High speed film recomendations

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by analogfotog, May 31, 2007.

  1. analogfotog

    analogfotog Member

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    I request and require some input from the community on high speed films. My main film at this time is Agfapan 400, in both 35mm and 120 sizes. When my current supplies are exhaused, I will then be switching (back) to Ilford HP5 as my main film.

    I have next to zero experience with higher speed films. Yes, I know that I can "push" Agfa 400 or Ilford HP5 two or three stops, and have done so, with both films. What I am looking for is personal experience with the three current high speed films, Kodak TMAX 3200, Ilford Delta Pro 3200 and Fuji Neopan 1600. I currently use HC-110 and D-23 developers, and would like to stick with these two for the forseeable future.

    My main considerations are speed and sharpness; large grain is not a problem as far as I am concerned. I would value input from community members who have had experience with these films.
     
  2. fhovie

    fhovie Subscriber

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    My favorite is Delta 3200 - i shoot it at 3200 and develop it in Microphen. It does a decent job in medium format. More often than not though, I shoot TRI-X at 1600 and develop it in XTOL 1:3. - I get snappy contrast and great results
     
  3. David R Munson

    David R Munson Member

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    I have two favorite high-speed combos, the first of which may fit you perfectly.

    1. Tri-X 400 shot at EI 1600, developed in HC-110 Dilution B for 16 minutes at 68ºF.
    Example:
    [​IMG]
    2. Neopan 1600 at the stated EI in WD2D+ diluted 1.5:1:50, 7:15 at 72ºF.
    Example:
    [​IMG]
    I have successfully pushed HP5+ to 1600 using HC-110 as well, but don't have any notes on it any more and I recall I didn't stick with it as I liked the Tri-X combo better.
     
  4. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Member

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    I've used all three, and vastly prefer Delta for tonality. It's also the fastest, and grainiest, and probably sharpest -- certainly sharper than TMZ.

    Can't speak for the developers, but as Delta has the highest native speed (in speed-increasing developers, ISO 1250+, as against 1000 for TMZ and at best 800 for Neopan), I'd think that D23 should be acceptable at 1600.

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  5. eddym

    eddym Member

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    I shoot dance and theater photography using HP5+ up to 1600, processed in Ilfotec HC, 1:31, with excellent results. If I need more speed, I shoot Delta 3200 at 3200 to 6400, processed in DD-X. I've tried TMZ, but prefer the Delta for finer grain and better tonality.
     
  6. Doug Webb

    Doug Webb Member

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    I like Delta 3200 best of the 3 films. I like Delta 3200 best at 1600, and it is exceptionally nice at that speed for natural light portraits, but it can also be very nice at 3200. I have only used high speed films like these successfully in medium format size, don't like them much in 35mm. Can't help you with your developers but I don't see any reason why they would be a problem. I have only used Delta 3200 in Ilford's DDX and in XTOL. It would be hard to beat DDX developer for this film.
    Good luck,
    Doug Webb
     
  7. MikeSeb

    MikeSeb Member

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    Delta 3200 @ 1600 in Xtol straight

    This is my favorite hi-speed combo. Honestly, I find Delta 3200 at EI 1600 in Xtol 1+0 to have not much more grain than Tri-X in some developers, and beautiful tones. DD-X should also be a good choice for this film.
     
  8. DrPablo

    DrPablo Member

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    Has anyone tried Delta 3200 in PMK?
     
  9. fhovie

    fhovie Subscriber

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    If you are looking for speed - it is easier not to use a developer that costs you one stop from the get go - most of the gallol cetechol p-aminophenol or microdol-x will loose you speed before you begin your push. Microphen ACU-1 Diaphine and XTOL, D-76 type developers give faster film speed to begin with - they are a better choice for a push - I used XTOL for TRI-X(1600) and Microphen for Delta 3200 (3200)

     
  10. hywel

    hywel Member

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    I've only used Delta 3200 out of the three high speed films (if someone in town would like to start selling the other two I'd give them a try) and my, unscientific and ongoing, comparison is whether, when shooting at 1600, I should use the Delta 3200 or should push HP5.

    In 120 it's easy: use Delta 3200 (in ID11 or DDX). Sharp, details in all my shadows and, printed up to 11"x11", such unobtrusive grain that I have one print where I actually went back to check that it really was Delta 3200.

    In 35mm I think I'm going to give up on the Delta 3200 and push the HP5 in DDX instead. It's the grain, even at 5"x7" (which is no more of an enlargement than 120 to 11x11, I know, I can't explain), it's just so big for me that I'm looking at an "effect" not a picture. But if it isn't a problem for you... then the advantage I do see in the Delta 3200 is that for a given EI it is lower contrast than pushed HP5 so shooting in dark but contrasty light (stages and the like) I have a much easier time printing.

    One word of warning, perhaps it's just me metering optimistically but, I find Delta 3200 sometimes needs a little more development than Ilford recommends (using ID11/DDX).

    Hywel
     
  11. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Member

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    Dear Hywel,

    You are not alone. Many (including me) use the next dev time up, i.e. expose at 3200, dev for the recommended time for 6400.

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  12. mcgrattan

    mcgrattan Member

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    I've used and quite like all 3, however, I've had the most consistently good results from Delta 3200 in DD-X. Again, as with others, exposing at 3200 and developing for 6400.

    The grain level is surprisingly low, actually. I had some HP5 pushed 1 stop by my local mini-lab this week and it was grainer than Delta 3200 at 3200 in DD-X.
     
  13. fschifano

    fschifano Member

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    I don't know. I can't say anything about Neopan 1600; I've never used it. The other two biggies, Kodak TMZ and Ilford Delta 3200 are both good if used in a speed enhancing developer, which in my case is XTOL. The Ilford film has a smoother tonal range, but has what I call popcorn grain. Kodak's TMZ has sharper grain and a steeper contrast curve. It's up to you to decide which you like better, and the choice would be dependent upon the images you want to get. Of course, only Delta 3200 is available in medium format.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 1, 2007
  14. dynachrome

    dynachrome Member

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    High Speed b&w Films

    I like TMZ at either 1600 or 3200 in the following developers: Ilford Microphen - undiluted, Clayton F60 1:9, NACCO Super 76 1:4. TMZ has nice sharp grain and better shadow detail than pushed Tri-X or HP5+.
     
  15. DrPablo

    DrPablo Member

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    How about a post-development pyro bath then? I ask in part because of its ability to mask grain.
     
  16. Mark Antony

    Mark Antony Member

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    I like TMZ at 1600 or 3200.
    The shot below was at 3200 dev'd in T-Max developer.
    [​IMG]
    Quite nice smooth tones and shadow detail for a fast film.
    Mark
    http://photo-utopia.blogspot.com/
     
  17. DrPablo

    DrPablo Member

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    Delta 3200 at 12,800 looked very nice (on 6x6). It took 30 min in XTOL 1:1, but still very smooth tonality.

    Just a test shot:
    [​IMG]
     
  18. mcgrattan

    mcgrattan Member

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  19. copake_ham

    copake_ham Inactive

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    Wow!

    All of these shots are great - but I really like the light in the second one on the balustrades! :D

    Congrats!
     
  20. nworth

    nworth Subscriber

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    Choice of film seems to always lead to religious wars. My own choice, mostly for convenience, has been Kodak TMax P3200 (TMZ) at 1600. You can push TMZ all the way to 25000 if you really get desparate, but I think the quality drops significantly as you go beyond 1600. At 1600, the images are excellent. If you are going to do much high speed shooting, I suggest you shoot a few rolls of each of the 1600+ films and see which one fits your shooting and developing technique best.