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Posts Tagged ‘Kodak’

Kodak reveals how and when it’s bringing back 35mm Ektachrome film

17 Nov
Photo: Kodak

Kodak first announced the rebirth of Ektachrome way back in January at CES. Along with Kodak Alaris—who will distribute the 35mm Kodak Professional Ektachrome film for stills shooters—the company said it would bring back Ektachrome by the end of 2017… and then promptly stopped talking about it.

But if you were worried that Kodak had given up on the idea, fear not: in a new episode of the Kodakery podcast, a few of Kodak’s higher ups (including Marketing and Product Manager Diane Carroll-Yacoby) updated the world on the progress of the Ektachrome reboot, how they’re making it, and what testing still stand between your hands and a fresh 36-shot roll of the stuff.

You can listen to the entire Kodakery podcast update below:

The first half of the podcast is mostly a photography and history lesson: discussing the origins of Ektachrome, its ‘characteristics’ (read: limitations), and how Kodak has managed to bring it back to life after discontinuing it in 2013. But if you want to get into the “how and when” of the matter, you’ll want to skip to the 22 minute mark.

That’s where we get to learn about how difficult it is to bring back a film like Ektachrome—which is made up of 80 ingredients, some of them no longer available to purchase—and how Kodak is making the economics of Ektachrome work by creating it in smaller, more sustainable batches.

You’ll want to listen to the discussion to really get the details of how the film is made, but here are a few of the most interesting tidbits about the revival process (for us anyway):

  • Kodak has managed to either find or manufacture all 80 ingredients required to make Ektachrome.
  • Much of the process so far has involved retooling the formula so it will work on the machines available to them, because they no longer have all of the equipment they had when Ektachrome was being developed previously.
  • They’ve already produced some ‘pilot coatings’ that they are testing to ensure they’re ready to mass produce Ektachrome that’s up to snuff.
  • When they’re ready to go, they will be making rolls using a coater that produces the film on sheets that are 4 feet wide and 6,000 feet long. The first of these ‘wide’ rolls will be produced before the end of 2017, and will be used for internal testing.
  • Kodak will be making a single (4ft x 6,000ft) roll for the first production run, so they don’t have to hold on to too much inventory at one time.
  • Kodak Ektachrome’s market release is planned for 2018.

Eastman Kodak itself will produce all of the film and plans to distribute the Super 8 cinema version of Ektachrome, while Kodak Alaris will distribute the 35mm slide film for stills shooters. For now, we still don’t know exactly when Ektachrome is coming back in 2018, but as soon as we do, we’ll let you know so you can mark your calendars.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Kodak will lay off 425 employees after reporting millions in losses

14 Nov

Kodak recently disclosed its third quarter fiscal results, revealing that it had a GAAP net loss of $ 46 million on $ 379 million in revenues during its Q3 2017. This marks a sharp downturn of fortunes for Kodak, which saw $ 12 million in net earnings during the same quarter last year. “An overall print market slowdown and rising aluminum costs have impacted our commercial print business,” explained Kodak CEO Jeff Clarke in a release.

Clarke went on to explain that Kodak is, “taking immediate actions to accelerate cost reduction and reduce investments to sharpen our focus as we continue to actively pursue changes to the Kodak product and divisional portfolio.” According to New York Upstate, “accelerate cost reduction” translates to the Eastman Kodak Company cutting 425 jobs.

The quarter had its upsides for Kodak, however, which reports that its Kodak Sonora Plates saw a 24% growth in Q3 and its Flexcel NX revenue grew 2% year-on-year. Overall, Kodak’s CFO David Bullwinkle said the company anticipates generating cash during Q4 2017. “We plan to improve our cash balance through reducing working capital and through cost actions,” Bullwinkle explained, “including focusing investments in technologies most likely to deliver near-term returns.”

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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This Kodak Moments chatbot digs through your old photos and tries to sell you prints

23 Sep

Kodak has created a new Facebook Messenger chatbot called ‘Kodak Moments’ that tries to get users to buy physical products by digging through and resurfacing their old photos.

The AI algorithm works by searching through the mass of images a user has uploaded to Facebook and suggesting ones that may have been forgotten in hopes the user, when suddenly presented with this fond old memory (or Kodak moment… if you will), will order it as a physical print or photo product like a coffee mug.

Facebook users are given the option of either dismissing the chatbot’s suggested image, requesting other images that contain the same people as the first image, or requesting a print or product containing the selected image. All you have to do to join this ‘fun’ game that tries to sell you things is search for Kodak Moments in the Messenger app.

Unfortunately, the chatbot—at least in its current iteration—doesn’t support any sort of filtering options, making it impossible to prevent the bot from digging up photos of old memories better left forgotten. Consider yourself warned.

Joining this Messenger chatbot is a new Kodak Moments app (Android | iOS) that goes a bit further. After being given permission, the app will search through a Facebook or Google account and camera roll to find images it thinks users may want to turn into physical products.

The goal behind the new Kodak Moments technology is (obviously) to increase the company’s print sales while reviving the idea of a ‘Kodak Moment’ and helping customers sort through their possibly massive photo albums. We’ll let you decide if the concept is fun, annoying, or maybe a bit traumatizing.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Kodak PixPro Orbit360 4K VR camera now on sale in the US

19 Sep

The 360-degree camera Kodak unveiled at Photokina 2016 is now available to buy in the US. The PixPro Orbit360 is a rugged, compact action camera with a pair of 20MP sensors, one on the front and the other on the back, joining by two curved 155-degree and 235-degree lenses, a microSD slot for storage, a 1″ LCD, and an included selfie stick (depending on bundle).

JK Imaging, the company behind the camera, designed the PixPro Orbit360 to be rugged for outdoor use. The camera has an IP6X dustproof equivalency, an IPX5 splashproof equivalency, a shockproof design able to withstand drops from 2m / 6.6ft when using the lens cover, and the camera is also freeze-proof to temperatures as low as -10C / 14F.

The PixPro offers users three recording modes: a fully 360-degree spherical mode, a 235-degree ‘dome’ mode, and a 197-degree 4K Ultra-Wide mode. It works with a related mobile app (Android | iOS) that makes it possible to directly upload the PixPro’s videos to YouTube and Facebook.

The camera’s full specs sheet is available here.

The Orbit360 is being sold in the US through the Kodak PixPro website and through Amazon.com. It $ 500 USD in the “Adventure Pack” (arriving later this year) and $ 550 USD for the “Satellite Pack” (available now). The Satellite Pack includes some accessories not included with the Adventure Pack, such as the aforementioned selfie stick.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Kodak will bring back Ektachrome film this year, start selling it in 2018

13 Sep

Kodak first announced its plans to bring Ektachrome 35mm film back from the dead in January at CES. But if you were worried that the announcement was just a lot of marketing hype, you have nothing to fear: it seems the resurrection of Ektachrome is proceeding apace, with full production scheduled for 2018.

This news broke over Twitter, of all places, thanks to an inquisitive Kodak fan named Karen Wink. She asked Kodak what the ETA on the Ektachrome comeback was, to which Kodak replied:

If you’re a fan of the old film, it won’t be long before you can get your hands on a fresh roll of 36 exposures in the 35mm format.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Kodak unveils the Printomatic: A point-and-shoot ‘instant print’ camera

12 Sep

There’s a new instant camera in town. Revealed by Kodak earlier today, the Printomatic is a point-and-shoot ‘instant print’ digital camera: meaning the photos it captures with its 10MP sensor are instantly printed out of the side of the camera Polaroid-style while you go on shooting.

Kodak is calling it “the ideal all-in-one solution for capturing and sharing vibrant prints instantly.”

To call the Printomatic a ‘no-frills’ camera is almost an understatement. Available in Gray or Yellow for just $ 70, the 10MP shooter comes with a built-in Li-ion battery, flash, low-battery indicator, print indicator, microSD card slot, and two pictures modes: vibrant color or black & white. In other words, it’s as close to fully automatic as you’re going to get.

The appeal of the camera, at least according to Kodak, is in its simplicity.

“The KODAK PRINTOMATIC is a contemporary camera with a wonderful balance of digital and analog technology,” Steven Overman, Kodak’s Chief Marketing Officer, said in a statement. “It’s an accessible device for anybody who wants to create a lasting memory in a tangible, colorful way.”

Each photo is printed at 2×3-inches on Kodak’s ZINK (stands for “Zero Ink”) Photo Paper, which means it comes out of the camera water-resistant, tear resistant and adhesive-backed.

The camera will be available online and in stores starting “late September” for $ 70, and comes with a 10-pack of ZINK Photo Paper included. ZINK refills are available online in 20 and 50 packs for $ 9 and $ 20, respectively. To learn more about the Printomatic, head over to the Kodak website.

Press Release

KODAK PRINTOMATIC Instant Print Camera Captures the Moment

Sleek new camera brings legendary Kodak style to the instant print camera game; prints beautiful, ready-to-share photos

Rochester, NY and EDISON, NJ, Monday, September 11, 2017

Today Eastman Kodak Company and its licensee C+A Global unveiled the KODAK PRINTOMATIC Camera, a brand-new instant print camera. The stylish new point-and-shoot camera instantly prints high-quality, full color photos right from the camera body, making it the ideal all-in-one solution for capturing and sharing beautiful, vibrant prints instantly.

The KODAK PRINTOMATIC Camera is the ultimate catalyst for a good time that can be shared instantly. Every day is a special occasion with the KODAK PRINTOMATIC Instant Print Camera – from graduations to family gatherings to relaxing getaways with loved ones. A perfect accessory for event planners, scrap-bookers, vacationers and partygoers, instant photography is the utilitarian-meets-fun solution for custom gifts and mementos. Wedding guests can snap candid photos of the ceremony and have them printed and framed before the reception starts. Creating custom scrapbooks is hassle-free when photos print immediately with adhesive backing ready to be added to the page. Events become more fun, weekend get-togethers are enriched, and moments that once were forgotten on a smartphone are cherished forever.

“The KODAK PRINTOMATIC is a contemporary camera with a wonderful balance of digital and analog technology,” says Steven Overman, President of Kodak’s Consumer and Film Division and Kodak Chief Marketing Officer. “It’s an accessible device for anybody who wants to create a lasting memory in a tangible, colorful way.”

“We feel honored to partner with Kodak, a company that has established itself as a leader and storied brand in color technology used the world over,” comments Chaim Pikarski, CEO of C+A Global. “This release is another step for Kodak entering into the growing instant digital camera market. The KODAK PRINTOMATIC Camera is the first of the full product lineup to be launched in 2017 and continue into 2018. The KODAK PRINTOMATIC Camera brings back the nostalgia of capturing and sharing KODAK MOMENTS, putting the print in the palm of your hand, the moment it happens.

With a maximum resolution 10-megapixel camera and no computer connection or even Wi-Fi needed, the KODAK PRINTOMATIC Camera produces 2×3” photo prints with no ink cartridges, toner or film necessary. Photo prints are durable, water- and tear-resistant with an adhesive back. Fun, fast and easy to use, the compact and fashionable KODAK PRINTOMATIC Device fits right in your back pocket and is perfect for sharing vibrant, smudge-free photos with friends and family, anywhere, anytime. Keeping up with all the fun, the camera can even shoot a new photo while still printing the previous shot, so you’ll never miss a special moment.

KODAK PRINTOMATIC Instant Print Camera Highlights and Benefits:

  • Maximum resolution of 10-megapixel camera
  • Built-in flash
  • Built-in lithium ion battery
  • Two picture modes: vibrant color, black & white
  • Low battery indicator
  • Printer status indicator
  • MicroSD™ card indicator
  • MicroSD™ card slot
  • Slots for neck strap
  • Comes in grey or yellow

The KODAK PRINTOMATIC Instant Print Camera will be available in late September for $ 69.99 USD at major retailers and online including Amazon. The camera comes with a USB cable, a Quick Start Guide, a 10-pack of KODAK ZINK Photo Paper and a memory card. KODAK ZINK Photo Paper comes in 20 and 50 packs, and is sold separately.

More information is available at www.kodak.com/go/printomatic.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Shooting modern motorsports photography with a Kodak Brownie No. 2

11 Aug

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Photographer and automotive writer Murilee Martin has published a series of modern motorsport photos he took using an old Kodak Brownie No. 2 camera from 1926. The collection, 24 photos in all, was published recently on Autoweek where Mr. Martin explains, “After learning how to drive a Ford Model T recently, I decided that I needed the camera equivalent of the T, the camera that gave the world the ability to shoot photographs cheaply and easily.”

The photos above, as well as the rest of the collection found in the Autoweek post, were taken with the Model F version of the Kodak Brownie, one that sports an aluminum chassis rather than the original model’s cardboard frame. The photos were shot on ordinary 120 film during the 24 Hours of Lemons race in California.

To see the full gallery or find out more about what it was like shooting fast action with a 91-year-old film camera, head over to Autoweek.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Kodak EKTRA ‘camera first’ smartphone now available in US

24 May

The Kodak EKTRA, the company’s ‘camera first’ smartphone, is now available to purchase in the United States. The Android smartphone, which was first announced in October 2016, features a 21MP camera and a design reminiscent of point-and-shoot cameras. The handset has been available to purchase in Europe for a handful of months, and now US consumers can buy the model unlocked with support for GSM mobile networks for $ 399.99 USD.

Coinciding with the launch is software update version 2.009.00/_A for the smartphone,  which Kodak says it is zeroing in on requests from its ‘photo-enthusiast’ customers. The update brings improved autofocus performance, better color saturation and white balance, and the addition of raw image support, among other things.

The full software changelog:

  • Enhanced single handed camera functionality; when the camera app is enabled the Android touch buttons are now disabled to avoid an accidental press when using the camera with one hand
  • Added RAW file support in manual mode; shooting in RAW records all the data from the sensor enabling more sophisticated image processing options
  • Improved auto focus making in quicker and more accurate
  • Improved Face Detection performance for better portrait photos
  • Optimisations to the Auto White Balance and colour saturation
  • Improvements to shutter speed performance
  • New option to disable Auto Scene Detection in smart auto mode
  • New shutter effect to provide visual indication of when a picture is taken
  • Enhanced low light performance
  • Optimisations to the noise reduction algorithm from ISO 100-6400
  • Introduces a new ‘How To’ camera tutorial on the new functionality

Via: BusinessWire

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Kodak CMO says the company is ‘looking into’ reviving Kodachrome

11 Jan
Photo by pittaya via Flickr. Used under CC license

During CES 2017, Kodak announced it would revive the film stock it discontinued in 2012, Ektachrome. The announcement was well received, and was itself the result of an uptick in professional film sales, something that has also spurred Kodak toward another possible revival: Kodachrome. Eastman Kodak’s President of Consumer Film division and Chief Marketing Office Steve Overman confirmed as much during a recent The Kodakery podcast.

The Kodakery team spoke with Overman from the Kodak booth during CES, and near the end of the discussion they mentioned the Ektachrome revival. That topic snowballed into a confirmation from Overman that Kodak is likewise looking into bringing Kodachrome back, but plans to do so haven’t been finalized at this time.

Overman works for US-based Eastman Kodak but it seems likely the company would follow the pattern seen with its recent Ektachrome announcement, and work with UK-based company Kodak Alaris to release a stills version of the film to photographic markets.

It took less effort and time to bring Ektachrome film back, Overman explained, which is why it was given precedence. He went on to say, though, that ‘people love Kodak’s heritage products and I feel, personally, that we have a responsibility to deliver on that love.’ 

Via: PetaPixel

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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CES 2017: Hands-on with the Kodak Super 8

08 Jan

CES 2017: Hands-on with Kodak Super 8

First launched in 1965, Kodak’s Super 8 format was one of the most influential developments in amateur filmmaking. And now it’s back, with an all-new (kind of) camera. We headed to the Kodak booth earlier today to get our hands on one.

CES 2017: Hands-on with Kodak Super 8

The new Super 8 camera is truly a hybrid of the very old, and the very new. At its heart is a cartridge of 8mm film, totaling 50 feet in length. How many minutes of footage you can shoot depends on which frame-rate you select. The Super 8 camera can shoot at 18, 24, 25, or 36 fps. 

CES 2017: Hands-on with Kodak Super 8

The ‘viewfinder’ is a 3.5in LCD, which provides a live view image, via a split-prism behind the attached lens. Although a large flipping, tilting screen is definitely a huge improvement over classic all-analog Super 8 cameras of the past, the live view image is hazy, grainy, and hard to use as a means of judging critical focus. In other words – pretty familiar, if you’ve ever shot Super 8 before.

CES 2017: Hands-on with Kodak Super 8

The main control on the Super 8 camera is the circular ‘wheel’, shown here on the body, facing the flipped-out screen. It works rather like a second-generation iPod. The central button brings up a menu, and the touch-sensitive wheel allows you to navigate the settings by scrolling. The screen itself is not touch-sensitive.

CES 2017: Hands-on with Kodak Super 8

Super 8 cameras will be bundled with a manual focus Ricoh 6mm F1.2 prime lens (roughly equivalent to a 40mm F7 in 35mm terms) but the C-mount is compatible with a huge number of lenses stretching back decades.

CES 2017: Hands-on with Kodak Super 8

Here’s that click wheel in action. The Super 8 is reasonably customizable. Many of the features that would have been managed with physical switches in the past (like frame rate) can be set in the camera’s menus. As a result, the camera body is impressively clean and minimalist.

CES 2017: Hands-on with Kodak Super 8

The Super 8 is a true ‘hybrid’ device. While the film takes care of the images, sound can be recorded to an SD card, via an external microphone. Cartridges must be mailed back to Kodak for development, and the price (TBC) will include film development, scanning and uploading to the cloud.

CES 2017: Hands-on with Kodak Super 8

Oh yes – and Kodak has also promised to bring back Ektachrome! 

It feels a bit surreal to be covering the launch of new film products in 2017, especially from Kodak, but after using an almost production-ready sample of the Super 8 camera today we’re actually pretty impressed by how well the company has married the analog and digital sides of the product. What do you think?

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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