Film Speed and Grain

Film Speed and Grain

This film tip comes from Fujifilm and explores the relationship between film speed (ISO) and the appearance of grain:

"Film 'grain' is the visible appearance of the silver halide particles within the exposed emulsion of processed film.

"The amount of grain and size of grain are both optical effects that depend on the film stock and distance of observation (how much the image is magnified when printing or viewing on a monitor).

"The size of silver halide grains varies in film stocks. Larger grains of silver halide give film a greater sensitivity to light, and are used in higher-speed films (such as ISO 400 and above). Fine-grain films are generally slower speed, meaning they are less sensitive to light and require more exposure time or brighter light than faster speed films that produce more visible grain in images.

". . . [T]he size of film grain also affects how finely the final image can discern details. Large grains (crystals) will not be able to reproduce fine details as well as small grains, so if detail is most important, you should use slower speed films."


    • Related Articles

    • Film Sizes and Formats

      This tip comes from Fujifilm. There are three main characteristics that define film: Type, Speed and Format. Type The two basic film types are Negative and Reversal. Negative film, when exposed and developed, creates a transparent negative. Reversal ...
    • Sending Film

      Demo Video Order Online Check our current service times . Place your order online . Note the ORDER CODE you receive after checkout. Bag + Box + Tape Write your ORDER CODE, NAME, and PHONE NUMBER on a slip of paper. Place it inside a plastic, ...
    • How to Store Film

      What's the best way to store both exposed and unexposed film? How can you keep your unshot film as fresh as possible and preserve the physical backup of your art for generations? We got you. Let's dive in! Keeping Film Fresh We all know film is ...
    • Traveling with Film - CT Scanners

      CT Scanners Can Ruin Unprocessed Film Some U.S. airports have new X-ray scanners at security check points called CT scanners. They're different from previous X-ray security scanners and you really need to avoid sending your film through them. CT ...
    • How Side-by-Sides Can Help You Hone in Your Film Scans

      Art is subjective. While this is one of the beautiful things about photography, it is also one of the reasons why written feedback regarding your film scans can be tricky for even our expert color techs to decipher. So what is the best way to ...