Why ECN and C41?

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Eugen Mezei

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Why does ECN-2 and C-41 exist?
Different emulsions, different chemicals. Exceptional results from both.
So why not one process and be done with it? I guess remjet can also be put onto C41 films.
 

Photo Engineer

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Different contrasts and different latitude. Different dyes. Different requirements in production. It is a long list.

PE
 

halfaman

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I think you are assuming that photo printing and a movie printing follow the same process, but they don't.

Photographs are printed directly in paper, while movies are print into film again (a "print film"). Also movies are usually printed from an internegative, not from the original camera negative.

So different print processes and final substrates using the same film and chemistry? It doesn't sound optimal at all. By the way, printing chemistry is also different. RA-4 for paper and ECP-2 for print film.
 
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Eugen Mezei

Eugen Mezei

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halfaman: Well... printfilm also exist as C41 and E6. (Called duplicating film.) Yes, those films have other contrast characteristics than films exposed in cameras, but obviously they don't necessarily need a different process.

PE: Well, take the one with the better characteristics. More latitude is always better, right? And drop the other.

Yes, I am convinced reasons exist for having both processes. Exactly those reason are what I want to know.
 

trendland

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I would not respeak PE - he did mention it right. But an additional idea about "why not c41" in CINEMA production.

With parameters PE mentioned you go alternate via ECN2 you just have requirements with a direkt need of. (may we say : in most cases).

I could imagine that reformation of c41 would allowe to get nearly 100% you need. But if we regard the history of c41 and Ecn2 (by the way was it named Ecn before?) it comes more clear.
C41 was forced to a standard in color Film from Kodak because of Kodak domination. Other color processes from Agfa/Fuji/FERRANIA diet.
C41 came to all manufacturer. But for the first years other companies named the c41 processing with own words (seams they were blamed from Kodaks domination).
Because Kodak dominated also the market to motion picture Film they had their special own play in this part. ECN 2 is optimized. If you would reformulated c41 you would first get a standard to both
(Motion Film/color Film) you could use the same soup but there wouldn't be a standard in both at last.Bec ause you would need a special layer exklusive with motion picture Film.

So it is indeed a nice idea to have c41 chems for motion picture Film. Some use it in that direction with different results (ECN2film is reacting different in c41 developer from its design).

But today no company would (and could) spent that money wich is a need for complete reformulation.
We should not forget the investment from labs.

Within the past (before 2000) the money was there, perhaps the idea was spoken out from some engeneers (why not have the same chems for both films).
But the profits have been so imense that there was no reason to have a standard (chem standard -development has to be different). So one decided to hold on individual best creation of each processing from different conception of the used chemistry and this was in concern to each special emulsion design.

But it is possible to use c41 chems with ecn2 Films - if you can afford the difference from result.

with regards
 

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If you would reformulated c41 you would first get a standard to both (Motion Film/color Film) you could use the same soup but there wouldn't be a standard in both at last. Because you would need a special layer exklusive with motion picture Film.

What special layer woud be needed for cine film?

In case you thought of Rem-Jet, forget it. It is technically outdated.
 

kb3lms

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At one time, long ago, the motion picture film and photographic film were entirely different departments at Kodak, probably due to the different markets. If all this were to be done again today, I wouldn't be surprised if both MP and still film would be designed to use the same process.
 

trendland

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What special layer woud be needed for cine film?

In case you thought of Rem-Jet, forget it. It is technically outdated.

Ok I didn't use Cine Film for a longer while that means :

1406736642000-MotionPictureFilm-hi.jpg


This dear boddys have no ramjet any more ?

with regards
 

trendland

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At one time, long ago, the motion picture film and photographic film were entirely different departments at Kodak, probably due to the different markets. If all this were to be done again today, I wouldn't be surprised if both MP and still film would be designed to use the same process.
Indeed they would come to compromis between to lower costs.

with regards

PS : Lower the cost during the golden years at Kodak have been discussed.
For example Sponsoring! Much more budget Kodak today get from all sellings have been avaible for Sponsoring. Not for advertising.
The conclusions was : "So let us then higher our budget to sponsor olimpic games exclusive (against Fuji)"
 

trendland

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Much more than Kodak get from sellings today of course. Otherwise Kodak had to be bunkrupt 1982:wink:

with regards
 

halfaman

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halfaman: Well... printfilm also exist as C41 and E6. (Called duplicating film.) Yes, those films have other contrast characteristics than films exposed in cameras, but obviously they don't necessarily need a different process.

I am very aware of the existance of duplicating films, but I don't think standard photographic color emulsions were designed or optimized with duplication in mind. On the other hand, duplication must be as perfect as possible in cinema films. Cinema and photographic processes have being designed to get the best possible final images at the end of their respectively main road.
 

MattKing

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A material optimized for printing on paper will never give optimum results (colour and contrast) if printed on projection film.
A material optimized for printing on projection film will never give optimum results (colour and contrast) if printed on paper.
If you use the same process for both, one or both will be severely compromised.
 

gorbas

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During my university I did spend some time in movie labs. As far as I understand ECN2 process formulas were always available for labs to mix its own from raw chemicals. In '90s and 2000 Kodak start offering them as premixed concentrate kits as simplified option for smaller volume processing (but no home use) . Maybe from today perspective ECN 2 and C41 can be shared, but with amount of already existing infrastructure & knowledge I don't think it will ever happen
 

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I think you are assuming that photo printing and a movie printing follow the same process, but they don't.

Photographs are printed directly in paper, while movies are print into film again (a "print film"). Also movies are usually printed from an internegative, not from the original camera negative.

So different print processes and final substrates using the same film and chemistry? It doesn't sound optimal at all. By the way, printing chemistry is also different. RA-4 for paper and ECP-2 for print film.

Of course these products are used and printed differently, but the print materials have different characteristics just as the original films do. Print FILM has a Dmax of over 4.0, while print PAPER has a Dmax of about 2.2. The film for MP use has a gamma fit to suit the 0.5 gamma of ECN, while the print paper has a gamma designed for a film with a gamma of 0.6 (these are just working values here, and are actually different and more precise).

MP and still films were worked on out of the same office complex, and we often went to the same meetings. I remember one hallmark meeting with ILM representatives, in which the entire Senior Staff was invited to see actual clips in which they demonstrated what needs they had for MP films for good SFX. At the same time, it was well known that the gamma of consumer films had to be higher due to the flare of the less expensive lenses used on average consumer cameras.

Then there are the speed, grain and sharpness issues to be considered. Maybe the scope is too broad for this forum??

PE
 

Rudeofus

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Then there are the speed, grain and sharpness issues to be considered. Maybe the scope is too broad for this forum??
I would interpret the original question as "if we use C-41 film&process, are we missing something compared to ECN-2?". My impression from what I have read here and elsewhere, is that the movie industry was not willing to change their development equipment, and that Vision 3 movie film was therefore formulated to work with that preexisting equipment and ECN-2 process. There appear to be no specific advantages of ECN-2 over C-41 as far as still film photographers are concerned, to the contrary: CD-4 contained in C-41 CD is less prone to triggering allergies than CD-3. Both processes appear to create optimal results with their respective materials.
 

trendland

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During my university I did spend some time in movie labs. As far as I understand ECN2 process formulas were always available for labs to mix its own from raw chemicals. In '90s and 2000 Kodak start offering them as premixed concentrate kits as simplified option for smaller volume processing (but no home use) . Maybe from today perspective ECN 2 and C41 can be shared, but with amount of already existing infrastructure & knowledge I don't think it will ever happen
For sure (as you might know) a movie labs workflow is most different to labs costumers let their holiday shots develope.
To me their might be no difference between the quality you can get from minilabs, normal labs, and central labs (biggest lab in one region where you sent films via postage.)
It depends on the professional view.
Some labs employer trainees who are responcible to change chems. Theese trainees have no idea what they do (therefore developer tanks and kanisterrs with fresh chems are sighned with colors)
for example red =developer/blue=fixer/yellow=bleach.
What will happen when it will be mixed is clear = "Oh sorry I made a misstake I refreshed bleach into the red marked tank = that is not so god - isn't it?"
But most machines are New and rerfreshing is permanently - a big field to fail is remaining.

The same is with movie labs - with a little difference : Trainees were trained and teached professional.
The first time they are allowed to clean tanks - nothing more.
And failures came from intention - not from small experience. It is often the issue to find the optimum between economy and a quality on a midt level.
Highest level is in special cases possible. But not EVERYTHING is coming from newest James Bond or Spielberg production. The main issue in movie labs is to longer the baths. And sometimes in a way of impossible tasks. Therefore professionell chemists are well expierenced to handle with all kind of tricks baths wich have to be wasted (under normal criteria) 2weeks longer.
And as you metioned with raw chemicals. And sometimes this is outside Kodaks ECN2 standard but within good results.
Because after many years of experience some responcible lab chemists may find solutions with their own special soup to handle bad baths. Let this name "smallest reformulation" inside Kodak specification.
In fact it isn't any more within specification. But that is the difference : A normal c41 lab is working withprofessionals within a movie lab proffessional means :graded chemists. !!!
with regards
l
 

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I would interpret the original question as "if we use C-41 film&process, are we missing something compared to ECN-2?". My impression from what I have read here and elsewhere, is that the movie industry was not willing to change their development equipment, and that Vision 3 movie film was therefore formulated to work with that preexisting equipment and ECN-2 process. There appear to be no specific advantages of ECN-2 over C-41 as far as still film photographers are concerned, to the contrary: CD-4 contained in C-41 CD is less prone to triggering allergies than CD-3. Both processes appear to create optimal results with their respective materials.

These processes were being revised in R&D at about the same time. There is really no reason why one process could be "developed" and made compatible with existing processing machines.

PE
 

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No! I want to know more about it, it is interesting. :smile:

Pulling out the stops would include Calculus, General Chemistry and Organic Chemistry.

Are you ready for that?

I am preparing a document right now called "How to Build a Film", but it is slow going and I know how to do it. :wink:

PE
 

trendland

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Pulling out the stops would include Calculus, General Chemistry and Organic Chemistry.

Are you ready for that?

I am preparing a document right now called "How to Build a Film", but it is slow going and I know how to do it. :wink:

By the way : " How to Build a Film" PE let me short asked you (on basis of your well known background at EK within emulsion concerns"
You mentioned in other concerns that some chemical raw compounds one have a need of for backing color emulsion (I do not remember in what concern you stated it and I can't find it at this time) but may be it was in concern of Kodachromes - came rare and more rare over the last years.
Some of them are not longer in production generaly by the chemistry industry.

Kodak stated the same (that was definitivly just stated to Kodachromes)

Some other basic (or special) compounds are in production - so we just may be happy if chems are not used exclusive for Film production - but even if they were produced they increased horrable from price.

Ok now the question : Could you imagine that you design (from general issues) an emulsion without the chemical compounds your design is made originally ?In a form that you find derivates with simular
characteristics? Sure this is a case wich depends on the special function of the chemical compounds
(color coupler/ interactive working chems a.s.o) but the point of main interest is :
Could you imagine that such "let it name reformulated emulsion" have 100% identical characteristics special from the original color design?

From my point it isn't possible because the New emulsion then has to have min. a difference wich has to be more in comparison of different emulsion numbers of the same Film.
So it can be in the very near of original design but it is a New Film with a difference to be seen from characteristics.
Perhaps you remember Fuji 2005 with Velvia50. They stated they reformulated Velvia50 with New raw chems they were able to find and the relaunched Velvia has the 100% same characteristics.
The last (same characteristics) was indeed true - there is no minimalst difference between old and New Velvia50.

But from my point it wasn't the holy true Fuji stated before the raws from Velvia50 came out of production so they had to discontinued Velvia - later they stated they found derivater raws with gave
100 identical characteristics?????
To me Fuji used original same intigrients for relaunched Velvia50 but they have been much increased from its costs.
Possible or not possible ? I know it is a bit academic and dependable. But from serious concern.

with greetings to you in Rochester

PS : AS I used New Velvia50 late 2007 I was sure this Film is a very little different because of complete New raws. Later I wonder - absolute 100% identical
Because of same raw chems:whistling::wink:.....isn't it?















PE
 

trendland

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Sorry PE there was a technical trouble via "Quote" you have to "clic" on to read my Question above.
ThAnks in Advance
 

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Chemicals that can no longer be used are Cadmium, Mercury and Lead compounds. Those that can be used are organic chemicals that are very complex.

They normally control Latent Image Keeping, Reciprocity and Keeping.

Here is a simple series of sensitizing dyes and a set of generic couplers to start our organic chemistry portion. :wink:

PE
 

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lantau

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Chemicals that can no longer be used are Cadmium, Mercury and Lead compounds. Those that can be used are organic chemicals that are very complex.

They normally control Latent Image Keeping, Reciprocity and Keeping.

Here is a simple series of sensitizing dyes and a set of generic couplers to start our organic chemistry portion. :wink:

PE
I've never seen a generalised substituent called 'ballast'. Quite funny. Will it act as a drag anchor to set a rate of diffusion?
 
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