A few months ago there was a presentation of various black and white films on emulsive.org. It made me curious. Without further ado, I ordered the High ISO Set with films No. 99 and No. 10 from NoColorStudio in Lithuania. No. 99 has ISO 990 and No. has ISO 100. ISO 100 is High ISO? For NoColorStudio yes.

The films arrived after only one week.

I didn’t think long and then it was clear which cameras I would load with them.
A No. 99 came into my Minolta X-GM, ISO to 32°/1000. ISO 990 is funny and this “10 over” shouldn’t matter.

But it is still waiting to be used.

A roll of No. 10 came in the Agfa Optima I (with its Color Agnar f/2.8 45mm lens).The first camera with a fully automatic exposure and only that. No possibility to set anything yourself. I’ve shot one film with this machine so far and the results have been very good. So why not?

Now I just had to wait for the right moment. And it soon came.

My friend Erik had announced himself once again for a photo tour. This time on short notice. So I had no time to plan what would be a nice photo destination. But when I saw the fog in the morning, I stopped worrying. In the fog it is beautiful everywhere.
And to capture this beauty, I took the Agfa Optima I with me.

First up the mountain to the north. There, some attractive motives in the fog should be waiting for us.

And now let’s see how the fog is at the other end of the town. On the mountain with the castle ruins it is also always quite beautiful.

If I had been purely digital on this tour, I would certainly have taken more pictures. But I was purely analog on the road and the film didn’t get full. Even if it only has space for 29 shots. After Christmas, I got it full and could now develop it. For lack of the other given developers, I took on Rodinal. 1+50, 13.5 min, gave fine-grained results and a nice density.

The negatives looked a bit blurry, but that was quite different, as became apparent after scanning. I guess it was the fog that fooled me. No. 10 is a great film with very good sharpness and great tonal richness. The film also does an excellent job of conveying the sad mood of the day. Which is not to say that the film is a sad one!

And the Agfa Optima is nothing to sneeze at either. It consistently exposed well in its auto mode. The selenium cells are still working very well after 60 years. And the Color Agnar f2.8/45mm lens is also beyond reproach.

~ Olaf

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I'm a hobby photographer who has been pursuing this for a long time. I really started in the mid-1980s, when I got my first and especially my second SLR camera, a Minolta X-300. It still serves me faithfully today. But then it went blow by blow, I discovered...


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