The contents here may have some key words here and there in pure photographic term, please refer to our huge Glossary section for cross references.
Is the choice of film important ?
Yes & no, it depends all on your specific requirements and knowledge with individual characteristics of respective films that available in the market.
In general, there are two types of film,
Color Negative Film & Color Slide Film
Most films are DX-coded now (means it will load its data to the camera in relation to its film speed & number of exposures), thus the chances are minimized for wrong setting of corresponding speed (ASA) in the camera's setting.
The most popular print film speeds are 400, 200 and 100. All cameras are capable of handling these film speeds. For easy speed identification, check the colored strip on any film box the next time you go to the store.
Color Negative film
"C41" (official Kodak name for the development process) is the standard reference for the process of colour negative film.
Among the few set backs for color negative films are, primarily, your lab that you drop the film for processing control your end result of your print in certain way. Besides, a negative is never the final product (not a first generation output because there is so many slot in the printing process) and
Wide availability and choices of variable film speed and almost every five square miles within a township you can have at least a lab to process it. It's cheap, it providing excellent sharpness and a very forgiving exposure latitudes for general photography - are the few strong points of colour negative film.
To illustrate further, color negative film is very tolerant of exposure errors. You can be set off by 2 or 3 f-stops over and under exposure and still get a print that is barely distinguishable from one from a correctly exposed negative.
The choices for color negative film ranges from ASA 25 (low speed but Ultrahigh sharpness) to ASA 3200 (Fast Speed but grainy).
For general photography, we strongly recommending ASA 200 to 400 film - Ideal for extended flash range, as well as outdoor shots. It stops action for ultra-sharp pictures in bright or low light and is great for zoom cameras.
Why zoom cameras ?
Don't be fooled by those compact zoom camera's advertisements, unless your photographic session are all on ideal bright environment, the extended zoom range is practically useless, why ? Most compact zoom lenses can tell you features like a zoom with 35mm-145 mm, BUT what they didn't tell you is the apertures on the lens could range from f3.5 to f13, ask any photographer what can you manipulate with a zoom aperture set at f13!
Zoom lens means - many lens elements inside. The internal reflections on the surface of individual lens element resulting in low contrast. Thus, most images produced by zoom lenses are low in contrast (NOTE: A top rated zoom lens may cost many of those compact zoom camera bodies alone).
When you have a zoom cameras, and since the available aperture is so not being practical, fast films can come to the rescue, which it can compensate for the light loss. When deal with flash, fast film providing an extended working flash range to capture more light to the film for better exposure.
Color Slide Film
One thing is of sure, color slide film reproduces faithfully as first generation product from your original captured image. Your images won't be ruined by the slings and arrows of outrageous automated printing machines.
A lot of people refer slide film as "E6" - Kodak's process that is used to develop all slide film today (while another type of process for another category of slide film from Kodak's Kodachrome (K14) and infrared Ektachrome (E4)) or "chromes".
When you want to make a living with photography, slide film is the only choice - because agencies and editors only accept slides. There are two general categories of slide films : the Pro & the commercial version. It will take me another 10 pages to explain this, if you like to know more, mail me or call Kodak or Fuji in Malaysia.
The only thing you need to know apart from the above is : slide film offer very little exposure latitude - which means slight over and under exposure is not so tolerable as color negative film (as the expense of highlight or shadow details.
This page is too long, and I am writing too much unrelated stuffs, and I'd really wondering will anybody benefits from all these rubbish published here. mail me and keep me going on!
Related topics: Is point & shoot camera good enough for us ?
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