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Thread: Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

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    Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

    Greetings everyone: I've had my Epson film scanner for several years now and I've scanned most of my worthwhile LF and MF photos. Now looking at my (much older) 35mm work and I'm becoming nostalgic... I'm really starting to miss the color palette of the old Kodachrome 25 that I used extensively in the 80s and 90s.

    So I'm wondering if anyone has a suggestion for a current film in LF that might come close to duplicating the old Kodachrome 25. I've used most of the Fuji transparency films and these produce beautiful images but nothing much like the old Kodachrome.

    Suggestions anyone? Perhaps even a slide film cross processed in C-41 might work. I'm open to suggestions.

    Cheers,

    Bob G.
    All natural images are analog. But the retina converts them to digital on their way to the brain.

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    Large format foamer! SamReeves's Avatar
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    Re: Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

    I think the problem lies in how Kodachrome is made and what gives it's sharpness. The current generation of E-6 films have a problem reproducing that.

    If you can still find it on frozen auctions on eBay, I would say Agfa RSX-50 might be the one that could resemble the Kodachrome of old.

  3. #3

    Re: Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

    If you have not tried it yet, Fuji Astia 100F is probably the best film in 4x5 for very natural colour palette and high resolution. Kodak E100G is close, with a slightly different colour rendering, and same high resolution. In C-41 4x5 films, I know one prominent professional who uses only Kodak Portra 160NC, which might be another film for you to try out.

    Kodachrome in 4x5 sizes is something that I don't think was ever around in my lifetime, though I have seen books that indicated shots made with such a thing. I think most Kodachrome was in 35mm size, so perhaps some of the look might be down to somewhat higher resolution lenses, or maybe the increased projection of the smaller image frame. Trying to match what you could do in 35mm with something in 4x5 might be a lesson in disappointment for most people.

    Ciao!

    Gordon Moat Photography

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    Re: Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

    Thanks Sam. I never tried the Agfa but I'll keep my eye open for some. I guess this is another discontinued one. Regarding the grain I know what you mean. After scanning my old 35mm Kodachromes and expanding the images to fill my Viewsonic screen, I find the grain is only a bit more than my 6x9 MF Fujichromes. But actually it is the color palette I would like to reproduce. Nothing else I've used since has ever given me those soft almost pastel-like colors. A couple of my experiments with cross processing Vericolor have come close though. Cheers. Bob G.
    All natural images are analog. But the retina converts them to digital on their way to the brain.

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    Re: Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

    Gordon: I believe Ansel Adams did the original work proving-in Kodachrome in LF sizes. I've seen a book of his Kodachrome images and most of them are spectacular beyond description.

    But the largest I was ever able to use was the PKR-120 which was an ISO 64 film and it did not have the same color rendering as the Kodachrome 25 had.

    I find it hard to describe but to me its color palette is the best of any film I have ever used. Bob G.
    All natural images are analog. But the retina converts them to digital on their way to the brain.

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    Re: Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

    Kodachrome WAS available in 4x5 starting during WW 2. I think Adams work, particularly for the Kodak Colorama Murals in Grand Central Station in NYC were done with early Kodak Color Negative materials.

  7. #7

    Re: Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

    A Kodak rep told me once that he used to shoot Kodachrome in 8x10 and 5x7 and that it came in larger sizes than that, before they slit it and packaged in in more common sizes. I do know Arizona Highways used to reproduce 5x7 Kodachromes, but in those days the problems were with the offset printing. It was never as good as the transparency.

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    Re: Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

    Gordon: Forgot to mention in my last note. I tried Astia 2 years ago in MF when I was in Alaska. I found it too bland for my taste. And not much like the original Kodachrome 25 that I was asking about. Kodachrome 25 had a look all its own that I have never seen reproduced in any other film. One attached. Was it natural? Perhaps not completely. To my eye it had a pastel type of look. But it needed bright sunshine and a bit of underexposure to really show the palette I liked. I only tried Portra 160 once. I might try again with it though under better lighting conditions. Regards. Bob G.
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    All natural images are analog. But the retina converts them to digital on their way to the brain.

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    Re: Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

    Quote Originally Posted by Gene McCluney View Post
    Kodachrome WAS available in 4x5 starting during WW 2. I think Adams work, particularly for the Kodak Colorama Murals in Grand Central Station in NYC were done with early Kodak Color Negative materials.
    Kodachrome sheet was available in sizes up to 16x20. It was discontinued shortly after the introduction of Ektachrome, which was in 1946.

    Gene, that is my understanding about the Adams Grand Central Station murals.

    Bob, sorry for contributing nothing other than trivia to your query.

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    Re: Kodachrome 25: CanTodays Films Duplicate

    Merg: No worries. Nothing objectionable about trivia as far as I'm concerned. I read up on Kodachrome in the mid 1990s and learned a bit about its history at that time. Although I'm sure the facts by now have faded a bit in my aging brain. That's when I saw the book of Ansel Adams Kodachrome photos. But even so I'm not quite old enough to have tried it in LF. The colors in Ansel's photos (at least the way they were reproduced in the book and the way I remember them) to my mind were nearly identical with the look of Kodachrome 25 which had quite a following with the 35mm crowd up until Fuji Velvia came on the scene. Anyway, as I said earlier in the thread, I was becoming nostalgic this weekend as I scanned a hundred or so of my old 35mm slides. They have a look that I would like to be able to do again.
    All natural images are analog. But the retina converts them to digital on their way to the brain.

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