pro film no longer stored in freezer?

Discussion in 'Film and Processing' started by ryan_pasia, May 16, 2010.

  1. I went to Adorama last week to stock up on film and was told that they now moved their film sales behind the cashiers. No problem, I thought, until I realized that certain types of film were no longer being kept in a freezer (eg, Velvia 50 in 35mm and 120). Velvia 100 in 220 was brought up from their stockroom freezer, though.
    Should I be concerned? Why would Adorama keep some film in the freezer and some out at room temperature?
  2. Hi Ryan
    A valid question, however, all the stock goes back into a cool environment overnight, and only small amounts are brought up to replenish the behind-counter stock during the course of the day.
    - Helen Oster -
    Adorama Camera Customer Service Ambassador - -
  3. I don't know if this is my chance to heckle or broadcast my experience with Adorama. I had a whole block (20) of USA Velvia turn red (?) with yes, different processors. "We've never heard of this problem," without an apology or money back return. After I was sold 50 sheets of 20x24 B/w fiber paper "It's Ilford paper just with our name on it."... well, that was the end of my business with Adorama. I do admit they're fast, happy talkers over the phone when they are getting $ from you.
  4. Chris
    Firstly, please allow me to apologize; whoever told you that it was "Ilford paper ...... with our name on", was ill-informed.
    In addition, I am surprised to hear that there was no offer of compensation.
    I would appreciate it if you could email me directly with the relevant order number which may enable us to identify the member of staff that you spoke to, and ensure he receives any necessary product and customer service training.
    Any time you receive less than 100% from any Adorama employee, please do let me know. We are committed to improving every aspect of the service we offer to all our customers, and really appreciate our customers' feedback and support in order to do this.
  5. Wow, that's pretty bad. Not a small waste of money when you're really looking for the Ilford.
    I've been fortunate to have pretty good experiences at Adorama myself. I recently got the Tiltall Traveler tripod on the recommendation of a salesman there (who steered me away from more expensive ones), never having heard of it but wanting something that folds small on a tight budget, and I'm very happy with it. And the salesman showed appropriate respect for my F100 :) I also noticed the unrefrigerated film and asked about it and was told that the rest of the stock was in the back in cold storage and the stuff in the front rotated quickly enough that it wasn't a problem, and I wasn't buying film that day so I took their word for it.
    Helen, do you have rules for how much time film can spend outside the fridge?
  6. I find adorama to be awesome. I bought $200.00 worth of darkroom equipment about a month ago, and i am pretty happy with it. the paper i got is the adorama paper, of various varieties, and i am very pleased with it, it work great, and the fiber based paper washed well, just in a water bath. great service, and fairly fast mailing, except for the developer, which went on backorder, but thats not their fault. I saved hundreds from going to my local store, so im happy.
  7. I find that most Dealers I use will talk to you and if they don't then I never use them again . Freestyle Adorama and many pthers that I have used will take phone calls and work out things. Heck the guy at Ultrafine had me on speed dial. :) .
  8. I am sorry you had a bad experience with them. I had a very good experience with their used department. I purchased a used lens that was defective. I called up and they just asked me a few basic questions. Clean contacts? Did I try it on another body? And then it was how did I want my refund. I would buy from them again with complete confidence.
  9. Same thing happened to me and they told me to keep the lens and returned my money I use that lens on a Kiev 19m now a free lens.
  10. I am curious to know how long any particular batch of film stays outside of the freezer as Andrew pointed out earlier...
    FWIW, the cashier who handled my film order was clueless. I had to point out that she pulled out Velvia 50 and not Velvia 100, and 120 film instead of 220!
  11. I too have had problems with Adorma. However they have always corrected the issue when I contacted them. If you order online most retailers will have a record of your purchases going back years. From this they can easily see if you are a regular customer and will take care of you.
  12. Any company that brings professional film out to display at room temperature should not be supported. Pro film should be kept refrigerated....period! Thanks for bringing this to our we can look elsewhere for film.
  13. For mail order customers, we do keep the film refrigerated until we ship it.
    In the store, (which is air conditioned at 68 degrees F), we keep it refrigerated until we fill the shelves each day.

    Ryan; I've passed your coment on to the store manager who is going to be speaking to the rep who served you.
  14. This is a vexed subject; sort of like ice cream.

    In humid areas some pros DEMAND that stores have a few rolls at room temperature; or perhaps an in-between temperature; instead of super cold; during store hours.

    There are groups that are never happy no matter how it is kept.
    In the 1970's some of us would call up our local store and tell them to remove 6 rolls of Vericolor II from the fridge ; so we could shoot a rush portrait session.

    Customer will bitch either way.
    If it is held at 0F they will complain about condensation; they want a roll already ready to shoot. If the few rolls are taken out each day for the rush crowd; others will complain that the all should be held super cold.
    The same thing happens with foods. Some folks want steaks frozen like bricks; other want to buy it and cook it in a hour for a Saturday event.
    When I worked in a camera store in the 1970's we got whining by either camps.

    One would be called "not a professional store" unless one had some Vericolor almost ready to go; others wanted stuff always super cold like tundra/ meat locker cold.
    ***One way to address this issue is to have a dinky dorm fridge or wine fridge where one keeps film below room temp but not super super cold.

    In areas like New Orleans; one can get the dew point to be only 1 degree below ambient; and one has to allow a lot of time for film to warm. In LA this is almost a non issue; since one has a dry weather.

    The cool thing about working retail is the customer is right; thus one has both camps to please; the folks who want icecream rock solid; the folks who want to buy and eat it when they leave the store.

    Having some almost ready to go film at 65F in HotLanta where it is 78F in the store and 90F and 85 % RH outside might be wanted by pros there; but tick off a New Mexico visitor who is ignorant of humidty issues and thus wants tundra cold film.
    As an employees if you point out that the 65F stuff is better for a shoot in one hour in HotLanta outside; the dry state expert might get ticked off; ie he is a know it all. Thus one can be damned either way; for having ready to go icecream/film or not having all ones stuff arctic cold.

    Since customers are know it alls if their fllms get screwed up due to condensation; you point them to basic books. Some customers have egos so big their heads requires stores to have double doors. When you process their ruined film due to condensation; one has to hold back that they are total #@&% idiots for using tundra cold film in Hotlanta in the humid outside in 1 hour. One has a big problem; they will blame store.

    One has the same issue with coffee; stores after lawsuits like at McDonalds now serve coffee that to me is too cold. I likes it the old way; the coffee kept longer in a car/commute; or after a few minutes.
  15. Helen: that's enlightening, but did not quite hit the mark for me. For pro film with high turnover, a single stint at room temperature might not affect the resulting image. However, for slow-selling film at the retail store, I'd like to know what happens to those. I can't imagine repeated cycles between fridge/room temperatures doing any good to the film emulsion.
    How is turnover of the film being monitored? I'd like to know what kind of quality control is in place for the film you sell.
  16. This subject is really 50 years old. Ideally you want the film to be frozen tunda cold before X hours and an end user walks in the store at it is ok to shoot that second.
    There are pro films like Vericolor where the "pro temperature" Kodak recommended was 55F/13C. Thus a lay customer will complain it is not in a Freezer.
    One mighty have a store keeping infrared film and bricks of Vericolor in a -0F Freezer; and "ready to go" rolls in a warm refrigerator at 55F.
    No matter what some customers will complain. Thus one has the open up frozen bricks of films because the refrigerated stuff is not good enough. *THEN* (drumroll) some customers will whine because one has no extra boxes for the 5 backs of 120 broken.
  17. I could be wrong, but part of what pros and serious amateurs pay for is consistency. Whether the film was kept at room temperature or in the freezer/fridge by the retailer (or any temp in between) is ultimately a business decision by the retailer and a philosophical one for the end user.
    As far as I am concerned, however, I do want to know under what conditions my film was stored and whether those conditions are applied consistently or within a certain narrow band of variation for all batches. No use paying good money if I get good results on one batch and funky colors on the next on what should be the same film.
    What worries me is that the Adorama rep was absolutely clueless, which indicates that she may have been either unsupervised or untrained, both of which are just unacceptable for a pro-level shop. The previous rep who handled the film at the back of the store (when film was kept in a freezer for all to see) was much more professional.
    It seems to me Adorama has stopped making film sales a priority since they can't be bothered to train a cashier to tell one kind of film from the other! Since I live in NYC, I'm taking my business elsewhere unless someone from Adorama explains to me the minimum quality of product and service I should expect as far as film is concerned.
  18. I think some people really overstate the importance of freezing or chilling film. Yes, it is recommended to store film at somewhere around 55 degrees, but have you ever thought about how the film is transported to get to the store? How about if you order some and have it shipped? In a truck, boat, or plane. Outside. Warm. OMG! A week or two at room temp won't cause any noticeable color shift in your film. If it does, then whoever makes that film has bigger issues to work out. How do you know your processor keeps the developer at exactly the same temperature every time? What about rinse water? There are many more factors in image degradation and storage temp is probably the least of them.
  19. True John....but I'd rather have the exposure to room temp limited to transport....not store display as well.
  20. That's true. I have no idea under what conditions the films are stored on their way to the store.
    However, assuming all other factors are the same up to the its delivery at the retail level (a reasonable assumption, I think), I'm more likely to buy from the shop that sells the film I want under the conditions I prefer. At least that part I can control.
    Curiously, Adorama hasn't piped in again with a response to my earlier queries as to quality control and monitoring.
  21. I too have had great experiences with Adorama. In fact, they and BH get all of my business. I wouldnt worry about this, as long as they are still refrigerating the bulk of the stock, and only pulling small amounts out as needed (which is what Helen says they are doing).
  22. Hi friends not just you can get bad film in Adorama.Manny time i try to buy used lenses and went i check the equipment i find scratches and dust everywhere,also last time i get a focusing screen for my canon 5D markII and went i open the box was scratch to and that happen with a B&W filter to.In adorama wet page this lenses are under Excellent condition.
    I hear say that in adorama they no take care the equipment
  23. Larry D: I am glad it worked out for you. They wanted mine back and I gladly returned it.
    Juan C: My 1 and only time (so far) that I bought used equip. from Adorama the lens came very nice and as rated. I am sorry you had more than one failure.
  24. I don't live in NYC so this issue will never affect me. But if I did live there and I wanted the film a certain way, I would just ask the manager. I am sure I would be accommodated. It just might take a little longer for my visit.
  25. CO I see you have the right attitude as I used to do retail and #1 was my customer as without them I was just a guy with an empty store. I don't think what you are asking for is too demanding and in fact to save time we had a small frige under the counter for just that. so we did not have to walk to the back of the store to get something.
  26. No vendor handles film more carefully than Adorama.
    A few hours at room temperature isn't going to hurt film.
    Does anyone have a link to research showing how long it takes for film to degrade due to modestly elevated temperatures?
    Film isn't shipped to you in refrigerated trucks. As far as I know, it's not shipped from the factory to the dealer in refrigerated trucks, either.
    Adorama has answered the concerns raised here graciously and thoughtfully.
  27. Dan South [​IMG], May 18, 2010; 01:35 a.m.
    No vendor handles film more carefully than Adorama.
    A few hours at room temperature isn't going to hurt film.
    Does anyone have a link to research showing how long it takes for film to degrade due to modestly elevated temperatures?
    Film isn't shipped to you in refrigerated trucks. As far as I know, it's not shipped from the factory to the dealer in refrigerated trucks, either.
    Adorama has answered the concerns raised here graciously and thoughtfully.​
    Dan, you miss the point. As a customer, I want my film to stay refridgerated as long as possible. I'm the customer....I get what I want. If I don't, I go elsewhere.
    And no, they haven't answered the concerns. They provided excuses. There is NO REASON why the film need to be out of a refrigerator. My local pro shop has a row of fridges out front and I can see the film as plain as day.
    Like I said, there are places that do what I want.....and they'll get my business. I for one am shocked that this sloppiness is condoned at all.
    Oh, and can you provide all the research you've done that shows Adorama's handling of film to be superior to every other vendor. I anxiously await this research....or was it simply an opinion based upon, oh, nothing?
  28. When you go into the store you may certainly request that the film is brought up from the store rather than taken from the counter.
  29. I'm curious....does fresh film from the factory ship to the store in refrigerated trucks?
  30. The best place to buy camera and lens is they are very honest and professional they no lie.
  31. How do you know your local pro shop doesn't keep the film in a closet until they stock the up front refrigerators?
  32. I'm waiting to see your research Dan.
  33. Dave, I asked a question...I don't know if the film comes to the stores refrigerated...does anyone know? Maybe what is more important then refrigerated film is the expiration date, or how close the time is to the expiration date....I buy the cheapo drug-store FujiFilm Superia, so I have no such concerns...
  34. I checked Kodak tech pubs for Portra and Ektar 100 storage-store unexposed film in the original sealed package at 700F or lower; for extended periods store at 550F.
    Ektachrome films still state refrigerate at 550F or lower.
    Fujifilm Velvia 50-store short term at 590 or below (refrigerator); Veliva 100- store away from direct sunlight or high temperatures and humidity; long term store at 500F or lower.
    Apparently some newer PRO films do not need to be refrigerated for short term storage.
  35. Dan; most films come in Brown UPS trucks or White/Green Fed Ex ground trucks; or White USPS trucks via ground; unless you pay more. It is the same as if you buy the film too from a NYC dealer.
  36. Helen had stated that "all the stock goes back into a cool environment overnight, and only small amounts are brought up to replenish the behind-counter stock during the course of the day."
    However, parts of that statement appear to be contradicted by Adorama's own staff and what I've seen myself. I asked a staffer in the store just this morning if film on the shelf is kept there or frozen at some point and the response was, without hesitation, "Oh, they're just kept there." Also, not an insubstantial quantity of film is kept on the shelf, which is probably about 4ft high and 6 ft wide.
  37. I have been advised by the store manager that we keep the film in storage at 55 degrees F until it comes up to the store.
    In the store we generally keep no more than the amount we expect to sell in a day - which is air conditioned at 68 degrees.
    Unless you are purchasing from a store which takes the film directly from a freezer or refrigerator in front of your eyes, I don't see how you can say for sure how the film is stored. (Even then, I guess that stocks of film could be kept unrefrigerated in another storage area).
  38. A lot of this is moot if the film sat in a hot UPS truck one afternoon of the way to B&H, Adorama; or Walmart ; it might equal to a year at 68F. It is part of the absurdity of to worry about what does not matter; a core tenet; a lack of scale to issues.
  39. I posted what I heard and saw on my visit. Ultimately, it's up to the reader to decide what to take away from it.
    Frankly, if customer service and store staff aren't singing the same tune, I'd have to wonder why.
  40. Ryan I second your concerns. I noticed the same thing when I bought my film there. I guess the best arrangement in the store would have been if everything came up directly from the freezer at time of purchase and nothing was kept at the counter in the back of a cashier. As suggested by Helen, the next time I visit the store to stock up on film, I will request to get the film directly from their freezer.
    If it does not feel cold to the touch, i will not purchase...
  41. Daniel
    Adorama does not keep the film in a freezer. It is kept at 55 degrees.
    The store manager advised me of the procedure. If you'd like to speak to him directly, his name is Martino ( and his assistant's name is Henry. Either would be delighted to answer your questions about film storage.
  42. I order mine from Freestyle not sure how it was stored but I can tell you I never got a bad roll of film. I did write to Kodak to see if it is shipped cold from Rochester but I did not yet receive an answer. I doubt it because when I worked in a store years ago it cam USPS to us from the warehouse 50 miles away.
  43. Helen, thank you for your response. Fuji's recommendation for Fujichrome Velvia 50 ASA is as follows: Film must be stored at 59 degrees or lower (refrigerator) if the duration is "short term storage". If however film is in for "long term storage" it must be stored at 32 degrees or lower (freezer).
  44. I just had a *very* frustrating experience trying to order from Adorama. First, the website was incredibly slow, taking minutes to load the shopping cart, cart going empty, etc. I tried, and tried. A quick internet search revealed that is a common problem. Is it 1999? Of course I would have ordered from B&H, except they (and freestyle) don't have neopan 100 in 120 right now. After much wasted time, I got to checkout. Then the Verified by Visa stuff failed to work after numerous attempts. I *hate* verified by visa. Why should I have to deal with that as a customer? Especially as a returning customer, with many years of history. Eventually I gave up and phoned my order in...
    I am in Seattle. I wanted to order last week, but knew my order would sit in a UPS truck over the long holiday weekend. So I waited until this morning... Imagine my surprise when I was told my order would not ship today because Fuji film is kept at the store, and needed to be transferred over. Because of that, it cannot be shipped same day. So that means my 3 day UPS would result in my film spending the weekend at UPS (the three days is bad enough).
    In the comments above, I read that the film at the store is not refrigerated.. So there is some question in my mind how it is stored. Not having fuji film available for same-day shipment seems like a bad business decision. It does not meet my needs. It should be noted on the product pages that it isn't actually in stock for same day shipment. Now I question what items on the Adorama site are actually "in stock". I wasted a huge amount of time because of that.
    At least at Glazer's, I can take the film out of the fridge myself.
  45. Glazers in Seattle keeps all their film in refrigerators. They have a pretty good selection. Just bought 2 boxes of Kodak Ektar 100 120 film there the other day. Looking forward to shooting it on a road trip in a few weeks.
    I store all my film in a freezer around 0 degrees F. When I need it I shoot it after letting it warm up for about an hour. I also keep film in the fridge that I know I'll be shooting soon. I keep all exposed film in the fridge before I process it.
  46. So, my problem has been solved, in a way. Adorama is out of neopan 100 in 120. So I no longer need worry about placing an order that will sit in a UPS truck over the weekend ;)
  47. Ya I think I got the last stuff from freestyle too as the day after I ordered it it was gone. and out of stock 5 packs are all that is now listed.

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