Kodak Aerochrome III 1443 (120, 400 iso) user-review

2009-03-02 41

Kodak Aerochrome ||| Infrared Film 1443 is the last false-color infrared (CIR) film in production in the world. It is now temporarily available in 120 and 135 formats.

The Aerochrome 1443 is produced by Kodak as an aerial film, that is a film to be used to take pictures of the ground from a plane, especially used in agriculture, forestry and even camouflage detection. This means that Kodak only sells this film by bulk rolls (several hundred feet) in sizes for aerial cameras – typically the 70 mm or 9.5 inch format. These formats can’t be shot in regular cameras, but to our luck a great CIR lover, Dean Bennici has been doing the dirty work of cutting 9.5″ × 400 ft rolls down to 120 format – in total darkness, and is selling them through his website (right now this film is temporarily available in 135 format as well.)

As with any infrared film you need to use a filter to get a proper effect. This film has the same color sensitive layers as the discontinued Kodak EIR (described in more detail here) where all layers are sensitive to blue light, so you need to filter the blue light (typically done with a yellow or an orange filter, but other filters such as red or Wratten 87C/89B have proved to give very interesting results as well.) Even though it is stated numerous places that the 1443 emulsion is the same as Kodak EIR, it is definitely not. The film speeds are different and the colors are quite different. I have used the same medium yellow filter on all my Aerochrome and Kodak EIR pictures, and the pictures are easily distinguishable.

The Aerochrome 1443 is mainly meant to be used with AR-5 processing, but since this is very expensive and hard to find, you can also use the E-6 process (which is actually cross processing) to get slides – this will however boost contrast and color saturation (too bad huh?! d-:) E-6 is the primary recommendation of this film, and for this purpose the film is rated at about 400 ISO (you need to adjust your exposures depending on the light conditions.) You can also cross process the film to get a negative by using C-41, and being a reversal film, I thought that this would give an even crazier result than E-6 processing, but to my experience the pictures have a nicer contrast, better details, are less saturated with darker reds and finally the pictures have noticeably finer grain. This film is rated 320 ISO for C-41 processing, and I would strongly recommend anyone trying this film to try both E-6 and C-41. Here’s a look at the differences between the two processing types:

The greatest thing about this film is that the results will always surprise you. The colours of different objects depends on both their visible color and their material, so even though reds typically turn out yellow and black fabric usually turn out red, you may once in a while see visible reds that turn out red and visible blacks that turn out black, or apples and oranges that turn out in very special colours… Well have a look for your self (pictures in first gallery are E-6, second gallery is C-41):

written by larslau on 2009-03-02 #gear #slide #infrared #aerochrome #c-41 #filters #1443 #color-negative #x-pro #false-colors #dean-bennici #kodak #500c #120 #review #transparancy #hasselblad #e-6 #ar-5

41 Comments

  1. eyecon
    eyecon ·

    I never heard about this film - but the colors are supercrazy.....very interesting review!

  2. lolfox
    lolfox ·

    great review.... i do love to hear about obscure and little known film

  3. babo
    babo ·

    Loved it! Thx for sharing it with all of us!

  4. babo
    babo ·

    Loved it! Thx for sharing it with all of us!

  5. xpunklovex
    xpunklovex ·

    That's the film review of the week.

  6. rater
    rater ·

    Great film and great review!

  7. -a-l-b-e-r-t-o-
    -a-l-b-e-r-t-o- ·

    cool review

  8. takezzo
    takezzo ·

    interesting...

  9. larslau
    larslau ·

    Thanks for all the nice comments!! You should buy a couple of rolls and try this out... You'll be really amazed of the results!

  10. stouf
    stouf ·

    Exceptionally complete review ! Veeeery interesting ! Sometimes Tungsten film as the same super-reaction with red colour... Congrats larslau !

  11. thaiseb
    thaiseb ·

    It's very interesting and well explained. Thanks a lot, I think I will order some of this film.

  12. cinzinc
    cinzinc ·

    those shots are soo hippy trippy! and other photos on ur website seem kinda freaky.hehe. Great review!

  13. larslau
    larslau ·

    Hahaha... What are you saying cinzinc? d-:

  14. breakphreak
    breakphreak ·

    best best best reZults ever

  15. breakphreak
    breakphreak ·

    what happenZ to one that will eat that piZZa?

  16. bennici
    bennici ·

    thanks for the great review lars!

  17. vicuna
    vicuna ·

    Great great review!! The comparison between the C41 & E6 devs are very interesting to see! :)

  18. spendospend
    spendospend ·

    sweet review!!!

  19. doubleswithlomodirk
    doubleswithlomodirk ·

    Hey Lars,

    well done, can`t wait to shoot this film next weekend ;)

  20. lomosexual_manboy
    lomosexual_manboy ·

    Such awesome shots I don't even know what to say. The colors...THE COLORS!!!
    Thanks for such an in depth review especially showing c-41 vs e-6.

  21. zulupt
    zulupt ·

    Great review!!! I never heard about htis film!
    Amazing gallery. Nice work m8

  22. zulupt
    zulupt ·

    Great review!!! I never heard about htis film!
    Amazing gallery. Nice work m8

  23. fivedayforecast
    fivedayforecast ·

    Where do i get some of this????

  24. fivedayforecast
    fivedayforecast ·

    Wait is this the stuff that's like $2000?

  25. larslau
    larslau ·

    @fivedayforecast: As I write you can buy it through this website: www.tarquinius.de/. It is 17€ / $23 for a 120 roll..

  26. l-_-l
    l-_-l ·

    Wow... Stunning gallery!

  27. herbert-4
    herbert-4 ·

    Lomography needs to lobby Kodak to release this in 35mm and 120. That 9.5in x 400ft roll is for K7 aerocameras, which are huge and rare, and not hand held, but mounted in something like a U2. None of us can afford this sort of platform and even Dean Bennici is rather expensive for most of us.

  28. pith
    pith ·

    Where can I buy filters for Diana F+?

  29. tws
    tws ·

    im using this film!!!
    but 120 film is very hard to find in my country!!

  30. bulletofmine
    bulletofmine ·

    this is another great film by kodak!

  31. bulletofmine
    bulletofmine ·

    this is another great film by kodak!

  32. jaguarwomon
    jaguarwomon ·

    I agree with herbert-4!!!!

  33. naomac
    naomac ·

    Beautiful effect, hopefully it comes more widely available, come on Lomography looks like lots of buyers here.

  34. camielioo
    camielioo ·

    hope the lomoshop expands his films with this one!

  35. rychie
    rychie ·

    here's a petition for anyone that hasn't signed yet :) Please sign it!
    www.lomography.com/homes/lighttomysoul/blog/8206-lomo-pleas…

  36. darkart69
    darkart69 ·

    how i do put a colored filter in a Diana F+?

  37. ihave2pillows
    ihave2pillows ·

    Thank you :) this is my Aerochrome Bible!

  38. welliamancio
    welliamancio ·

    your article is very interesting.

  39. ihave2pillows
    ihave2pillows ·

    Results! After reading your review a couple times, I went ahead and shot a roll of 120 (bought it for $36, but it's now auctioning at $70+ each on eBay as of April 2012). Knowing that the Aerochrome stock is drying up, I felt the pressure + responsibility to use it well and not f*ck it up :-P

    www.lomography.com/homes/ihave2pillows/albums/1848036-dream…

    @pith I duck-taped filters onto my Diana F+ and it worked well. Only that your can't re-adjust the focus of the regular 75mm Diana afterwards without taking off the filter, unlike the Diana Fisheye or the Diana 110mm Telephoto lens.

  40. guinastrapazi
    guinastrapazi ·

    thanks fort sharing.. :)
    damn, i'm really a bit envious -i'd love to try it out ;)

  41. awkwardmongoose
    awkwardmongoose ·

    It was used also in archeological survey, it' awsome. I'm pretty eager to try it out one day or another...

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