BetterPhoto Q&A
Category: Best Photographic Equipment to Buy : Film-Based Camera Equipment : Camera Film

Photography Question 

BetterPhoto Member Since: 10/28/2003
 

Buying Film


Where do the pros buy their film?

I have things lining up for me to do some shoots, and I want to buy film at the best price possible.

Can you buy film wholesale somewhere?

Any suggestions?


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11/22/2003 2:46:56 PM

 
Tony Sweet
TonySweet.com
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  Buy film at http://bhphoto.com


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11/23/2003 6:40:06 AM

 

BetterPhoto Member Since: 10/28/2003
  Thanks Tony.

They were one place I was looking at.

Obviously, care of film is very important. Therefore, purchasing from a reputable establishment is probably wise.


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11/23/2003 9:03:49 AM

 
Tony Sweet
TonySweet.com
Tony's Photo Courses:
2-Week Short Course: A Quick Start to Adding More 'Pop' to Your Images
4-Week Short Course: High Dynamic Range (HDR) Photography
4-Week Short Course: Mastering the Nikon D3 and D700
4-Week Short Course: Nikon D800/D800E: A Quick Start Course!
Fine Art Flower Photography
Image Design: Revealing Your Personal Vision
  One more thing, Jerry. You'll probably see two prices, one for US and one for gray market. The price difference can be substantial. Inquire further with your salesperson as to the nature of gray market film, because it can be classified as grey market for several reasons. I have used grey market film with no problems.

You can also check with Hunt's photo in Melrose, MA for film, also.

Good luck!


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11/23/2003 9:10:24 AM

 
Bob Cammarata
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/17/2003
cammphoto.com
  Thanks Jerry, for posting this question re: wholesale film. I too, am looking for an alternative to retail.

Thank you, Tony for the info.... Have you ever used "grey market" Fuji Provia 100? If so, how was it, and what is the approximate shelf life?


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11/23/2003 2:37:23 PM

 
Tony Sweet
TonySweet.com
Tony's Photo Courses:
2-Week Short Course: A Quick Start to Adding More 'Pop' to Your Images
4-Week Short Course: High Dynamic Range (HDR) Photography
4-Week Short Course: Mastering the Nikon D3 and D700
4-Week Short Course: Nikon D800/D800E: A Quick Start Course!
Fine Art Flower Photography
Image Design: Revealing Your Personal Vision
  Hi Bob:

I've used grey market Provia100, although not for a while. Not sure about the shelf live, but I put it in the freezer immediately and, being a professional, I shoot it up pretty quick anyway.


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11/23/2003 4:14:40 PM

 
John Sandstedt
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/8/2001
  HELLO!!! I'm shocked that anyone suggests Fuji Provia 100 film is "gray market!" After all, isn't Fuji film a Japanese product and exported to the USA. And, what about Agfa, Konica and Ilford film?

PopPhoto had an interesting article this month - do's and don'ts regarding spending for photographic "stuff." While many argue that PopPhoto "never met a piece of equipment it didn't like," the article did indicate it's folks [or, at least, the author] never had had a bit of difficulty with imported film. My own experience confirms this.

Remember, Nikon, Canon, Minolta, and Leica cameras and lenses, Tamron, Vivitar and Sigma lenses, Slik tripods, etc. all are imported. The gray market designation usually reflects the fact that this equipment doesn't come with US warrantees and may not be repairable, under warrantee, in the US. Gray market items may also be missing batteries, straps, etc. It doesn't necessarily imply any difference in actual quality of the item itself.


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11/26/2003 5:49:23 AM

 

BetterPhoto Member Since: 10/28/2003
  Can anyone discuss "gray" market film, or point me to some good resources.

I think I read that the difference is the intended market. If Ilford, for instance, is made and packaged for the USA, it is not gray market film. But, if it is made for Indonesia, and winds up in the USA, then it is gray market.

From my understanding, the latter situation is cause for concern because the quality and care for the film cannot be guaranteed.

I will not use any gray market film yet for pro shoots. However, due to the low price of gray market film, I will experiment with it on my own.

One of my worries is that there are likely to be large variations in quality. You cannot control for the “gray” part of the world the film came from. Each time you order film, it may be totally different circumstances.

Does any one have results they can share; good or bad?

Jerry


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11/26/2003 7:03:51 AM

 
Tony Sweet
TonySweet.com
Tony's Photo Courses:
2-Week Short Course: A Quick Start to Adding More 'Pop' to Your Images
4-Week Short Course: High Dynamic Range (HDR) Photography
4-Week Short Course: Mastering the Nikon D3 and D700
4-Week Short Course: Nikon D800/D800E: A Quick Start Course!
Fine Art Flower Photography
Image Design: Revealing Your Personal Vision
  Never had a problem. I wouldn't worry about it. But, there is an element of risk. Just keep it in the freezer until you use it and in the freezer until you get it processed, if there's a time lag between shooting and processing.


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11/26/2003 7:07:03 AM

 
Bob Cammarata
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/17/2003
cammphoto.com
  I was under the assumption that Fuji manufactures the film and supervises the importation to its various markets
around the world. Referring to the "grey market"...in this particular case, means that another importer...not Fuji, is responsible for bringing it over to the U.S., and their quality control standards during shipment may not be as high.
Unless I'm mistaken...the two films themselves, are identical.


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11/26/2003 8:22:43 AM

 
John Sandstedt
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/8/2001
  Once agin, check out one of the photomagazine. Often, stores like Adorama list all kinds of film - like, for example, Kodak made for international sales [whatever that means.]


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11/26/2003 8:33:32 AM

 
Buddy Purugganan   TRY B & H ( www.bhphotovideo.com) Adorama(www.adorama.com ). They sell a vast variety of films for 35mm and they have great packages too.


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1/2/2004 7:26:17 PM

 
Gregory LaGrange
BetterPhoto Member Since: 11/11/2003
gregorylagrange.org
  I've heard also that with gray market it could mean that something like film, you don't know if it's been sitting out in some loading in 100+ heat in a country in the desert somewhere for a month or two. And that u.s. market is supposed to be handled and shipped in better care.
But if gray market means that it can be missing batteries, straps, etc.... that etc. dosen't sound too good to me.


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1/2/2004 7:48:22 PM

 
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