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Kodak Kills Kodachrome

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the and-try-to-find-tri-x-pan dept.

Media 399

eldavojohn writes "Another sign that digital cameras are slowly phasing out analog comes with Kodak's announcement to discontinue Kodachrome film. This should come as no surprise as Polaroid film was phased out long ago. At least the analog photography industry knows how to change with the times."

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Mama Took The Kodachrome Away (5, Funny)

ahess247 (209933) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427391)

Re:Mama Took The Kodachrome Away (1)

WheelDweller (108946) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427821)

Don'tcha think ole' Paul Simon's feeling pretty old, today?

Great song; though it was a long time ago.

Take Kodachrome if you must ... (5, Insightful)

multisync (218450) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427401)

But Mama don't take my Velvia [wikipedia.org] away!

Re:Take Kodachrome if you must ... (1)

broggyr (924379) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427867)

I always used to love my Velvia and shells. Photography and food, what a combo ^^

Re:Take Kodachrome if you must ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427903)

Youll have to settle for Velvia II because they already have.

Re:Take Kodachrome if you must ... (1)

iknowcss (937215) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427907)

Doesn't the wikipedia entry you linked to say that it was discontinued in 2005?

Re:Take Kodachrome if you must ... (3, Interesting)

jmcbain (1233044) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428061)

No, the Wikipedia article does not say Velvia was discontinued. It says that the original type of Velvia (RVP) was discontinued. However, new lines of Velvia are still going strong. In fact, Velvia and Provia are typically still the film of choice among professionals still shooting film.

Re:Take Kodachrome if you must ... (1)

jadedoto (1242580) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428073)

Fuji brought it back (because of a massive uproar) after changing the formula a little bit. I personally don't like the tones in the new film as much. :\

Re:Take Kodachrome if you must ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427971)

Mama don't take my cordless phone awaaaya

Re:Take Kodachrome if you must ... (3, Funny)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427977)

I didn't even know Kodak made cheese!

Hey, speaking of cheesy...

Suing your consumer base (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427405)

sounds like changing with the times to me

The ultimate irony (5, Interesting)

suso (153703) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427409)

I think what will be the big irony of the digital revolution is that we haven't tackled the technological problems yet like getting people to back things up and store them for long periods of time. One might think that with the advent of digital that in 100 years we'll have pictures of virtually everything from this era, but because of the problems people face, we will probably yet again have a gapping hole in time filled with lost pictures.

Re:The ultimate irony (2, Insightful)

petrus4 (213815) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427659)

No; all that's happened is that digital as a format has proven that, in most cases, photos genuinely aren't worth all that much.

As far as people are concerned, photography is basically an attempt to evade death, and not one that works well. I'm guessing most digital photos probably last about as long as they actually should.

Life is transient.

Re:The ultimate irony (4, Insightful)

Brigadier (12956) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428035)

how on earth is this insightful. Your telling me your family doesn't have an album, no wedding pictures, baby pictures ? The fact is they are priceless. I personally have processed 20 rolls of film since last year. The reason being I'm documenting time. If I had a dime for everyone who had a digital camera, a HD full of pictures and not a single hard copy to show for it.

The reason digital camera's are taking over is because it caters to a basic human trait .. laziness !!! I predict there will be a backlash when in ten years when no one no longer has there pictures. I still have pictures my father took back in the 50's not to mention I still have his old camera.

Re:The ultimate irony (4, Funny)

jimbobborg (128330) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428233)

no wedding pictures

Seeing how I'm getting divorced...

Re:The ultimate irony (4, Funny)

digitig (1056110) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428333)

Divorce pictures, then!

Re:The ultimate irony (3, Insightful)

umghhh (965931) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428273)

why it has to be dichotomy? I think there is place for both worlds even if some think not (owners of polaroid did not even consider selling right even if there were buyers interested in keeping production). As for digital world being definetly lost I think that is a nonsense - I have digital photos of my wedding, of my growing children etc. and they are great because we could select dozens from hundreds (or rather hundreds from thousands) - but they are all on paper now. The hand made wedding book is filled up with a properly made copies and children photos are printed in a dozen of issues each year by a company doing it in small series on basis of digital photos. While I think there is this strange disparity between your worst nightmare traces left forever in internet where you cannot even delete them and your precious photos lost because medium failure (whether physical or only due to unavailable format decoders etc) I think digital revolution has brought massive advantage in making photos while paper (or plastic) copies still remain - how nice, even funny as predictions of some silly fanatics of the 'new' failed to see the obvious i.e. that people want values and have no interest in technology itself:photo however made is a valuable artifact and it (almost) does not matter how it is made.

Re:The ultimate irony (1)

narfspoon (1376395) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428449)

I thought the post was insightful. However it leaves a lot of room for interpretation.
I took the overall message as "You reap what you sow."

There's folks who carefully sort and organize their photo albums, print hard copies, and spend a lot of time & money doing so.

And others who don't...

It's the same story for other important data backups and security. The number of times there's a front page story on some huge database theft/loss/etc is scary.

He could've also meant that photography is generally a pointless waste of time.
Well, the demand exists, at least.
However on a personal note, I do enjoy digital cameras simply because I no longer worry about "wasting film". I take more shots (extra angles, playing around) and have the luxury of deleting them later if they turn out poor.

Re:The ultimate irony (5, Insightful)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428223)

Historians in 250 years time will be very interested in your holiday snaps. It won't matter that they aren't well taken etc, they will still tell them a lot about life in the early 2000s.

Re:The ultimate irony (3, Insightful)

afidel (530433) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428293)

And since there is about 10000x as many photos taken today with digital even if only .1% survive there will be more information for them to sort through.

Re:The ultimate irony (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28428391)

Evade death? Beans! Sometimes photography is just a matter of seeing something you'd like to have a static reminder of. It's not always about leaving some kind of legacy. Usually it's just as simple as "Wow. That mountain scene is lovely. I'd like to see that when I get back to my office every day. " Freakin' cynic.

Re:The ultimate irony (4, Insightful)

sunderland56 (621843) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427773)

It is much, much easier to back up digital for 100 years than it is to back up film.

Film stock is extremely unstable. One of the major problems in preserving old motion pictures is that the reels of film fuse together. (In fact, most active film restoration projects involve carefully digitizing the movies for preservation). If you have carefully separated your negatives, and store them in a temperature and humidity controlled environment, you can slow down the deterioration, but not stop it altogether.

Prints from both digital and film sources are essentially identical - if you use the best technologies (pH neutral paper, etc) your prints from both medium will last about the same time. Unfortunately, of course, people tend to use the cheapest solution, not the best available solution - but that is a market choice, not a failing of the technology involved.

Re:The ultimate irony (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28428153)

Actual the "unstable" film stocks you're referring to have been off the market for decades. The chemical makeup of film has changed repeatedly since the 1930's and many stocks are backed with polyester today.

And suggesting that it is much easier to back up digital files for 100 years is incredibly misguided. I suggest you tell that to my old zip disks full of 1.3 megapixel pictures.

Re:The ultimate irony (2, Informative)

repetty (260322) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428341)

> Film stock is extremely unstable.

Apples to oranges, dude.

Film stock has always been DESIGNED to be temporary. In fact, I can't imagine that the film studios ever expected to get their prints back from the theaters in usable condition and they considered themselves lucky if they did.

In fact, film studios only recently have taken any interested at all in archiving. They are awful at it.

It is not film but digital preservation that is bad shape right now.

Yes, 80% of the movies ever made are gone for good.

The topic of computer data preservation pops up about every six months on Slashdot and no one yet has solved the problem by any meaning definition of the term.

Without a groundbreaking change, a similar figure for digital media will be about 100%.

--Richard

Re:The ultimate irony (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427851)

getting people to back things up and store them for long periods of time

I've been scanning my family's color photographs preferentially over the older black and whites because many of them which are not even 30 years old have begun to fade into nothing.

Photographs are also not safe from fire or dampness.

So I don't think the situation has changed all that much. Most photos are junk, and the good ones tend to get distributed, printed, and thus inherently backed up. I know if I somehow lost my main drive, backup drive, and Mozy data I could recover most of my best pictures simply by asking my mother and father for what they can find.

Re:The ultimate irony (1)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428165)

>Photographs are also not safe from fire or dampness.

Disc drives and LTO-4 tapes don't do so well either.

Re:The ultimate irony (1)

COMON$ (806135) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428299)

Man who backs up to disk drives and LTO anyway....that is yesterday's backup. Today just throw your pictures up to Carbonite or Mozy, hell for true redundant backup head for Picasa and let it get indexed and flung across the web. Digital Photos have a lot more versatility than analog photos. Sure they aren't perfect but are eons past film in most cases. I have photos from my digital camera a decade ago, backed up and in multiple locations, slideshows readily available on my media PC for entertainment during house parties.

Re:The ultimate irony (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428331)

But Mozy or your offsite digital storage of choice IS.

Re:The ultimate irony (2, Insightful)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428365)

Why not send your mother and father some CD's of the digital photos you want to restore? "Offsite backup" can really be as simple as that - send some discs or USB flash drives with stuff you want preserved to family or friends who live in a different building. Put some in a safe-deposit box in a bank if you have no one to send them too (or just want additional offsite copies).

In my experience, the real biggest 'problem' caused by digital photography is people don't tend to throw away the dreck. My parents have several thousand of photos -and they've only had a digital camera for 3 or 4 years. I want to try to get them to go through them and delete stuff that isn't really their best work or very important.

I heard someone on the radio once joking that the difference between a good photographer and a bad one is that the good photographer throws away their bad photos.

And it is good because? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427413)

If I was a high-school kid trying to get into photography, a decent SLR was about $500 and if you knew enough, you could make great photos with it. Now, a full-size dSLR is at least $2k.

Re:And it is good because? (2, Informative)

suso (153703) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427563)

Like all other technologies, its not the features, its what you do with them. I've taken good pictures and some Interesting things [youtube.com] with my $600 Canon digital rebel xti. I recently bought a cheap $33 remote timer made by a Hong Kong company so that I can do more time lapse stuff. You don't need to spend a lot, you just need to be innovative. $2000 won't buy you that.

Re:And it is good because? (2, Insightful)

Ironica (124657) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428115)

Like all other technologies, its not the features, its what you do with them. I've taken good pictures and some Interesting things [youtube.com] with my $600 Canon digital rebel xti.

Amen to that. We paid a professional photographer $1600 to cover our wedding... but a couple of my favorite pictures were taken by my cousin with a free disposable camera. They're all about the timing and the framing (and catching the photographer ordering us around ;-).

Re:And it is good because? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427587)

But you can still get great photos with a $500 SLR. You won't get a full frame sensor in that price range, but either of the Canon or Nikon entry level dSLRs with interchangable lenses will give great photos. And, just like an entry level SLR film camera, you can still build a nice lens collection that's ready to use with a more expensive full frame sensor camera later.

$500 DSLR price point (1)

Estanislao Martnez (203477) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428319)

But you can still get great photos with a $500 SLR. You won't get a full frame sensor in that price range, but either of the Canon or Nikon entry level dSLRs with interchangable lenses will give great photos. And, just like an entry level SLR film camera, you can still build a nice lens collection that's ready to use with a more expensive full frame sensor camera later.

The problem at $500 isn't the image quality, indeed. The problems are (a) awful tiny viewfinders, (b) awful interface (one control dial does everything, so you must hold down all sorts of tiny indistinct buttons while turning it), (c) often you don't have the option but to buy without the kit zoom lens.

Re:And it is good because? (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427595)

Parent here. I am dumber then i thought. Kodachrome was just an out-dated positive-film technology. No surprise they dropped it. The article is obviously edited to be more controversial than it should be. There is still a whole line of negative and positive Kodak films available, don't sweat it.

Re:And it is good because? (0, Flamebait)

suso (153703) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427639)

Parent and you didn't know what Kodachrome was? Sounds more like you are the child.

Re:And it is good because? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28428041)

Parent poster, jerk.

Re:And it is good because? (2, Insightful)

networkBoy (774728) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428085)

Kodachrome is the only slide film not prone to color shifting.
When they removed the slow K-14 films from their line I bout 2 cases and popped them in the freezer.

Guess I'll have to use them in short order lest the chemistry goes away too :(

I still have 4 rolls of Konica SRG-3200 in deep freeze. I'm saving that for a special need.
It's the only 3200 film ever made that can see IR through UV, and it was in color.
-nB

Re: What? (1)

colinnwn (677715) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427655)

There are some very good used dSLRs in the $200 range, and some decent new ones in the $600 range. I've been wanting one and was surprised how much new ones have come down, and how well really old but well regarded dSLRs retain their value. I was hoping to get a 6mp Nikon body only for about $100. They're not that cheap yet.

Re: What? (1)

dunkelfalke (91624) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428321)

You can get Sigma SD9 used for about 100 Euros, though. SD10 costs not much more.

Photography students in the digital age (2, Interesting)

BenEnglishAtHome (449670) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427739)

What is the digital equivalent of the Pentax K1000? For those who don't know, the K1000 was *the* student SLR for the last 25 years of the film era. Everybody had one.

So what do introductory-level photography students use nowadays?

Re:Photography students in the digital age (1)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428045)

My experience in Texas has been that the Nikon N2 is pretty much ubuquitous at schools which still have/use/teach darkroom techniques. Usually the N2 is a school loaner unit but they're not difficult to find used. Most people I know are taking DSLR classes these days.

Re:Photography students in the digital age (1)

wk633 (442820) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428081)

I dunno, but my mother is still using the K1000 she bought in '79.

Re:Photography students in the digital age (1)

CrackedButter (646746) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428213)

In my uni, it is whatever they can get their hands on, usually their dead granddads kit or their parents. I've seen first start on medium format, holga or a Canon A1. I understand your point though since I started on the K1000 as well.

Re:Photography students in the digital age (1)

NotQuiteInsane (981960) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428263)

Probably the Canon 1000D or the Nikon D40 for digital.

That said, there are plenty of film SLRs on the used market. If I was starting over I'd probably get something along the lines of a Canon EOS 33V (Elan 7N) and a "thrifty fifty" (Canon EF 50mm/f1.8 Mk.II) to start with. After that, improve the lens -- EF 28-135mm f3.5-5.6/IS/USM or EF 24-105 f4 L/IS/USM.

If for some reason I decided to go down the Nikon route instead... I honestly don't know what camera body I'd buy, but I'd stick with a 50mm as a starter -- 50mm lenses were for many years the staple of lens manufacturers. They've had years to perfect the optical quality (prime, aka fixed-focal or "fixed zoom", lenses tend to be quite sharp anyway) and get the price down -- an entry-level Canon or Nikon 50mm lens can be bought new for about a hundred pounds Sterling.

Can you tell I've been doing this a while? :)

Re:And it is good because? (1)

ergo98 (9391) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427763)

You can make great photos with a low-end digital camera.

The hardware seldom contains creative potential. Yet digital allows you to experiment without blowing the bank.

Re:And it is good because? (1)

Kickasso (210195) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427797)

A decent film SLR is still about $500.

Re:And it is good because? (1)

Kell Bengal (711123) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427841)

Also, you back then you could probably buy a burger and a coke for $1.50

Re:And it is good because? (1)

ottothecow (600101) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427975)

That's about what white castle would run you

Re:And it is good because? (1)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428265)

>Now, a full-size dSLR is at least $2k.

The results you get from the average $300 Canon Powershot are far better than what you had with your $500 SLR back in the day, especially considering the lenses you could afford then. A Canon 1D or whatever full-frame DSLR is pro-level, but I don't know anyone who doesn't turn livid at the L-series lens prices.

Umm.... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427415)

"At least the analog photography industry knows how to change with the times."

The analogue photo industry was FORCED to change with the times. They did not control the distribution of Digital Cameras and printing paper. If they had, we might never have seen the advance in CCD technology that we now have....

In the immortal words of Paul Simon... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427433)

When I think back
On all the crap I learned in high school
Its a wonder
I can think at all
And though my lack of education
Hasn't hurt me none
I can read the writing on the wall

Kodachrome
They give us those nice bright colors
They give us the greens of summers
Makes you think all the worlds a sunny day, oh yeah
I got a Nikon camera
I love to take a photograph
So mama don't take my Kodachrome away

If you took all the girls I knew
When I was single
And brought them all together for one night
I know they'd never match
My sweet imagination
And everything looks worse in black and white

Kodachrome
They give us those nice bright colors
They give us the greens of summers
Makes you think all the worlds a sunny day, oh yeah
I got a Nikon camera
I love to take a photograph
So mama don't take my Kodachrome away

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j.delanoy has a small cock (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427477)

Imagine your willy being smacked until it bleeds.

...and everything looks worse in black and white. (5, Interesting)

Eevee (535658) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427495)

Kodachrome
They give us those nice bright colors
They give us the greens of summers
Makes you think all the world's a sunny day, oh yeah
I got a Nikon camera
I love to take a photograph
So mama don't take my Kodachrome away

Re:...and everything looks worse in black and whit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427927)

One of my all-time favorite songs. I can't listen to it and not smile.

Re:...and everything looks worse in black and whit (1)

Reality Master 201 (578873) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428083)

It's true, too - lovely, vivid colors. My Kodachrome slides still look as vivid now as they did when they were first taken.

Mama don't take my Kodachrome away! (1)

edwardd (127355) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427519)

Paul Simon is probably mourning with the rest of us, as we wonder where we left our film cameras....

My dad got me into photography, I used to develop my own film with him when I was a kid (but that was black & white). Kodak may be ending Kodachrome, but there's still plenty of applications where digital still doesn't fit the bill. They're dwindling, but there is still a need for film.

they still make ektachrome (4, Informative)

Ralph Spoilsport (673134) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427557)

in all of its dreary blue fuzziness.

Kodachrome was like smoking pot.

Fuji is like doing acid.

Agfa is like a rainy day...

RS

Re:they still make ektachrome (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427717)

Actually this is an important point. Ektachrome can be processed by yourself or an independant lab. Kodachrome (RIP) could only be processed by Kodak.

But, wow. End of an era. Kodachrome was the standard for archival slide film.

Re:they still make ektachrome (4, Interesting)

cabjf (710106) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428215)

Not even Kodak processes it actually. They contract out to the one lab left in the country that develops Kodachrome. And the contract runs out in 2010.

Re:they still make ektachrome (1)

readthemall (1531267) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427955)

And fortunately, they still make Portra [wikipedia.org] .

Re:they still make ektachrome (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428393)

And you can recreate [grafnet.com.pl] them in the digital world =)

Eastman Kodak Company... (1, Flamebait)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427625)

The Better Business Bureau [bbb.org] has a few things to say about Kodak.

Notice that, in order to lose accreditation with the BBB, you basically have to perform remarkably poorly after you've been informed that your customers are pissed off and you're under review.

Re:Eastman Kodak Company... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427965)

The BBB doesn't have "accreditations."

Re:Eastman Kodak Company... (1)

muellerr1 (868578) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428143)

The BBB [bbb.org] disagrees with you.

Re:Eastman Kodak Company... (2, Interesting)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428189)

What is a BBB Accredited Business? [bbb.org] , emphasis mine.

If a business has been accredited by the BBB, it means the BBB has determined that the business meets the BBB Accreditation Standards, which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints. BBB accredited businesses pay a fee for accreditation review/monitoring and for support of BBB services to the public.

BBB accreditation does not mean that the business' products or services have been evaluated or endorsed by the BBB, or that the BBB has made a determination as to the business' product quality or competency in performing services.

Businesses are under no obligation to seek BBB accreditation, and some businesses are not accredited because they have not sought BBB accreditation.

Well There Goes Archival Color Photography (1)

buddhaunderthetree (318870) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427685)

My Kodachromes from 20 years ago still look as good as they day they were processed. Kodachrome was the film of choice for many years, you could even push it.

Re:Well There Goes Archival Color Photography (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427753)

I seriously doubt that. Unless they've been stored in sub-zero conditions, I guarantee you that your film has faded over the last twenty years. I suggest you read Henry Wilhelm's "The Permanence and Care of Color Photographs", the definitive work on traditional photographic permanence.

Re:Well There Goes Archival Color Photography (2, Informative)

KokorHekkus (986906) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427825)

I seriously doubt that. Unless they've been stored in sub-zero conditions, I guarantee you that your film has faded over the last twenty years. I suggest you read Henry Wilhelm's "The Permanence and Care of Color Photographs", the definitive work on traditional photographic permanence.

And the book is available for free download here: http://www.wilhelm-research.com/book_toc.html [wilhelm-research.com]

Re:Well There Goes Archival Color Photography (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28427891)

Neat. I didn't know that. I should add that my digital art files from 16-17 years ago haven't faded at all, and don't require any special storage, whereas film and prints require climate controlled dark storage.

Re:Well There Goes Archival Color Photography (1)

tengwar (600847) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428033)

It will have faded, but less than other colour films. IIRC, the estimated colour lifetime of Kodakchrome was about 60 years, vs 30 years for E6 process film and 200 years for conventional B&W negatives.

no, not really a sign at all (5, Insightful)

YouWantFriesWithThat (1123591) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427687)

Another sign that digital cameras are slowly phasing out analog

this is not a sign of anything. the article is being used by the submitter in an attempt to prove a point that he wants to make. in fact, if you read the entire article the assertion of the summary is clearly not supported. this film is hard to develop and there is only one lab in the US that does so. it also is among the worst-selling film that Kodak makes:

Kodachrome accounted for less than 1 percent of the company's total sales of still-picture films

so the story here is that Kodak got rid of the bottom selling film of their line. companies do that all the time, and this has nothing to do with digital cameras. film is still sold pervasively and easy developed at dozens of establishments in most towns.

Re:no, not really a sign at all (5, Informative)

LunaticTippy (872397) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427897)

Not only that, but they have been discontinuing Kodachrome for years now. This was the last remaining speed they were making, ISO 64. They stopped making other speeds years ago.

Indeed. (1)

Estanislao Martnez (203477) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428145)

Indeed. Kodachrome for many years has been a fringe old-style color slide film that's been mostly replaced with E-6 process film [wikipedia.org] for many years now (the E-6 process dates from 1977). Kodak's certainly not discontinuing their Ektachrome [kodak.com] E-6 process films.

Re:no, not really a sign at all (2, Insightful)

repetty (260322) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428161)

> this is not a sign of anything. the article is being used by the submitter in an
> attempt to prove a point that he wants to make.

Man, I agree completely. I'm surprised that this was posted as is. I guess there's no editorial process operating here at all.

In 60 years, hold up a Kodachrome slide next to a compact optical disk and see which was is still usable.

I call digital photography "temporary photography."

I shoot digital myself, occasionally, but I'm not kidding myself about it.

--Richard

Re:no, not really a sign at all (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28428185)

yes, it is

The best ever; Kodachrome 25 was phased out in May 2001.

Kodak Knows How To Change? (5, Informative)

BeardedChimp (1416531) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427723)

"At least the analog photography industry knows how to change with the times."

Oh yes Kodak have really coped well [yahoo.com] in the digital age.

Its not like Kodak concluded a four-year, $3.4 billion restructuring in December 2007 that eliminated 28,000 jobs, about half its workforce [bloomberg.com] . Or that its "share price sank to the lowest price in at least 35 years".

An unusual and easily misinterpreted sign (5, Informative)

downix (84795) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427809)

I see replies about the death of film, when this was less than 1% of Kodaks film sales per year. Kodachrome is difficult to process, expensive to maintain the equipment for, and has been slowly being phased out for over 50 years, ever since the killing of it in the large format. What the people here do tend to ignore is that for the death of 1 stock, Kodak has introduced new stocks, such as the Ektar 1 and E100D, that truely are visual marvels, cheaper to process and maintain, and most of all, can be upgraded to newer speeds/processes far cheaper than the now almost 80 year old Kodachrome technology. I do think Kodak has made a lot of mis-steps for Film, and I will miss Kodachrome, but I do not call this a mistake in the least.

Re:An unusual and easily misinterpreted sign (1)

mellestad (1301507) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428101)

Film isn't going to die off, but I don't see how anyone can claim it won't turn in to a purely niche market as time goes on; it is obviously dying out. Go ask your one hour photo place to compare their current volume to what it was ten years ago if you don't believe me.

Re:An unusual and easily misinterpreted sign (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428353)

Yeah. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Velvia [wikipedia.org] pretty much credits Velvia, not digital, with the death of Kodachrome.

While digital is doing a pretty good job displacing film for the majority of 35mm photography and below, the barriers to entry for medium format digital are so high that film is still going strong there.

And LF digital? Forget it for a LONG time...

This Just In !! (1)

IsaacD (1376213) | more than 5 years ago | (#28427937)

Intel phases out Pentium II for Pentium III ! This is the death of processors!

Caretakers of artistic medium (1)

cockpitcomp (1575439) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428011)

I hope Kodak and Fuji take care of their core film lines, even if it is no longer a significant profit center. I know they are a business, maybe they can keep some film production going as a charitable contribution when no longer profitable on it's own. I am not an photographer myself but do appreciate their work.

Paul Simon will be sad... (1)

DigitalSorceress (156609) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428023)

From the song "KODACHROME"
Paul Simon
Transcribed by Randy Goldberg
(original URL [lyricsdownload.com] )

...
Kodachrome, it gives us those nice bright colors
Gives us the greens of summers
Makes you think all the world's a sunny day, oh yeah!
I got a Nikon camera, I love to take a photograph
So momma, don't take my Kodachrome away ...

Any recommendations for a digital point-n-shoot? (1)

Rude Turnip (49495) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428031)

While we're lamenting the death of a tiny segment of Kodak's business, I have a far more urgent crisis. Can anyone recommend a digital point and shoot with RAW support for about $200-300? My GF's birthday is this weekend and I need to scramble. Thank you!

Re:Any recommendations for a digital point-n-shoot (3, Informative)

NotQuiteInsane (981960) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428149)

You're probably not going to get RAW mode in any compact in that price range... Not with stock firmware, anyway. The first compact that comes to mind with RAW mode is the Canon G10 and its predecessor, the G9.

Alternatively most of the PowerShot and Ixus range can run CHDK, which adds RAW mode, a live histogram, and a few other really neat toys to the Canon firmware.

URL for the latter is: http://chdk.wikia.com/wiki/CHDK [wikia.com]

Re:Any recommendations for a digital point-n-shoot (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428245)

Run over to Digital Photography Review [dpreview.com] and peer around the reviews. I think your price point is a tad low for a RAW format camera, but I could well be wrong....

Re:Any recommendations for a digital point-n-shoot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28428325)

You could get one of the Canon compact range then load up this alternative firmware: http://chdk.wikia.com/wiki/Downloads

Let's you do things you cannot do with the standard OS/Firmware, and to boot it is perfectly safe as it only loads from your SD card into ram. Remove card and camera is back to default factory settings.

Note, for most [ultra] compacts saving in RAW format doesn't really gain you much.

Canons have good low light level response, but I like the lenses on the Panasonic compacts TZ5+ (I have one of each :) )

Re:Any recommendations for a digital point-n-shoot (1)

swordgeek (112599) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428357)

Yeah. Nearly anything by Canon, and aftermarket firmware.

Check out the CHDK wiki. [wikia.com] You can download firmware which unlocks RAW mode and a whole slew of other neat features. Something that makes it particularly neat is that you don't actually put the firmware on the camera--only the memory card, and it's optionally loaded on power-up time. If it causes problems, turn the camera off and then back on but without loading the 'firmware.'

Re:Any recommendations for a digital point-n-shoot (1)

multisync (218450) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428371)

Can anyone recommend a digital point and shoot with RAW support for about $200-300?

I don't know what they're retailing for where you live, but the Nikon D40 is a great entry-level DSLR. It's small and lightweight, which might appeal to your girlfriend, it comes with a decent 18-50 mm kit lens and shoots RAW, although I generally set mine to shoot Fine quality jpeg.

I would also suggest checking out Ken Rockwell's [kenrockwell.com] site. He has great reviews and how-to articles that may be helpful before and after your purchase. I'm not connected to his site in any way, but consult it frequently.

Re:Any recommendations for a digital point-n-shoot (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428445)

RAW support?

Probably not out of the box.

CHDK + one of the PowerShot A series is probably your best bet.

RAW without manual controls is not the most ideal combination, so except for the SD990 + CHDK, the Elphs are out. The SD990 is above your budget range.

Unless you go used, maybe a G9?

The day the Kodachrome died... (1)

NotQuiteInsane (981960) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428095)

(From the article)
"Eastman Kodak Co said it will retire Kodachrome color film this year, ending its 74-year run after a dramatic decline in sales."

The problem with Kodachrome (when compared to E6-process slide film) is that the developing process (the "K14" process) is quite elaborate and complex -- it involves seven different chemicals, exposure to light during different stages of processing, and a ton of monitoring. There are only a few companies that still have working K14 processing machines and the chemistry and expertise necessary to run them (Dwayne's Photo Service in Kansas). From what I've heard you can still process it with black-and-white chemistry, though obviously without the colour.

As a point of comparison, E-6 is a far simpler process -- half a dozen steps in the "pure" E6 process, or three (or four, depending on manufacturer) for the "simplified" E6 kits sold by e.g. Fuji-Hunt Chemicals and Tetenal. As long as you can keep the chemical bath temperatures within spec, it's possible to do E6 (and C41, the normal colour negative process) at home. Getting the chemistry isn't easy, and the chemical heaters are getting thin on the ground (but you can always use a sink filled with warm water and a couple of mixing jugs/flasks).

For what it's worth, Fujifilm are still making Velvia. E6 process, and about the same tonal response as Kodachrome. Admittedly it isn't exactly the same, but it's close enough that for most people it really doesn't matter (and there are far more E6 labs and pro-labs than there are K14 labs)...

Polaroid To Bring Back Polaroids (4, Insightful)

travdaddy (527149) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428109)

Polaroid is trying to bring back the instant photo, in the form of a small digital camera/printer that can instantly print your digital photo. Sounds pretty cool actually! Polaroid Pogo [coolest-gadgets.com]

A challenge (2, Interesting)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428113)

Using any digital process you'd like, make a slide that doesn't stand out as "fake" in a set of either Kodachrome-25 or Kodachrome-64 slides.

Slowly? (2, Insightful)

rm999 (775449) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428127)

"digital cameras are slowly phasing out analog"

I would argue that the transition from analog to digital was actually remarkably quick. The last analog camera I bought was in 2000, I think. Also, cell phones and small point and shoots effectively replaced disposable cameras years ago.

My guess is the only people who used film after 2005 are *some* professionals and artists.

Re:Slowly? (1)

cabjf (710106) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428355)

Just ask Kodak how quick it was. The company isn't even a shadow of its former self.

Not "analog" (1)

Outatime (108039) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428235)

Not "analog," but optical. Film is storing the actual picture, not an electromagnetic representation on magnetic tape. It should be noted that all that is not digital is not necessarily "analog."

demand: dutch Polariod plant trying to reinvent (1)

swschrad (312009) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428241)

yes, the workers bought the last Polariod one-step film plant in Holland, days before the machinery was to be junked, and are trying to reinvent the material.

seems Polaroid used up all the critical chemicals before dumping the product, the process is basically lost.

that won't happen for Kodachrome. initially only Kodak processed the film, nobody else, they had at one time 28 labs nationwide. then they outsourced the processing lab at Kansas city to Duane's, and closed the rest.

bet the last film batch was made a couple years ago, and when that's out, that's it.

hint: like the faces of image orthicons, film kept in a freezer does not deteriorate if left in the dehydrated factory package. you could conceivably freeze up all the K-chrome you can find.

but it's a 38 step process requiring, again, specialized chemicals made for the purpose and precise machinery to process K-chrome, so when Duane's folds its lab in 2010, all you have is filmsicles. they'd just be ornaments.

Why Kodachrome was good... (1)

CaptainOfSpray (1229754) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428297)

was not just that the colours were great, but also that the grain was tiny. I saw an 8-foot high poster in a photo exhibition, where the grain was not visible until you walked up to it, and asked the photographer how he'd done it. "Enlarged from a single 35-mm Kodachrome" was the reply. I walked away with a new respect for Kodachrome, the film against which all others are measured and found wanting.

So KKK... (1)

jplopez (1067608) | more than 5 years ago | (#28428301)

... huh?

Amateur Documents Owe to Kodachrome (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28428329)

Kodachrome is the only colour film that doesn't fade after decades of storage. While certain flavours of Velvia may technically capture more details, it doesn't stand up to time. In fact, 10-15 year old Velvia slides have washed away it's 'accurate' colours while my dad's kodachrome from the 40s and 50s looks like it was shot yesterday. Without Kodachrome, generations of colour photographs would not exist. Obviously, the famous photos would still survive (eg anything from National Geographic), but snapshots and other amateur photos would now be lost had they been shot on any other film.

Apart from it's longevity, Kodachrome also has beautiful colour rendition. Both of those reasons is why it is the only film I reach for when I want colour. Anything worth recording isn't worth losing to an unstable film.

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