The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks

(FINAL) The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks - FilterGrade

In the digital age that we live in, it can be hard to find the best film stocks, and even harder to find the one that’s just right for you.

Today we’re going to break it down so that you can find your favorite color negative 35mm film stock. Discover the perfect balance between price, quality, and speed for you so that you can start shooting.

Let’s take a look at the top 10 color negative 35mm film stocks:

All photos + videos created by © Moloney Creative Agency.

Intro The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks - FilterGrade

1. Kodak Ektar 100

Kodak Ektar 100 - The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks - FilterGrade

Photo by Matt Moloney

Kodak’s Ektar 100 is well-known amongst film photographers, especially commercial photographers shooting product photography and many other professional projects.

This film stock is highly versatile and can be used in natural or studio lighting. For more on Kodak Ektar 100, be sure to check out our Kodak Ektar 100 Examples video here.

Read the Kodak Ektar 100 Review Here


View Kodak Ektar 100 Samples Here

2. Kodak Portra 400

Kodak Portra 400- The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks - FilterGrade

Photo by Mike Moloney

The second color negative film stock on our list is Kodak’s Portra 400. This film type is highly regarded as one of the best film stocks for portrait photography and capturing fine skin detail.

Compared amongst many professionals with Kodak’s Ektar 100, both are very diverse and can be used in array of settings; however, portraits are the dominant category of Portra, as the grain and color composition are incomparable.


Read the Kodak Portra 400 Review Here


View Kodak Portra 400 Examples Here

3. Fujifilm Fujicolor Superia 1600

Fujifilm Fujicolor Superia 1600 - The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks - FilterGrade

Photo by Matt Moloney

Fuji’s Superia 1600 stock is the next film type on our list and for good reason – the grain detail. The heavy grain that appears on the photos adds unique detail and provides a beautiful effect on any type of imagery, whether it be portraits or landscapes.

Although this film is better suited for low-light conditions, it is still able to be shot in bright settings; however, care should be taken as to not overexpose.

Take a look at some Fujifilm Superia 1600 samples here!

4. Kodak Gold 200

Kodak Gold 200 - The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks - FilterGrade

Photo by Matt Moloney

One of the most under-rated film stocks, and also one of the most commonly found, is Kodak’s Gold 200 film type.  This stock can be found at nearly all film camera shops and many Walgreens and CVS pharmacy’s.

This is not only a great color negative film for beginners looking to take on analog photography, but also a great stock that can be used by professionals for many daylight situations. Check out our full review of Kodak Gold 200 below!

Read the full Kodak Gold 200 Film Stock Review Here


Watch the Review Below

5. Psych Blues #3

Psych Blues #3 by Dustin Adams - FilterGrade

Photo by Matt Moloney

Next up on our list is one of my favorite ‘fun’ film stocks that I use all the time when shooting portraits with friends or when I’m at the beach. This hand-altered film is created by photographer and film enthusiast Dustin Adams and always provides unique, unintentional light leaks that will add bright flare to your photos.

Red, blue, purple, pink, and orange light will show up as streaks and orbs throughout the roll, and also completely dominate some frames. My plan for this film is to keep it evolving between every couple of batches, and the process itself was designed to turn out more variations between rolls.

– Dustin Adams on Psych Blues #3

For more info on Psych Blues film and Dustin Adams’ various other film stocks, check out his site here.

6. Fuji Pro 400H

Fujifilm Pro 400H - The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks - FilterGrade

Photo from Mario Andrei

Fuji Pro 400H is the sixth film on our list and is another stock among analog photographers favorites. It has a subtle, yet noticeable grain exposure that provides a soft feel and offers a unique touch.

Many photographers use this for portraits and it is commonly compared with Kodak Portra 400, however, many photographers tend to prefer the grain on the Portra stock more. With that being said, I highly recommend trying out Fuji Pro 400H for yourself so you can know for sure what you prefer more.

Check out some of Matt’s Fuji PRO 400H Film Samples Here!

7. Kodak Portra 800


Photos by Matt Moloney

Kodak Eastman Co.’s Portra 800 is another incredible portrait film stock that has a beautiful grain composition that continuously adds detail and contrast.

Whether you or are shooting portraits with your Portra 800 or street photos, you will always find a unique way to use this film and when you get the negatives back after developing, you’ll be more than impressed.

For more on Kodak Portra 800, be sure to check out our comparison of Kodak Portra 400 vs. Kodak Portra 800.

8. Kodak ColorPlus 200

Kodak ColorPlus 200 - The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks - FilterGrade

Photo by Matt Moloney

Next up is Kodak ColorPlus 200 by Eastman Kodak Company. At 200 ISO, this film has a low grain content and can be used during the daylight without heavily worrying about overexposing.

This film stock tends to work better ini daylight than in studio light; however, it is sill able to shoot in harsh settings and low-light.

Read the Kodacolor 200 Review Here

9. Lomography Color 100

Lomography Color 100 - The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks - FilterGrade

Photo by Matt Moloney

Lomography is another film company providing high quality 35mm film stocks that many photographers tend to forget about. Although it may not be on the top of the bar like Kodak or Fuji, it is still a highly dependable film that tons of photographer  choose year in and year out.

It is great for both portrait and landscape photography and has a subtle grain composition that provides quite fine detail.

10. Agfa Vista 400

Agfa Vista 400 - The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks - FilterGrade

Photo by Matt Moloney

The last color negative film stock on our list is Agfa Visit 400. This stock from the Agfa-Gevaert Corporation is highly durable and can be used in a wide range of scenarios.

Primarily used for street photography, but not limited to this, many photographers enjoy using these film stock as a means to shoot a personal journal due to its cheap price and good quality.

BONUS: Expired Film

Now, when you think of film, shooting expired film may not be the first thing that comes to mind. And listen, before you start asking ‘why would I intentionally shoot expired film?…’ just take a look at this video above.

When I first started out, I had heard of shooting expired film, but honestly I never could get my hands on it easily so I just never shot it. Then after a few years of learning what my favorite film stocks were (and shooting tons of different stocks), I realized that I never tried shooting the expired version of each stock. Time to start back at square 1, this time with expired film. I decided to pick up some trusty Kodak Gold that had been expired in the 1990’s off of eBay and started bringing a roll with me everywhere I went in my point-and-shoot camera. After a few months, I developed all of it and was in pure awe.

Before shooting expired film, I had heard that you are supposed to overexpose a certain amount of stops depending on how many decades old it is…. but honestly that seemed like too much effort. And since I found a good deal on the film from eBay, I wasn’t too worried about if it even came out or not – I just wanted to see what would happen. I decided to use my point-and-shoot for most of these rolls, mainly because I wanted to make sure I had enough light for the expired film.

If you’ve gotten this far into the article, you’re a trooper, and I really appreciate you. I also highly recommend shooting some expired film if you haven’t tried it yet.  :-)

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16 Replies to “The Top 10 Color Negative 35mm Film Stocks”

  1. Paul Porter says:

    Curious to know what cameras a few of these where shot on. Specifically 3, 4, and 10. Thankyou!

    1. Matt Moloney says:

      Hey Paul,
      3) Pentax Espio 140V
      4) Pentax Espio 140V
      10) Nikon FE2

  2. Russell Cardwell says:

    Sadly, Agfa Vista is no more. The company stopped making it several years ago, and remaining stock from specialty resellers is rapidly drying up. If you want some, buy it now. Like a lot of Agfa’s films did, it beautifully captured a mid-20th Century feel.

    Velvia is a gorgeous ultra-saturated film, but it’s a transparency film, rather than a negative film.

  3. Alexei says:

    What film was used on the first shot of the girl?

  4. Agfa Vista 200 is rebadged Fuji.

  5. C.Vale says:

    So this work perfectly fine with a Canon AE-1?

    1. Mike says:

      Yes, the Canon AE-1 is a 35mm film camera, so all of these film types are compatible.

  6. Marvin Brutus says:

    what camera was used for shots 3,6 &9?

    1. Mike says:

      Shot #3 was shot on a Pentax point and shoot. Shot #9 was shot on a Nikon FE. Not sure about 6.

  7. Adolfo Zobel says:

    Will everything work perfectly on Ricoh KR 5 Super II with 50mm lens?

  8. Moz says:

    Did you use flash for photos? especially the night shots

    1. Matt Moloney says:

      Yes! I love to use flash with my 35mm film cameras as much as I can. It’s a little trick I learned from shooting Polaroids – the more light the better (if that’s what you’re going for)

  9. Seth says:

    Was there any post production editing on any of them? If so what ones? Thanks! :)

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