Changes in enlarger filteration depending on size of enlargement!

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by LAMitchell, Jan 31, 2006.

  1. LAMitchell

    LAMitchell Member

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    Good morning guys, welcome to my first thread on the forum. I primarily work with colour using Ilford 2000 paper and what ever RA4 chemicals I can get my hands on. Currently I am using the SpeediBrew RA4 kit which although cheap is exhausted quickly. As a lot of my images are from a Holga, I usually work on a small print 6" until I get the right colour and dmax from the print. What I have noticed though is when I come to do an enlargement I need to increase the yellow filtering. I cant understand how the colour filtering should change depending on the size of the enlargement. I am keeping the light hiting the paper the same and I am keeping the exposure time the same. Chemicals are pretty fresh temperature is at 35c for 45 seconds before 10 seconds fix then 45 seconds BLIX. Exposure time is 5.5 seconds, I am using a Meopta Magnifax enlarger and putting the paper through a Nova processor. Oh and the lens is a Schneider Componon. Anyone else experience this?
     
  2. Marco Gilardetti

    Marco Gilardetti Member

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    Forget it. I didn't read your MSG well before answering. Of course you didn't change paper batch, did you?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 31, 2006
  3. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    There is one change that you are doing, you are changing the aperture on the lens to keep the exposure constant.

    I can, at this stage, only assume that the colour of the light changes, as the lens is opened up.

    I myself don't use this method, as when I do a big enough enlargement, I run out of aperture on the lens.

    There is a lot of talk about colour change when you change the time the lamp is on. I haven't really experienced much of a colour change when changing times as I roll the enlarger up.

    I have at times, gone about 2½ stops more light required and haven't noticed a change. Which doesn't mean to say the colour hasn't changed, just that for all intents and purposes, I cannot notice any colour shift.

    Yellow is the weakest filter change, so I assume that you must be changing the filtration a fair bit to keep the colour consistent.

    You are using the same paper out of the same box, or are you using a different box of paper for the enlargements?

    Mick.
     
  4. LAMitchell

    LAMitchell Member

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    Hmm, some interesting points, The aperture is usually 1-1.5 stops greater, as the Magnifax has a ND filter of a range of 2 stops I usually try and use that so I wouldn't expect too much change in aperture. The enlarger is pretty bright so I am at f8 for 5.5 seconds on a 10" enlargement.
    Change in colour depending on length the head is on is a strong possibility; The reason why I think this is I have a Philips colour analyser, when programming it you need to leave the lamp on for 5 seconds for the yellow and magenta to settle down, the yellow taking the longest, around five seconds and it oscillates. Changes to the filtering is 2 for magenta and 8 for yellow, the filters max out at 200. So I will have C36 M40 Y8 for a 10" and C36 M38 Y0 for a 5" print. A solution I guess would be longer exposures, or just stick to a fixed height and test strips. The changes are not a great amount, you get far more from the lighting you use to view the images under, it just getting the filtration to hit the sweet spot with this paper which is tight.
    Meopta Enlargers are very utilitarian and I have considered replacing it but TBH its solid and apart from a large format enlarger its the only one I know that will do an oversized 6x9 neg.
     
  5. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    I doubt changing the lens aperture is an issue.

    "C36 M40 Y8 for a 10" and C36 M38 Y0 for a 5" print"

    Is that right? No yellow but Cyan? Also those changes aren't very much. How are you deciding what the right values are?

    Assuming you're using the analyzer one possible issue might be how sensitive the probe is.
     
  6. Ed Sukach

    Ed Sukach Member

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    Using that much cyan filtration Is strange. Usually, if the negative is exposed with the proper film (Daylight balanced in daylight) or proper filtration, only magenta and yellow will be necessary.

    What film are you using, and what was the lighting for exposure?

    I've used a lot of Ilfocolor ... I LOVE the stuff. Unfortunately it is nearly impossible to obtain any over here, now.
     
  7. srs5694

    srs5694 Member

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    Adorama lists it on their Web site. At the moment, some sizes are flagged as being out of stock, but others aren't.
     
  8. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    IIRC you can remove Cyan and add extra Magenta and Yellow. I don't know if it'll make a difference but at least the filter numbers will look more normal.
     
  9. lee

    lee Member

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    So I will have C36 M40 Y8

    doesnt this create some neutral density? that would cause extra exposure also, no?

    lee\c
     
  10. Boris

    Boris Member

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    1. Are you using distilled water?
    2. Is development time enough? Try to increase it slightly.
    3. Are you using enough chemicals? This could be a problem. You may have enough chemicals to cover the print, but not enough to keep consistency.
    4. Are you using pre-wet? If you do pre-wet and use distilled water for the developer and tap water for pre-wet then make sure to draingpre-wet water well.
     
  11. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    C36 M40 Y8 effectively means that you are running filtration of C28 M32, the yellow is just adding neutral density.

    Basically, adding all three colours at once, adds neutral density.

    When I've used an enlarger with a 2 stop ND facility I always put the ND to one stop. That way I can either reduce or add up to one stop of ND to facilitate constant times.

    There is nothing wrong, AFAIK, with running a Cyan Magenta filtration for RA4 printing. Most people use the Magenta and Yellow instead.

    There is a possibility that when you change the ND filter, the colour filtration changes ever so slightly. After all you are moving filters in or out of the light path!

    Mick.
     
  12. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    I have a Philips colour analyser PCA 061. This may or may not be the same as yours. Unfortunately my enlarger and paper are different. I suspect the analyser may be different. If it is then you may need to ignore the rest of this post. If it is the PCA061 then how do you measure the exposure? On mine, once the analyser is calibrated the cyan button is depressed to determine the exposure and the Y and M buttons are depressed to determine the colour balance which is done by nulling the needle via the dichroic head. I take it we are talking prints from colour negs hence your mention of RA4 paper.

    My PCA 061's needle is very sensitive and you're right it needs a few seconds to settle down. With changes of enlargement I have noticed that the Y and M settings will vary a little but not enough to alter the colour balance noticeably unless you were to look at the two prints side by side. Then if your eyes can detect very slight differences you may notice it or you may not.

    If it is the PCA 061 then the needle is very sensitive and can take a while to settle down and I suspect can change just a little between the same neg even at the same enlargement. At least with mine it can but the change which might be say 2 on the Y dial really isn't detectable to my eyes although as I said to others who view the prints from the same neg at this difference it might just be detectable.

    To avoid this just note the settings at say 5 x 7 and repeat at 10 x 8 instead of trying to use the analyser again.

    Let us know if the analyser is the PCA061.

    Pentaxuser
     
  13. LAMitchell

    LAMitchell Member

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    The example neg I am using is from a Holga and the film is Fuji NPZ 800. The neg is reasonable (for a Holga) and the chemicals I am using are pretty fresh in the Nova. The analyser I am using is the PCA 061 and that is partly the reason for the strange settings, plus the digipaper. With some playing I could get it back to the usual M Y combo but this paper is a 'Prototype' paper from Ilford. Ilford no longer do Ilfocolor/Ilford 2000 but they have Ilford Digital which is bought on a roll. I purchased a 50m roll 12" wide, I cut it to the sizes I need in batches. It has the same plastic base and is super glossy but the exposure setting have been tweaked for digital processors. That on top of the chemicals I am using (Speedibrew RA4) and I have some different settings for this compared to the Ilfocolor paper. i.e. there is hardly any yellow.
    What I am unsure about, is how the filtering changes depending on the height of the enlarger head. It does not compute, the changes are small and can only be seen with the two prints side by side but they are there, both images would be acceptable but they are different. maybe yellow light is slower than magenta.
     
  14. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    If you take out the cyan you should have plenty yellow. Cyan equals yellow + magenta. No?
     
  15. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    I have used different papers with same chems and same papers with different chems and have never noticed the chems affecting the colour. The only factor affecting colour and therefore requiring re-calibration of the PCA061 was the paper. Fuji Crystal Archive required quite different calibrations from Kodak Endura. Once this was done, I quite frankly could really see a difference in the quality of the prints.

    I'd be inclined to calibrate for each paper you use. When I calibrated, it results in the cyan dial being set for correct exposure and the cyan button being pressed for the exposure for each neg. The calibration of the Y and M dials are the only ones needed for colour balance. Cyan isn't needed at all except for exposure.

    You can get test negs for various films such as Fuji or Kodak and test prints as well but any good neg you've taken will do as long as it has a range of colours and its of a scene where you can remember how the colours were. Once you have your print from the test neg looking like the test print provided, then that correct exposure and the Y and M dichroic head settings are left as they are and then used to null the needle by means of the Y and M dials on the PCA061. The exposure dial on the PCA061 is set to the correct exposure and the C dial nulled on this setting.

    The analyser is now calibrated correctly. Throughout all of this the C dial on the dichroic head is left at zero and remains there.

    As I said the needle is very sensitive and unless you have a lot of patience you may find that it settles at zero on a slightly different Y setting even if you were to remove the neg and then put the same neg back into the carrier and re-analyse. The difference in the print should barely be detectable.

    I notice for instance that with a set of negs taken on the same film under the same exposure conditions each neg will give a very slight different Y and M readings. I always religiously analyse each neg but I strongly suspect that if I used the same setting for each neg taken under the same conditions then the prints would be almost identical and acceptable. I also suspect that the cheap one hour labs, for speed, used to use the same settings for the whole film. This often resulted in the odd print looking funny if the film negs were taken under different conditions where colur balance was different but most customers used to just shrug and accept it, probably thinking that it was their fault.

    Do you have the PCA061 booklet? If not then let me know and I can photocopy it at my local library.

    PM me with your address, give me a day or so and I'll post it to you.

    Pentaxuser
     
  16. LAMitchell

    LAMitchell Member

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    Wow, a lot of good advice there, I will need to go and play. I thought the chemicals would have an affect on the colour and density, if it doesn't.... GREAT. Just got two papers at the mo, the one I mentioned and a batch of Kodak Endura. So I will work on calibrating for those.

    I do have a photocopy of the booklet for the analyser so I am okay there, but thanks for asking. Currently it is a new toy for me so I am still getting use to it and its quirks. Will have more of a play this weekend when I get my new chemicals in.

    Bought a load of Agfa RA4 chemicals for 4x10 Litres including BLIX, stop and starter for £61 incl P&P so I am feeling pretty pleased. I think the guy still has some more if anyone is interested?
     
  17. Ronald Moravec

    Ronald Moravec Member

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    assuming the same batch of paper and time, the ND filter is not neutral.

    Redo tests with using F4 and F11 or what is required.

    Check with the analiser and ND in place. Then remove ND and close the lens to the same illumination as the set up. The rest of the filters should be the same if the ND is indeed neutral.
     
  18. LAMitchell

    LAMitchell Member

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    I think I have nailed this, need to experiment a little more but it seems to be the original RA4 chemicals I was using causing the inconsistency between each print I would put through the processor and so confusion. The Colour analyser also had a dodgy yellow dial as it probably hadn't been used in years (new eBuy). Taking the dial through the range a couple of times has helped and the guage will stay in one place rather than oscilate as before. Need to experiment a little more but it all seems to be going in the right direction.

    High C business is sorted too, that was an issue with the carbon interface (me).
     
  19. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    In printing RA4 the use of cyan except for neutral density is very strange indeed. I have printed color negatives since the 70's. I have NEVER encountered a situation where cyan filtration was required. Ordinarily the filter packs are just magenta and yellow with one of the two being in excess of the other. So mainly the filter pack is RED or the opposite of CYAN. Strongly do I suspect that something is wrong. How were the negatgives developed? ARE YOU CERTAIN THAT THEY WERE FULLY BLEACHED?
     
  20. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    He had something like

    "C36 M38 Y0"

    Take the C out it's likely something like M74 Y36.
     
  21. LAMitchell

    LAMitchell Member

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    The Cyan was a red herring, I was getting confused with setting up and using the colour analyser, what it was doing was acting as a ND combined with the Magenta. I am no longer using cyan for any of my filteration.
     
  22. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    So to speak :D
     
  23. LAMitchell

    LAMitchell Member

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    badum tssss :rolleyes: :D
     
  24. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    Your problem with the dodgy yellow dial has just reminded me of a problem I had with my ebuy PCA061. I had bought it and stored it for months before taking the plunge into RA4 and it didn't work. I thought I had been sold an ebuy pup. Anyway I plucked up the courage to unscrew the probe to see what went on inside. It's a set of wheels and the MYC filters which are cranked into place on pressing the appropriate buttons on the analyser.

    If I remember correctly I carefully used some WD40 aimed at the "clockwork" in the probe and lo and behold it started to work. So yes the wheels and cogs can stick. If yours is now working fine then probably best to leave alone but if it starts to "play-up" then it's worth opening the probe cover and carefully encouraging the wheels to move.

    Pentaxuser
     
  25. LAMitchell

    LAMitchell Member

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    I'll take that into account, cheers Pentax.

    I was doing some prints and one interesting point with the new Ilfocolor is yellow filteration is minimal i.e. M36 Y8!

    If I run out of yellow on a print I guess I will start topping up with Cyan.