Tag Archives: Test Roll

{Testing the batch} Expired Kodak Pro 400MC 2.0

Maybe you’ve noticed by now that I sometimes buy batches of expired film. I had some film called Kodak Pro 400MC a couple of years ago, which expired in 1996. I LOVED it. It was some of my favorite expired film which I’ve ever used. I wished I had lots more rolls of it once I ran out! Here are some examples of that Pro 400MC batch:

(those last two were taken in London <3)

I finally decided to buy more Pro 400MC from ebay, knowing that it wouldn’t necessarily give me the same look as the other set of Pro 400MC I had, but I thought I would give it a try anyway. I got three rolls that expired in 1999 (well, I bid on five, but then the seller realized that there were only three in the box and the other two were something else. More on that another time though…) ANYWAY, I used the test roll on one of my niece’s “$5 photo shoots” on July 4, in her “photo shoot worthy” Nintendo shirt. I know some purists won’t like the way the expired film looks in these, but I kind of LOVE them. A lot.

Fuji GA645i • Kodak Pro 400MC, expired 1999

I shot the film at 200 ASA to help compensate for the age of the film, but I will probably want to do exposure compensation in tricky lighting situations, because film this old doesn’t have as much “latitude” as fresh film. I noticed that when I used the other batch of Pro 400MC I had in my GA645i, it wasn’t as well-exposed as when I used it in a camera where I set the exposure instead of the camera doing it (which is the case with the GA645i.)


{Testing the batch} Expired Fuji Sensia 400

Once in awhile, I’ll buy a batch of expired film. Late last year, I got a bunch of old Fuji Sensia 400 and Sensia 200, which are two slide films that haven’t been produced in at least six years. I got five rolls of the Sensia 400 and five of the Sensia 200 in this batch. I’ve written in the past about what it can be like to shoot expired film, and what factors might come into play. One of those factors is how the film was stored throughout the years since it expired. If the film has been kept in a cool, dry place, the film may suffer less from color shifts and prominent grain. In the case of this batch of expired film, the seller on eBay from whom I bought it didn’t have any information on its expiration date or how it had been stored. That’s why it was important for me to test the batch of film, so I’d know if it “worked” at all. I loaded one of the Sensia 400 rolls in my Kiev 4AM and shot it at 200 ISO to try to compensate for any loss of light sensitivity that the film might have suffered due to age/conditions of storage. Oh, and I bought the film with the intention of having it cross-processed, so that’s what I had the lab do with this roll.

Listening to my prized possession Otis Redding and Carla Thomas duet record <3

Flashback vintage store in Midtown Memphis

Mallory’s apartment

Some shots around the square in Coldwater, Mississippi

(that last one is my FAVORITE shot from this roll!

Kiev 4AM • Helios-103 53mm f/1.8 • Fuji Sensia 400, expiration date unknown, cross-processed


Look, if you are shooting expired slide film and having it cross-processed, you have to expect some potentially zany results. And the Sensia 400 did not disappoint! I’m glad I’ve got a few more rolls of it to play with!

I didn’t want to put this in the “Forgotten Frames” series, because it wasn’t a roll of film that I forgot about and found years after the fact without knowing what was on the film before having it developed, but it’d been so many months between when I finished the roll and when I had it processed, I really didn’t have a clue as to what I’d shot on it! I kind of felt that the contents of the roll turned out to be a pleasant surprise.

{Testing the batch} Expired Kodak Pro 400MC

Another day, another batch of expired film.

I just wrote a post about using some expired film that I got from ebay and talked about why using old film can be tricky. I love using expired slide film for cross-processing, but I tend to shy away from overly-expired regular color film. That’s because some of the effects of age can look worse on print film than on cross-processed film (as the latter is supposed to have kooky  colors anyway.) But I recently reminded myself about this one time that I had a few rolls of old Kodak print film and loved the results. I decided to take a chance on some Kodak Pro 400MC film I found on ebay. It expired in 1996. Yikes!

I actually started this test roll in my Yashica D TLR and swapped it over to my newly-acquired Yashica-mat TLR. And I think my film photography friends will be proud of me, because I took notes of what settings I used for these so I’d know what I’d done right or what I’d done wrong when I got the film developed!

I’d just taken a portrait of my Yashica D with my Polaroid SLR 680, then returned the favor by taking the 680’s portrait with the Yashica (+2 close-up lens used)

Our Christmas tree, with close-up filter attached to the Yashica (+2 close-up lens used)

My new boots. My “Christmas bonus”*

Sweet Lionel! From my photo session with his family at Christmas 

My darling new single cup coffee maker. Christmas pressie from my mom!  (+1 close-up filter used)

After this frame of film, I went into a dark closet, and presto chango, the film was out of the Yashica D and in the Yashica-mat!

The pretty jukebox at work

A few quick shots from the morning after we got some snowfall down here


In the aforementioned blog about expired film, I said that it can lose light sensitivity. I chose to shoot my test roll of Pro 400MC as if its ISO were 200. Meaning, I gave it one extra stop of light. This seemed to work well! I was expecting the colors to be a lot more “off” than they are – which they aren’t really – only a little softer in tone. I actually love the somewhat muted contrast. The only frames of film that weren’t “keepers” were a result of operator error. Namely, I didn’t steady the camera well enough during longer exposure times.  I’m so glad I have more of this to play with!


*I work for myself, so I gave myself a Christmas bonus. Of new gray boots. Savvy? 😉

{Testing the batch} Expired Fuji Provia 400

Last year, I bought a batch of medium format slide film from eBay. Very EXPIRED medium format film. Most of it expired in 1999. Why would I buy really old film? Because I have had really cool results by using expired slide film and cross-processing it (I explained about cross-processing in another blog post last year.)

There are a lot of things that can happen to film as it ages. Along with possible color shifts, film can lose a certain amount of light sensitivity when it’s expired. That can make getting proper exposures tricky. Another factor in how well film has aged is how the film was stored throughout the years. If it was kept in a cold, dry place (like a freezer or refrigerator) then the effect of time could be minimal. But with film like the batch I bought, I have no real way of knowing how it was stored. That’s a gamble when you buy expired film from eBay…

I decided that I needed to test a roll of this film so I could see what kind of shape it was in after nearly 15 years. I loaded it in my Bronica ETRSi and gave it a go!

(the above photos were taken with my Samsung NX1100)

I asked the lab to cross-process the film for me, and here are the results:

Dilapidated sign in Memphis

This photo is only included because it makes me laugh. Perfectly captured my niece’s mannerisms


I got my niece to pose in some of her T-shirts that I like (this is her ‘model’ face, btw)

Probably petting one of her dogs, who were clamoring for attention

Her real personality. Goofy!

I don’t know how I got her to take her glasses off…love her Turtle Power shirt though!

Climbing the front porch

Holding on and hanging out on the porch

Bronica ETRSi • Zenzanon 75mm/2.8 EII • Fuji Provia 400, exp. January 1999, Cross-processed


I’m pretty darned pleased with how the photos came out. I can look at the negatives and tell how a few were a bit underexposed . That just means I’ll have a better idea about the film’s exposure needs when I shoot the rest of my batch of this film.

(I have eight more rolls of the Fuji Provia 400 in the crisper drawer of my fridge!!! Exciting!!!)