2 recipes for pushing tri-x to 1600 in rodinal, need help choosing one

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by tron_, Jul 27, 2013.

  1. tron_

    tron_ Member

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    Hello,

    I recently shot a roll of Tri-X 400 at an EI of 1600 and have found two recipes for developing it in Rodinal. I know this can be a sensitive subject on this forum since people don't believe Rodinal is suitable for pushing, but I was wondering what recipe would get me more favorable results?

    Recipe 1 (semi-stand):
    -1+100 dilution Rodinal (20C)
    -90 min development time
    -invert for first minute, 3 inversions at the 30 minute mark, 3 inversions at the 60 minute mark

    Recipe 2:
    -1+50 dilution Rodinal (20C)
    -18:30 development time
    -Agitate 30 seconds initially then 2 inversions every 2 minutes
     
  2. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    Kodak recommends that if you wish to push 400TX (Tri-X) you use HC-110. Look at their website for this film for instructions. Rodinal will produce less than optimal results such as an increase in grain and excessive loss of shadow detail. Bur then Kodak doesn't know anything about their films but some twit on APUG does. I assume you got your information from APUG. They are the twit I was referring to not the OP of this thread.

    Check the following site for information on HC-110 and 400TX, http://www.covingtoninnovations.com/hc110/
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 28, 2013
  3. Mackinaw

    Mackinaw Member

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    I've never saw much reason for stand development but figured I'd try it, just to say I've done it. I was absolutely amazed by the results. Relatively fine grain, and very impressive tonal range. And we're talking about Tri-X pushed to 1600. This is the procedure I followed which I saw on RFF:

    1) Several minute water bath.
    2) Rodinal at 1+100.
    3) Temperature not important, unless very cool or very warm.
    4) Pour in developer and vey slowly invert the tank, e.g. about 20 inversions in 60 seconds.
    5) 120 minute total development time,
    6) Every 30 minutes slowly swirl the tank (no inversions) for 15 seconds.
    7) Pour out developer and give three water baths
    8) Fix and wash as normal.

    It worked for me, and I gotta say that I was impressed with the results. I will be using stand development more in the future.

    Jim B.
     
  4. tron_

    tron_ Member

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    Gerald, I understand Kodak recommends HC-110 but this is more of an experiment I'm doing to see how my Tri-X will do in Rodinal. I've tried pushing Tri-X in Microphen as well and liked the results. Going to try HC-110 after this push in Rodinal :smile:.

    Jim, thank you very much for the response. I know this is probably a moot point since pre-wash time isn't a HUGE deal but by several minutes do you think ~3 min should do?
     
  5. keyofnight

    keyofnight Member

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    Whenever I push Tri-X, I stand develop in Rodinal 1+100. Honestly, I only ever stand develop these days. It works, it has always been consistent for me over the last entire year, and I really like the results I've gotten. What matters the most is what kind of process you like to use and whether you like the results.

    I get really good shadow detail in good light, and I don't get that much grain (compared to other people's stuff posted online, at least).

    Here's a couple examples:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The first was developed for 1'40" with no agitations, and the second for 1'30" with a single agitation halfway.

    A ~3" prewash sounds fine to me. I prewash/soak for way longer than necessary—usually 5-10 minutes. This is usually accidental. lol.

    The devil is in the details, though, so here are a few tips. First, keep your water cool/cold if possible. I've read this helps with grain size, but I'm not sure about that. Second, be careful with the agitations. If you agitate one too many times, you'll lose that compensation effect.

    Hey Gerald, why so upset? Why call anyone a "twit" at all ever? We're just trying to have fun with chemicals and film. :/
     
  6. pdeeh

    pdeeh Member

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    There's a difference between underexposing and pushing, isn't there - although the terms seem to be often conflated.

    Stand development isn't a "push" though, surely?

    One of the effects of stand development is to reduce overall contrast, whereas the whole point of a push process is to increase contrast in an otherwise underexposed negative. Or have I grossly misunderstood something basic here?
     
  7. Mackinaw

    Mackinaw Member

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    Three minutes should be fine. The idea is to pre-wet the film so absolute time, be it three minutes or five minutes, probably isn't all that important.

    Jim B.
     
  8. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    Pushing is simply underexposure combined with some method of development intended to bring out whatever shadow detail was recorded (ie maximize film speed).

    The simple push method is to extend development time. The problem is this also increases contrast. So various techniques are attempts at maximizing shadow development while holding back highlight development somewhat. This is often referred to as "compensating" development. There are different ways of doing this, some more successful than others, and regardless of how many experts you hear from, compensating development is not very well understood. One procedure aimed at compensation is stand development or semi-stand development. The idea behind it is "controlled" local developer exhaustion taken to its extreme. Since there is little agitation, the developer is expected to exhaust in heavily exposed areas while it continues to work in areas of low exposure (shadows). What is not well understood is how important both the film emulsion and the developer formulation are in determining how much compensation you actually get. Often there is significantly less than expected (although people still see what they want to see). Further, compensation does not necessarily imply film speed is maximized. You need the right developer.

    Also, while I won't beat the proverbial dead horse regarding the risks associated with stand development, I still think it is important to do proper testing for uniformity. Usually the examples people post (aside from being high in contrast with poor shadow detail) are fairly "busy" images in which uneven development might not be immediately visible. But as with any extreme development technique, tests with more uniform, featureless tonalities should be done to ensure you don't end up with unexpected problems at some point.
     
  9. pdeeh

    pdeeh Member

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    Beautifully clear and concise - thank you Michael
     
  10. Alessandro Serrao

    Alessandro Serrao Member

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    But then Kodak has to sell his Hc-110...
    :D
     
  11. keyofnight

    keyofnight Member

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    Great explanation…and great advice!

    Do you push film a lot? What techniques do you prefer?
     
  12. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    I don't push.

    If I were going to push, the technique would depend on the situation and how far underexposed the film is. For example, if I needed maximum speed and needed to keep contrast down, I'd use a formula like (T)FX-2. Another option people seem to like for pushing and/or contrast control is Diafine. On the other hand if contrast is not a big problem, I'd keep it simple and go with plain old D-76 or a similar solvent developer.

    For good information on pushing black and white films see page 18 in the following Kodak publication:

    http://www.kodak.com/global/en/professional/support/techPubs/o3/o3.pdf
     
  13. Helinophoto

    Helinophoto Member

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    Pushing is to try to get more speed out of your film, or underexpose and overdevelop. This always creates increased contrast, as the shadow-details hardly move, while highlights keep on developing throughout.
    Stand development (for a long time), is a way of developing, where you don't agitate/agitate very little.
    What happens, is that the developer in the highlights gets exhausted, so development stops, while the developer in the shadow areas, still have some "umpf" left and keep on working on the little data left in the shadows.

    So, while you do this, you reduce highlight-development considerably, while the shadow-areas gets loads of time to be developed.
    (This is also considered to be, correct me if I am wrong, compensating development, Rodinal seem to be pretty good this, although HC-110 also works for stand development).
     
  14. tron_

    tron_ Member

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    Hey guys, here are some examples from my test roll. I used a 1+100 concentration of Rodinal for 120 minutes. Agitated for the first minute and then four times every 30 minutes after. I really like the results, I plan on repeating the experiment in the near future to make sure I didn't just get lucky :smile:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  15. TheToadMen

    TheToadMen Subscriber

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    You could cut the film in two and try both recipes. If you don't want to, go for the real stand developing @100 minutes. Not agitating at all might cause some streaking.
    Go for it!
     
  16. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    Tron, I take it these are scans of the negs. They look pretty good. Certainly the highlights seemed to have been tamed. How much shadow detail is there in the dark cupboard door over the shoulder of the lady and in the dark areas either side of the white car?

    There appears to be very little but there may be more in the neg than appears in the scan and anyway it could be the case that Tri-X pushed to 1600 would have lost shadow detail in any developer.

    Thanks

    pentaxuser
     
  17. clayne

    clayne Member

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    Looks good just don't over agitate and if you're adjusting afterward, either printing, or computer, keep the contrast reasonable. The highlights are bit punchy in some of the images with strong contrast.

    I don't personally use Rodinal for pushing, preferring to use XTOL or D-76 but it should be alright with somewhat minor loss of effective speed.

    Nice EK btw.
     
  18. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    The highlights don't look tame to me. Also I still recommend testing these techniques with uniform exposure as it will help reveal uneven development. The first scan shows what looks to me like uneven development, but it is always difficult to judge based on scans as it could simply be a scanning issue. You don't want to find out you're getting uneven development when you later shoot some type of landscape and end up with an uneven sky.

    Not trying to discourage anyone. Just make sure you know what you're getting before you apply any new technique to serious work.
     
  19. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    It might be that that you see what I cannot without help. Which areas contain "untamed" highlights and what are the areas of uneven development?

    Thanks

    pentaxuser
     
  20. tron_

    tron_ Member

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    That is a pretty good idea actually. Might give a large enough sample size without having to use all 10 (or 12) frames for me. I think I'm going to stick to semi-stand for now since (from what I've read and from what you said) not agitating is more likely to cause streaking.

    Thank you, yes these are scans from my Epson V500. Didn't want to use the "s" word on here since I know scanning is a touchy subject for many here on APUG :tongue:. The negatives honestly don't show too much more shadow detail in the portrait, but there is a little more shadow detail in the negative of my car shot. That could be because the cabinets are pretty dark and the light coming into the room didn't help much.

    I agree without a doubt that some shadow detail was lost when pushing this roll. But for some reason I really like the inky blacks look :tongue:

    Have you tried Microphen for pushing Tri-X? I've had some decent results. Unfortunately I still need to give D-76 a try too.

    Oh and thanks :smile:. That was the last comment I thought someone would have on here!

    I totally understand what you mean by experimenting before applying a method to serious work, that was the point of this thread. As far as highlights, I'm having a hard time seeing where the highlights are not "tame." The shot of the trees probably has the best highlights out of the three so I'll focus on the other two. Are you talking about the bit of the counter top in the kitchen shot as well as the front bumper in the car shot?
     
  21. wpwentzell

    wpwentzell Member

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