If you were to look at the outdated box design, the budget price, the ubiquitous availability and the results it gives, it would be easy to conclude that Fujicolor C200 is nothing special.
It’s not like a JCH Street Pan 400, or a CineStill 800T, or a Kodak Ektachrome E100; all of which genuinely are special in their own ways, and are often used to shoot their own specialised kind of photography. Street, neon signs, and colourful inanimate objects respectively.
However, we’re all special in our own way, and I think a case could be made for C200 actually being special too. You just have to look on the bright side of its averageness. Having liked the film myself, that’s exactly what I’m going to do in this review.
If the positivity makes you want to grab some Fujicolor C200 for yourself, you’re not going to find it hard to track down. It’s readily available on Amazon of course, on eBay, and from our friends at Analogue Wonderland.
Get Your Fujicolor C200 today
What is Fujicolor C200?
Depending on where you live and buy your film, you may or may not recognise Fujicolor C200’s box design. But if you’ve ever shot the C-less Fujicolor 200, you’ll probably recognise the canister. That’s because they’re the same. Same canister, same film.
It’s different stuff to the plain old Fuji Superia 200 and Superia X-TRA 400 that can look similar at first glance in search results, by the way. The latter is 400 rather than 200 for a start, and the former was discontinued in 2017 – so beware buying expired film there.
Fujicolor C200 is Fujicolor 200 though, so you can take this as a review of both. For the remainder of it, I’ll be using the name C200 only, as that’s what I’ve shot.
Aliases aside, C200 is Fujifilm’s budget mass-market colour film offering, occupying the same space as Kodak’s ColorPlus and Gold in the ISO 200 category. It dates back to around 1990, although it was updated in 2017 with Fuji’s super fine grain technology.
C200 is the kind of film you can pick multiple rolls up for the same price as one of something more boutique and take them on holiday or somewhere else where reliability and quantity are more important than exquisite quality.
I shot mine on a couple of trips I took, as you’ll see from the sample photographs later, and found it did a more than serviceable job. I was genuinely pleased with the results.
So, what is Fujicolor C200? Well, first up, it’s Fujicolor 200. Second, it’s probably not a film for producing fine art with. But, in my opinion, it’s a pretty good budget film for when you’re just out there preserving memories.
Fujicolor C200 image qualities
One main difference between Fuji’s films and Kodak’s is their colour reproduction. As I talked about in those other reviews, Kodak films tend to have a brighter, more yellow hue to them, with Fuji films being cooler and more subdued.
While C200 does continue this trend, don’t be fooled into thinking it’ll present your sunny-at-the-time holiday memories as some gloomy alternate reality. What I got from my couple of rolls was certainly still vivid enough.
When I reviewed Fuji’s Industrial 100 film, I mentioned how its greens and reds were the colours that popped the most. C200 is similar with the greens, although the reds – while still strong – come out a little darker and less gaudy than with the Industrial.
The film also has a wide exposure latitude, which means you’ll have to try hard to really under or overexpose it. I think a good place to test this out would be a sunny day at the beach, with the strong light and bright sands giving the film the perfect excuse if it couldn’t handle it.
A trip to the gorgeous countryside around Yangshuo in southern China would be a good place to see the C200’s green reproduction too.
As luck would have it, those are two places I shot at this film at, and it did well with both. It didn’t lose detail in the sand or the sky above it and gave plenty of sharpness and contrast to the people in the scenes too.
In the shot with the bridge over the river Yulong, the greens of the trees and the water and the man’s red shirt back up the earlier claims made on those.
The grain was always low across both rolls I shot, as you’d expect from an ISO 200 film. Overall, I have to say the image quality and qualities were everything I could ask for and more from a budget, general use, average film.
Street photography with C200
Some of the things that make Fujicolor C200 an average film are the very same things that make it a good choice for your street photography.
The first and most obvious of these is the low price, which means you can spend less energy worrying about how much each shot costs you and more worrying about making photographs.
As I continue to shoot film and build up experience, I’m finding the more freely I shoot, the more likely it is I’ll have something in the results that I really like.
That ISO 200 rating is good too, freeing you up to shoot in slightly worse light than you could with the Industrial 100, or any ISO 100 film for that matter.
Of course that means it’s not as versatile as the Industrial 400, but that doesn’t matter too much for me. If I know I’m shooting an ISO 200 film, I won’t go out and do it in bad light anyway.
Finally, C200’s image qualities lend themselves to street photography pretty well too. Those more-subdued-than-Kodak hues mean your scenes and skin tones remain realistic, and the low grain and sharpness help keep them clean.
Finally, that aforementioned wide exposure latitude is a good safety net should the light really be too bright or dim, and the film has good enough dynamic range to render light and dark areas well in the same shot, as you can see with the fish market and pigs shots below.
Fuji C200 specs and development
Fujicolor C200 is a 5500°k daylight balanced, consumer-grade ISO 200 colour negative film that’s available in 35mm format only. In some territories, it may be available as plain old Fujicolor 200, without the C.
It used to be available in both 24 and 36 exposure rolls, although the former was discontinued a few years ago. If you see any of these available, they will be old and expired stock. If you want fresh film, make sure to go for the 36-ers.
C200, which is DX-coded with the number 106254, is processed using the highly common C-41 technique, or CN-16 as Fujifilm call it, meaning any photo lab should be able to develop your rolls once you’ve shot them.
It also means, if you have experience developing other colour negative films, you’ll be able to do this one yourself too. You can find the datasheet right here.
If you shoot your C200 before it expires, you can most likely get away with not storing in your fridge. Of course, I wouldn’t leave it in direct sunlight or next to my oven either, but keeping it in a cool, dry cupboard for the relatively short time you have it should suffice.
Where to buy Fujicolor C200
Fujicolor C200 is the kind of film that’s available almost everywhere film is sold. If you have a place local to you that sells a large variety of film off the shelf, they probably should have this. Or if not, at least the C-less Fujicolor 200 version.
It’s the kind of stock you might find in a place that also carries film too, like a pharmacy or petrol station or general purpose corner shop, like you might a Kodak Gold for example. You never know what you might come across in these places.
But if you don’t have any of these in your vicinity, want to compare prices before buying, or just prefer to order online and let your film come to you anyway, you have plenty of options for doing that too.
You can check the prices and availability through the links below.
- buy Fujicolor C200 from Amazon
- buy Fujicolor C200 from eBay
- buy Fujicolor C200 from Analogue Wonderland
Final thoughts on this Fuji C200 film
A few of the more boutique films I’ve reviewed on here are synonymous with specific types of photography; either by design or by how the herd has taken to shooting them.
Fujicolor C200 is not like those. As a budget, ISO 200 colour negative film that gives you those more muted Fuji results, and with that dated-looking box design, it’s easy to write it off as the very definition of average.
I think that’s the wrong way to look at it, though. I’m not saying it isn’t average, but I don’t think dismissing as such is the best way to think about it. Not when we could celebrate its averageness instead.
Its qualities actually give you more freedom to shoot. The wide exposure latitude and dynamic range, which to be fair most other consumer grade films have too, make it highly unlikely your results are going to be over or underexposed, even on a bright beach.
They also mean C200 is ideal for point ‘n’ shoot cameras that might not meter the light so well or be more restricted with their shutter speed.
Even if something did somehow go wrong and you lost your shots, dispiriting as that would be, at least you haven’t also wasted an expensive Ektachrome E100 or rare discontinued Fujicolor Natura 1600, for example.
And while C200 might be average in the film world, consider that it’s a product long-made by one of the very best film manufacturers in the actual world. Compared to most other things on this planet, it does a very good job of reproducing your images.
Instead of degrading it for not being a special colour negative film like a Kodak Ektar 100 or Portra 400, I like to recognise it for what it is. A reliable general use film that gives you exactly what you expect, with whatever working camera you have, in almost all good light situations, and at low cost.
If you appreciate things for what they are and use them for what they were made for, I put forward that C200 is, just like all of those other films just mentioned, special in its own way.
Get your Fujicolor C200 today
… p.s. if you’ve shot this film yourself and have anything to add to this, let us know in the comments below
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