Kodak Portra 160 vs. Kodak Ektar?

Kodak Ektar, Leica Summilux 1.4 50 asph. | © mare.photo

On mare.photo most of the photos are shot on Kodak Ektar or Kodak Portra 160. But again and again we think for the next photo series, which of the two films we take.

Kodak Portra 160 or Kodak Ektar?

Museumswerft Flensburg - Kodak Portra 160 | © mare.photo

Museumswerft Flensburg – Kodak Portra 160 | © mare.photo

Again and again, the question arises, whether we use the Kodak Portra 160 or the Kodak Ektar. What are the differences in what the strengths of each film? Basically, it is good to commit to a movie in general. But there are good reasons to choose between the two films depending on the shooting situation. We try to introduce the different characters of the Kodak Ektar and the Kodak Portra 160.

Basics to Kodak Ektar

Fiskeläge Klintehamn, Gotland, Leica Summilux 1.4 50 asph. Kodak Ekta

Fiskeläge Klintehamn, Gotland, Leica Summilux 1.4 50 asph., Kodak Ektar | © mare.photo

The Kodak Ektar has ISO 100 sensitivity and is the highest resolution film in its class. In the image of the edge sharpness he shows very high potential, he is very sharp, without losing harmony. Our apartment hangs an enlargement of a Kodak Ektar trigger with the dimensions 40×60 cm.

Basically, the Kodak Ektar has a tendency for Kodak to warm shades and tends in the reddish color range. In forums you will find total enthusiasm or total rejection for this film. For some, the colors are too strong, the others are enthusiastic about the bright colors.

Bugøynes, Barents Sea, Barentssee, Varangerfjord, Finnmark, Kodak Ektar, Leica Elmarit M 2.8 28 asph.| © mare.photo

Bugøynes, Barents Sea, Barentssea, Varangerfjord, Finnmark, Kodak Ektar, Leica Elmarit M 2.8 28 asph.| © mare.photo

However, the Kodak Ektar develops its absolute strength, especially in the case of the weather: in cloudy skies and thus in diffused light. Where other films bring only boring gray soup to light, the Kodak Ektar charmingly brings out the color that still exists.

In bright skies it brings warm glowing colors, an autumn forest is the Kodak Ektar in all its liveliness again.

Again and again, the question arises on how the Kodak Ektar 100 because the best exposed. There is actually no discussion at the Kodak Ektar. It should be exposed to its nominal sensitivity and measured during exposure measurement a mean value between the brightest and the darkest part of the image. Or with extreme contrasts, which, by the way, he masters very well, with a light meter from the subject to the lens to determine the readings. If you really like, you can expose the Kodak Ektar with ISO 80, let it develop normally. But you will not experience more than a minimal and barely noticeable increase in color saturation.

Basics to Kodak Portra 160

Leica Elmarit 2.8 28 asph. new + Kodak Portra 160

Figeholm – Kodak Portra 160 | © mare.photo

The Kodak Portra 160 is tuned to the reproduction of skin tones in the northwestern culture, he is primarily a portrait film. In addition, the Kodak Portra 160 is intended for digital processing. Thus, the Kodak Portra 160 can be excellently scanned. The reproduction of the colors is restrained and quite refreshing, without really looking cool. He has a high resolution and sharpness.

VW T6 California - Kodak Porta 160 | © mare.photo

VW T6 California – Kodak Porta 160 | © mare.photo

As usual, the question arises here of how best to illuminate the Kodak Portra 160. We recommend in this film, in fact, the nominal sensitivity ISO 160. If you want to achieve the pastel look, then we recommend the exposure to the darkest parts of the picture. If the pastel look is desired and the ambient light is diffuse, then an exposure of ISO 100 is recommended, without adapting the development. If you want to expose normally, then it is best to measure the middle parts of the image or to hold an external exposure meter from the subject to the objective.


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The differences between Kodak Ektar and Kodak Portra 160

The choice is painful, as is the case for Kodak Ektar’s own decision with Kodak Portra 160. It is not very effective to be almost religious against one or the other, as both films have a potentially wide range of uses. And so one should deal with the desired motives before the film choice.

The main differences:

  • The Kodak Ektar is finer-grained. So if you want maximum magnifications, you should take this into account. However, we have made of both 35mm film prints deductible larger than 30×40 cm and are very satisfied. The question is when you really need such or larger deductions. Even for a large-format picture book, both films offer.
    Kodak Ektar, Leica Elmarit M 2.8 28 asph.,Kjerringøy, Karlsøfjord | © mare.photo

    Kodak Ektar, Leica Elmarit M 2.8 28 asph.,Kjerringøy, Karlsøfjord | © mare.photo

  • The Kodak Portra 160 is minimally sensitive. The required exposure times are thus about 50 percent shorter. Anyone who has a fainter lens, so from aperture 4.5 or 5.6 and capture faster movements, would rather resort to the Kodak Portra 160th
    Nordfriesland - Kodak Portra 160 | © mare.photo

    Nordfriesland – Kodak Portra 160 | © mare.photo

  • The Kodak Ektar has more vivid colors. If I want to portray an autumn hike, the Kodak Ektar is the first choice. In general, the Kodak Ektar shines when taking pictures of nature in the mountains. We took the Kodak Ektar on two big tours. Example Gotland in the summer: We have portrayed the island of Gotland with its church ruins for a few weeks and also wanted to capture the summer heat of this sun-drenched island. That’s why we opted for the Kodak Ektar. It transports the summery color intensity, reflects the warmer of the stones of the ruins and the Raukar, as well as the summery blue sky. Water is almost neutral, but a little bit in the direction of aquamarine again. The red tiled roofs of the island’s capital Visby and the wooden houses in their classic “Swedish red” are subtly accentuated by the Kodak Ektar.
    Kodak Ektar - Gotland - Fiskeläge - fischer settlement | © mare.photo

    Kodak Ektar – Ljugarn – Gotland – Fiskeläge – fischer settlement | © mare.photo

  • The Kodak Portra 160 has a cooler color reproduction. For this reason, we have portrayed with him the archipelago Åland, this autonomous and belonging to Finland region northeast of Stockholm. Åland is known for its red granite. In the summer months, this rock is illuminated by the sun again warm.
    Since Åland is very sunny, the vegetation is often dry and shows a yellowish-reddish color in color. With the Kodak Ektar we would have slightly increased this color intension, that’s why we chose the Kodak Portra 160 here. The colors are given neutral again. And this rendering is still as strong as you feel in summer.
    We also like to take the Kodak Portra 160 to Norway for the winter. Because it gives back the coolness of the snow and minimally dampens the existing color tones, which benefits the mood of a wintry landscape. At the same time the sky is rendered in cool blue tones.

    Åland, Kodak Portra 160, Leica Elmarit M 2.8 28 asph. | © maree.photo

    Åland, Kodak Portra 160, Leica Elmarit M 2.8 28 asph. | © maree.photo

  • The Kodak Ektar has a particularly fine color nuance in diffused light. When the sun goes down and we visit places that we may not return to, we do not want to allow ourselves to take boring pictures. The Kodak Ektar even brings gray to life and shows the finest contours, for example in weathered wood. For example, we chose the Kodak Ektar as the main movie for our 90-day tour along the Norwegian coast and the Barents Sea. The journey took us through a variety of climatic conditions, rapid weather changes are and were just in the high Arctic north on the agenda. Sun and sea, high mountains, snow and ice, rain and fog, winter, spring and summer, for all this we needed a universal film, so that the pictures harmonize with each other. Brightness plays no role thanks to the midnight sun, so even for all outdoor shots ISO 100, especially for large apertures between 1.4 and 2.8 have and so synonymous short shutter speeds can use in storm, ider the camera just can not be kept calm.
    Bugøynes, Barents Sea, Barentssee, Varangerfjord, Finnmark, Kodak Ektar, Leica Elmarit M 2.8 28 asph.| © mare.photo

    Bugøynes, Barents Sea, Barentssee, Varangerfjord, Finnmark, Kodak Ektar, Leica Elmarit M 2.8 28 asph.| © mare.photo

Long exposures on Kodak Ektar and Kodak Portra 160

Long exposures are very possible with both the Kodak Ektar and the Kodak Portra 160. Due to the consideration of the Schwarzschild effect, the necessary extension factors must be taken into account. We recommend no extension for up to 30 seconds, and more than 120 seconds to double the exposure time. If the exposure time exceeds 120 seconds, then quadruple the exposure time. Alternatively, of course, you can adjust the aperture accordingly. So between 30 and 120 seconds to double the aperture, in addition quadruple the aperture. The aperture values ​​have  here..

Blaue Stunde am Nord-Ostsee-Kanal in Rendsburg | © mare.photo

Blue hour Kiel Canal in Rendsburg | © mare.photo

Kodak Ektar or Kodak Portra 160 with mixed lights 

Especially in the blue hour, at dusk or when shooting indoors you have different lighting situations. Neon and halogen light, possibly LED or a laser show. For many films, such occurrences are overwhelming. Both films, both the Kodak Ektar and the Kodak Portra 160, master such situations very well. However, we would fall back on the Kodak Portra 160 for recordings in this environment, he is the master when it comes to the color cast-free handling of mixed light.

Blaue Stunde in Rendsburg | © mare.photo

Kodak Portra 160 | © mare.photo

Sample photos

Below are a few examples where we used Kodak Ektar Kodak and Kodak Portra 160. It makes no sense to want to find out which one is the better movie now. It simply does not exist. The purpose of this article is to help you figure out which film is the ideal one for your own ideas and express yourself in person.

Pictures Kodak Ektar in diffused daylight

Kodak Portra 160 in diffused daylight

Kodak Ektar with sunlight

Kodak Portra 160 with sunlight

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