One of the first films I shot after getting into this pastime was Fujicolor Industrial 100. I found it to be a decent enough stock; inexpensive yet giving nice results.
So naturally, I was excited to try this ISO 400 version too. Neither are officially available in many markets and even in their native Japan they are, or were, only meant to be sold in bulk.
Some places will let you break up a brick and buy single rolls, which is nice, but this is probably only applicable for the 100 version these days. That’s because this Fujicolor Industrial 400 has – surprise surprise – been discontinued.
You can read on to find out how big a shame that really is or isn’t. And remember, if this post does make you want to grab some of the dwindling stock before it’s all gone, your best bet might be to see what, if anything, is left on eBay.
What is Fujicolor Industrial 400?
Fujicolor Industrial 400 is a budget colour negative film that was produced for the Japanese market. Again, was.
If you’re looking for the word industrial on the packaging though, you won’t find it. The Japanese you do see on the box – (業) 記録用力ラーフィルム – roughly means ‘colour film for business or work’, and industrial has become the commonly used name due to this.
The film was given a very basic design and no marketing. Along with it officially only available to buy in bulk, as mentioned, this all speaks to a stock aimed at B2B sales rather than B2C ones. Were Fujifilm producing a unique film for this purpose, though?
According to this forum post, no, they weren’t. The very helpful research behind it finds the same bar code on the negatives as Fuji Superia X-TRA 400, which tells us it’s the same film. Checking the DX code 106283 brings up further evidence of this.
All said, it appears Fujifilm were simply giving one of their consumer films a different name and look and selling it at wholesale quantities and prices to businesses who just needed something in bulk at low cost.
So the answer to the question posed by that subheading – what is Fujicolor Industrial 400 – is highly likely repackaged Superia X-TRA 400.
Industrial 400 image qualities
As a general rule of thumb, consumer grade Fujicolor films give cooler results than their Kodak cousins. Cooler in colour tone, I mean. Not hip, or aloof, or any other meaning of the word.
I found the same to be true back when I shot the Fujicolor Industrial 100 too, although the greens and reds especially were accentuated over everything else.
There’s never a shortage of red to shoot in China so I made sure to get some with this review in mind. The huge plastic lanterns below were the main focus of that shot but the jacket and scarf below them are pretty prominent too.
I like the grain on this film also. It’s probably more noticeable than the ISO 100 version gives if you look closely but that should come as no surprise. I would never say it’s too noticeable though. In no way does it make me dislike these photographs.
The only thing I would say is the grain seems to vary in different light, as does the contrast. You can see this in the difference between the second and third images below.
That’s not down to the film, though. That’s just how photographs look when there is more sunshine and shadow vs a flatter light.
I like what this Fujicolor 400 gave me in both instances. The cooler, less contrasty images are a nice and distinct change from the Kodak I’ve shot recently, while those shot in the brighter light show this film can do contrast if you need it to.
Street photography with Fujicolor Industrial 400
In a perfect world, Industrial 400 would be a slam dunk for a good street photography film.
The 400 ISO rating gives you plenty of flexibility in what and when you can shoot, giving you higher shutter speeds than ISO 100 or 200 films in comparable light.
You will typically sacrifice some image quality in return but, as we’ve already addressed, I don’t think there’s much to worry about here in that respect. You can judge for yourself on the images below.
As a relatively inexpensive film when bought in bulk, it was ideal for shooting in uncontrolled environments, like the street rather than a studio, where not every frame is going to be a keeper.
It also has that Fujicolor coolness mentioned earlier, which should give a grittier look to your street photography than those warm Kodak consumer films produce.
This isn’t a perfect world though, and that attractive price is negated by this film being discontinued. Much like with Agfa Vista Plus 200, it’s probably no longer inexpensive.
And that’s if you can even find any at all. If not – and it will one day all be gone – then all the other good things will have been negated too. Because there’ll be no Industrial 400 to even shoot.
The tl;dr here is that it was a good street photography film, and it’s a shame that it no longer will be. So if you do find some at a good price and that isn’t too long expired – perhaps on eBay – I’d seriously consider grabbing it.
Industrial 400 specs and development
Fujicolor Industrial 400 is a discontinued daylight balanced, colour negative film that was available in 24 and 36 exposure rolls. It was only available in 35mm format.
It should be processed using the common C-41 process, which Fujifilm call CN-16.
I couldn’t find an actual Industrial 400 data sheet, but as the film is thought to be repackaged Superia X-TRA 400, we could just take a look at that one right here.
On it you’ll find the usual claims of quality, like excellent grain, excellent skin colour reproduction, excellent sharpness, excellent grey balance, and a couple that use a different adjective: high speed and wide exposure latitude, and improved ageing characteristics.
You’ll also find all the information you’ll need for storing, shooting, and developing the film too, with exposure guides, processing charts, and plenty of graphs with curves on them that I don’t understand.
Where to buy Industrial 400
Unfortunately, as you read this, it’s only going to get increasingly harder to find Industrial 400 anywhere. Supplies have dried up since it was discontinued and they aren’t going to be replenished.
It was never the most widely available film anyway, with it being produced for the Japanese B2B market, so the chances of some forgotten boatload turning up in storage somewhere are also very low.
As ever, you could check online, but you’ll find nothing on Amazon or Analogue Wonderland. There isn’t much left on eBay either, with just a few sellers popping up on a search.
You can check their current prices and availability through the link below.
Final thoughts on Fujicolor Industrial 400
When I reviewed another relatively recently discontinued film – Agfa Vista Plus 200 – I talked about how I wouldn’t shed too much of a tear for it.
While losing a budget stock is a shame, I hadn’t been shooting film long enough to gain any attachment to that particular one. We have other options and I didn’t find the roll I shot to be anything special anyway.
That’s not the case with this Industrial 400. Although I’ve only shot one roll at the time of writing, I wish it wasn’t true that I likely won’t get to shoot another.
For everything mentioned already – the price, the versatility, the image quality – it could easily have been a go-to film and something to keep a stock of in my cupboard.
All is not lost, though. If you’ve been paying attention, you might have a question that needs answering. That question might be this: if Industrial 400 is just repackaged Superia X-TRA 400, can’t you just buy some of that?
The answer, perhaps surprisingly, is yes, you can. For all my lamenting, this film is still available in a different guise. It is more expensive than Industrial was though, and quite for how much longer we’ll have it, I don’t know.
In a previous round of their film stock culls, Fujifilm announced that Superia X-TRA 400 would only be available in single rolls. It had previously been sold in multi-packs too.
Whether this means it’s no longer being made and what’s left is being stretched out, I again don’t know. Time will tell, but nobody would be surprised if that turns out to be the case.
As for the version known as Fujicolor Industrial 400: I hardly knew ye, and I’m glad we had the little time together we did.
If all the stock on eBay is gone by the time you read this and you need that minimal green and white packaging in your life, we do still have Industrial 100.
Read the review of that if you haven’t yet, and maybe grab some before the axe falls there too. 🙂
… p.s. if you’ve shot Fujicolor Industrial 400 yourself and have anything to add, let us know in the comments below
… p.p.s. if you found this review useful and think others will too, why not share or pin it?