Bergger News

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Aurelien, Oct 3, 2007.

  1. Aurelien

    Aurelien Advertiser Advertiser

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    Well,

    I have just read a letter from Bergger to resellers: they have transferred their production line from Forte to ... Harman Technologies, that's to say Ilford. I think Simon will confirm this. But it 's very interesting. Simon, will they make their own products on your lines?
     
  2. Michel Hardy-Vallée

    Michel Hardy-Vallée Membership Council Council

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    Ben ça alors! Ilford to be in competition with themselves... Hm, they've said some time ago that they stopped all sorts of rebranding. It's a different situation, though, but it proves I'll never understand the logic of silver gelatin economy...
     
  3. david b

    david b Member

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    I said this a long time ago and I will say it again:

    Ilford will be the last man standing.
     
  4. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    It may not be rebranding, as Harmond will make Bergger products not Illford. It kind of like Toyota and GM sharing plants in California.
     
  5. Ulrich Drolshagen

    Ulrich Drolshagen Subscriber

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    Hi,

    I think it's a logical step to go. They compete in emulsion technology not in production technology. Sharing the production plant (mainly coating I think) will reduce capital cost for both and makes them both more competitive. This works as long as the coating technology for both their emulsions is appropriate. Which may not always be the case. But there are several coating lines to chose from worldwide.

    cheers

    Ulrich
     
  6. aldevo

    aldevo Member

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    Paul, I'm afraid that analogy may be true, but not in the manner you expect.

    The NUMMI plant in CA makes the Pontiac Vibe and Toyota Matrix. The Vibe is 99% a Toyota Matrix with some minor differences in styling and trim. So this is, very definitely, rebranding.

    Most, if not all, of Bergger's products were just re-badged Forte products as can be confirmed by reviewing a Forte product catalog from the mid-90s or earlier. A very small minority of those products were probably designed by Filmotec. Similarly, I expect the new Bergger products will simply be Ilford wares in drag - at Bergger's traditional markup.

    I really do hope I am proven wrong in this, but I suspect that I will not be.

    Only time will tell.
     
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  7. aldevo

    aldevo Member

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    It's a different approach. Ilford used to produce private-label films and papers (such as Freestyle's "Arista Premium" line of a few years back) that were sold at lower cost than its own Ilford-labeled products. The idea was that Ilford would get the benefit of using its production capacity at higher utilization and the retailer would bear the costs of marketing the product.

    If history is any indication, I cannot imagine anything carrying a Bergger label will sell for less than one branded Ilford.
     
  8. Marc Leest

    Marc Leest Member

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    Right. Extremely bad move. Ilford is already too pricey, so what can Bergger add ?


    Eh. Nothing. Bye Bergger.
     
  9. GeorgesGiralt

    GeorgesGiralt Member

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    I, for one, wait to see and test before making a choice, but I was unable to make any difference from Bergger products and Forte ones. Except pricing.
    So I will wait and it will be difficult to make me switch from Ilford and Adox products to Bergger.
    And I'm French and liked a lot the old Guilleminot products from which Bergger product are said to come from.
    Of course, finding no difference between Bergger and Forte may be due to my poor knowledge of darkroom work ;-) As usual, YMMV.
     
  10. Michel Hardy-Vallée

    Michel Hardy-Vallée Membership Council Council

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    If in a way Bergger products are an "extension" of Ilford Harman's line of products, I don't mind. As long as there is a wide variety of quality B&W papers at reasonable price, the user wins, and probably the producer as well. It may end up as a kind of monopoly (or niche, depends how you read it), but as long as there is choice and no dirty play, it's fine.

    Bergger sells at least one paper that is unique, their extra-premium 100% rag base, and well, there must be a market for that. Their VC papers are really nice as well, and have their own "flavour."
     
  11. aldevo

    aldevo Member

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    As PhotoEngineer, FotoImpex and others have pointed out...

    It is never simple and - rarely possible at all - to take Emulsion A from Company A and produce it at Company B.
     
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  12. Paul Kinney

    Paul Kinney Member

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    I thought Ilford said they were comitted to keeping B&W film and paper alive even if they had to help produce their competition. Adox and Efke film are manufactured in the Ilford plant now. I'm not suprised Bergger had to follow.
     
  13. Uncle Bill

    Uncle Bill Subscriber

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    I thought Adox/Efke was being made in Croatia?
     
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  15. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Not quite true. Bullshit !!!!

    Fotoimpex sell Ilford film rebadged as Adox, Fotoimpex own the Adox trade name. Ilford do not manufacture any EFKE films, EFKE make them all themselves.

    Get your facts right.

    Ian

     
  16. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    EFKE films are made in Croatia;.

    However EFKE no longer own the Adox trade name, that is now owned by Fotoimpex who are rebadging products from a variety of manufacturers under the Adox brand name.

    Ian

     
  17. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    That "Silver Supreme" paper is the most expensive paper on the market, and I have sometimes wished I hadn't discovered just how different it is. When it's the right paper, nothing else comes close...

    The "Art Contact" is unique in the market too, I believe? It even liths well, except for the ridiculously long exposure time!
     
  18. Aurelien

    Aurelien Advertiser Advertiser

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    What you don't know is that Bergger bought some material to Forte plant and moved it to Ilford. So products will be in continuation of those we bought till now. And I hope so !
     
  19. aldevo

    aldevo Member

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    I hope you are proven correct. Even if true, the products cannot be absolutely identical to those produced in Vac, Hungary. Better? Worse? Identical to Ilford's? We will have to wait and see.

    I would not doubt Bergger's intentions but for Guy Gerard's and Daniel Boucher's continual refusal to acknowledge that most (not all, but most) Bergger products were re-branded Forte ones.

    Ultimately, it will be the testimonials of the customers that determine whether these products are distinct from Ilford's or not. If they are not, then I think word will spread rather quickly.

    In any case, thank you for posting this update. Now...we wait.
     
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  20. Michel Hardy-Vallée

    Michel Hardy-Vallée Membership Council Council

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    I wish for you that the oil prices keep going up!
     
  21. aldevo

    aldevo Member

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    Actually...

    Efke 400 actually has been two separate emulsions - neither of which was produced at the Efke facility in Croatia. Very briefly it was HP5+ (late 2004 after Ilford's difficulties) and now it is APX 400 (Efke having procured a share of the remaining AgfaPhoto-produced APX 400 emulsion to finish and cut).

    So it isn't quite true that Efke makes all their films.
     
  22. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Well, I can't see where Bergger formulas came from. Were they Forte formulas? Or, were they Bergger made by Forte. In the case of being Forte formulas, how did Bergger get them when Forte went belly up? If they were Bergger formulas, then would Bergger give them to Ilford. Either way, it is a case of giving some degree of trade secret to Ilford.

    Then again, will Ilford let Bergger people into their closed areas to make the emulsions or will Bergger make them somewhere else and deliver them to Forte? All of this is very hazy to me.

    In the end, it sounds more like Ilford will make products to Bergger specs and they may even cut and package them for Bergger. Or, is another company going to do that?

    Oh well, one thing is sure. The price of Bergger products will go up.

    PE
     
  23. Peter Schrager

    Peter Schrager Subscriber

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    Ilford;Bergger;Forte

    Geez whiz you all-can't you calm down and try to appreciate the fact that there is going to be some continuation of these materials. Bergger never made anything as far as I can recollect. they took the formulations and Forte made them to their specs. I do hope that the whoever makes the final product for them will continue to make these old fashioned style type emulsions. I will continue to support the semi-matte formulations either in VC or graded because to me they were the ONLY true warm toned emulsions on the market. if you're going to continue crying about prices go digital and watch your budget skyrocket...do you actually believe that Ilford would be stupid enough to remake their own emulsions into Bergger products?? no way jose; and you can keep debating it till the cows come home. this is nothing but great news for all of us out here in analog world....
    Best, Peter
     
  24. Bruce Osgood

    Bruce Osgood Membership Council Council

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  25. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    Agree with Peter. I have never used Bergger products, but I am happy they will continue to be available.
    - Thomas
     
  26. aldevo

    aldevo Member

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    Peter,

    Sorry but Bergger's Forte-manufactured products were absolutely not the same as the products they produced while the Guilleminot factory was still around. I am 100% positive that Bergger BRF 200 was nothing more than Fortepan 200 - which existed for quite some time before it wore a Bergger label. They are one and the same; I've got about 150 rolls of 120 experience with both BRF and Fortepan 200 that certainly backs that up. And BPFB-18 FILM was not a Bergger emulsion, but one designed by Filmotec of Germany.

    But I do share your opinion Fortezo and Polywarmtone were the only true warm-toned graded and VC papers on the market - regardless of whether they wore the Bergger or Forte labels.

    As to whether Ilford is stupid - you are missing the point that Ilford MUST run their production infrastructure at a certain capacity or it cannot be proftitable. It's good news for Ilford regardless...but whether we are truly getting Bergger products cannot be answered until they actually hit the market.
     
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