Kodak Gold 200 for 120 | Medium Format Film Review

One of the best film stocks, now in medium format (finally).

New York City captured on Kodak Gold 200 in 120 medium format by Nat Meir (@softboifilms).

If you know me in any capacity, through real life or through the film community online, you know I’m a diehard 35mm photographer. Why? The level of grain on 35mm film, the distinct “look” of 35mm photos, the portability of 35mm cameras. I carried an RB67 once… it didn’t go well for me.
But there’s another reason too: Kodak Gold.

Hot Tip: Want to send in your rolls to a lab you trust? Check out FieldMag's article on the top 10 best mail-in photo labs across the USA.

To Know

This film offers consistent warmth, a vibrant color palette, and generally behaves just like its older brother, Kodak Gold for 35mm. If you’ve shot that stock with your 35mm camera, you’ll be really pleased to get similar results with your medium format camera.

What We Love

Vibrant Colors

This film is *chef’s kiss* when you want to get reds like Ektar but better than Ektar. This film brings the vibrancy and richness of the colors out of a cityscape, emphasizing highlights you didn’t won’t even see with just your eyes.

Consistent Warmth

I love warm photos. When people look at my photos, I want them to feel like they’re literally standing in an afternoon sunbeam streaming through their windows. This film makes that happen — period.

Brand New

Film photographers are always asking the film gods to bless us with more film and new stocks, but particularly within the past few years after price hikes and supply chain issues, we’re all feeling the crunch (or rather, not hearing the sound of our cameras loading). But this film is brand new and abundant, available through online retailers or your local shops.

The Details:

Brand: Kodak

Product Type: 120 Medium Format Film Stock

Best For: Creatives wanting a warm, yet still true-to tone film stock at a reasonable price for their medium format film photography.

Moment Kodak 1075597 Professional Gold 200 120 Film 5 Rolls thumbnail

Kodak

Professional Gold 200 120 Film - 5 Rolls

Shoot with the Legendary Kodak GOLD 200 120 Film! A low-speed color negative film, offering outstanding color saturation, fine grain, and high sharpness

Buy for $44.95

The Perfect Switch

For the longest time, it was a 35mm only stock. It was pretty slept on too, in my opinion; for awhile, you could get a 3 pack for $15 (so sorry, this is going to make you feel sick if you bought film recently). It was what I would consistently reach for when I didn’t feel like paying the same amount for a single roll of Kodak’s more expensive film (*shouts* Portra). It did everything I wanted it to do, always. I would shoot a roll and it’s like the film understood what I wanted without too much extra work. Ever since I picked up my first roll of Gold, it’s my go-to for every kind of setting, from sunny days to wildly lit concerts.

I think the prices for Gold 200 skyrocketed because it’s such a solid alternative to the Portra family. Bright pops of color, a warm glow around the edges of most things in your frame, not a bad portrait stock if you’re in the right light — I could go on. But because of that price increase and the subsequent demand, now we have something most film photographers have been talking about and manifesting for years...

Kodak Gold for medium format.

What can I say about it? It’s PERFECT and pretty near identical to the results you’d get with 35mm film... in terms of color, tone, and grain. It’s timeless and yet somehow makes you feel like you’re looking into another time when you see photos made with it. I shot 5 rolls and spread them out over mornings, middays, afternoons, and early evenings. The results sang every single time. While I didn’t shoot this stock under cloudy conditions, I have shot its 35mm counterpart under clouds and still gotten rich colors and comfortably warm scenes, so I feel fairly confident about this stock’s ability to handle itself well under any lighting conditions considering how similar they are.

So, besides the price point, why reach for Gold over Portra with your Hassy in your hand? This one is really a matter of opinion, since I know some folks who actually prefer a little less warmth and more consistent colors and tones vs ~extra warm~ and pops of color. But if you are looking for those nice jewel tones and pastels that look like someone just decorated a cupcake, Gold is for you. I didn’t shoot any portraits with this stock, and I know most portrait photographers reach for Portra where that’s concerned, so I’d say stick with that.

Look, I love this film, and you will too. I would exclusively shoot Gold across all of my setups forever if I had access to a steady stream of it. It’ll give you everything you want, every time. Check out some of the photos I made with this stock and feast your eyes on those colors!

What We Rate

Color Tones

Poor Fair Good Near Perfect

Grain Level

None Slight Texture Just Enough Pretty Hairy

Temperature

Pretty Cool Fairly Cool Fairly Warm Pretty Warm

Budget

Around $5 Around $10 Around $15 Around $20

Dynamic Range

Poor Fair Good Perfect

Look, I love this film, and you will too. I would exclusively shoot Gold across all of my setups forever if I had access to a steady stream of it. It’ll give you everything you want, every time.