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Fuji vs. Kodak processing and paper

B Fitz , Nov 19, 2003; 02:21 p.m.

I am getting film developed and have never used Fuji film processing before. With regard to Fuji vs Kodak processing (and Fuji vs Kodak paper) is one better than the other, or is there no real difference? These are vacation photos and I have been using Kodak 400 film. I know that years ago photos printed on Fuji paper had a tendency to turn blue over time--is this still a problem (and was it the film, the processing or the paper)? Also, if anyone can recommend any good (reasonably priced) processing centers in Manhattan--downtown or UWS.

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Kevin Hundsnurscher , Nov 19, 2003; 02:55 p.m.

It'll depend on the machine that they use. If it's a Frontier, then the results will come out very nice. If it's not a Frontier, then they will pretty much look the same as if they were done on a Kodak machine.
Of course there's other variables to take into account, such as; do they change their chemicals on a regular basis, is the operator very competent, etc.

R.T. Dowling , Nov 19, 2003; 04:39 p.m.

Sometimes it is best to have Kodak film printed on Kodak paper, or Fuji film printed on Fuji paper. However, a highly skilled, competant lab operator with good equipment can make any film look good on any paper.

Jonathan Bundick , Nov 19, 2003; 07:08 p.m.

The previous post is correct, but unless you know the lab very well, and they are going to pay close attention to your order, you would be best to stick with Fuji film on fuji paper, and Kodak film on Kodak paper.

Antonio Plaza , Nov 19, 2003; 11:24 p.m.

Regarding the accuracy of colors, I think that it all depends basically on who does the color filtering more than what brand of paper they use, so if the people at the lab do it right, the pictures should come out good no matter what brand of paper they use. Now, Kodak recommends Kodak films to be printed on Kodak papers, and Fuji suggests to print Fujicolor films in Fuji papers. Agfa also recommends to print Agfa films in Agfa papers. When it comes to image longevity, according to Whilhem Imaging Research tests, Fuji's Color Archive paper outperforms all the others.

Christopher Bibbs , Nov 20, 2003; 01:25 p.m.

This may not be new to anyone else, but I only recently pieced it together. If you're getting your pictures developed at a consumer lab, talk to the person who will be doing the work and treat them like a professional. When I spoke to the woman who was working the Frontier machine at Wal-Mart (tongue piercing and all) about what the colors actually were that she'd be seeing on the rolls not only did she do a great job, but she bumped me up in the queue. Seems she wanted to do the work while things were fresh in her mind. I almost wanted to tip her afterwards. :)

Canon EOS Rules , Nov 20, 2003; 09:04 p.m.

Using Kodak film? Ask for Kodak paper!

Personally, since you're using Kodak film. I'd suggest finding a lab that uses Kodak paper because prints from Kodak film on Fuji Crystal Archive paper look just plain horrible-especially ones from Portra 400UC-even prints on Kodak EDGE look much better! (That's the reason I take my 400UC to Target & my Fuji film to Wal-Mart or Walgreens.) Target, Kmart, & CVS 1-hour photo labs (& some Walgreens 1-hour photo labs), as well as Sundance Photo & Kodak's Qualex wholesale photofinishing labs all use Kodak paper. Better yet, find a local minilab or pro lab using Kodak Royal paper.

Also, Kodak has significantly improved their paper longevity-Kodak's reformulated EDGE Generations, DuraLife Generations, & Royal Generations papers are now claimed to last 100 years in direct light or 200 year in dark storage!

Scott Eaton , Nov 20, 2003; 09:55 p.m.

the pictures should come out good no matter what brand of paper they use.

Wrong.

Take a roll of simple yet respected Gold 100, shoot some people pics, and have it processed at a Fuji Lab on Fuji paper and a Kodak shop on any Kodak paper. The Kodak prints on Royal, Edge or Duralife will usually look pretty decent with strong yet believable colors and neutral skin tones. The Fuji prints from Gold 100 will have crossover, orange/green/blue/purple skin tones, and screwed up contrast that says 'mini-lab' print. You can *sometimes* get away with the Kodak Portra films on a Frontier depending on subject matter, but by and large it's not a good combination. The stronger the saturation of the non Fuji film the worse it will look when combined with Fuji papers. Kodak specifically formulates their films to work with their papers while Fuji is increasingly doing the same. If somebody can't tell the difference, then they likely can't tell Gold Max 400 from NPH either and this whole discussion is irrelevant anyways.

Fuji pro films transition much better to Kodak papers, which is due to the compensation built into Fuji film dyes. NPH, NPZ, Reala, and NPS do pretty decent on the better Kodak papers.

Antonio Plaza , Nov 21, 2003; 08:16 p.m.

Scott, I wasn't talking about "1-hour" labs when I said that any film can be printed in any brand of paper and produce good/excellent results. Many years ago, I used to send all my C-41 films to a lab where each and every print was hand made, the lab's owner who was a real expert in printing high quality negative prints used AGFA papers only, and no matter what film, Kodak, Fuji or Agfa, the prints were always great. Unfortunately, I have to agree, the story is not the same when it comes to 1-hour machine labs.

Scott Eaton , Nov 22, 2003; 11:31 a.m.

This is an easy one.

The reason all those films printed on Agfa paper look decent is Agfa *has no choice* but to formulate their papers to work with Kodak and Fuji films. Agfa's domestic paper market has historically been far larger than their domestic films sales. Pro Labs that use Agfa paper today only do so because the Agfa papers are so *dull* in terms of color saturation they'll basically work with any neg film. I've seen way too many team shots made from Kodak Portra NC/VPS printed on Agfa papers to know when to cringe at the mere sight of them.

The higher the color saturation of your paper stock, the fussier the film/paper match will be. This is why Fuji Crystal Archive, the highest saturated paper on the market right now, is the worst in terms of getting along with other films. More subtle Kodak Royal or Agfa Prestige are far more general purpose and wy I recommended mini-labs to use them over Crystal Archive. Or better yet, Kodak Supra.

The Kodak Portra films printed on Kodak Portra paper are incredibly lifelike, and they actually have some degree of color saturation, unlike Agfa materials.


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