Film Gurus: Who shoots either TMAX 100 or Delta 100 at ISO 50?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by RallyFan, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. RallyFan

    RallyFan Member

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    First off, I'm still a little new to developing, but I've found that I like PanF+, but I was given 10 rolls each of TMAX 100 and Delta 100. However, my reason for liking PanF+ is that I like shooting on sunny days, and 50 gives me more versatility to open up the lens. I'm shooting 35mm film on a Leica IIIf.

    So now that I have all this film to burn, what is everyone's experience shooting either TMAX 100 or Delta 100 at 50. What kind of development processes do you use and what kind of results do you get? For the record, I have been using Ilfosol 3 which was great to learn with, however I'm not opposed to trying something new as long as it's still relatively easy to work with. And I prefer to stick to ISO50 vs. 64 or 80 (I use the sunny 16 rule and no meter, and I'm not sure my little brain would like me trying to compound things further by throwing half or third stops in the mix). Also, I don't print my negatives in the darkroom. I (gasp) scan them, if that matters or not.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Michael R 1974

    Michael R 1974 Subscriber

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    A lot of this will come down to personal preference. I've used TMax 100 and Delta 100 almost exclusively, developed in a few different developers and I shoot both of them at an exposure index of 50 under normal conditions anyway. My exposure index is actually 64 with these films but I consider 1/3 stop virtually meaningless and within the margin or error. You have to then do a few tests to find the development times that work for you shooting at 50.

    If you are pleased with Ilfosol 3, no reason to switch. It is a little grainier than ID-11/D-76 but probably slightly sharper, and these are very fine grained films to begin with (Delta 100 is about the same as Pan F and TMax 100 is even finer grained). The two films will work well in a variety of general purpose developers. ID-11/D-76 diluted 1+1 or more, XTOL diluted 1+1 or more, etc etc. Stick with Ilfosol if it is working well for you.
     
  3. John Wiegerink

    John Wiegerink Member

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    You should have no problem shooting Tmax 100 at ISO 50 using the Sunny 16 rule. Truth is that's what I would recommend to a person who wanted to try out Tmax 100 without doing proper metering/testing. Always better to slightly over-expose than under-expose. I've never used Ilfosol 3 so I can't comment on it, but there are many good developers out there that work just peachy with Tmax 100. Personally, I think a very good combo to use is Tmax100 and Rodinal(Adonal, R09 etc.). I use it with Tmax 100 and Tmy-2 400 as a stand developer( 1:100 for 60 min.) when I've shot in very harsh lighting like, say a heavy sunny snow scene. Or for normal scenes it's 1:50. I think every darkroom warrants a bottle of Rodinal and believe it's one of the best "standby developers" out there. You use so small of an amount that it makes the cost per roll almost nothing, it lasts forever on your shelf, it's extremely simple and easy to use and it gives great looking(sharp) negatives. So, if I were you and wanted to try a slightly different developer Rodinal would be it. Plus, it's been around in one form or another since before the first automobile hit the road and there is a ton on info on the NET about its use. Whatever you do have fun! JohnW
     
  4. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

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    Works fine at 50, just develop in a bit less time (15-20%) than what you would at box. Both are nice films, I like tmax a bit better though.
     
  5. CPorter

    CPorter Member

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    I think it does matter a bit to what density range film is developed for a scanning workflow versus darkroom printing, but I'm not up on that part of it. I have an established time for shooting TMX at EI50 when I am planning for N-3 development with hc-110 (1:119), but that is the only time I expose TMX at that rating. With t-grain films, I'm of the opinion that 1/3 stop increments can be important as opposed to traditional grain films like tri-x, it is a well known fact that t-grain films are more sensitive to exposure and processing inconsistencies, just something to think about.

    Chuck
     
  6. MartinCrabtree

    MartinCrabtree Member

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    I use a Weston Master II meter so use an EI of 80 with either. Agrees with my in camera meter within 1/3 stop and turns out well enough for me.
     
  7. grobbit

    grobbit Member

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    I rate all my films at half box speed than develop in Microdol-X 1:3, time is reduced by 15%. Gives very nice tonality I find. Not got any TMAX examples done this way but have a 100ft of TMAX 100 in the fridge so will be trying it fairly soon. This is how it works with FP4+, rated at 64, scanned on my Plustek 7600i. I find denser negatives scan best, and most of my best scans have been with negatives that would probably be too dense for printing well, so I also say err on the side of overexposure than under.
     

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  8. Ian C

    Ian C Member

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    If you wish to shoot an ASA 100 film using the apertures you like with ASA 50 film, simply install a 1-stop 0.3 neutral density filter.

    Depending on the maker’s practices, this might be marked “NDX2” (Hoya for example).
     
  9. Nicholas Lindan

    Nicholas Lindan Advertiser

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    FWIW, I prefer TMX-100 over Delta.

    The finest grain in a pictorial film is to be had with TMax-100 developed in Microdol-X (sadly no longer made, but Photographers' Formulary and Ilford make work-alikes [which I haven't tried, having a large stock of M-X...).

    I also like the idea of shooting wide open in the sunlight - I shoot Tech-Pan at f2.0 and 1/1000 for my version of 'Sunny-11' (we never get an f/16'th worth of sun in Cleveland). A medium-yellow or yellow-green filter will give a 1 stop decrease in film speed if you want to shoot TMX at ASA 50; the filter will also give better tone rendition.

    My experience is that TMX has about the same tolerance for overexposure as color negative film - you could probably expose it at ASA 12 and get printable negatives (that's printable, as opposed to optimum).

    TMX's huge tolerance to overexposure means it has no shoulder to speak of. This means that highlight density just goes up and up - and beyond the range of the paper when it comes time to make a print. The naive interpretation is that the film blocks highlights - but the truth is otherwise, the highlight detail isn't blocked but may require burning in. The resulting prints have lovely highlight detail but take a bit more work to make.

    Films with a shoulder compress the highlights. This means the negatives are easier to print and need less highlight burning. But it also means that the highlight detail you can get is all compressed. The shoulder in traditional films like Tri-X is the reason for the old split-grade adage to burn highlights with a #5 filter - the reason being an attempt to recover some of the compressed highlight detail. With TMax films there is no need to burn with a #5 as the detail isn't compressed.

    TMax films change contrast with over or under development much more quickly than traditional films. Following Kodak's directions isn't hard, though, and a 15 second variation won't make any difference that you can see. The only place this sensitivity comes into play is when developing for N- or N+ contrast when playing around with the Zone system - the development change for a one-zone contrast shift is about 10% as opposed to 15% for old-technology films. The same sensitivity holds with temperature, but a $9 digital cooking thermometer from Target will provide all the accuracy one could ever need for measuring developer temperature.
     
  10. grobbit

    grobbit Member

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    That's great info, cheers Nicholas. I'll soon be trying TMAX 100 shot at 50 in Microdol-X 1:3. I've got FP4 and FP4+ (I have a lot of both) dialled in with this method, but TMAX 100 sounds like it will be really nice in Microdol-X so I'll give it a try as soon as we get some light here.
     
  11. andrew.roos

    andrew.roos Subscriber

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    I quite often shoot D100 at ISO 50. It works fine, you just develop normally.

    D100 has a straight-line region that extends from about 3 stops below nominal exposure for ISO 100, to about 7 stops above. So if you shoot it at ISO 50 you gain a stop on the low side and lose a stop on the high side, giving you a straight-line region from about 4 stops below nominal (at ISO 50) to 6 stops above. This gives you more protection against blocked shadows, provided you don't have any extreme highlights to worry about.

    My only concern would be if you have bright highlights or over-expose, you might find the negative density exceeds the Dmax of your scanner. I have no practical experience of this as I print in the darkroom.
     
  12. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    Really depends on your developer. But the way I do it, Delta 100 has quite a long toe, and I like most
    of the exposure on the relatively straight line part of the curve; so I rate it at 50. TMX on the other hand
    has quite a bit of contrast not only overall, but way down into the shadows, with relatively little toes;
    and it's a film that can block up in the highlights under extreme brightness range, so I expose it at 100,
    just as mfg rated. These two films might have similarites in grain, but not in curve shape. They are very
    different animals in that respect.
     
  13. RidingWaves

    RidingWaves Member

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    If you're planning on shooting in Bright Light, don't overlook Microdol-X 1:0, if you don't mind a slight softening of grain. It has a nice effect on strong highlights for Tmax 100, like Panatomic-X IMO.
     
  14. RallyFan

    RallyFan Member

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    Thanks all, some great info in here. I should have mentioned that I'm shooting with a Leica IIIf using a 5cm Elmar. The options for using a filter are rather slim and expensive, so I've ruled that out for now. I do have a CV 35 as well, so maybe I should just find a 35mm viewfinder so I can use that with filters. I may have to research Microdol-X/Perceptol...etc. I do plan on shooting a few rolls this weekend as we are expecting about 2 feet of snow Friday night, so come Saturday afternoon when the suns out, my scenes will be more than bright!
     
  15. Michael R 1974

    Michael R 1974 Subscriber

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    Forget about Microdol(-X), Perceptol etc with TMax 100 or Delta 100. You'll gain nothing there. Use what you're using, or use a general purpose developer like D-76 or XTOL, Ilford DDX etc.