AGFA DISCONTINUES 120-FILM!

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by patric_dahl_n, Apr 13, 2004.

  1. Just got it confirmed from Robert Öbrink from Agfa Sweden. Agfa
    discontinues ALL 120-film. Color, slide, and B/W films. Goodbye Agfa!
     
  2. That's really bad news! I will miss Scala. Digital "photography" (in the absence of a better word) turns out to be more harmful to photography than I thought. Let's hope that Fuji and Kodak can benefit sufficiently from Agfa's move to keep their 120 films alive for many years to come. Unfortunately, there is no alternative to Scala.
     
  3. If shipping from Europe doesn't make it prohibitively expensive, dr5 is an alternative to Scala, and quite a good one. Info at www.dr5.com

    Also, there is the T-Max reversal kit.
     
  4. It is sad to hear... I liked their Optima II and RSX100... May be it's time to fill my freezer until stocks last.
     
  5. Bad...on the bright side I've had some time to perfect my FP4+ processing due to the lack of Agfa BW in sheet sizes (and APX100 in 120 is/was curiously expensive here.)

    Some lab in Denmark quit their Scala line, so the future of Scala processing here in Finland (Agfa used to send the film to Denmark) is unsure. I've never shot Scala, so maybe it's good that I don't know what I miss, but it's interesting to see how this situation develops...
     
  6. Hmmm... A quick look in the fridge reveals
    - 3 rolls of Fuji Acros
    - 5 rolls of Kodak T-Max 100
    - 4 rolls of Ilford Delta 100
    - 1 roll of Fuji Velvia
    - 1 roll of Fuji Provia
    - 4 rolls of Kodak E100VS

    I don't think I know what I'll be missing - anything I should rush out and buy while stocks last??

    --POP
     
  7. lkv

    lkv

    Sad ! I like there film most ! And used a lot of Optima. That said, it is not surprising as
    their film was already hard to find. I think they were killed by bad distribution more than
    by digital...
     
  8. They will still make 135-film, but for how long? In 120, I love APX 100, and have just learned to like Optima. :|
     
  9. Joachim Inkmann , apr 13, 2004; 07:03 a.m.
    That's really bad news! I will miss Scala. Digital "photography" (in the absence of a better word) turns out to be more harmful to photography than I thought.

    LOL!!! But things like this will always happen until forum fellows won't refrain from asking the "professional's" opinion, disregarding the difference between a professional and an artist.

    Too bad. I was already missing Agfa Portriga to death, now there's something more that I will miss. Oh, well, many others missed Platinum paper long ago, but the world is still here. Anyway thanks, digital photoCRAPhy.
     
  10. db1

    db1

    FROM AGFA UK:

    This is from AGFA UK:

    Dear Mr. B,

    Thank you for your e-mail.

    Medium format films are currently under review by many manufacturers including Agfa but we have made no decision to discontinue it. The vast majority of 120 film has traditionally been bought by professionals but it is also this market that is turning most rapidly to digital technology.
    There is no denying that 120 sales are declining.

    Taking these market trends into account we will be examining the situation very closely to determine future manufacturing capacity. Should we take a decision to discontinue 120 format, a proper announcement will be made in the Photographic press.

    I hope this information is of help.

    Regards,
    Philip Miller
    Corporate Communications Manager
    Agfa UK
     
  11. Just great. After reading several threads by hopefuls that digital won't completely kill off film we get this news. Ilford also mentioned they won't make 220 film anymore. Sigh...I'm really starting to think I made a bad decision blowing several grand on a Mamiya RZ67 Pro II. Agfa may just be the first in a domino effect of film just completey going away. I was planning to hit some photo swap meets next month to pick up another 120 back but maybe I should start saving up for a 10K digital back for my camera if ones available and I can get it this cheap :-/
    Regards,
    Marc
     
  12. db1

    db1

    I won't believe anything until I see it in writing. Patric has made several claims in the past about about Agfa. I'm not sure what to think about it.
     
  13. If this is true, then I am very sad, APX 100 was becoming my favorite B&W film. Dammit Agfa! Oh well, as long as Ilford keeps making FP4.
     
  14. David B, this is what Robert Öbrink told me in his email:

    "Hej,

    Ryktet talar sant. 120-filmen kommer att utgå ur sortimentet
    under året.

    Mvh
    Robert."

    (The rumor is true. The 120-films will dissapear from the sortiment during this year)

    When I asked him if it's only in Sweden, he replied: "120-filmen utgår H E L T." (The 120-films will dissapear C O M P L E A T L Y).

    That's all I know.
     
  15. I'm shocked how soon one of the big companies would make such a decision.
    Do you all think that 120 b&w films will be reduced to niche companies like
    Efke, Foma, and Maco in a few years? I might have to invest in digital sooner
    than I thought. This is bad timing, I just bought a used Pentax 6x7 (although
    for very cheap...) :.-(
     
  16. Can't say I've ever used Agfa 120 film, though I have used some APX100 in 4x5 - nice, but not quite what I wanted..

    Some of us use Foma and Efke/Maco almost exclusively, so this news doesn't hurt too much. Now, Ilford discontinuing 220 film, that hurts - but as long as they keep 120 around, there is an alternative to Foma & Efke/Maco.

    Kodak/Globo-Chem can kill off whatever they want, but I hope HIE stays around a good while - has anyone else noticed HIE dropped $1.50 in price at B&H????
     
  17. Yeah, I'd love to (and going to) try the Efke and Foma films (I've tried Maco
    820, nice film), but I'm really worried about North American availabilty of them
    in the future.
     
  18. Well, it sure does make me feel better about my decision to boycott Agfa after them dropping their 4x5 stuff last year.


    The only Agfa product I buy now is Rodinal, and that might not be long for the world either.

    tim in san jose
     
  19. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    This shouldn't be a surprise. When Agfa dropped Ultra 50 (which sold reasonably well in 120) and brought out Ultra 100 a year later in 35mm only, it was obvious what was going on. A local source of film has been unloading their 220 (which I don't use) as the bottom has dropped out of the business for that. I wouldn't expect the major players to keep more than a couple of different films over the next two years.
     
  20. och himmel falla.... Du eller Agfa varit mycket dum... och Jag tror ikke Agfa macht slutta med 120 filma ..... i Sveriga? lilla Sverige...... maybe.. men Sverige ar ikke....
     
  21. Mr. Zimmermann, yes Agfa very stoopid if tell peepole wrong tings. Very sad my eyes bee too if Agfa stop make nice film.
     
  22. Agfa has been retrenching its business for a long time. It tried to sell off the film part of its
    business a couple of years ago but got no takers (at least none who'd offer what Agfa
    thought the business was worth) and upon keeping it started trimming back on its film-
    related product lines and introduced cost savings and layoffs.

    Competing film producers will now be evaluating the market to decide whether they can
    make money by going after customers about to be abandoned by Agfa, or whether they
    believe the Rubicon has been crossed, the market is shrinking rapidly, and that they need
    to follow Agfa's lead.
     
  23. "Competing film producers will now be evaluating the market to decide whether they can make money by going after customers about to be abandoned by Agfa, or whether they believe the Rubicon has been crossed, the market is shrinking rapidly, and that they need to follow Agfa's lead."

    On the other hand the other companies could see it as a chance to take over the market Agfa had.
     
  24. I wrote an email via the web form om agfa.de and wanted them to confirm the information I got from Agfa Sweden. I truly hope that Öbrink at Agfa was misinformed. But I don't know what to expect to hear from Agfa Germany since they haven't gone out in public with the discontinuation yet.
     
  25. "om"? I meant "at".
     
  26. "On the other hand the other companies could see it as a chance to take over
    the market Agfa had."


    That would be nice, but I could see that happening with the smaller
    companies instead of Kodak, Fuji, etc. It would be small companies that
    would probably fill in the rollfilm market (esp. B&W), like what Efke etc. are
    doing right now. I'm holding out hope that Ilford stays in the rollfilm business
    for a little while longer. I cannot currently afford a digital camera that can
    emulate the quality of medium format gear (I'm a grad student) and there's
    probably others in my boat as well.
     
  27. On the other hand the other companies could see it as a chance to take over the market Agfa had.​

    Reread what I wrote.
     
  28. Since Agfa killed the "Best B&W Film of All Times" (APX25) I'm
    ready to believe any new stupidity from their side. They also quit
    selling their desktop scanner line, which was especially
    interesting because of its magnificent software. If only Vuescan
    or Silverfast could ever reach that level... What a waste.
     
  29. Agfa's Consumer imaging sales decreased by 17% last year, and it is clear that theu it has
    decided to move focus away from consumer products in favor of the commercial graphic
    industry (newspaper and commercial prepress) and the healthcare business (radiography
    and other medical imaging equipment).

    Consumer imaging is 20% of its business (and shrinking) and Agfa apparently thinks it can
    increase profits by focusing its attentions on inkjet consumables and photofinishing
    printers instead of film. They fired 2,000 workers last year to reduce costs.

    Agfa has spent the last few years becoming a differently-oriented company. It is clear that
    it does not want to be in the film business, or at least in the medium format business for
    much longer.
     
  30. I don't get all these Crocodile tears for Agfa's MF film division. Between them Kodak and Fuji have half a dozen amatuer print films that are technically superior to the Optima films, and I have yet to see an Agfa slide film hold a candle to Astia or E100G.

    I guess because the name says 'Agfa' on the wrapper there's some trendy sentiment involved. Whatever.....Agfa's been trying to dump their film/paper division for years. Their color papers are among the worst on the market.

    Agfa APX 100.....not bad, but Tri-X pro can almost match it in Rodinal at 2.5x the speed. APX 25 followers have more of my sympathy.

    Re: Scala. Here's another irrelevant, proprietary, low lattitude, and difficult to process material that falls apart next to the competition unless it's worshipped on a light table. Try pushing Velvia 2-3 stops and desaturating. You'll get real close to Scala.
     
  31. Scott, Agfapan in Rodinal was one of the reasons I got into medium format a couple of
    years ago. (Verichrome was the other.)

    There's something about that combo that is unique and unmatchable by other films, and
    it's just too grainy in 35mm.

    I'm pretty distressed about the news, but not surprised.

    I may just sell my Autocord after Agfapan supplies dry up.
     
  32. •[• Z, try Efke 100 before selling the Autocord. It's a beautiful film for some of the same reasons Agfapan is--not the same, but very nice in its own right.
     
  33. Although I don't use agfa its still not something one wants to hear when they just bought a 501cm :(
    I haven't noticed as many 35mm films being discontinued lately, which is also a concern.
    Will 120 film be discontinued by companies before 35mm?
     
  34. I guess because the name says 'Agfa' on the wrapper there's some trendy sentiment involved.
    Nah, the slide films were nothing special - ok, but there are many equivalent or superior alternatives. Some of the C41 is nice, but not all and Kodak and Fuji indeed have better selections and choices. However, APX25 really was something: fine grain and excellent tonality (still have some in the fridge in 35 mm...) - I've never cared much for PanF and most of the time I find TMX tonality boring (and don't ge tme started on TechPan...) APX100 is a solid film, but I can manage on FP4+ and some other films.
     
  35. >Tim O'Brien , apr 13, 2004; 02:15 p.m.

    >Well, it sure does make me feel better about my decision to boycott Agfa after them dropping their 4x5 stuff last year.

    >The only Agfa product I buy now is Rodinal, and that might not be long for the world either.

    Boycotting their film is really going to help keep Rodinal around--duh! Real smart there, Dim.
     
  36. Oh yeah, film will be around forever. ROFLMAO!
     
  37. As someone else has said, if you like APX 100, try Efke R100. Very similar characteristics.

    The only problem I've encountered with Efke R100 is that the film base is very thin and the negatives curl (lengthwise) like a Slinky.

    Not that I want to see any film or related materials disappear, but perhaps it'll teach me to concentrate on my technique rather than fiddling around with too many materials.
     
  38. I really really hope this isnt true. I use Agfa RSX 50 all the time. Its one of my favorite films
    to cross process. I get certain results with it that I cant duplicate with Kodak or Fuji.

    Im really starting to hate digital.
     
  39. Unfortunate but at least in my part of the world, nobody I know uses any Agfa products. I've never used any either so I'm not making any judgements here, just making the point that (at least from my perspective) they are really a small player outside the consumer films they sell (labelled Agfa and otherwise).

    I did get to recently see a 6x7 Scala trannie at our local store and it really was shockingly excellent!
     
  40. Antonio Carusone: I really really hope this isnt true. I use Agfa RSX 50 all the time. Its one of my favorite films to cross process. I get certain results with it that I cant duplicate with Kodak or Fuji.

    Im really starting to hate digital.


    Ah, RSX 50. Not too long ago Agfa Sweden decided not to import this film anymore. Great films for the few but loyal people are always the first to go. I have ordered two rolls of RSX 50 to try it while it's still available here in Sweden. About hating digital - Welcome to the club!
     
  41. Dear Jon,

    Much better than you have tried to bait me. Keep the subject on topic and discourse civil. Just because you didn't understand the humor of a previous post doesn't mean you can abuse photo.net policy of direct abuse of another poster. I am making a complaint to the list moderator.

    tim in san jose
     
  42. <<Unfortunate but at least in my part of the world, nobody I know uses any Agfa products. >>

    I've got a bunch of APX-100 in 120 and 35mm. Not that it's all that great but it's the cheapest B&W B&H sells and it soups well in Rodinal which is also economical for someone like me who processes film only occasionally, because it's in really small bottles. I think I've also got a bunch of RSX-50 in 120 (I'll have to check)which I don't use at all since I stopped shooting dental photography with film.
     
  43. APX-100 is IMHO one of the top B&W emulsions out there when souped in
    rodinal. I (and many others) find TMX, Delta, etc to be bland films with poor
    tonal characteristics compared to APX 100, FP4 etc. APX 100 and rodinal is a
    magic combination.
     
  44. I think that the reality is, that there is really not enough long term MF film market to attract more than 2-3 film vendors. IMHO, ONE out of Kodak and Fuji will bail, and the other will benefit substantially. I expect that Ilford will be a prime beneficiary in the area of high quality emulsions targetting pros and serious amateurs, and will remain solidly in the business. Their dropping of 220 makes sense, as it allows them to focus on fewer products without offerring fewer real choices among emulsions. Then, perhaps one other niche vendor like Efke will remain. I would NOT be surprised if Illford, as wall as the last one standing between Kodak and Fuji greatly streamlined their product offerring. But the reality is, there are LOTS of EXCELLENT 120 emulsions. In truth, we really only NEED a handful from each of 2-3 manufacturers to preserve the viability of the format. I can assure you that the last 1-2 vendors in the 120 space will do very well for quite a while. But right now (prior to Agfa leaving) there certainly were too many to prosper, given the demand.
     
  45. I can honestly say that I've never once used an Agfa film during my 30-40 years of amateur photography. There was always lots of Kodak around, plus Fuji, Konica, and whatever. I can remember many times when Agfa film would have been hard to find wherever I lived or was at the time. However, Agfa was once a major camera manufacturer too (of more serious cameras that is), and when they dropped out of that market, the sky didn't fall. I don't expect it to fall now either. Industry shake-ups happen all the time. There are always some manufacturers who become more marginalised than others, and who drop out for economic reasons, in order to concentrate on something else. The sky never falls.
     
  46. I have a few rolls of AgfaPan 25 in 120 left. I won't get upset untill Ilford drops HP5 in 120. Then I will buy 500 rolls of HP5 and a bigger freezer.

    We still have lots of choices in 120.
     
  47. >Tim O'Brien , apr 14, 2004; 01:20 p.m.

    >Much better than you have tried to bait me. Keep the subject on topic and discourse civil. Just because you didn't understand the humor of a previous post doesn't mean you can abuse photo.net policy of direct abuse of another poster. I am making a complaint to the list moderator.

    Dear Tim,

    No sense of humor? You are the one that didn't get the original post--of course then you panicked and started whining at a high pitch.

    I'm not baiting you--why would I waste my time on such a little catch?

    Now, here is the logic, which you just might be able to grasp:

    If you continue to purchase film from AGFA they may have more incentive to continue producing their whole line of film products. Hey! One of which is Rodinal.

    Get it? On topic for this post. As to civil, you have a long way to go before considering yourself any such thing.

    Another thing, please don't send me any more of your whimpering emails to my personal account--you have been reported to hotmail for your obnoxious and childish language.

    Now please, PLEASE grow up a bit.
     
  48. Ralf Büscher from Agfa Germany just minutes ago posted a statement on a german b&W-forum (www.schwarzeiss-magazin.de), that Agfa germany continues to manufacture its films in 120 and continues to offer them on the german market.

    If a local distributor will still offer the product in a certain country is only up to him. Therefore, I conclude that Agfa Sweden tried to put the blame for their decision not to import part of Agfas product line on the manufacturer.

    Maybe our swedish friends should discuss this matter with their distributor? Agfa may change their mind in the not to distant future but as of today no such decision has been made.

    best

    Stefan
     
  49. Agfa Sweden just got the information from Agfa Germany that they WILL continue to make their 120-films.

    Two months ago Agfa Sweden got clear-cut information from Agfa headquarters in Germany about the discontinuation of these films. They would stop manufacturing 120-film and sell them as long as the stocks lasts.

    But evidently Agfa Germany changed their minds.

    Mr. Öbrink of Agfa Sweden thought it's embarrassing to have to go out with one information one day and tell something compleatly diffrent the next.

    Well, so do I. But it feels good to know that our beloved Agfa films will still be on the market.
     
  50. "Agfa Sweden just got the information from Agfa Germany that they WILL continue to make their 120-films."

    ROTFL. Yes, sure. "Just got the information", in the sense of "again hiding behind that bad big brother". I assume nobody expected they admit to be blatant lyers.

    STefan
     
  51. I sent a message to Agfa through www.agfa.com to ask them to confirm this rumor of discontinuance of all the Agfa 120 format films two days ago, when I first read this thread here.

    They responded today (Mr. John Auer from Agfa Consumer Imaging), as follows:

    "Please be advised that there are no immediate plans to discontinue Agfa 120 roll film in the United States".
     
  52. Why that word: "immediate"?

    Stefan
     
  53. I think it could be a good idea to support the companies who actually care about photographers, esp those in b&w. No one can deny the changes to the industry on any level with the advent of the 'new age'.. but lets face it the loyal customer is not left with much choice and no real say. It's already become that way with paper.. so as far as i'm concerned lets start supporting the alternative companies who are offering close approximations of classic emulsions.

    Don't get me wrong i'm sad about AGFA too..
     

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