aerographic panatomic x...silver content.

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by alan doyle, Jan 26, 2011.

  1. alan doyle

    alan doyle Member

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    sometimes one reads of the term silver rich in connection with old generation films.
    kodaks aerial films or certain eastern european films.
    would kodak really put more silver in a product than in another.
    did older films have a lot more silver in them and does it make any difference.
    thanks.
    i assume films today because of high silver prices would have the bare min required?
     
  2. msa

    msa Member

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    Yes, but Pan-X is such a great film, and slow enough that most of it has held up pretty well.

    I'm not sure why you'd try and reclaim silver from it (you'd have to incinerate it, and what a waste of film) -- just get it out of your fixer later.

    Less to do with cost, really, since silver was still cheap several years ago when all the new emulsions showed up.

    I think most of it has to do with advances in coating techniques.
     
  3. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    i was told by a retired chemist who did all the lab-work
    for the photo lab index that a lot of the old films were silver rich,
    and a lot of the "modern" films were filled with "poly vinyl fillers" when they cut the silver
    i have wanted to talk to him for ages about this and other things, but
    last i spoke with him was 9 years ago, and he died last year or the year before ....
     
  4. Stephen Frizza

    Stephen Frizza Member

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    I may be way off the mark here but i thought older emulsions were more rich in silver because the older technologies had a higher percentage of inactive silver in the emulsion/ the newer emulsions were optimized for their silver sensitivity and so less silver was needed? something like that?....
     
  5. brianmquinn

    brianmquinn Member

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    Silver alone does nothing and will not tell you how good or bad a product it. It is the entire emulsion that gives you the image. Newer emulsions like Tmax 400 use less silver and are in many ways far superior to older films. Also the silver in a film or paper is just pennies worth. 90% of the cost comes from other factors. Nobody would cut the silver if it really hurt the quality. Would you buy an inferior product that cost 5% less?
     
  6. alan doyle

    alan doyle Member

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    sorry..
    i am not trying to reclaim the silver..
    just interested in the the term silver rich?
    i would be interested to see a battle between 35mm aerographic pantomic x and the many ways superior tmax 400 : )
     
  7. brianmquinn

    brianmquinn Member

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    That battle was already fought between Tmax 100 and Panatomic-X. Tmax 100 won and Kodak stopped making Panatomic-X long ago.
     
  8. frobozz

    frobozz Subscriber

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    I think "silver rich" is just the term used by the guys hawking the Aerial Panatomic-X on their website, isn't it? Sure *sounds* like it must be better!

    Duncan
     
  9. alan doyle

    alan doyle Member

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    i was thinking of the aerial panatomic x that the u2 plane still use's.
    the usaf seem to still like it...so pan x won that small battle.
    kodak are making it for someone or they would have stop production..
     
  10. hrst

    hrst Member

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  11. brianmquinn

    brianmquinn Member

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    My father was a USAF officer in the 1960s. He planned U-2 flights and went over the pictures taken. I have seen some of the prints first hand when I was a kid. I remember them covering the whole table (BIG prints). I also remember using a magnifying glass to look at them more closely. I do not however remember any grain. They were made with the best optics money could buy and the negatives were bigger than 8x10 inches. Still Tmax 100 has the same or better resolution but 3 times the speed of Panatomic-X.

    The military has deep pockets and is reluctant to change what works. They also need to do direct comparisons to historical photos taken with the same camera and film. They can pay whatever it costs for custom runs of this film.

    The reason we lost the IR films from Kodak is because the military stopped buying them. The rest of us never ordered enough for Kodak it make them.