5 Frames With… KODAK T-MAX 400 (EI 400 / 35mm / Canon EOS 30V Date) – by Steven J Parkes
With the exception of an Olympus Trip, I sold all of my 35mm camera equipment at the beginning of 2017. This was a decision I have regretted since. Although not a big film user at the time, I missed my 35mm kit.
I have already replaced one of my cameras, a Canon EOS 30V Date, and while I received peanuts for it against a trade in at a local camera store, I had to pay through the nose for a replacement in equally good condition. Lesson learnt, ‘Never Sell a Camera’. The Lens with the camera is Just a 28mm-90mm Ultrasonic II, so nothing special, but certainly adequate for snaps and photography at my level. The camera might not be much to some people either, but the ease of use, weight, and speed it worked at got me hooked back in 2006 when I got my first 30V.
My first film through the replacement 30V would be a Kodak T-MAX 400. A film I had never used, but I had seen good results from here on Emulsive and on Flickr. I needed the ISO 400 for the slow lens. Without any special event to go to, I ventured in to the local village to start the film. Development was done by Peak Imaging in the UK, and scanning was done on a Epson Perfection v800 at 2400dpi. The images have been spotted using Photoshop, then imported in to Lightroom where they have been auto toned, and sharpened ever so slightly. Noise reduction? What is the point of noise reduction on film? Surely that’s an advantage!
I am not sure if I had manually overridden the ISO of the film on the camera rather than using the DX coding, if the meter is under-exposing or if I was under-exposing in the Aperture priority setting I prefer by accident, but the scanned images are underexposed. If I was printing in a darkroom, this would be recoverable, and I feel they have corrected ok in Lightroom. Exposure aside, I was happy with the quality from T-Max 400, and without doubt I will be use it again.
My next kit replacement will be the Canon 50mm f1.4. Just what on earth was I thinking when selling this? In the meantime, this was my 5 Frames With Kodak T-MAX 400!
~ Steven J Parkes
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Finally, don't forget that this series is being produced in conjunction with Hamish Gill's excellent 35mmc.com. Head on over to read the other half of these stories.