analyser pro or stopclock with zonemaster

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by aljanjr, Mar 13, 2005.

  1. aljanjr

    aljanjr Member

    Messages:
    2
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    i am confused as to which way i should go. i am an amateur and i want to buy what will do the job in the best way. what are the limitations of the analyser pro vs the stopclock-zonemaster combo. would i be giving up some functions or capabilities i would regret. the issue is not whether to buy rh but what to buy. i would appreciate any help you can give me.
    THANKYOU
     
  2. clogz

    clogz Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,842
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Location:
    Rotterdam, T
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Two years ago I decided to buy the Analyser Pro as it incorporates a timer function.
    Very pleased with the machine!
    Have you downloaded the various manuals from RHDesigns' website? www.rhdesigns.co.uk
     
  3. JeffD

    JeffD Member

    Messages:
    308
    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2004
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    I was thinking about the analyzer pro, and whether it would be something helpful to me.

    I don't use the standard 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 paper grade filters that the device is probably designed for.

    Instead, I use a dichro head with a continuous range between full yellow and no magenta to all magenta and no yellow light to vary my contrasts. Problem is, I have no idea exactly which of those combinations of yellow and magenta fall on those generally accepted grade numbers.

    So, in light of this, is the "densitometer" functions of the device likely to be any use to me? The device, I assume, has to know what paper "grade" I am using, to be able to display any info on where a tone might fall in the final print.

    I like the timer features, though. Just wondering if the analyzer function would be a waste of money for me. I assume the unit could be calibrated, but seems like this would be an impossible chore when you are talking about an infinite amount of contrast potential with the dial in filters....
     
  4. rbarker

    rbarker Member

    Messages:
    2,222
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2004
    Location:
    Rio Rancho,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    As I recall, there are some compatibility issues that relate to the type of enlarger you are using (or, might plan to buy in the future). If you re-check the specs on the different units with that in mind, I think it will become more clear.
     
  5. Saganich

    Saganich Subscriber

    Messages:
    536
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Location:
    Brooklyn
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I bought an stop clock pro which can integrate the zonemaster. I would start with a stop clock pro then see if if you want to add the zone master later especially if you do volume work. If not then learn to use your eyes first then upgrade to the zonemaster. It is a fancy bit of equipment. Download the manual and read it. Beware that the Rh timers have their own plugs so you will have to strip one end of an extension cord, not as difficult as it sounds. I love mine it forced me to print mindfully and with goals which was an improvement.

    chris
     
  6. wfwhitaker

    wfwhitaker Member

    Messages:
    566
    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2004
    Location:
    Lobsta
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Unless I'm completely mistaken (and it's been known to happen), the Analyser Pro can be calibrated to whatever paper you're using. It's not "designed for" any particular paper, although it comes from the factory calibrated to Ilford Multigrade RC. The version I'm using is a slightly different model, the Analyser Pro 500, and is designed expressly for use with the Ilford 500 Multigrade head. (In fact, it cannot be used with any other head.) One of its virtues is that can be calibrated for papers which aren't "standard" (whatever "standard" means). Additionally, it will store calibration settings for several different papers which can be recalled later when changing papers. In the interest of full disclosure, I've not ever used the non-500 version of the Analyser Pro. But it's my understanding that the operation is very similar.

    With regard to the original question of whether to purchase the Analyser Pro or the Stopclock with the ZoneMaster, I would thoroughly read the details of each at the RH Designs web site. Also take a look at Paul Butzi's reviews at http://www.butzi.net/. When you get your technical questions narrowed down, Chris Woodhouse, who designed these marvelous devides, can be reached through the ktphotonics web site.
     
  7. martin@jangowski.de

    martin@jangowski.de Member

    Messages:
    39
    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2004
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    There is one scientific defined measurement of paper grade, the ISO-R number. You are free to assign any ISO-R number to any paper grade (and a lot of manufacturers did this, too), but a lot of people use Ilford numbers. These run: 180 - 160 - 130 - 110 - 90 - 70 - 50 for the paper grades 00 .. 5

    The Analyser (and the Zonemaster) can calibrated to any number assignment you wish. If your dicro head has any repeatable (!) method to get a setting, you can use it with an Analyser or Zonemaster.

    At first you need a step wedge (eg. T2115 from Stouffer) to make a table of dicro head settings and resulting ISO-R values of your paper. Paul Butzi wrote an excellent article how this is done, you can find it here. It will take about 1-2h of work to get this list of settings and resulting ISO-R values for one type of paper.

    After you got this table, you can calibrate the Analyzer. With the step wedge, this is accomplished in another hour. After that, your workflow is like that:

    • put negative in enlarger, use white light
    • measure up to 8 points in the enlarged image, the Analyzer shows the grey value of each measurement
    • widen or narrow your grey scale (switching gradations) or move it to the darker or lighter side (with longer or shorter exposure)
    • set the dicro head to the shown gradation following your compiled list
    • put paper under the head, make the exposure

    This will give you excellent results for 90% of your negs in the first try. I work with the Analyser and (recently) the Stopclock/Zonemaster since 1997 and can't imagine been without it...

    Martin
     
  8. Jeremy

    Jeremy Member

    Messages:
    2,767
    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2002
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    If you get the analyser, find the manufacturer's ISO R and P ratings for their paper and start off with those. I just recently finished a 2.5 hour calibration and my numbers were with a few of the manufacturer's numbers--this is time I could have been printing real pictures!
     
  9. tleirtro

    tleirtro Subscriber

    Messages:
    41
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2002
    Location:
    Trondheim, N
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Isn't the Analyser Pro just the Stopclock and the Zonemaster combined into one unit?

    Thor Egil
     
  10. martin@jangowski.de

    martin@jangowski.de Member

    Messages:
    39
    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2004
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    The feature set of the Analyser is a subset of the Stopclock/Zonemaster combo. The Stopclock features things like drydown automatic, two time channels with 9 steps each and 1/24 stop step size. You can do everything with a Stopclock/Zonemaster the Analyzer is capable and do a few things more.

    Martin (who switched from Analyser to Stopclock/Zonemaster)
     
  11. RH Designs

    RH Designs Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    657
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Yorkshire Da
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    No - it's a combination of the (now discontinued) StopClock LE and the ZoneMaster, so the timer functions are less advanced than the StopClock Professional. With the Analyser, you don't get the 1/24th stop finest resolution, the second channel, the programmable exposure sequences and the dry-down compensation. More minor missing features include the alternative test strip and safelight modes, the audible beep, and switchable lamp saver.

    For people who are interested in getting high quality prints with a minimum of effort and material wastage we recommend the Analyser Pro. Those who like to wring the last drop out of the negative by making several exposures, perhaps at different grades, on the same print will prefer the StopClock Professional, with a ZoneMaster to establish the starting point exposure. Fine Art printers typically fall into this category.

    As this is a FAQ, you'll find answers on our web site at www.rhdesigns.co.uk/darkroom/html/faq1.html

    I'm not a regular checker of the APUG forums but am always pleased to answer any questions here - just drop me an e-mail at richard@rhdesigns.co.uk (as Thor has done) and tell me there's a question waiting :smile:

    Regards
    Richard Ross
    RH Designs
     
  12. RH Designs

    RH Designs Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    657
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Yorkshire Da
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Jeff -

    A dichroic head does indeed give you an infinite number of contrast "grades" but the Analyser will get you to within a half grade - after that you can fine tune the result if you wish. We have some calibration information on colour heads in the Tech Support section of www.rhdesigns.co.uk/darkroom

    Regards
    Richard Ross
    RH Designs
     
  13. tleirtro

    tleirtro Subscriber

    Messages:
    41
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2002
    Location:
    Trondheim, N
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Richard,

    Thanks for the reply, although it complicates matters a lot when I'm trying to decide what to buy. :-]

    Thor Egil
     
  14. Jeremy

    Jeremy Member

    Messages:
    2,767
    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2002
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Better check this, Richard, my Analyser Pro has all of these features.
     
  15. RH Designs

    RH Designs Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    657
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Yorkshire Da
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Apologies - that's what comes of hitting "quick reply"! Yes, you're right - the features are missing from the StopClock LE but not the Analyser. Thanks for pointing it out.

    Regards
    Richard
     
  16. Jeremy

    Jeremy Member

    Messages:
    2,767
    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2002
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Dang! I was hoping I had an ultra rare model that I could sell on eBay for millions and retire, oh, well :smile: