Kodak Discontinues All B&W Paper

Discussion in 'Kodak' started by Richard Knoppow, Jun 15, 2005.

  1. Richard Knoppow

    UC Guest

    UC, Jun 16, 2005
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  2. : On Wed, 15 Jun 2005 23:25:47 GMT, Gregory Blank wrote:

    : > IMOP the only one worthy of note is Azo, made to special order.

    : I thought PolyMax II RC was pretty good for a VC/RC.

    I also like PolyMax II RC, but Kodak has discontinued it before this
    announcement. It's listed in the "discontinued papers" on their web
    site, which Polycontrast RC is still listed as an active product.
    B&H doesn't list PolyMax II RC any more.

    This must have happened recently, because I was able to buy some from
    B&H about a year ago.

    Warren B. Hapke

    : --
    : John - www.puresilver.org
    Warren B. Hapke, Jun 16, 2005
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  3. Richard Knoppow

    David Starr Guest

    What he said.

    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
    Retired Shop Rat: 14,647 days in a GM plant.
    Now I can do what I enjoy: Large Format Photography
    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
    David Starr, Jun 16, 2005
  4. Richard Knoppow

    John Guest

    I agree. I think the local store still has a case on their shelf somewhere
    as that is the paper they also use in their lab.
    John, Jun 17, 2005
  5. I have nothing against prints made from a digitalized file, though
    personally I like darkroom work and would not like to see the materials

    However, my main concern is with images that begin their life as digital
    images and have no film negative. Such images are as ephemeral as the
    next software or hardware evolution. How will historians 200 years from
    now access a visual record of our era? Even if the images still exist
    (highly unlikely) on some more permanent storage media than what is now
    available, how will future technology be able to access them? I may
    make prints on an inkjet printer from a file that began as a real
    negative and was scanned into Photoshop, but I will always insist on
    having the negative to start with.
    LR Kalajainen, Jun 17, 2005
  6. OK, so analog photographers get to be the ones to write the visual
    history of this age.

    Where is the problem?

    OTOH, it may be it is the digital data that survives as it is substrate

    The vaunted archival properties of silver gelatin have so far flopped
    big time:

    Negatives on cellulose triacetate [CTA - most modern film]
    aren't in any way archival. The CTA degrades, giving off acetic acid
    and turning to goo; accelerated by water vapor and heat. Google
    'acetate' and 'bettman'. If you want your negatives and slides
    [Kodachrome's on acetate] to last you may want to scan them -now-.
    Keep negatives loose in a dry cool place and pray. For God's sake
    don't put them in 'archival sleeves' and pack them in boxes, it
    just makes things go faster.

    Negatives on polyester [Mylar, Estar] base may last longer. At least
    none have turned to goo or powder, yet. Estar base films are
    TechPan (I'm safe), most(?) sheet film, some roll film (Tri-X 400
    (400 Tri-X ?) but not 320), and microfilm.

    RC prints have a bad track record. The claim is the problems have
    all been fixed - heard that before.

    Fiber base prints? Excluding badly fixed ones, nobody really
    knows. A fungus among us that just _loves_ silver gelatin?
    Maybe byarta gets together with cellulose and does something
    spooky in the night?

    Results in 200 years, place your bets now.
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Jun 17, 2005
  7. Richard Knoppow

    John Guest

    Really ? Jeez, I guess that suitcase full of 120 year old prints I found
    must have just been a fluke.
    John, Jun 17, 2005
  8. No, it was one of those archival suitcases they used to make.
    Jean-David Beyer, Jun 17, 2005
  9. Richard Knoppow

    Scott W Guest

    Well to start with how many really old photos still have their
    negatives around? I have a few photos that are over 100 years old, but
    they are just prints, I have no idea of where the negatives for them
    would be. I think this is pretty normal, like it or not negatives tend
    to get thrown away and what we are left with 100 years from now is
    prints. So this being the case how will prints from digital photos be
    different then from negatives, I get mine done at Costco, on
    photographic paper.

    I am not worried about the long term storage, for now it is very easy
    to make mutable copies of the files and a snap to keep them on updated
    media, I used to have my photos on CDs, now they are on DVDs and
    external hard drives. But looking forward I notice a couple of things,
    when a format get used to a certain level is simply does not go away,
    take ASCII, is there anyone who believes it is going away, it has been
    extended but still a file that is coded with ASCII done in 1963 will
    read just fine on your home computer today. 200 years from now there
    will be lots of software that will be able to decode a jpeg file.

    As we move more and more do a digital world it is getting easier to
    keep up with new formats, not harder. Take 8mm movies, some of which I
    have to get transferred to DVD. It costs a fair bit to get this done
    but the film is beginning to fall apart and the movie are not viewable
    without getting them moved. The transfer process runs at about real
    time, an hour of film take at least an hour to transfer. I have the
    same issue with my videos shot on my old 8mm camcorder, I have to get
    these transferred or risk losing them if my old 8mm camcorder breaks
    down. And I lose a bit of quality every time I do a transfer. Now I
    have a digital DV format camcorder, with this I can easily make copies
    to DVD, and once on DVD keep the video up more up to date formats
    become much easier, in part because the transfer rate can be much
    higher then real time.

    As for what a historian might want 200 years from now, how about if
    every photo has both a time stamp and GPS data imbedded in it, so you
    know when it was taken and where, now that would be cool. This will be
    coming pretty soon, there are already some cameras that can do this, in
    10 years I bet most do.

    Scott W, Jun 17, 2005
  10. Scott W wrote (in part):
    That may be OK for small-time image makers, but when you consider a large
    institution, like an art museum, this is out of the question. I worked for
    an outfit that had over 10,000 reels of 10.5" 7-track tape. By the time they
    realized there were no more tape drives that could handle it, it was too
    late. Even if there were drives, the programs that read and wrote them are
    no longer around. Anyone have the Fortran Monitor System running? The tapes
    use 6-bit BCD encoding, and while you could find out how to crack that in
    individual cases, the chances are the data was put down in a special-purpose
    binary format that any good cryptographer might be able to crack, but as a
    practical matter, no one would do it. And now I am not sure how many 9-track
    tapes that take EBCDIC are out there anymore either, though probably more
    than the 7-track stuff. I used a non-IBM machine for a while that also read
    and wrote BCD and binary on 7-track tape, and later, on 9-track. It was
    impractical to convert the old tapes, so we just scrapped them. It would
    have been possible, but there was no way to get the money together to hire
    an employee to do it.
    Sure, but you would never write audio or video files in ASCII. And besides,
    ASCII was supposed to replace many different forms of BCD codes, but the
    standards committee took so long to get the standard approved that IBM could
    not wait and came out with their EBCDIC instead, so by no means everyone
    converted to ASCII.
    I would not wish to bet on that. And during those 200 years, most people
    _will not_ faithfully copy and convert all their old stuff, so it will be
    lost. (Now, of course, that is what a lot of it deserves, but we may be too
    close to the stuff to make valid long-term decisions.)
    But if you are a museum with 25,000 reels of movie film, you will not have
    the money or the staff to do it. There are still nitrate base films (or
    there were until recently) that no one, even the film studios, that could do
    it. The bean-counters did not even believe that stuff had any value. It took
    a labor of love to even restore one movie, Napoleon by Abel Gance, and that
    took _twenty years_ to do it. Here is a little about that one:

    Jean-David Beyer, Jun 17, 2005
  11. Richard Knoppow

    Scott W Guest

    But you are making the very point I was trying to make, perhaps not as
    clearly as I could have been. Media that starts out as analog, like
    film, is a pain to deal with and very hard to get into a digital
    format, I know I have been getting my own stuff converted to digital.
    But when the media starts out as digital it is fairly easy to maintain
    it in current formats and on current storage media.

    As an example, if for some reason I wanted to convert all my jpeg
    photos to jpeg 2000 I could use Infaview to convert them as a batch

    It is far easier for me to transfer my digital video to DVD then my
    analog video.

    My point is that I feel much better about the storage of my digital
    photos then I do about my film photos. I have negatives that are
    showing signs of decay, an they are only 20 years old.

    I have my parents negitives from 50 years ago and they all have problem
    to some extent.

    Scott W, Jun 17, 2005
  12. All this talk about the "archival" benefits of one technology over the other
    only applies to image storage in the long term.

    Where digital pales yet today, is in the current differences between the ink
    jet, black and white, paper print (the one that hangs on a wall) and the
    traditional darkroom silver print. (Oh boy, I'm in trouble now. Bummer of a
    birthmark, Ed. It looks just like a bullseye!)

    White flowers against a black background, which I love to shoot under
    "professional" (ok, expensive) lighting, when printed on traditional
    darkroom glossy paper, seem to glow under any type of light.

    No color shift, no cyan hues, just glowing white on black. Glowing.

    Digital black and white prints, however, of the same subject matter, seem
    flat. No glow. Glossy flat, perhaps, like I might expect out of my laser
    office printer, later sprayed with lacquer to make them glossy, but the
    white portion just doesn't seem to glow. It looks like an email to my boss.

    Up until now, I have never seen a black and white inkjet print that could
    equal the silver based content of the traditional glossy print. Someday,
    yes, but not now.

    Once, Cone Editions sent me a black and white print, printed on non-glossy
    paper of their choice, for review. Good photograph, but flat, no glow.

    Even the famous landscape photographer, Clyde Butcher, whose darkroom,
    studio and gallery reside in the same city as I, and who places his
    Hewlett-Packard ink jet prints near his silver prints, recognizes the value
    of the traditional print, as would be reflected in his pricing strategy. For
    the most part, he appears to keep them at least somewhat divided, perhaps to
    prevent critical side by side comparison.

    I don't know, well, yes I do know, that film won't last forever, but as long
    as it does, I likely will be part of it.

    It's kinda like sex. I'll hang on as long as I can...........Hey Babe, look
    what I did with our digital camera and Photoshop....come look,
    Honey.......it's me!!!!.....once.
    Michael J Rodney Sr., Jun 18, 2005
  13. Richard Knoppow

    deloid Guest


    What a great note!! Not only do I agree with you (which must mean you are
    right) but you write well and have a great humorous style of writing. Thanks
    for the smile!

    deloid, Jun 18, 2005
  14. I thought "archival" means "storage in the long term".

    I was playing Devil's advocate after seeing the 60-minutes show on the
    Bettman archive. We all assume silver gelatin will last, but maybe
    not. There are mucho problems with negatives. Don't tell the
    digital folks, they'll never let us off the hook.
    Can't agree more. And I think RC also looks crummy.

    It's the older film negatives that are going in the Bettman.
    Testing seems to indicate newer acetate negatives may suffer the same
    fate. The glass negatives are OK and prints are OK.
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Jun 18, 2005
  15. Correction: you mean the Bill Gates Microsoft archive.
    Gregory Blank, Jun 18, 2005
  16. Richard Knoppow

    John Guest

    Ya still got it where it counts JD !

    BTW, 4 is out. http://fedora.redhat.com/
    John, Jun 18, 2005
  17. Richard Knoppow

    John Guest

    How many great images still have their negatives around ? I'm sure the
    answer is quite high. Right up to Mathew Brady's plates.
    John, Jun 18, 2005
  18. Richard Knoppow

    John Guest

    Well that's it then. Time to go back to glass plate. Now where did I leave
    that silver nitrate ? ? ? ?
    John, Jun 18, 2005
  19. AFAIK, Edward Weston's negatives, Ansel Adam's negatives, and most of Imogen
    Cunningham's negatives are still around. Also Garry Winogrand's, Alfred
    Stieglitz'. Most of these are on flexible film, not glass plates.
    Jean-David Beyer, Jun 18, 2005
  20. Richard Knoppow

    John Guest

    Yep. Corbis. The stock agency killer.
    John, Jun 18, 2005
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