polaroid originals film vs instax in terms of resolution/sharpness

Discussion in 'Extreme, Retro, Instant and More' started by norayr, Jun 12, 2019.

  1. hello,
    i know that instant photography is not always about resolution or sharpness, it's just interesting, recently i shot some polaroid originals film with sx-70 with manual focus.

    i got the images, where i have clear focus on some things, like here

    [​IMG]

    or here

    [​IMG]

    i never got such a result with instax, and i wonder why - is it a paper/film quality, or is that because my lomo instax cameras have plastic lens (actually my lomo instant magellan glass has glass lens) or lack ability to nail the focus?
     
  2. I think it's the nailing of the focus, as you say. I can get good results from my Instax Wide 300, but for close work, I have to use a tape measure to get the focus right.

    Here are some values I found online:

    I wish Fujifilm would bring out a more "serious" Instax camera, they certainly have the ability to do so.

    Some kind of focus (SLR, rangefinder or even just simple autofocus) and the ability to trigger off-camera flash would be top of my list, followed by some control over exposure.
     
    norayr likes this.
  3. AJG

    AJG

    I haven't used any Instax cameras, but I do remember what a revelation it was to see Polaroid prints made with my 4x5 with good lenses and Polaroid back vs. the prints from a consumer grade Polaroid camera. The Polaroid film/print system was a lot more capable of high quality than their inexpensive cameras would have led one to expect.
     
    Ricochetrider likes this.
  4. Back in the pack film days, AFAIK all the Polaroids had some form of rangefinder, although most were pretty primitive. My 125, for example, has two lines inscribed in the viewfinder and one moves as you focus, but it's basically intended to get the focus correct by lining up an adult head between the lines. I've seen decent results from a 250, which has a coupled Zeiss rangefinder along with a 3 element lens, but it's still not as good as I see shooting pack film in my Hasselblad or Mamiya RB67.

    With the SX-70-I wonder if the OP is using an SX-70 SLR. The lenses on those do leave something to be desired compared to higher end cameras, but at least you have a split image to help with focus and also a decent amount of contrast on the screen to see whether or not it's in focus.
     
  5. Yeah, back in the day we'd proof 4x5 shots using a Polaroid back. The results were great compared to consumer cameras. I doubt you could make an instant film with poor enough sharpness to worry about. Camera and technique are 90%.
     
  6. I found the SX-70's both the manual focusing version or the AF version are good in focusing.
     
  7. >With the SX-70-I wonder if the OP is using an SX-70 SLR.
    yes, i did use sx-70.

    >The lenses on those do leave something to be desired compared to higher end cameras, but at least you have a split image to help with focus and also a decent amount of contrast on the screen to see whether or not it's in focus.

    Just to mention, that not all SX-70 allow manual focusing, and Model 2 versions aren't SLR's, you don't actually see what you'll shoot.

    >Yeah, back in the day we'd proof 4x5 shots using a Polaroid back. The results were great compared to consumer cameras. I doubt you could make an instant film with poor enough sharpness to worry about. Camera and technique are 90%.

    That's a pack film, it's of a much higher quality, than integral film. integral film has much lower quantity of lines per inch, i believe.

    but probably, you are right. i have watched some videos and read some articles: it seems people are getting much better results with mamiya and a dark bag, rather than with normal instax cameras.
     
  8. i searched in the net and found this:
    Hauskeeping Instax 210+Polaroid 110b : instax
    i see that the photo made with polaroid 110 is even better than those people get with instakon rf70, which has plastic lens.
    So the camera indeed matters the most and the paper has pretty good potential. Thank you.
     
  9. Gentlepersons:

    1. I find Polaroid Originals SX-70 film itself much less sharp and to have much less definition than Instax Wide. It also is grainier.

    2. The first Polaroid™ SX-70 and Alpha 1 versions had a 4 element Tessar like glass lens of good quality probably resolving 50 + o r-.lp/mm It could far out resolve the original Polaroid™ film let alone the Polaroid Originals film.

    3. Do the Instax Wide specs mean 10 lines (5 line pairs) or 10 line pairs. 5 line pairs is about what the average 35 year old eye can resolve. Sharp vision and younger eyes can resolve in the 8-10 range. Back when I was about 90, I tested out at about 7 lp/mm, but then I had better than average vision than average. Even today, at my age I see Instax Wide taken with a 100 camera to be sharper than Polaroid Originals with my good SX-70 lens.

    4. I look forward to traveling back to Montana this summer and testing the Polaroid with my full size 1951 USAF chart and can give a more science based answer.

    A T Burke
     
    steve_gallimore|1 likes this.
  10. As far as I know, in discussing analog measurements, lines always means line pairs. That is, you can't have black lines without intervening white lines.

    For digital (pixel) measurements, it is usually given in pixels, not in lines, which makes the number twice as big, following Nyquist.
     
  11. Note that Instax, like Kodak, exposes the film from the back, while Polaroid, and so Impossible, from the front.

    Exposing from the front normally requires a mirror to reverse the image. (Not if the source is, for example, a CRT.)

    That might mean that light goes through more layers in the front exposure case.
     
  12. Mr. H.,

    Yes, it's SUPPOSED to be quoted in line pairs. As you say, after all, there has to be a contrast between lines. However, both film and lens makers started just saying lines so they could double the public perception of their film and lenses. If both Brand X and Y are 50/lpmm, and Brand X decides to overstate their specs by saying it resolves 100 lines, Brand Y is going to see that as unfair competition and also advertise 100 lines. That's how standards become meaningless. As of 20-30 years ago, the figure quoted for the same film would be stated as both lines and line pairs. In a situation I'm thinking of, the film would actually meet the line pairs spec so they weren't cheating but also maybe got negatively compared by people who were.

    When I get back to Montana, I'm going to figure out a way of exposing my Edmunds Scientific 1951 USAF glass resolution scale directly to Instax and see what the results are. At either 10 lines or 10 lp/mm, I wouldn't need more than a 10 power loupe to know the truth.

    I don't think Polaroid Originals has the same definition as Fuji Instax. That makes me wonder why I bother using my good four-element SX-70 lens rather than a cheap single element lens boxy camera. Using the SX-70 is probably putting lipstick on a pig in spirit but not meant to denigrate the magnificent effort that the Impossible Project has made to try and duplicate Polaroid film without access to the same chemicals and trade secrets that were not mentioned in their patents.

    Do you mean the Instax wide exposes direct rather than from the rear? In my Instax 100, the film pack faces the lens directly. The lens does not face the back of the pack.

    A.T. Burke
     
  13. If you look at a finished Instax print, the exposure side is that back of the print.
    When the print comes out, a black layer covers the back to keep light out.
    When the print comes out, the view side will face the back of the camera.

    I am not sure of the exact order of things but this is the design that Kodak used, hoping
    to avoid the Polaroid patents. As well as I know it, Fuji was allowed to sell outside the US.

    If you are looking at a print, Polaroid exposes from the front (view) side. If this side
    pointed at the lens, the picture would be reversed, so Polaroid cameras use a mirror,
    either the moving mirror of the SLR SX-70, or fixed mirror of some of the later cameras.

    I am wondering how the two different ways affect the resolution.
     
  14. I have a Polaroid back for my Mamiya RB67 medium format 6x7 camera. Are there any polaroid type film available today or adaptable to fit in that holder?
     
  15. As far as I know, they use the Polaroid, and later Fuji pack film, where you peel of the print after the appropriate development time.

    This was discontinued by Fuji a few years ago, and what is still around sells for high prices.
     
  16. Mr. H...

    Looking at the Fujifilm Instax Data Sheet, the film is inserted onto the cartridge with the back facing the lens. The light goes through the film back which later becomes black. In development, the dyes are pushed forward causing the image to migrate up against the front clear window. This process seems much different than the Polaroid SX-70 and 600 series film.

    A T Burke
     
  17. Apparently not enough different, or Kodak wouldn't have lost the patent suit.

    One that I remember from years ago, is that Polaroid uses a mixture of dye and TiO2 for the front,
    which covers the front when the print comes out. The image diffuses through that mixture and appears
    with the TiO2 background. At the appropriate time, the dye is neutralized chemically so it goes away.

    I don't know how Instax does the front, but I presume again with something for the image
    to diffuse through to be visible.
     

  18. When Polaroid and Ready Loads loads disappeared I gave up 4x5.
     

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