SX70/Time Zero

sx70.gif A while ago a friend came up with the idea of Polaroid week, a week of posting our favorite Polaroids. This gave me a chance to use my SX70 again. I looked online to see if I can get time zero film cheaply, to my surprise and dismay I found this on the Polaroid site.

Please be advised that Polaroid will be discontinuing the manufacture of its SX-70 / Time-Zero film within the first 3 months of 2006 due to the phasing out of components used in the production of this film.
We realise that this is disappointing news for our loyal SX-70 users and we would like to underline that, although the circumstances made it inevitable, it was not an easy decision.
We are very sorry for the inconvenience.
For customers who would like to continue using their SX-70 camera, we can offer some film alternatives below. However, we do appreciate that these films do not offer the same characteristics as SX-70 / Time-Zero film.

I was pissed till I saw this (taken from the site itself):
Can I still use my SX-70 camera now that SX-70 / Time-Zero film is being discontinued?
Yes, you can. Although you will need to make some adjustments to your camera (please see below).
Which films will work with my SX-70 camera?
600 Film
The 600 film is our most standard square format film, which can be bought in most photo retail shops around the world.
779 Film
If you would like to use a more professional alternative, try 779 film, which can be bought in specialist shops in local markets or via Polaroid online (not available in all markets – visit for more information). 779 film has very specific skin tones – this characteristic can also be of interest to professional photographers.
How to use my SX-70 camera with type 600 or 779 film?
Please follow these steps to adjust the film and camera:
600 / 779 Film
The 600 and 779 films have four little plastic nubs at the bottom, which prevent them from being loaded in a camera designed for SX-70 film. You have 2 options:

  • You can remove the two nubs in the middle in order to load the film. (I remove all of them)
  • You can use the dark slide of a previously loaded instant film to load the film without removing the nubs. Hold the dark slide (also known as black tab or cover sheet) under and slightly beyond the pack while loading it. The idea is to have something smooth that covers the nubs as the pack is inserted.

SX-70 Camera
Now that you have loaded either 600 or 779 film into your SX-70 camera, you have to overcome the fact that this film is four times faster than SX-70 / Time-Zero film.
This cannot be achieved by adjusting the exposure control settings. Even if you alter your settings to reflect the dark, your pictures will still be overexposed.
If you only plan to take photographs in broad daylight:

  • Reduce the amount of incoming light by affixing a 2-stop neutral density (ND) filter in front of the lens. Please note that this will also darken the view in your finder.
  • Alternatively, you can try a 1-stop ND filter and set the exposure control 1.5 stops to darken. Use a coated filter to get the best results.

If you take photographs in any light:

  • Remove the filter retaining ring (the little chrome ring which surrounds the photocell) by gently pushing the tip of a small knife under the edge and popping out the ring. Remove the small round neutral density filter.
  • Replace with a similarly thin piece of clear plastic (e.g. from a CD box). Re-fit the housing, insert the film and affix a 1-stop ND filter in front of the lens. The exposure-control settings should now allow you to compensate for the film speed.

Remember the exposure-control returns to zero when you fold the camera.
There you have it…