While I had my Nikon N90s out I decided to shoot one of the rolls of expired slide film that Stephen Dowling of Kosmo Foto gifted me some time ago. This time I chose Agfa CT Precisa 100, expired since January of 2006. This is another of the Agfa films that survives, zombie-like, after Agfa stopped making its own films. The film sold as CT Precisa today is made in Japan, and by all accounts it’s not the same.

Word on the street is that this stuff loves to be cross-processed — that is, developed in the C-41 chemistry used for color print film. So that’s what I did. Roberts, the photo store Downtown, still has a minilab and they cheerfully processed and scanned my roll.


I shot part of the roll Downtown after I got a good barber-shop haircut. I’ve bought shoes at Stout’s — it’s like stepping into 1942 in there, with the same technology and the same service.

Downtown Indy

I aimed my camera (with the 28-80mm f/3.3-5.6G AF Nikkor lens) at anything colorful as I walked along Delaware Street and on the first block of Massachusetts Avenue. The entrance below was to a Burger King when I worked in a building across the street more than 20 years ago. Today it’s a tapas joint.

Barcelona Tapas

I made the photo below to finish the roll before dropping it off for processing at Roberts. I’m a little disappointed that the sun washed out the hood and snout of the Camaro so strongly but I’m showing the photo anyway because of all the colors I got otherwise.

Corvette snout

I also brought the camera to Zionsville Village and made some of my usual shots.

In Zionsville

I really liked how cross-processed CT Precisa rendered the greens of grass — so supernaturally vibrant.

Black Dog Books

Look around online for people who’ve cross-processed this film and they’ll all tell you it really brings out the blues. Sure enough, that’s what happened here.

In Zionsville

After my last roll of expired slide film was so washed out, I researched online whether exposure compensation could help. The wisdom I came upon over and over was that if you weren’t sure how the film was stored, overexpose — but only by about 1/3 stop given slide film’s narrow latitude. So I did. And I didn’t need to; everything was slightly overexposed. Photoshop rescued every shot. This stuff must have been stored frozen until I got it.


Shooting this roll of CT Precisa was great fun. Maybe I’ll come upon another someday.

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13 responses to “Shooting Agfa CT Precisa 100, original emulsion, cross-processed”

  1. Dan James Avatar

    Jim, I love the last shot of the checkerboard especially. I’ve tried a couple of cross processed rolls of the AgfaPhoto version of CT Precisa 100 (I don’t know what the original emulsion is, I think some say it’s a Fuji slide film?) but also got very vivid colours too. You might want to give some a try if you like the results you got here, I think it’s still widely available.

    This is a good example of the vibrant greens I got –


    Rollei Digibase CR200 is another you might like for cross processing.


    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      I cross processed this time just for a lark, and because it made it possible for my local lab to do it (as they don’t do E6). It was fun. I have more slide film from Stephen in the fridge and I might cross process it all. But when I buy fresh slide film for myself it’s generally because I want the look I get from E6 processing.

      Those are some mighty vivid greens!

  2. Zimmette Avatar


    Heads up. Just received the following notice on FB:

    From Heather Teets:

    Hello fellow artists, The Park Tudor Fine Arts Department is holding a Darkroom Sale on June 5th, 2018 from 9:00am – 1:00pm (E.S.T.).

    First-come, first-serve, pay what you can for equipment and haul away the same day.

    Checks must be made payable to Park Tudor School. Please message me for additional information. Thank you!

    Sent from Carrie’s iPhone


    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Oh, what a shame their darkroom is done for. Wish I could make time to check out the gear.

  3. M.B. Henry Avatar

    Such pretty colors! Also – I want to visit that book store.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      It’s a lovely little store. Small, carefully chosen selection.

  4. mellonicoley Avatar

    loving these images!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar


  5. Photography Journal Blog Avatar

    This just seems like a fun experiment to me. You got some visually interesting results. I also shared this on my Twitter feed.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thanks for the tweet! It was fun to do this. Because I didn’t know whether I’d get good results I just relaxed and shot whatever felt good. That was really the best part.

      1. Photography Journal Blog Avatar

        That sounds like a good photography outing to me.

  6. Joshua Fast Avatar
    Joshua Fast

    CT Precisa is one of my favorites to cross process, it is an older version of the Provia emulsion. Cross processing increases the speed of the film in my experience. No matter how expired, shoot it at box speed or higher. I normally shoot 100 @ 100-200.

    Great looking shots!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Interesting info! Given that I didn’t know this film’s provenance I feel lucky that I got good exposures.

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