35mm Polaroid Instant Slide Films

Polaroid instant slide film and associated processing systems give easy access to several finished and ready-to-use slide films without the necessity of a darkroom or commercial processing. The system is comprised of five different 35mm films and manual or motorized "instant" processing and slide-mounting equipment.


The film itself is loaded in the camera, exposed, and rewound like any other 35mm film. Each Polaroid instant cartridge is supplied with its own sealed plastic container of processing chemicals that Polaroid has dubbed its "processing pack." After film is exposed in almost any 35mm camera, it is loaded into the auto processor and in a minute or two is ready for visual inspection. A few minutes more to mount the slides in an easy-to-operate slide mounter and you are ready to project or print the finished images.


The color film is different from most other conventional emulsions in that it is based on the additive color principle rather than normal subtractive color alignment of other color slide films. Polachrome CS contains a microscopically fine lined additive color screen consisting of a repeating pattern of red, green, and blue color filters at about 1000 color triplets per inch, with each triplet comprising a single red, green, and blue filter element.


Over the filters is a very thin color screen protective layer and over that a positive image-receiving layer. It is in this layer that the final silver image will be deposited. Four additional layers are situated above the receiving layer. They consist of a protective layer directly above, which also functions as a stabilizer, a release layer that allows upper film layers to be removed during processing. Below the top antihalation layer is a panchromatic silver-halide emulsion layer.


A color image is formed almost in the same way as is a color television picture. Microscopic examination of the white portions of a finished Polachrome CS slide reveal equal amounts of red, green, and blue. One of the problems associated with the use of an additive color screen is that the base density of the film tends to be much higher than that of conventional slide material. Because of its higher density, measured at 0.7 compared to conventional slide films at 0.2, the brightness of Polachrome is considerably less. This brightness differential is most noticeable in the highlight areas (the toe of the characteristic curve) and least in the midtones (straight-line portion of the curve) plus shadow areas (shoulder of the curve).


Since image formation of the four black-and-white films takes place without an additive color screen, their base densities are very similar to regular black-and-white emulsions.

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