Kodak ceases production of B&W paper

Discussion in 'Kodak' started by PGG, Jun 15, 2005.

  1. PGG

    PGG Guest

    They've been making it for 117 years. Yikes...
    PGG, Jun 15, 2005
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  2. PGG

    Scott W Guest

    But there are those who will tell you that film is alive and well and
    there will be no problems in the future, which tells me that people can
    belive just about anything if they really want to.

    Scott W, Jun 16, 2005
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  3. PGG

    Skip M Guest

    I find this depressing. I knew that film had a finite lifetime, but, for
    some reason, I didn't expect the ancillaries to go away. I figured I'd
    always be able to print my old negatives in the darkroom, but first Ilford
    has problems, then Agfa, now Kodak drops b&w paper. I guess I'd better get
    that film scanner, but inkjet b&w still sucks, and I don't really want to
    trust someone else to print my stuff like I'd like it printed.
    Skip M, Jun 16, 2005
  4. PGG

    DaveW Guest

    Where did you hear or read this? I've not been able to find any
    reference to it. A hoax perhaps?

    DaveW, Jun 16, 2005
  5. PGG

    calcerise Guest

    There will be film for the hardcore art and commercial users, supplied
    by smaller firms. It's been a long time since Kodak B&W papers have
    been considered desirable anyway.
    calcerise, Jun 16, 2005
  6. PGG

    PGG Guest

    PGG, Jun 16, 2005
  7. But there are other manufacturers of photo paper....I expect that it will be
    around for a number of years to come. Like film, the selection will be
    smaller, however......
    William Graham, Jun 16, 2005
  8. It was on the financial news this morning.....CNBC, I believe.......
    William Graham, Jun 16, 2005
  9. PGG

    Scott W Guest

    If the other B/W paper producers were doing well then the decision by
    Kodak would not be as significant. But nobody seems to be doing well
    producing B/W paper at this time, and this will only be getting worse.

    This move also shows Kodak's willingness to drop a produce once it no
    longer is bringing in the revenue that Kodak wants.

    The other thing that should be troubling is that Kodak said that the
    B/W paper sales have been falling at a rate of 25% per year, if that
    rate were to continue in 10 year the market for B/W paper would be less
    then 6% of its current levels and in 20 years it would be about 0.3%.
    This is not a industry that most people would want to invest in.

    Scott W, Jun 16, 2005
  10. PGG

    Colin D Guest

    I wonder if that figure applies to all paper sales, or just Kodak's? Are
    they losing market share as well as declining sales?

    Colin D, Jun 16, 2005
  11. PGG

    Scott W Guest

    It is hard to know but I would bet that they are not far off from the
    over all market.

    Scott W, Jun 16, 2005
  12. This is of course just the sales of Kodak B/W paper. If their paper is not
    very popular one way or another, they may see bigger drops in sales than the
    market as a whole.

    I sort of don't understand where the drop in volume comes from. There has
    been a lot of darkroom equipment in recent years, but I don't see how
    digital B/W is better. Messing around with inkjet printers doesn't sound
    like fun to me.

    For color it is easy: grain in color images is ugly, lots of film was scanned
    (for offset, etc. printing) anyhow, traditional darkroom color printing is
    no fun at all, digital output at the same level (certainly for RA-4 paper)
    as traditional prints from negatives. Once you can get enough resolution in
    a digital system, switch is more or less obvious.

    For B/W the situation is mostly reversed: grain can be used effectively in
    B/W images. Traditional darkroom prints provide a quality that is hard to
    match with other media. And finally, sensors are designed for color and not
    for B/W imaging.

    And in cases where B/W film was scanned, you would not notice a drop in
    paper sales when a switch is made to digital capture.
    Philip Homburg, Jun 16, 2005
  13. PGG

    Scott W Guest

    My guess is that a lot of people were doing B/W not because that like
    B/W so much as it gave then control that they did not have if they
    simply drop the film off for printing. Now they can get that same
    level of control using digital cameras and in color.

    I know a lot of people who use to do their own B/W printing, including
    me, that now shoot only digital.

    Scott W, Jun 16, 2005
  14. PGG

    Sander Vesik Guest

    There are really two things with this...
    a) it probably refers to some part of kodak somewhere stoping
    making one particular paper
    b) who cares? anybody who has been following things at all
    knows that Kodak considers its tradional photography
    custopers to be aliability. If its true - or when its true -
    people using these will say "oh, it was coming anyways"
    and switch to other papers.

    There is no point in seeing Kodak as a tradional photography bellweather.
    Sander Vesik, Jun 16, 2005
  15. PGG

    Mark Roberts Guest

    As most of the news stories noted, Ilford recently emerged from
    bankruptcy (see 4th-from-last paragraph at

    Although I'm sure that at some level, the people at Ilford find it sad
    that Kodak is getting out of B&W paper, a dispassionate business
    perspective has to be that the loss of a major competitor is good news
    for Ilford.

    BTW: When I lived in Rochester, NY (until 3 years ago) I used to
    frequent the Rochester Community Darkroom. Even in the heart of Kodak
    country they used Ilford products almost exclusively.
    Mark Roberts, Jun 16, 2005
  16. PGG

    Alan Browne Guest

    Alan Browne, Jun 16, 2005
  17. PGG

    Paul Bielec Guest

    Printing B/W is so easy, both to learn and to do at home.
    I was 8 or 9 yo when my grandfather showed me how to print my pictures
    at his studio.
    Paul Bielec, Jun 16, 2005
  18. PGG

    Matt Clara Guest

    I think you're extrapolating a fact about a company that hasn't made a good
    business decision in years to the industry as a whole. Yeah, the market is
    getting smaller, but that doesn't mean it's going away.
    Matt Clara, Jun 16, 2005
  19. But if you like color, why not print color? There were plenty of options
    to get color prints other than using the cheapest consumer lab.
    Philip Homburg, Jun 16, 2005
  20. PGG

    Father Kodak Guest

    Why do you say that? (I haven't done any b&w printing since lo these
    many years.

    I used to favor Afga Brovira and Portriga (sp?). I doubt those papers
    are still around. But I also used Kodak polycontrast papers from time
    to time. What papers/companies are considered the best these days?

    Father Kodak (a/k/a Great Yellow Father)
    Father Kodak, Jun 16, 2005
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