Film V SD cards

roll 0f 35mm film with SD card

World © Geoff Wilkinson – All rights reserved

Film size..

A little bit of trivia. If I take a roll of 35mm film from it’s carton, how many SD cards can I get in to the carton to replace it ? This came to mind the other day when I discovered a 5 roll pack of Fuji Superia X-Tra, ISO 400, tucked away in a cupboard. The use by date is July 2008 so 5 years out of date, well as far as I know it’s been in the cool and dark so maybe I’ll try a roll in my Nikon F80 and see how it looks.

It set me thinking how much 35mm and 120 film I used to carry on assignment before I switched to digital. I didn’t rush into the change of digital capture, I used to look at the quality of prints and publications in the early days and think ‘why bother’. It was only when more and more clients wanted the digital road that I changed. For me treating digital in much the same way as I treated film was the answer, that is to do as much in the camera as possible and not to rely on photoshop for everything.

It’s amazing how quickly one forgets. Buying film in bulk to get the same batch to avoid any variation in colour or speed and of course having to keep it refrigerated. Then there was the types and speed, 100 ISO for portraits, studio shoots and generally good lighting, 400 ISO for those overcast days and higher ISO’s for available light indoors. I needed a stock of tungsten for artificial light, Kodak EPJ if I remember correctly, Fuji Velvia for landscapes and the like and don’t even get me started on how much Polaroid we got through.

All this film had to be transported to and from the shoot, no problem if travelling by car, it had it’s own metal case. Flying however was a different story. I would never put film in checked baggage to go in the hold, I always carried it on the plane with me together with my cameras, that way I always had enough gear to start shooting pictures even if the other equipment in the hold went astray. I did though on occasion get strange looks at the airport because I used to pack the film into a fly fishing jacket that I wore, it made me look like a cross between the Michelin man and a barrage balloon, you have to suffer for your art.

Five rolls of 35mm film equates to 180 exposures on the 2GB SD card that I use shooting RAW. I get around 60 exposures on my Nikon D7000. So going back to the question how many SD cards can I fit into the container that the five rolls of film came in, roughly 109. So 109 x 60 equals 6,540.

Boy, 6540 frames packed into the space that 5 rolls of 35mm film take up, how many in 100 rolls, how many in a thousand rolls etc, etc?

Technical info: Nikon D7000 handheld in Aperture priority mode with a 60mm Nikon Macro lens, The shutter speed was 1/250th of a second with an aperture of f4. The ISO was 800. The lighting was soft natural light.


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