Recently, the good folks at the FPP found a cache of 2009-expired ShurFine 200 film. Peel the label off, and what do you have but some nice Kirkland Signature 200. I quickly put a roll through the Ricoh 500 ME, partly at EI 100, partly at 50, and here’s what I found.
First off, it’s grainy! Wow. For a slow film, it’s got some crunchy grain. It sorta reminds me of that bulk roll of Konica Pro 100 I ran through a couple of years ago, but the canister says “Made in Germany,” so I expect it’s likely an old Agfa stock.
I started the roll out at EI 100, and switched to 50 about halfway through. I think I’ll shoot the other two rolls I have at 50. It’s a bit cleaner, and somewhat easier to scan with a bit more light, but the contrast suffers some. (The image on the left is the 100, obviously.)
Second, the negatives have a dark orange base, darker than almost anything I’ve ever seen before, and it came out with an awful convex, across the width, curl. I rolled it up tight, emulsion side out, and stuffed it in a film canister for two days. That solved the curl somewhat, but not enough to scan, so it spent another week in there, and that got it just barely flat enough to scan, but it was enough.
Other than that, it’s a decent enough film. The color is good, and the grain probably has some appeal and/or uses in certain situations. I have two rolls in the fridge, and I’ll probably shoot them at some point. I actually sorta like this last one. The blue is great, and the grain isn’t too awfully distracting.
Overall, I’ll give it a scant 3.1 stars.
At time of writing, our friends at the FPP still have some available, but for how long? Better get it while the getting’s good!