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Best Film for the Canon EOS RT

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Best Canon EOS RT 35mm Film

´╗┐The best film to use in your Canon EOS RT is going to be based on the lighting conditions, your lens, and type of film you want to use.

To prevent having to haul around a flash and/or tripod, choose a 35mm film that has an ISO of 400 or faster.

If you need to take pictures in low light, such as inside, make sure you are using a fast lens. Check out my article on the 5 Best Lenses for the Canon EOS RT for lens recommendations.

Color Film

Consumer

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Kodak UltraMax 400 35mm Film

Kodak UltraMax 400 - The film handles a plethora of lighting conditions well and is an excellent choice for a 35mm color film. Using this film you should be able to handhold the EOS RT in just about all scenarios.

Expect photos to look slightly warm with amazing colors.

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Fujifilm Superia X-Tra 400

Fujifilm Superia X-TRA ISO 400 - Depending on your location, this film might have greater availability. It’s a great alternative to Kodak.

When compared to Kodak, Fujifilm tends to be a little bit cooler with stronger blues and greens.

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Lomography Color Negative 800 ISO

Lomography 800 - There are a small number of possibilities if you want a color ISO 800 35mm film. This happens to be the only film geared towards consumers.

Furthermore, if you own a medium format camera, Lomography 800 is also available in 120 film format.

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Kodak Gold 200

Kodak Gold 200 - An outstanding option to obtain that mid-1980s through 90s feeling. Use a flash to get the “authentic” film look.

To bring the ideal look out of the film, over-expose it by 1 or 2-stops. This will give you the beautiful colors everyone loves Kodak Gold 200 for.

Professional

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Kodak Portra 400

Kodak Portra 400 - By far the most popular color negative film among film enthusiasts online. Overexpose the film by 1 or 2-stops to get the look and feel the film is well known for.

There’s also ISO 800 and 160 emulsions of Portra. 8x10 sheets, 4x5 sheets, and rolls of 120 are also easily found.

Black and White Film

Consumer

With low costs and good very popular for use in the Canon EOS RT.

The main draw for photography students and budget minded photographers is the very low cost. Even if you don’t put yourself in those groups, it’s nice to have economical rolls of film on hand for testing newly delivered used gear.

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Kentmere 400

Kentmere 400 - It’s produced by the parent company of Ilford, Harmon Technology. This is great because that allows this to be the most widely sold 35mm film out of the three.

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Foma Fomapan 400 Action

Foma Fomapan 400 Action - Is likely to be easier to purchase in Europe as the film is produced by Foma Bohemia out of the Czech Republic.

A very good 35mm film to employ for your first couple of attempts at film photography or developing film at home. Also a good selection if you’re testing out a camera to make sure that it’s completely functional.

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Ultrafine eXtreme 400

Ultrafine eXtreme 400 - The cheapest store to get this film is online directly from Ultrafine.

They sell chemical developer kits for 35mm color film, so if you process film at home you may have previously interacted with them.

Professional

The two most widely used black & white 35mm films are Kodak Tri-X 400 and Ilford HP-5 Plus 400. They possess many characteristics that are similar that make them popular, while keeping distinctive looks.

Both films can be pushed 2 stops and still result in high quality photos. This makes the film versatile as a roll can be shot at ISO 400, 800, or 1600.

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Ilford HP5 Plus 400

Ilford HP5 Plus 400 - The primary differences are that HP5 Plus has less contrast and is more affordable compared to Tri-X. A lack of contrast can be helpful because contrast can be changed when making a print in the darkroom or editing digitally.

The film stock has subtle grain and still appears outstanding when pushed 2-stops.

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Kodak Tri-X 400

Kodak Tri-X 400 - This film emulsion possesses a more distinctive rendering to it. To achieve the traditional grain structure, contrast, and look of the film, it should be developed in D-76.

You will undoubtedly see a higher level of contrast with this film emulsion. That’s fantastic if it is the overall look you will want because it results in not as much work when during digital processing or making a print in the darkroom.

Reversal Film

Film emulsions that produce a positive image are commonly referred to as slide, reversal, or transparency film. That means a projector or lightbox can be used to exhibit the photographs.

This is distinct from the more readily available negative film emulsions that make photos that require inverting the colors for the image to be viewable.

Slide films are thought to be very hard to use due to the fact slide film has far less latitude and dynamic range when compared to negative film.

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Kodak Ektrachrome E100 Transparency Film

Kodak Ektachrome 100 - This is a fine grain film known for beautiful skin tones. The colors do not seem oversaturated. Ektachrome has a daylight color balance.

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Fujichrome Velvia 50

Fujifilm Velvia 50 - This is a sharp daylight balanced transparency film with lots of saturation and contrast, giving photos a special look. When compared with all the reversal films available, it has the top resolving power.

There is also another speed with an ISO of 100.

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Fujichrome Provia 100F

Fujichrome Provia 100F - Produces realistic and vibrant colors with moderate color saturation and contrast. It is a film balanced for daylight with ultra fine grain.

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Foma Fomapan R100

Foma Fomapan R100 - This is a black & white reversal film, marketed by Fomapan as having very fine grain, excellent resolving power, and elevated contrast. It is also billed as a replacement for the discontinued Agfa Scala slide film.

Film Basics

Consumer vs Professional Film

Pro films cost more due to the fact that they have greater latitude, are easier to push, and larger dynamic range.

You should be prepared for a significant difference in supply. Consumer film stocks can frequently be purchased from pharmacies and big-box stores in anemic amounts. Professional film stocks will need to be ordered from a specialized camera store or online retailer.

ISO

A film’s sensitivity to light is displayed by the ISO.

The bigger the ISO, the less light will be required to expose a picture. This comes at the expense of increased film grain.

It is often frustrating to handhold the EOS RT with ISO 100 or slower speed films (ISO 25, ISO 50, etc). This is because in the absence of full sun, the shutter speeds will probably be longer than what you are able to handhold without causing motion blur.

To avoid motion blur you are going to need to use a flash, fast lens, and/or tripod. The extra equipment may not be needed if you decide to use a higher speed ISO 800 or ISO 400 film.

As a quick note, the ISO knob is marked as ASA on the Canon EOS RT. The move to labeling ISO from ASA (American Standards Association) happened after the creation of the International Standards Organization (ISO).

Film Latitude

Latitude is the number of stops a film can be overexposed while retaining acceptable quality. Professional films have a greater latitude along with a slightly higher cost.

Transparency film has less latitude compared to negative film. That is a reason it’s perceived as more difficult to work with.

Dynamic Range

The range between the brightest and darkest parts of an image is referred to as dynamic range. Sections of an image that do not fit in this range will be seen as totally black underexposed shadows or totally white overexposed highlights.

When shooting in a variety or quickly changing lighting situations, films with a larger dynamic range is better.

  • Digital cameras 14+ stops
  • Negative film up to 13 stops
  • Slide film 6-8 stops

The limited dynamic range of slide film is one more factor it’s thought to be hard to shoot. The perfect time to give it a try is during the golden hour.

Film Type

The Canon EOS RT uses 35mm film that comes in canisters. The film can also be described as 135 film, and it’s the most often used type of film.

120 or 220 film, used in medium format cameras, is the only other type of film you are probably going to notice}.

One of the wonderful properties of film is that you can change the film stock you work with and get a totally different look to your shots.

DX Coded Film

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DX Encoding on a 35mm Film Canister

Just about all available 35mm film manufactured these days has DX encoding. This enables cameras to automatically detect and set the ISO when the film is loaded into the camera.

DX-coding doesn’t matter for the Canon EOS RT because ISO must be manually set.

Canon EOS RT Resources

Where to Get Film Developed?

There are limited options for where to get film processed. For a more complete explanation of the possibilities you can check out my article on Where to Develop Film.

WARNING: Film is not processed on site at pharmacies and big box stores. They ship the film away to be processed by a separate company. Consequently, you won’t get your processed negatives back.

  1. Develop Film at Home
  2. Use a Local Photography Lab
  3. Use a Mail Order Photo Lab
  4. Pharmacy or Big Box Store

Sending film to a mail-order photo lab to be developed and scanned is the least difficult option if you’re just getting started shooting film. A downside to this is that it becomes very expensive if you regularly use film.

So long as you’re going through a medium to high volume of film, there are two activities that you can do to minimize your expenses.

Bulk Loading Film

Getting a bulk roll of 100’ of film and manually loading in into canisters by hand is certainly one of the ideal options to lower your costs.

A 100’ bulk roll of film should fill around 18 rolls of film with 36 frames. Based on the film stock you can expect to save 20%-30%.

Keep in mind that you’re only going to be able to get bulk rolls of black and white film. This is due to the fact black & white film is less difficult and more cost-effective to process yourself.

Home Developing and Scanning

All film can be processed at home. It is a smart way to cut costs so you can use more film with your Canon EOS RT.

Black & white film is by far the least complicated to develop yourself. Developer temperature and development times are both not as critical to get correct with black & white film as time and temperatures are for slide or color negative.