Fuji Acros in XTOL 1+1 vs. Beutler or Rodinal

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by ath, Aug 27, 2011.

  1. ath

    ath Member

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    Hello,

    since years I'm developing Fuji Acros in XTOL 1+1 and am quite satisfied. From time to time I wonder If I could get a bit more sharpness without sacrificing (too much) grain.
    I did a test and developed Acros in XTOL 1+3 but a side by side comparison showed (edit: nearly) no sharpness improvement. I think this is due to the fact that Acros itself is quite sharp and there is not much room left for improvement by development.

    Having Rodinal and Beutler at hand I wonder if its worth to try them with Acros. Or will I waste my time?

    FWIW I'm talking about 35mm enlarged to 30*40cm, i.e. magnification ca. 12.
    I'm pretty sure that my camera / enlarger are not the limiting factors here.
     
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  2. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    I tend to use Rodinal and Acros in medium format, but I haven't used it in 35mm....I like grain in 35mm! You are definitely not wasting your time using Rodinal. I feel I get more apparent sharpness with Rodinal than xtol (my other developer). I have zero experience with Buetler.
     
  3. ath

    ath Member

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    Mark, thanks. How do you develop Acros in Rodinal and what contrast do you aim at?
     
  4. dpurdy

    dpurdy Member

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    I use 120 ACROS and my main processes are XTOL, Beutlers, Rodinal and Pyrocat HD. I use XTOL usually straight. My personal subjective aesthetic feelings about the different combos goes...
    with XTOL... very clean clear and the best for studio portraits
    With Rodinal Very sharp with beautifully glowing highlights.
    With Beutlers Very sharp, noticeably sharper, but with a tendency to look at bit grey and flat.. I often use bleach when printing.
    With PyrocatHD long scale open mid tones and a bit muggy in the highlights.
    That said, to me the difference between any of them is very subtle and doing side by side comparisons I have to write on the backs of the prints to remember which is which. My go to developer right now is Pyrocat only because I have about a lifetime supply and it is very cheap. Beutlers is also very cheap and easy. I have the sense deservedly or not that Rodinal gives me less shadow detail but the best of all for whites. And Xtol looks really good but I have a hard time ascribing any special quality to it.
    Dennis
     
  5. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    My parameters are: Rodinal 1:1 for Acros at EI80. 12 minutes with a few inversions every minute and I get negs that print well (mostly) at grade 3 on a diffusion enlarger.
     
  6. abate cruento

    abate cruento Member

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    i don't think you'll waste your time: may be you can find a good alternative to xtol :wink:
    i've used beutler, but mainly with fomapan 100 in 120 format and i really like the result: crisp and clear. i don't know how the developer will respond with the T-grain technology as foma is a classic emulsion
     
  7. brofkand

    brofkand Member

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    I love Acros with Rodinal. I believe I go 1:25 at around 7 minutes? I'll dig up my notes and see.

    Acros is excellent film. Fine grain, dries flat, clear base.

    Mark, are you sure you use Rodinal 1:1 or did you mean XTOL?
     
  8. Jerevan

    Jerevan Subscriber

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    I think there is merit in trying Rodinal, especially with a fine grain film such as Acros or Tmax. I did Tmax and Rodinal during a period in the beginning of my developing career, but it wasn't the easiest of combos for a newbie with totally uncalibrated process regimen. :smile:
     
  9. ath

    ath Member

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    Well I did a quick test, shot a UASF1951 chart and developed in XTOL 1+1, Beutler and Rodinal 1+50. I hope to find time in the next days to make the test prints.
     
  10. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    sorry ....rodinal 50:1!
     
  11. Tony-S

    Tony-S Member

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    Edit: Doh! I just saw your post above mine.

    Is this really what you mean? I've never head of Rodinal used undiluted (or 1+1 if that's what you mean). I've never seen anything more concentrated than 1:25.
     
  12. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    sorry, I made the correction in an earlier post...1:50
     
  13. rince

    rince Subscriber

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    I actually use D-76 1:1 with Acros 100 and I am very happy with the results.
     
  14. ath

    ath Member

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    OK, here are the first preliminary results. I printed test strips at a magnification of 12 (ca. 30*40cm from 35mm). The Beutler film strip had a bit lower contrast and I compensated this by adapting the paper contrast. Not ideal, I know.

    Beutler shows a bit more resolution than Rodinal and XTOL 1+1 (one step in the USAF chart). Rodinal is visibly grainier, XTOL and Beutler roughly the same. Rodinal looks slightly sharper than XTOL, Beutler maybe even a bit more but looks (due to the finer grain) cleaner.

    All in all the differences in grain (except Rodinal) and sharpness are subtle and one has to examine a 30*40 print quite close to see the difference.

    Rodinal had 22°C during development which is counterproductive for fine grain. Other people report that Rodinal at 16°C gives visibly finer grain but not at the level of D76 and friends.
     
  15. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    Not to hijack but can anyone explain the reason that rodinal gives finer grain at slightly lower temps?
    I've seen this mentioned several times and am curious.