Kodak Ultramax 400

Ultramax 400 is the most expensive out of the three consumer-grade 35mm films Kodak has to offer, the other two being Colorplus 200 and Gold 200. At ISO 400/27° Kodak Ultramax is a bit faster and better suited for low-light and indoor photography while still offering the classic warm and saturated Kodak colors. It’s available in rolls of 24 or 36 exposures.

According to Kodak, it is an easy-to-use, worry-free film designed for snapshooters. It is well suited when shooting with a zoom lens or working with greater flash ranges. Availability is also pretty good.

Color & Contrast

As already mentioned Ultramax offers the typical warm and saturated Kodak colors, this is also what gives the vintage vibes many people want to achieve. If you are looking for something a bit cooler Fujifilm C200 might be a good choice. When shooting on bright sunny days or during sunsets and sunrises the stock produces a good saturation and high contrast, perfectly fitted for landscape photography. Sharpness is also quite good for a consumer grade film.

Like with Kodak Gold 200 you will need bright daylight light in order to unfold its potential. Overall the colors are pretty balanced and true to life, but you should like the warmness. It is well suited for potraits as it renders skin tones very nicely, overexposing might cause a colors shift though. The Ultramax is 5500k daylight balanced so when shooting under mixed light conditions, the colors might be off.

Grain & Speed

At ISO 400 Ultramax is a versatile stock, you can shoot it at very bright days while still being able to capture low-light situations. Being able to set a higher shutter speed also comes in handy when trying to take photos of children or pets.

For a film stock in this price range the grain is good, even for a ISO 400 film. When exposed correctly grain is never overbearing, but it becomes very noticeably when underexposing. If you’re looking for a finer grain, the professional Kodak Portra 400 is a better choice, but also a more expensive one.


Kodak Ultramax 400 offers a great exposure latitude, even slighty better then Colorplus 200 and Gold 200. It’s no problem to overexpose this stock by 2 to 3 stops, but be more careful when underexposing, as the shadows and overall picture will get grainy very quickly. Slightly Overexposing seems to produce the best results with Ultramax, but you should be aware of the color shifts mentioned earlier.


Kodak Ultramax is a great budget film stock perfectly suited also for beginners. Being the fastest consumer film stock makes it very flexible and easy to use even in more difficult lighting conditions.

If you punchy, saturated colors and the warmness this is definitely a film worth trying.