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New Fuji VS. New Kodak Color Negative Films

Rory Burns , Apr 01, 2007; 01:18 p.m.

Dear All,

Has anyone tested the new Fuji Pro color negative films versus the new Kodak Portra stocks?

I am most interested in Pro 160S vs. Portra 160 NC, in terms of scanning for digital prints.

Recently, I did a scan on a Heidelberg drum scanner of the new Fuji Pro 160S versus the old Kodak 160 NC. In this case, the Fuji scanned much better in terms of grain fidelity, color rendition, and accutance.

While I have used the new Portra 160 NC, and found it to be a huge improvement over the old version, I haven't put it through a drum-scan yet so can't draw any hard conclusions.

Final question would be how these new negative films would compare to Astia or Provia when scanned. While conventional wisdom states that slide film scans better, these new negative films are younger and may avail themselves of newer technology.

That said, let's keep this thread as a comparison of the new negative films.




John Kelly , Apr 01, 2007; 04:51 p.m.

Question: How (or why, or IS) is this the "conventional wisdom" :

"While conventional wisdom states that slide film scans better.."

Are you referring simply to ease of visual match or to something else?

No argument, just curious.

Rory Burns , Apr 04, 2007; 03:08 p.m.


Most advice I've received from people doing hi-end drum scanning is that slide film delivers better results not just for the reason you stated, but also in terms of image fidelity, sharpness, and grain.

One lab in Dubai that had an older Heidelberg drum scanner almost refused to even attempt scanning a negative of mine.

The reasons for this are not totally clear to me, but I believe the presence of the orange mask in negative is a difficult problem for the se scans to overcome.

That said, I'm amazed nobody has an opinion on these films!

Jedidiah Smith , Apr 06, 2007; 12:51 a.m.

Well, we all have opinions...but I haven't used the newest version of Kodak's portra yet.

As far as Astia or Provia vs Fuji Pro 160S, I have used all three of them, and the slide film wins hands down for grain-free scans. There is plenty of detail in the negatives, but when you invert it, and raise the contrast to an acceptable level, the grain sticks out like a sore thumb - at least when comparing it to something like Astia.

That's on a Nikon Coolscan V and a high end Minolta.

Adam Smith , Apr 07, 2007; 02:53 p.m.

Personally I prefer the 160S, but let me qualify that. I find generally fine grain more offensive than most, which is the main reason I prefer the fuji. I believe the Porta may be sharper though, so if that's more important to you it should be kept in mind.

BOTH of these films have low grain and are reasonably sharp though, so the only way to really know what you prefer is to shoot a roll of both and compare their color pallettes. (Again I prefer the fuji.) IF I had to describe them both I would say that the fuji is a cooler pallette, and the kodak tends toward red/orange in most colors, but somehow pops yellows without any red contanmination. Hope this was helpful.

Rainer NAGEL , Apr 26, 2007; 05:32 p.m.

Response to New Fuji VS. New Kodak Color Negative Films Drum scanned

Hi Rory, please upload some drum scan crops for us. Thanks, rainer

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