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class="style8" Reversal Contrast

>Published : 26th February 2005

>John P. Pytlak commented that . . . . . . .

class="style9">>The reversal films are designed to yield a higher contrast image for >projection

>I always thought reversal film was inherently high contrast because it's in effect printed from its own built-in negative (during the re-exposure phase of processing). So the positive image is really "second generation" and therefore higher contrast.

>This begs the question: would it be possible to design a low-contrast S16 reversal film designed explicitly for TK rather than projection? Could such a stock combine the extremely fine grain and sharpness of reversal with a more forgiving latitude and gentler tonal range?

>Dan Drasin
Producer/DP
Marin County, CA


class="style9">>would it be possible to design a low-contrast S16 reversal film >designed explicitly for TK rather than projection?

>This sounds remarkably like the old (and sometimes lamented) 7252 ECO stock, which was designed for use as a camera/preprint material, and from which reversal prints were made (with a consequent slight increase in contrast) for projection.

>The extreme fine grain and more forgiving latitude sound a lot like the EI 25 that the old stock worked at, too.

>It was discontinued sometime in the 80s.

>Dominic Case
Atlab Australia


>Dominic wrote:

class="style9">>This sounds remarkably like the old (and sometimes lamented) 7252 >ECO stock...

>Dan's old enough to have shot ECO. Hell, he's old enough to have shot Kodachrome Commercial!

>Jeff "once shot a roll of Ektachrome ER and a little DuPont reversal too"
Kreines


>Less of the old Jeff.

>I both shot, and when I worked in a lab, processed, ECO

>Cheers

>Geoff Boyle FBKS
Director of Photography
EU Based
www.cinematography.net


class="style9">>This begs the question: would it be possible to design a low-contrast >S16 reversal film designed explicitly for TK rather than projection?

>Kodak did this in 1978 with the VNF stocks. VNF does after all stand for "Video News Film" and the VNF stocks are much lower contrast than the ECO and Kodachrome that were intended for direct projection. Back in the seventies it was fairly common to flash ECO and Kodachrome to lower the contrast of the camera negative, or to blow a low-contrast internegative.

>If you're looking for lower-contrast B&W reversal, that's easy to do as well by pulling a little bit, or replacing the first developer with a lower contrast or more compensating one.

>Scott


class="style9">>Could such a stock combine the extremely fine grain and sharpness of >reversal with a more forgiving latitude and gentler tonal range?

>Trouble is that it's the high contrast of reversal that gives it the impression of greater sharpness and finer grain. You lower it down to the contrast level of color negative, and that distinction disappears.

>David Mullen, ASC
Los Angeles


>David Mullen says :

class="style9">>Trouble is that it's the high contrast of reversal that gives it the >impression of greater sharpness and finer grain.

>This is true, but what is really interesting about reversal is that the shape of the curve is very different than with negative stocks. The shadow contrast may be much higher than a negative stock even if they are processed for the same midrange gamma. (And, of course, there is no compensation in the highlights with reversal, the way there is with negative stocks). That also adds a lot to the look.

>Then again, these days people associate blown-out highlights with video

>Scott


class="style9">>VNF does after all stand for "Video News Film" and the VNF stocks are >much lower contrast than the ECO and Kodachrome that were >intended for direct projection.

>Err, no.

>ECO was a low contrast stock designed for printing, not direct projection.

>VNF stocks had about the same contrast as their predecessor, 7242 -- all were designed for direct projection.

>The difference was that the VNF/VNX stocks didn't require a pre-hardener in the process, and therefore could be processed more quickly, and didn't get the famous "blue comets" from the magnesium particles in Mitchell mags.

>The "video" reference was a lame Kodak attempt to somehow fight back against TK76s and HL35s.

>Jeff "only shot one film on ECO, but it's lovely" Kreines


>Jeff "only shot one film on ECO, but it's lovely" Kreines writes:

class="style9">>The difference was that the VNF/VNX stocks didn't require a pre->hardener in the process, and therefore could be processed more >quickly, and didn't get the famous "blue comets" from the magnesium >particles in Mitchell mags.

>Let's not forget the resultant grain from processing VNF/VNX more quickly.

>Wow.

>And ECO was indeed lovely, but with a blistering ASA of 25. (The blisters were on the talent from the lights.)

>Brian Heller
IA 600 DP


>Brian Heller wrote:

class="style10">>Let's not forget the resultant grain from processing VNF/VNX more >quickly.

class="style10">>Wow.

>Ah, but that was only if you used the silly RVNP process, instead of the better VNF-1 process. The RVNP was an accelerated process designed to get film out of the machine and on to the air more quickly, but it was not really as good a process as VNF-1.

>Jeff "used to hang out with TV station processing guys because they could process film cheaply" Kreines


>I remember the low contrast EASTMAN EKTACHROME Commercial Films like 7255 and 7252. When I joined Kodak in 1970, one of my training assignments was to make a five minute training film about "A-Wind or B-Wind, Which Kind"?. Shot on 7252, work prints on 7387, and internegative on 7271. Thanks for the memories!

>Just to remind you that the EASTMAN EKTACHROME films designed for the VNF-1 and RVNP processes are being phased out:

http://www.kodak.com/US/plugins/acrobat/en/motion/newsletters/

news/PCN040804_Q.pdf

>KODAK EKTACHROME 100D Color Reversal Film 5285 (process E-6) will continue to be available, and will now also be available in 16mm as 7285:

http://www.kodak.com/US/plugins/acrobat/en/motion/newsletters/

news/PCN031304_Q.pdf

>John Pytlak
Eastman Kodak Company
http://www.kodak.com/go/motion


>>I remember the low contrast EASTMAN EKTACHROME Commercial >Films like 7255 and 7252. When I joined Kodak in 1970, one of my >training assignments was to make a five minute training film about "A->Wind or B-Wind, Which Kind"?.

I learned how to light and shoot with 7252,7242,7240 and finally 7247 which was the first 16mm neg I shot with. Since I was cutting the stuff I shot, I loved the look of neg but hated handling it.

Marty Hamrick
WJXT TV Photojournalist
Jacksonville,Fl.


>>The difference was that the VNF/VNX stocks didn't require a pre->hardener in the process, and therefore could be processed more >quickly,

And woe be unto the processing tech who got a roll of EF 7242 mislabelled as VNF. I've seen that happen, not pretty.

Marty "helped his processing buddies clean the tanks when a client sent film in the wrong can" Hamrick


>John Pytlak writes:

class="style10">>When I joined Kodak in 1970, one of my training assignments was to >make a five minute training film about "A-Wind or B-Wind, Which >Kind"?

>I think I saw that. Not bad for a first effort.

>Brian Heller
IA 600 DP


>Dominic Case writes:

class="style10">>This sounds remarkably like the old (and sometimes lamented) 7252 >ECO stock

>That was a beautiful stock, and I shot lots of it in my earlier years. I was just wondering whether the sophistication that's brought us Vision2 could be applied to an S16 reversal stock.

>David Mullen's reminder that the apparent sharpness of reversal was (partly? wholly?) a function of contrast is well taken. But then there's the relative grainlessness... and the fact that any scratches or specks of dirt on the original printed (or TK’d) black rather than white and were therefore less visible!

>Jeff "once shot a roll of Ektachrome ER and a little DuPont reversal too" Kreines writes:

class="style10">>Dan's old enough to have shot ECO. Hell, he's old enough to have shot >Kodachrome Commercial!

>How about tons of the lower-speed DuPont16mm black & white reversal? Now THERE was an incredible stock. Sharp, grainless and with low contrast, great latitude (for a reversal stock) and a beautiful gray scale. Blew up to 35mm like nobody's business! Much preferred it to Plus-X. As a bonus, there was no need to choose between tungsten & daylight!

>What the hell were the numbers of those low- and high-speed DuPont stocks?

>They're on the tip of my tongue... Argh. Three digits, if I'm not mistaken. Were they 930 and 931 or something like that?

>Dan "having a decades-long senior moment" Drasin
Producer/DP
Marin County, CA


>Dan Drasin wrote :

>What the hell were the numbers of those low- and high-speed >DuPont >stocks?

Well Dan, It just so happens I have (2) 100 foot cans of Dupont Stock sitting here in front of me. It is the "Rapid Reversal" 932A. Still sealed in the original boxes, although the scotch tape does seem to have lost its stick.

>Available to the highest bidder - I'll even put them in the fridge over night so that you can be assured that they were stored refrigerated.

>Don't worry if Dupont doesn't make film any more, The film is sold without processing included, but I'm sure someone can process it.

>Steven Gladstone
New York Based D.P.
www.gladstonefilms.com
East Coast CML List administrator


class="style10">>When I joined Kodak in 1970, one of my training assignments was to >make a five minute training film about "A-Wind or B-Wind, Which Kind"?

>Thanks! I forgot that they made copies for showing Kodak customers.

>John Pytlak
Eastman Kodak Company
http://www.kodak.com/go/motion


>Steven Gladstone writes :

class="style10">>I have (2) 100 foot cans of Dupont Stock sitting here in front of me. It is >the "Rapid Reversal" 932A. Available to the highest bidder

>Amazing! If I could shoot it in my PD-150 I'd take you up on it.

>Wasn't 932 the super high-speed reversal stock of its day? ASA 320 or so?

class="style10">>I'll even put them in the fridge over night so that you can be assured that >they were stored refrigerated.

>That's a generous offer, Steven. A little condensation might generate some neat avant-garde effects.

>Dan "maybe I can borrow a pre-reflex Bolex or a Kodak Cine Special" Drasin
Producer/DP
Marin County, CA


>And I have a can of either ECO or one of the high speed ME-4 variants at the bottom of the freezer somewhere. Again, highest bid wins it, or I will mail it to Mr. Gladstone to add to his collection.

>Scott


class="style10">>And I have a can of either ECO or one of the high speed ME-4 variants at >the bottom of the freezer somewhere. Again, highest bid wins it, or I will >mail it to Mr. Gladstone to add to his collection.

>Send it away Scott, I'm ready. Although my wife doesn't seem to understand my fascination with this, she does accept it.

>We've traded film before I think, you and I.

>Steven Gladstone
New York Based D.P.
www.gladstonefilms.com
East Coast CML List administrator


class="style10">>I have (2) 100 foot cans of Dupont Stock sitting here in front of me.

>I think I can smell the scent of cml-nostalgia coming to this thread.

class="style10">>And woe be unto the processing tech who got a roll of EF 7242 >mislabelled as VNF.

>The worst problem was in the early days when colour neg was 7247 and reversal was 7242. 7s and 2s are easily mistaken, especially when some dill has shot one roll of reversal (for whatever reason) and shipped it to the lab with several days' worth of neg.

>What a mess!

>Dominic Case
Atlab Australia


>Dan "maybe I can borrow a pre-reflex Bolex or a Kodak Cine Special" >Drasin

Have one, Dan.

>When I was 14 my neighbour down the street had a cine special that belonged to his granddad. We used to shoot our first claymation films as well as other silly projects. It was a great camera, variable speed, single frame button, interchangeable lenses removable film mag, but the best part was the little bronze masks that you could slip into a slot behind the lens to do split screen, (top and bottom) and circular vignetting.

>I recently, in a fit of nostalgia, bought a cine special kit on eBay complete with said masks and 5 lenses in pretty good shape. We haven't shot anything through it, but it seems to hum along pretty well. You are welcome to borrow it for the 'Vintage Film Stock' project

>Sincerely,

>Ed Coleman, President ­ SuperDailies, Inc.
Cinematographer Supervised Video Dailies
http://www.superdailies.com