Best Film for the Nikon N65

The best film to use in your Nikon N65 should depend on your lens, lighting conditions, and if you want to shoot color or black & white.

To eliminate having to lug around a tripod and/or flash, pick a film that has an ISO of 400 or higher.

If you would like to take images indoors or anytime there is low light, make sure you are using a fast lens. For lens lens recommendations go read my article on the 5 Best Lenses for the Nikon N65.

Kodak UltraMax 400 35mm Film
Kodak UltraMax 400 35mm Film

Kodak UltraMax 400 - A terrific choice for a wide range of conditions. Using Kodak UltraMax 400 you should be able to handhold the N65 in lots of situations.

Expect photographs to look a bit warm with beautiful colors.

Fujifilm Superia X-Tra 400
Fujifilm Superia X-Tra 400

Fujifilm Superia X-TRA ISO 400 - A different option than Kodak that could have far better availability based on what country you are in.

When compared to Kodak, Fujifilm appears to be a little bit cooler with an emphasis on greens and blues.

Lomography Color Negative 800 ISO
Lomography Color Negative 800 ISO

Lomography 800 - If you want a color film with an ISO of 800, there aren’t many possible choices. For film geared towards consumers, this is the single choice.

In addition, if you have a medium format camera, Lomography 800 is also available in 120 film format.

Kodak Gold 200
Kodak Gold 200

Kodak Gold 200 - A great means to get that mid-80s through 90s rendering. Use a flash to get the “classic” film look.

Over-expose it by 1 or 2-stops to create the most popular look the film can achieve. This will help you achieve the beautiful colors everyone loves Kodak Gold 200 for.

Box of Kodak Portra 400 ISO 35mm film
Kodak Portra 400

Kodak Portra 400 - By far the most popular color negative film among film enthusiasts online. Overexpose Portra 400 by 1 or 2-stops to get the color the film is highly regarded for.

Portra is also available for purchase in ISO 160 and ISO 800 versions. 8x10 sheets, 4x5 sheets, and rolls of 120 film are also easily found.

With reasonable prices and excellent very popular to try in the Nikon N65.

The largest attraction for photography students and budget minded photographers is the competitive price. Even if you wouldn’t put yourself in that group, it’s good to have relatively cheap rolls of film on hand for testing recently purchased used gear.

Kentmere ISO 400 Film
Kentmere 400

Kentmere 400 - Produced by Harmon Technology, which is the owner of Ilford. This is great since that makes this the most broadly available 35mm film of the three.

Foma Fomapan 400 Action
Foma Fomapan 400 Action

Foma Fomapan 400 Action - It will probably less difficult to purchase in Europe as the film is made in the Czech Republic by Foma Bohemia.

A great film emulsion to work with for your first few attempts at home developing or film photography. Also a good choice if you happen to be trying out a camera to make sure that it is functioning correctly.

Ultrafine eXtreme 400
Ultrafine eXtreme 400

Ultrafine eXtreme 400 - You can get the lowest price by getting it directly from Ultrafine.

If you process color film yourself, you might have used developer sold by them to develop your film.

Kodak Tri-X 400 and Ilford HP-5+ 400 are the 2 best black and white 35mm film emulsions. They do have numerous qualities in common that help make them so well liked, while maintaining individual appearances.

Both film stocks can be pushed 2 stops and still create quality photos. A roll of film can be shot at ISO 400, 800, or 1600, making them remarkably useful.

Ilford HP5 Plus 400
Ilford HP5 Plus 400

Ilford HP5 Plus 400 - The largest differences are that HP5 Plus has lower levels of contrast and is more affordable in comparison to Tri-X. Low amounts of contrast can be good because of the fact contrast can be added when making a darkroom print or editing digitally.

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

Kodak Tri-X 400
Kodak Tri-X 400

Kodak Tri-X 400 - This film stock features a stronger look to it. To create the old-school grain structure, contrast, and look of the film, it should be developed in D-76.

You are going to unquestionably notice a higher level of contrast with this film emulsion. That’s beneficial if it happens to be the style you are after because it involves less work when during digital post processing or printmaking.

Film emulsions that create a positive image are typically referred to as slide, transparency, or reversal film. That means a projector or lightbox can be used to show the slides.

The colors are not required to be inverted to be viewed, as opposed to the more readily available negative films.

Slide films are viewed as difficult to use due to the fact slide film has much less latitude and dynamic range when compared with negative film.

Kodak Ektrachrome E100 Slide Film
Kodak Ektrachrome E100 Transparency Film

Kodak Ektachrome 100 - This is a film known for fine grain and appealing skin tones. There’s virtually no hypersaturation of colors. Ektachrome is daylight balanced.

Fujichrome Velvia 50
Fujichrome Velvia 50

Fujifilm Velvia 50 - This is a seriously sharp daylight balanced film with lots of saturation and contrast, giving photos a beautiful rendering. It has the top resolving power of any increased increased.

It is also available in an ISO 100 version.

Fujichrome Provia 100F
Fujichrome Provia 100F

Fujichrome Provia 100F - Creates vivid and natural colors with medium contrast and color saturation. It has a daylight color balance and ultrafine grain.

Foma Fomapan R100
Foma Fomapan R100

Foma Fomapan R100 - This is a black and white slide film, marketed by Fomapan as having very fine grain, very good resolving power, and elevated levels of contrast. It is also regarded as a alternative for the long discontinued Agfa Scala reversal film.

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

There will be a disparity in where it can be purchased. Consumer film emulsions can usually still be seen in big-box stores and pharmacies in meager quantities. Professional level film often need to be ordered from a specialized camera store or online retailer.

A film’s sensitivity to light is listed as the ISO.

The less light available to properly expose an image, the bigger the ISO of the film will need to be. In addition, expect to see noticeably increased film grain.

It might be troublesome to handhold the N65 with ISO 100 or slower films (ISO 25, ISO 50, etc). This is due to the fact that without full sun, the shutter speeds will be longer than what you’re able to handhold without producing motion blur.

A tripod, flash, and/or fast lens will help you with longer exposure times. The additional accessories might not be needed if you choose a faster ISO 400 or ISO 800 film.

The dial to select film speed is listed as ASA on the Nikon N65. The shift to labeling ISO from ASA (American Standards Association) came after the creation of the International Standards Organization (ISO).

Latitude is the range of stops a film can be overexposed while still having satisfactory images. Professional film stocks have a greater latitude along with a somewhat increased price.

Negative film has more latitude than reversal film. That is one of the reasons it’s perceived as more challenging to use.

Dynamic range represents the difference between the shadows and highlights details of a picture that can be captured. Areas of an image that are not in this range will be rendered as completely white overexposed highlights or solid black underexposed shadows.

A bigger dynamic range is advantageous since it makes working in different lighting conditions easier.

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

The limited dynamic range of reversal film is another reason why it is regarded as tricky to shoot. The best time to try it out would be during the golden hour.

The Nikon N65 uses 35mm film that comes in canisters. In addition, it’s the most commonly used film format and is on occasion referred to as 135 film.

The only other film format you are likely to see is 120 or 220 film that is used in medium format cameras}.

Changing the film you are using will alter the look of your pictures. This is an example of the fantastic things about shooting film.

DX Encoding on a 35mm Film Canister
DX Encoding on a 35mm Film Canister

Nearly all commercially available 35mm film offered these days has a DX code. This makes it possible for electronically controlled cameras to auto detect and set the ISO when the film canister is loaded into the camera.

DX-coding doesn’t change anything for the Nikon N65 because ISO needs to be manually dialed in with the ASA knob.

There are just a few possible choices for where to get film processed. For a more in depth explanation of the possibilities check my guide on Where to Develop Film.

WARNING: Big box stores and pharmacies do not process film on site. They mail film off-site to be processed by a third party. As a consequence, you will not receive 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

Shipping your film to a mail-order photo lab to be developed and scanned is the most convenient choice if you are just getting started using film. If you frequently shoot film, this may be a downside since it can get really expensive.

As long as you’re using a medium to high volume of film, there are a few things that can be done to cut back on your expenses.

Considered one of the best options to save some money on film is to buy a roll of 100’ of film and load canisters by hand.

A 100’ roll will fill about 18 canisters of film with 36 frames each. Based on the film stock you are likely to save 20%-30%.

Keep in mind that you’re only going to find 100 foot rolls of black and white film. This is in part because black and white film is a lot easier and cheaper to develop yourself.

Any film can be developed by hand. It is a very good option to spend less so you can shoot more film with your Nikon N65.

Black & white film is significantly simpler to develop. Developer temperature and development times are not as important to get correct with black and white films as temperatures and time are for color negative or transparency film.