Help! Page 2

Subminiature Processing
Q. Please give me the name of a company that can process Minox color film. Also, do you know of a company that can make color prints from 16mm (12x17mm) film frames?
Paul Price
Downers Grove, IL

A. Have you tried contacting the Minox Processing Laboratories (250 Meacham Ave., Elmont, NY 11003; (516) 437-5750; I have had them listed in my reference files for decades. A bit of web searching uncovered another firm that might assist you. They process and print many sizes and types of older color films, including disc, Minox, and 110. If your Minox film is old, this might be the place you want to contact: Film Rescue International (PO Box 44, Fortuna, ND 58844; (800) 329-8988, (306) 695-2300; On their website they indicate they can also make prints from 8mm and 16mm film frames that you asked about.

Synchro Shutter Sought
Q. I have a like-new Busch D Pressman camera and am looking for an Ilex #2 synchro shutter (less lens, as I have one). Please help.
George DeBatto
Zuni, NM

A. Locating a specific shutter for old press cameras might be difficult these days. Several firms come to mind that handle large format equipment and either might have what you seek or be able to direct you to somebody who may have the shutter you need. Two of those firms include Midwest Photo Exchange (3313 N. High St., Columbus, OH 43202; (614) 261-1264; and Columbus Camera Group Inc. (55 E. Blake Ave., Columbus, OH 43202; (614) 267-0686). You also might want to ask the following firm that specializes in the updating and repairing of Deardorff & Signature large format cameras: Deardorff Photographic Products International (58 W. Lincolnway, Valparaiso, IN 46383; (219) 464-9748).

Scala Processing
Q. Where can I get some Scala black and white transparency film printed?
via Internet

A. On the Agfa website ( you will find listed the labs worldwide that can handle Agfa Scala film. There are just two in the US: Color Reflections of Miami (111 NE 21st St., Miami, FL 33137; (305) 576-3207) and Main Photo & Imaging Service (827 S Main St., Santa Ana, CA 92701; (714) 647-7600; Try calling them about your printing questions for this black and white reversal film. Since they can process the film I would assume they also could print it. Also, try dr5 Labs at:

Depth Of Field Query
Q. I have a Pentax Optio 550. I took a picture of a snake eating a lizard. The snake was really clear and the background was not. What setting do I use with my camera to achieve this again? I don't remember how I did it--please help. I have been asking everyone.
via Internet

A. Your Pentax Optio 550 zoom lens digital camera (like most other automatic cameras today) is preprogrammed for easy operation without adjustments and produces really sharp images at the main focus area. If the picture was made in low light, the lens would be wider open, resulting in a sharp image at the point of focus, but if made in bright light, the lens would be closed down, resulting in more depth. Your camera does have optional modes that will assist you in getting less depth in your pictures under any light level. Switch it over to "Aperture Priority" mode then adjust the lens aperture to a wider opening (probably about f/2.8 or f/4) which will select a faster shutter speed, but will also result in less depth behind the main focus point. If you also had the lens zoomed out to a longer telephoto focal length (since you probably did not want to get too close to the snake), the long telephoto setting will also result in less depth. Using Aperture Priority will help you get less or more depth no matter what lens focal length you are using.