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filmscanners: Ektachrome E100VS bad?

        Anybody out there used Kodak's E100VS film? I got four trial 
rolls from one of Kodak's special deals and developed my first one 
yesterday, along with a Fuji Provia 100F for comparison. I used 
freshly mixed E6 chemicals and my usual procedure. When I took the 
two rolls out of the tank after the fixer, the Fuji was fine but the 
Kodak had a milky strip along the whole length of the film. I had 
seen that effect before a couple of years ago, ironically with Fuji 
and Agfa films, after Kodak made a big change in the E6 chemistry. (I 
have not been able to find out why). The bleach is much weaker in the 
new formulation and seems to become exhausted quickly. Re-bleaching 
and re-fixing corrected the situation, with no harm to the images 
that I could detect. I certainly never expected one of Kodak's films 
to show the incomplete bleaching or fixing effect.
        I put the E100VS back into the bleach for another few minutes 
and then back into the fixer, which cleared up the milky appearance. 
After the usual washing, Final Rinse and drying, I compared the two 
films and made some scans. The Provira 100F produced its usual 
superbly sharp, slightly understated colour images. The E100VS was 
strange, with almost cartoon colours including weird electric greens 
and reddish browns. The scans (Minolta Scan Dual II) seemed to 
emphasize the odd colours and the grain was much more prominent than 
in the Provira 100F scans (further evidence that Provira 100F is the 
grain champ for scanning).
        Anyway, I'm curious to know if others have had good luck with 
what I assume is one of Kodak's flagship films. I was a bit 
suspicious of its "Vivid Saturation" designation, but I expected the 
colours to be fairly accurate. I will make sure to add extra Bleach & 
Fix time for the next rolls, but if the other three films turn out to 
be equally quirky, I can't see much use for E100VS.

Roger Smith


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