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Processesing?


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#1 Christian Blas

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Posted 01 April 2007 - 10:00 PM

Is it better to process at home or deliver the film to a lab? Which is more costly and more recommended?
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#2 Nick Mulder

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Posted 01 April 2007 - 11:24 PM

Lab is better

Lab is more expensive in terms of $$$

Home takes up time

(time = money - so make your own call here)

Lab is more recommended



...that all being said, home B+W is fun and can be very cheap and not too time consuming - color is a different story altogether apparently - what are you going to be doing with your films ?
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#3 Dory Breaux DP

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Posted 01 April 2007 - 11:40 PM

Is it better to process at home or deliver the film to a lab? Which is more costly and more recommended?


Home developing B+W reversal shouldnt be hard at all. Negetive may be a bit harder since you'll need to print it. Color, well thats something you oughtta save for the lab. Something you could do is get a 35mm still camera and just shoot alot of pointless pictures and learn to develope those, then move up to some test 16mm, THEN do all your own once your all good and stuff.
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#4 Dominic Case

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 02:12 AM

Is it better

Better by what criteria?

As others said, for colour and/or negative, stick to a professsional lab - if the result is what you are interested in. If it's the challenge of doing it yourself, and you don't mind too much if the results are acceptable (by your criteria), maybe you'd try it at home.

But your question is like "is it better to brew your own beer or buy it at the pub?" It all depends on what you want to get out of the experience. Product, or process.
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#5 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 02:19 AM

Processing is its own art and science, and personally, it's not something I'd want to get involved in, not at the volumes that movie film require compared to a cassette of 35mm still film. You're dealing with gallons of chemicals, removing remjet (if shooting color neg), washing and drying long strands of film, disposal issues to make sure you won't be dumping pollutants into the sewage system, replenishment issues, creating a dust-free environment... I'd leave it to professional labs and concentrate on other things. Surely your time is worth something.
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#6 Dory Breaux DP

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 09:37 AM

Processing is its own art and science, and personally, it's not something I'd want to get involved in, not at the volumes that movie film require compared to a cassette of 35mm still film. You're dealing with gallons of chemicals, removing remjet (if shooting color neg), washing and drying long strands of film, disposal issues to make sure you won't be dumping pollutants into the sewage system, replenishment issues, creating a dust-free environment... I'd leave it to professional labs and concentrate on other things. Surely your time is worth something.


Lucky me I have a mom who has her own mini-lab :) .
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#7 John Holland

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 11:28 AM

Dont stick any motion picture through mummys mini lab , it will really make her angry .
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#8 Dory Breaux DP

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 12:29 PM

Dont stick any motion picture through mummys mini lab , it will really make her angry .


I would never let HER touch it. I'd do it though, she has said if i want to risk it i can.
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#9 Christian Blas

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 02:35 PM

thanks all the helpful advice. I think I better let the lab handle my film then, being that it is color negatives that need processing.
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#10 Dominic Case

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 06:06 PM

I'd do it though, she has said if i want to risk it i can.

How many times do we have to say this?Don't put motion picture film through a minilab.
Don't put motion picture film through a minilab.
Don;t put motion picture film through a minilab.


See the black stuff on the back of your unprocessed motion picture negative? It's remjet antihalation backing. Jet is finely divited carbon particles, like lampblack. Remjet means it is removable - in the first stage of a motion icture process like ECN2. So it's all gone before you get the film into the developer.

In Mom's C41 process, like everyone else's minilab process, there is no backing removal bath. So if you "risk" putting your film through her process, that remjet will soften and fall off in the developer. It's not soluble, so it will deposit on all the rollers and pumps, and the sides of the tanks and it will clog up the filters, as well as getting on the emulsion of your film (from which it will be impossible to remove).

When you spend the rest of the day cleaning out the processing machine, be sure to get it all off. Otherwise what is left will deposit itself on the next few customers' negatives. Then it won't just be Mom who is angry.

The best that could happen is that all her customers would switch to digital cameras. There's no backing there.
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#11 Antonio Bunt

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 10:49 PM

Of course the prices raise in the lab but if you plan to experiment justo for the fun of it, processing your own film is fun, it's like a very big fetuccini! For a more professional job I wouldn't count on that! My Lomo tanks are getting dust all over them anyway but for the occasional DIY are OK. PS: I just deal with B&W, colour is a mess and it never comes good in my own experience.
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