Kodak gets all the love: Portra 160 and 400, Ektar 100, Tri-X 400. And if it’s not Kodak, it’s Ilford and Fujifilm that get to bask in the warm glow of film emulsion prestige. Those are indeed big names and they have unquestionably earned their reputations as great film manufacturers, but as with anything, there are names that fly under the radar despite the fact that they’re able to keep pace with the big shots in almost every way. One such name is AgfaPhoto. AgfaPhoto actually used to be a fairly big name in the photography world; now…not so much. They offer a color film in two speeds (200 and 400), a black and white film in two speeds (100 and 400), and a slide film (ASA 100). Some might refer to this as being a limited selection of goods, I prefer to look at it as being highly tailored.
While dropping a couple of handfuls-worth of film in my B&H shopping cart online, I figured I’d take a chance and throw a roll of AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 in my cart. At a cost $3 and some change I knew I wouldn’t be too upset if the film turned out to be a dud. So I made my way to 9th Ave. to pick up my goodies, loaded the Vista 200 into my Minolta Hi-Matic and hopped a train to Queens. The film did not turn out to be a dud.
In fact, I’m quite infatuated with Vista 200. It has fine grain (just as advertised), it’s sharp, it’s punchy without being overly saturated. Vista 200 absolutely holds its own against similar films I’ve used from Fuji and Kodak. Don’t believe me? Have a look at the results for yourself.
Plus a couple of shots from Pier 63 and 64 along the Hudson.
See examples of more film stocks in my Film Photography Archive.