Having never used any expired film before, I decided to try out some expired Fujifilm Pro 160 NPS – from 2005! This is what happened.
There was an evening not so long ago where there was nothing on the TV, and I found myself messing about on the laptop. I found myself on eBay thinking it’d be a good idea to buy a cheap medium format camera. The cheapest I could find was the Lubitel 166B, another soviet camera. It wasn’t until the next day that I realised I had no film for this camera! So whatever posessed me I ended up buying a job lot of 5 films. All expired, 4 of which were medium format and the other one for a 35mm camera. The films consisted of Fujifilm Pro 160 NPS, Fujifilm Provia 200 and Fujifilm Provia 400. The film arrived the same time as the camera, and I chose one at random and began to take some photos.
The film chosen was a Fujifilm Pro 160 NPS, and this particular roll expired in 2005. I didn’t pay a lot for this film as I wanted to be able to test the camera. But I’ve seen people use expired film online and thought I’d give it a try at the same time. It’s only now as I write this post that I found out a piece of advice for when you use expipred film. You’re meant to halve the ISO of the film for every decade after it’s expiry date. I didn’t know this at the time, so when I took these photos I treated it as an ISO 160 film
I wanted to make sure the photos I took were exposed in the right way, so I decided to use an app called LightMeter. This app does what it says on the tin, or description, and allows you to set your camera to the conditions in front of you. The same as an actual, physical, light meter!
I took the film to my local Jessops as I don’t have the chemicals to develop colour or C41 process films. I took it on a Sunday afternoon looking for a 1 hour development. Only problem was the staff had experience in developing 120/medium format film. So I had to wait until the next day for it to be developed.
The negatives were then scanned by me with my Epson V550 scanner. They haven’t been modified in post production at all. As you can see on some images there are purple patches on the image. This is the film curling up in the scanner, not on the actual negative.
Here they are: the sample shots I took with the Lubitel 166B camera, using Fujifilm 160 NPS film
I don’t often take photos using colour film. And when I do, I usually use CineStill ISO 800 film or Kodak’s Colorplus ISO 200 film. But right now I’m quite pleased with the results of this film, even in it’s expired form! After I scanned the images I bought more rolls of this film. Not only did I buy more expired stock, but I bought fresh stock too to see the differences between them.
As for halving the ISO of expired film for every decade it’s expired, I’m not sure if this suits all film. Granted I don’t have much experience in expired film, but for film used 14 years after it expired it performed very well.