CineStill 50D vs 800T Review Part 1

The Darkroom outlines everything you need to know about CineStill 50D & 800T C-41

This is Part 1 of a 2-part series on CineStill film – CineStill Film Overview Part 2

CineStill is a popular company amongst film photographers. Since 2012 the company has been working with film manufacturers to make cine film for enthusiasts. This is one of the many reasons why photographers flock to them. In their range, there are two main C-41 types of Cinestill film we would recommend, the CineStill 800Tungsten and the CineStill 50D (Daylight). Both have different pros and cons, which we will explore in this article.

An Introduction to CineStill 800Tungsten Film

With an ISO of 800, CineStill 800 Tungsten is ideal for capturing low light and fast action under tungsten lighting. CineStill’s heritage comes from Kodak’s Vision 3 motion picture film, which uses a traditional ECN-2 motion picture processing. The CineStill 800T adaptation utilizes a C-41 processing method. CineStill takes advantage of a C-41 process by reengineering the film, which provides a much greater exposure latitude. There’s also latitude for lower ISOs. Photographers can push the film up to three stops from ISO 800 to ISO 3200.

CineStill recommended ISO and acceptable exposure for push processing

  • ISO 800 – No push – EI 200-1600
  • ISO 1250 – 1 stop push – EI 800-2000
  • ISO 1600 – 2 stop push – EI 1250-3200
  • ISO 3200 – 3 stop push – EI 1600-3200 (added contrast)

View 800T Pushed Examples

What Should You Expect When Shooting With The CineStill 800Tungsten?

As photographers ourselves, we love the color balance when shooting under tungsten lighting. The film is balanced to 3200 K instead of a daylight temperature of 5500 K. This provides a real sense of depth when shooting under ideal lighting situations. Skin tones present as cool and muted tones, whereas lights or other high contrast elements produce a reddish glow around them. This halation effect is all thanks to the lack of ramjet backing on the film. As this is the case, if you are planning to shoot outdoors with the 800Tungsten, we recommend using an 85B filter (orange filter) to balance color and set your ISO to 500.

Who is The CineStill 800Tungsten For?

We recommend this film for photographers who want a rich red under base tone when shooting under halogen lighting. Once you have shot your film, make sure you get it developed in C-41 chemicals promptly to preserve latent image latitude and color fidelity. CineStill 800 Tungsten is incredibly popular amongst the street photography community. Shooting it in less than ideal lighting delivers moody photos of dusky street landscapes.

Halation Example with CineStill 800Tungsten
Halation Example with CineStill 800Tungsten
Photos shot with 800Tungsten film

Online Film Developing

Film Developing

Professional film developing and scanning for 35mm, medium, large format, and disposable cameras for over 45 years.

Start your order

Photography film index

The Darkroom’s comprehensive index of film types; characteristics, examples, and reviews.

View Index

An Introduction to CineStill 50D Film

Unlike CineStills 800Tungsten film, the 50D is daylight balanced. It is one of the main differences between the two films. The 50D film, developed alongside Kodak, provides cine film access to still photographers who may be familiar with the original Kodak’s Vision 3 50D (known as Kodak 5203/7203). The development of a stills cine film has proved to be welcoming to everyone involved. Although the CineStill 50D isn’t as popular as the 800T, don’t underestimate the stunning pastel colors this film produces.

Unlike CineStills 800Tungsten film, the 50D is daylight balanced. It is one of the main differences between the two films. The 50D film, developed alongside Kodak, provides cine film access to still photographers who may be familiar with the original Kodak’s Vision 3 50D (known as Kodak 5203/7203). The development of a stills cine film has proved to be welcoming to everyone involved. Although the CineStill 50D isn’t as popular as the 800T, don’t underestimate the stunning pastel colors this film produces.

What Should You Expect When Shooting With The CineStill 50D?

You shouldn’t have trouble tracking down this film compared with the CineStill 800T. While many photographers may not know about the 50D, it’s worth purchasing a roll to see the results for yourself. At ISO 50, the emulsion holds true to a cinematic look. There’s a very fine grain with plenty of detail. When comparing against the 800T, there isn’t as much exposure latitude at higher ISO, but the 50D still performs.

Who is The CineStill 50D For?

The CineStill 50D film is made for photographers who want a cinematic look to their portraits or landscape images when shooting in daylight conditions. The CineStill 50D film was developed in consultation with Kodak so still photographers could gain access to what cinematographers have been using for years. Processing is accessible for still photographers thanks to the Remjet removal in the manufacturing process. It means C-41 chemistry can be used to develop with ease.

Photos shot with 50D film

CineStill 800Tungsten Features

We recommend this film for photographers who want a rich red under base tone when shooting under halogen lighting. This film is incredibly popular amongst the street photography community.

  • Made for shooting in tungsten environments
  • Superfine film grain
  • Balanced at 3200 K
  • C-41 processing makes cine film accessible to photographers
  • Can push film up to three stops to ISO 3200
  • Desirable halation effect present under high contrast lighting.
  • DX-Coded cartridges factory boxed and spooled
  • Ramjet backing free

CineStill 800Tungsten

Cinestill 800T

800T Film Review

CineStill 50Daylight Features

The CineStill 50D film is made for photographers who want a cinematic look to their portraits or landscape images when shooting in daylight conditions.

  • Excellent for portraits and landscapes
  • Very fine grain with high detail
  • 5500 Kelvin Daylight balanced
  • Promotes a pastel color palette
  • Detailed highlight and shadow details (promotes a great S curve)
  • DX-Coded cartridges factory boxed and spooled
  • Enhanced Scanning Performance
  • Ramjet backing free

50Daylight Cinestill Film 120 and 35mm

Cinestill 50D

50D Film Review


Which Film Should You Use and Why

Both the CineStill 800T and 50D offer a new world of shooting opportunities. Either film provides a cinematic look so your images will stand out, and you can’t go wrong there. However, your decision on which film to use will all come down to the shooting environment you are going to be in. Our advice is to buy one of each to test and compare the results for yourself.

50D ideal for portrait photography in daylight conditions
800T is well suited for street night photography or indoor environments

If you are a portrait photographer, then chances are you’re going to want to use the 50D in daylight conditions. 50D produces beautiful pastels with rich grain. Whereas if you were carrying out a shoot at night or in an indoor environment, the 800T is well suited. Street photographers also will love the 800T purely for the halo effect around lights or neon signs as well as the cinematic look. The red halos around the lights add to the image and give it an edge you might be looking for.


Cinestill 50D & 800T Print Comparison

3 replies on “CineStill 50D vs 800T Review Part 1

So when shooting the 800 indoors and outdoors on the same roll it is possible to change ISO and not worry about it in the processing?

Leave a Reply

Note: We don’t monitor the comments very often, so please contact us directly if you have questions.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *