If there is the closest thing to a universal developer in the film photography world, that developer is Diafine. If you’re thinking, “Wait, aren’t all developers universal?” You are right; a B&W developer will develop many different film stocks. But it doesn’t often happen that two other film stocks, shot at different speeds, can be developed simultaneously. There are some examples of cross-over, but only a few. Diafine uses three main development times and a couple of unique combinations. These are shared across many different film stocks that allow you to develop multiple rolls shot multiple ways in the same tank. You can also shootRead More →

Regarding historically significant lenses, exact lens models like the Nikkor 85mm f/2 are abnormal. Usually, these historic lenses are designs like the Tessar, Petzval, and Planar. But in this case, this lens put Nikon on the map. Nippon Kogaku released the first 85mm f/2 as part of their original five-lens setup for the Nikon I. Although they also had versions in the LTM or M39 Mount. While Nikkor enjoyed popularity within Japan, they had yet to produce a camera that could be exported. But the lenses helped Nippon break out of the domestic market. The story goes that a chance meeting of two LIFE photographers,Read More →

Regarding films and photography, you encounter polarisation daily—your choice of film, camera, developer, and even how you shoot or your subject matter. But among the more divisive film stocks, one brand stands out: Foma. Now I’m a reborn fan of Foma films. Initially, I was unhappy with the results, but I soon learned to like them once I learned how to develop them. While I’m still on the fence about Fomapan 200, I’m a big fan of Fomapan 100 and Fomapan 400. And back in 2019, on a trip to Chicago, I grabbed a couple of rolls of Foma Retropan 320, hoping to find somethingRead More →

You will have to pry my Rolleiflex from my cold dead hands. But as wonderful as they are to use and the top-notch images, they aren’t the cheapest camera. But the folks at Rollei (Franke & Heidecke) realised that the cost of their cameras put them out of reach of many photographers. Enter the Rolleicord, the low-cost TLR, in the greater Rollei ecosystem, is the lowest tier, with the 2.8 Rolleiflexs at the top, followed by the 3.5 Rolleiflexes next and then Rolleicord. But that doesn’t mean you should turn your nose up at these cameras. While they never reached the same level of technologicalRead More →

What Was I Thinking… In the world of film developers, there are many options for almost any film type and situation, and then there are the weird ones associated with closed imaging systems. And then there are developers like Formulary FX-2. I enjoy working with the strange, trying to use them to crack a tough film stock or figure out where a developer will fit within my film-developing kit. And through these reviews, I have found several that will be useful going forward. Developers like FX-39 II, Atomal 49, and R09 Spezial have now found spots in my kit as excellent film development tools. AndRead More →

Not all my lenses are the best out there, and I have had some stinkers in the past that have come across my desk. Now in some cases, I have not reviewed these, but this time I need to get this one off my chest. Meet the Tamron 100-300mm lens; this is a budget lens in every sense. Tamron has produced some excellent optics, sometimes under their name, but quality optics are all the same. This lens is not one of them; there are a lot of issues with the build quality, optical quality, and even the features of this lens. But if you canRead More →

When it comes to reviewing cameras, I love reviewing the cameras that have impacted photography or are relatively cool and unique. And this camera is one that I have referenced a couple of times in the past as being part of a significant stepping stone in Canon’s journey towards an autofocus camera. While autofocus first hit the markets in point-and-shoot cameras, building an AF system for an all-in-one camera is easy; putting it in an interchangeable lens SLR is another ballgame. When Minolta jumped right in with the A-Mount, Canon took a more cautious approach even before Minolta launched the Alphas. The AL-1 was aRead More →

Have you already reviewed this film? The answer would be yes and also no. ORWO Wolfen NP100 is a film that is a variant of the cult favourite motion picture film, UN54+. However, the folks at Filmotec have added an anti-halation and anti-static layer to the film stock to make it better for still photography. And that’s enough of a change for me to warrant a full-on review. Now the history of ORWO is complicated; the company was formed from the original home of Agfa in the German town of Wolfen. When World War Two divided Germany in the post-war era, Wolfen ended up inRead More →

The often overlooked Nikkormat line of cameras is an excellent addition to anyone with a large selection of manual focus Nikon glass, both original Auto-Nikkor or the modern AI and AI-S glass. Sold as a consumer camera built to the same quality and specification as the professional Nikon cameras of the era, today, they have more of a cult following. While most people will gravitate towards the improved original Nikkormat FTn or the short-lived FT3, the FT2 is the forgotten middle child and is the ultimate Nikkormat. With backward and forward compatibility, a modern battery cell, over its life, never changed. Thanks to Bill SmithRead More →

This is only the second time I’ve reached a significant milestone in my ongoing reviews, the magic number of one hundred. And to be clear, I’ve done one hundred film reviews, not reviewed one hundred separate film stocks. And that’s because I’ve reviewed some rebadged films; sometimes, I knew it was a rebadge and then made a point not to go after that film stock again, notability ORWO films. I reviewed the four motion picture-specific films from ORWO as their Lomography rebadge. But in the case of Fomapan 100, I reviewed that first as KosmoFoto Mono 100 and then again as Fomapan 100. Agfa AviFotoRead More →