is what I consider excellent customer service (Pretty much the opposite experience of all the failed Apple charging cables I’ve had to contend with).   With some editing I am able to minimize the impact of the rem-jet and salvage the images at least for the purpose of sharing but really what matters to me is that Cinestill re-established my confidence in shooting their film and I look forward to shooting even more of it.

Here are some of the better files from the roll  with the faults more visible than others even after editing to minimize them.


Jul 26 2014

Niagara at night with Cinestill 800T Film


While in Niagara Falls Ontario I had some time in the late evenings to walk around and take a few pictures.  I chose to use Cinestill film for this because of its tungsten colour balance and how it reacts to light sources with a certain glow.  I also chose to use the Canon QL17 both for its fast 40mm F1.7 lens and that it can be used completely manually.  While it does lack slow shutter speeds I wouldn’t have a tripod and these are all hand-held so the 1/4sec slowest shutter speed is leisurely enough.

Cinestill 800 is an interesting film because it is actually motion picture film, specifically Kodak Vision 3 5219 that has had its Remjet layer removed to allow for it to be processed using regular C41 and its then packaged in a 35mm still film cartridge.  The effect of pre-removing the Remjet layer is that its antihalation properties are also removed.


What this means is that light can pass through the film and be reflected back striking the emulsion layers a second time which creates halos which are particularly noticable around bright light sources.


It gives Cinestill 800T a different look that isn’t easily duplicated and I kind of like it for that.