Kodak T-MAX (35mm, 3200 iso) User-Review

6

If you hate using a flash as much as I do but still need to take indoor photographs, give this Kodak T-MAX 3200 a try!

Need fast film, the fastest film available to the public? Turn to Kodak T-MAX 3200, a Black and White marvel of speed and versatility. I have used this film on a number of occasions when I need to shoot indoors or in any poorly lighted area. Most films that claim to be ISO 3200 top out at about 1250 speed at best. Only T-MAX, of the films I have used, appears to genuinely be 3200. Others films claiming to rate at that speed need to pushed to 3200 which creates larger grain. While pushing may not be an issue in slower films, it is a huge problem in fast black and white films which have more silver and thus more grain. I like grain but I also like to be able to see detail in my subjects. I don’t need to have it by pushing a film claiming to be 3200.

Processing the film can be a little trickier, although any lab processing black and white film should be able to do an adequate job. I like to develop my own black and white to ensure quality control. While I normally use Sprint products for developing most films I always buy a new bottle of T-MAX developer when I shoot this film. First of all, this developer was concocted with TMAX in mind, thus the name. It achieves rich blacks and vibrant whites. Secondly it develops the film a bit faster. In many developers it takes 15 minutes to process because of all the silver. However, in TMAX developer it can be processed in about 10 minutes (for the developing part). You could speed up time with other developing agents by mixing a stronger batch, but this is all trial and error.

I used this film to shoot a series of dog shows held indoors under poor fluorescent light. Subjects were moving, yet my shots turned out blur free because the film allowed me to shoot at 1/200th of a second at f/5.6, plenty fast enough considering the conditions. Of course, this film would be great at sporting events, even those held outside if your camera shoots fast enough. It works great at parties too and night-time. In fact the chunkier grain at night gives an added spooky effect.

written by altprocess on 2009-04-04 in #reviews

6 Comments

  1. stouf
    stouf ·

    Awesome !!!

  2. eggzakly
    eggzakly ·

    From what I've gathered through research online, the natural speed of t-max 3200 is 800 iso (without pushing or using a fast developer). The 3200 on the box just means it pushes to 3200 well.
    The same goes for Ilford Delta 3200, which has a natural speed of 1000 iso.
    Lovely gallery, though :)

  3. 3lla
    3lla ·

    Wonderful photos!

  4. cinzinc
    cinzinc ·

    great info and gallery! i just bought 5 of these rolls last week. waiting to use them. but my cameras are fisheye2 and holga135BC, do u think it wud produce good photos?

  5. jelga
    jelga ·

    super useful review and great gallery!!! well done!

  6. rofllmaoqwerty
    rofllmaoqwerty ·

    do they still process this film in the drugstores?

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