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Shooting On Older Film Stock Question


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#1 Stephen Tringali

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Posted 04 July 2009 - 12:10 AM

I have some black and white 16mm stock (plus X neg 7231) that's been sitting in my freezer for about a year now, and I'm preparing to shoot a short with it. I was wondering if anyone could suggest how I should treat the film stock while shooting, particularly with regard to over exposing it. Any other things I should keep in mind while shooting it would also be appreciated. Thank you.
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#2 K Borowski

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Posted 04 July 2009 - 04:40 AM

Rate as normal. One year in a freezer with a slow film like this will be practically indistinguishable from brand-new stock, even with a densitometer.

Hope this helps!

BTW: Do yourself a favor and rate it 1/3-2/3 of a stop slower than box speed to really get the finest grain possible. Were your film to be older, I would have recommended rating a full stop to 1-1/2 stops slower to overcome fog.

I've shot 10+ year-old film, sometimes rated up to three stops over box speed, and you can really get away with using very very old stock as long as you have the ability to rate it slower and slower as it gets older and older to raise the shadow details above the base fog on the film that happens with age (film will go from clear to greyer and greyer in B&W neg).

Edited by Karl Borowski, 04 July 2009 - 04:42 AM.

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#3 Brian Pritchard

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Posted 06 July 2009 - 04:01 AM

[quote name='Karl Borowski' date='Jul 4 2009, 10:40 AM' post='292307']

BTW: Do yourself a favor and rate it 1/3-2/3 of a stop slower than box speed to really get the finest grain possible. Were your film to be older, I would have recommended rating a full stop to 1-1/2 stops slower to overcome fog.

Over exposing usually leads to increased grain.
Brian
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#4 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 06 July 2009 - 10:04 AM

Stephen, I suspect "T" is not your family name, so please go to My Controls and edit your Display Name to a real first and last name, as per the forum rules listed when you registered. Thanks!
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#5 Chris Burke

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 09:06 AM

Over exposing usually leads to increased grain.
Brian



Is this a particular characteristic of this stock (7231)? I have always rated bw still film 2/3 over with great success. I thought that overexposing DECREASES the appearance of grain, that is why people do it.
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#6 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 09:12 AM

AFAIK overexposure decreases grain on neg because it "activates" more of the smaller particle of silver.
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#7 Robert Houllahan

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 09:53 AM

I have shot allot of 7231 and a year in the fridge is nothing it will be as new.

-Rob-
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#8 Dirk DeJonghe

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 10:27 AM

Overexposing B&W negative is good advice because the stocks are rated a bit too optimistic by the manufacturers (not so with color negative). +2/3 will be about right to get the proper normal exposure on 7231 and 7222.
On the other hand overexposing more than that will increase the grain in the filmstock and make it more difficult for the telecine to get the light through and this will increase noise. So, overexposing black and white negative is not a good idea.
B&W negative grain increases with overexposure, the opposite of what happens with color negative.
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#9 Stephen Tringali

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 06:57 PM

Stephen, I suspect "T" is not your family name, so please go to My Controls and edit your Display Name to a real first and last name, as per the forum rules listed when you registered. Thanks!

Sorry about that. I should have read over the forum rules more closely. I've added my last name to my Display Name. Thanks for pointing out my mistake.
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#10 K Borowski

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Posted 13 July 2009 - 03:45 AM

Overexposing B&W negative is good advice because the stocks are rated a bit too optimistic by the manufacturers (not so with color negative). +2/3 will be about right to get the proper normal exposure on 7231 and 7222.
On the other hand overexposing more than that will increase the grain in the filmstock and make it more difficult for the telecine to get the light through and this will increase noise. So, overexposing black and white negative is not a good idea.
B&W negative grain increases with overexposure, the opposite of what happens with color negative.


You are right that, with new stock, 2/3 stop, maybe 1 stop tops is all the over-exposure you want to give.

However, you didn't read me post properly. . . With older stock, which is already suffering from age fog, unless you want the fog to show up and crush your shadows, you have to expose even more to make up for the increased D-min due to fog.

Also, I disagree with the thing you say about grain increasing with over-exposure. The only thing you have to watch out for, that I have observed with extreme overexposure is halation, but this doesn't tend to show up until, what, +5-6 stops if I recall correctly.
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#11 Patrick ODonnell

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 06:30 PM

I have a related question: I recently picked up some 100 ft. rolls of Kodachrome with an expiration date in 1975. I have no reason to believe it was refrigerated anytime recently. What can I expect when these rolls are developed? Does anyone have advice on exposure?
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#12 Freya Black

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 07:06 PM

I have a related question: I recently picked up some 100 ft. rolls of Kodachrome with an expiration date in 1975. I have no reason to believe it was refrigerated anytime recently. What can I expect when these rolls are developed? Does anyone have advice on exposure?


If it is Kodachrome 40 or 25 then expose normally (reversal is finnicky about exposure) and hope for the best.
1975 is old. It's likely the colours have gone a bit funny, you may get lucky as Kodachrome has a long shelf life but it seems likely it will have gone at least a bit funny.

If it is Kodachrome II then you can try and develop as B&W at home or use as gash stock or leader or something.

love

Freya
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#13 Patrick ODonnell

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 07:36 PM

Thanks, it's Kodachrome II, so I guess I'm looking at the B&W route. Should it be overexposed a stop or two?


If it is Kodachrome 40 or 25 then expose normally (reversal is finnicky about exposure) and hope for the best.
1975 is old. It's likely the colours have gone a bit funny, you may get lucky as Kodachrome has a long shelf life but it seems likely it will have gone at least a bit funny.

If it is Kodachrome II then you can try and develop as B&W at home or use as gash stock or leader or something.

love

Freya


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#14 Dominic Case

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 07:58 PM

Also, I disagree with the thing you say about grain increasing with over-exposure.

Let's be clear about this.

It's quite true that increasing exposure will activate more of the smaller grains, thereby decreasing the average size of the grains. The term to describe this, strictly, is granularity: it's an objective term, it can be measured with a microdensitometer, and there is no question of "agree" or "disagree".

On the other hand, increasing exposure with black and white negative stocks does move the exposure up the characteristic curve, and because there is a considerably long toe on these stocks, that means that the darker tones are reproduced with considerably more contrast or gamma. This seems to accentuate the appearance of grain. This appearance is what we normally refer to as "grain", but strictly is called graininess. As it is what we perceive, it's a subjective term, and there is no precise measurement. Graininess is affected by a whole lot of things, including the lighting contrast of the scene, the sharpness of the image and so on.

Because colour negative doesn't have exactly the same curve shape - and also because the "grains" that we see are not actually individual grains at all, but dye clouds - it behaves differently.
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#15 Landon Hosto

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Posted 21 August 2009 - 10:28 AM

hello All , I've gotten some good advice on shooting older color negative film here and at the good folks at deluxe. One of the things I was told and see to remain true here is that after getting a snip test and seeing the density of my film almost .4 higher that what the aims were for that specific film from kodak (5279) I am at the conclusion of overexposing my neg by at least 1 1/2 stops to "fight" off the natural fog of the older film. Also the film I will be shooting is at least 3 years old and was only in a cool basement not a fridge. So I hope to report back in a few days after processing to let you all know what happened.

but if there are any other hints, recomendations, or tricks you all use for 3-4 year old film. please let me know!!!

thanks
landon
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