How Do You Tell If Color Paper is Fogged?

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by RedSun, Nov 10, 2012.

  1. RedSun

    RedSun Member

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    How Do You Tell If Color Paper is Fogged? Color shift and low contrast? Any difference between Kodak and Fuji on this?

    How about the paper is too old?
     
  2. Bob-D659

    Bob-D659 Member

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    White light turns Kodak colour paper very red with a small light leak, amazing how little it takes reflecting thru the fill pipe on a beseler drum. :sad:

    No personal experience what old age does to RA4 paper, but I remember reading here that the whites aren't anymore, more yellowish.
     
  3. RedSun

    RedSun Member

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    How old is considered old? More than 10 years? Or shorter, like 5 years? I think most of the paper is stored in room temperature, not frozen.
    It is also amazing the most of the papers do not have expiration date on.

    For comparison, some of the Kodak BW papers have light sensitive materials in the paper. When the pager is old, it turns into grey by itself. Not sure if any color papers behave like that.
     
  4. Bob-D659

    Bob-D659 Member

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    Some b&w paper incorporate developers that accelerate the fog in the paper, all wet process papers are light sensitive. :smile:

    Edit: some process chemical vapours will fog paper as well, so be careful.
     
  5. RedSun

    RedSun Member

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    I had some original Kodak Polycontrast that is still good after 35 years. But some much newer Polycontrast III is flogged like no tomorrow, even totally sealed.

    So for the color paper, if the printed paper has white borders and no strange line or abnormal color, then it is safe to say that it is not fogged or too old?
     
  6. Bob-D659

    Bob-D659 Member

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    That pretty much sums it up, the best test is a print of a colour checker card. If you have close matches on the colours you are good to go.
     
  7. polyglot

    polyglot Member

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    If there are white borders and no visible effects, then do you care? It might have lost a little of the Dmin and newer papers certainly have a brighter Dmin, but the real question is whether it meets your requirements - even if the paper is fresh it may not, or vice-versa.

    You could do an A/B comparison of a print against some fresh paper and see if you're happy that the quality is close enough. Note though that different papers have (deliberately) different contrasts; Portra Endura will be lower contrast than Supra Endura or Crystal Archive.
     
  8. RedSun

    RedSun Member

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    Well, this is the dilemma I'm facing. This paper (P III) was made about 4-5 years ago. It came still sealed, along with Super C, same age. The Super C gives very good results, but the P III is very flat and colors are dull no matter what color balance I change. There is no way I can compare it with the current paper since the new paper (P) was re-designed.

    The test prints are all clean with white borders. It does not show that the paper is fogged. But the low contrast and dull color make me think the paper has aged (age-fogged). I just do not know if 4-5 year paper can be aged that bad if stored in normal room condition.

    I'll probably put aside the paper I can't get it work and spend more time on the "good" papers.
     
  9. polyglot

    polyglot Member

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    Since it doesn't look like you want it to, don't use it! Use the Super C instead if that's what you like.

    You might find another subject that calls for the flatter look later, or maybe not.
     
  10. newcan1

    newcan1 Subscriber

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    Try adding 10ml/L of hydrogen peroxide solution (the stuff you can buy in the drug store) to the developer. It should increase contrast, but it will also raise base fog and may require shorter exposures. Don't get mad at me if it doesn't work! But I have increased contrast of RA4 papers successfully this way in the past.
     
  11. Donbko

    Donbko Member

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    The first thing is to create sure your darkroom is totally without any light. Before you use it, check your darkroom for lighting style issues.Turn off all mild style, such as the safe light, and sit in your darkroom for an occasion. It may take up to 10 minutes....and further so on...
     
  12. stefan4u

    stefan4u Member

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    My older color paper does lack clean whites, there is a slight amber touch, but overall behavior and contrast is OK.
    Up to a certain degree you can compensate the aging/staining/fogging a bit through slightly decreased development time / decreased temp. in conjunction with slight overexposure. If this will not help enough I consider my paper as “gone”…

    Maybe 2 more ways to explore,
    You may add some benzoetriazole to the color developer, this is not very common in color chemistry and will force you to adapt filtration and exposure a bit. Overall Contrast may suffer too. But actually this is the way DIR couplers in color negative film are working; they are releasing benzoetriazole (or analoges) during development to decrease D.max selective in the higher densities.

    Low doses of sulfite will reduce color coupling / contrast too

    These variants are considering only slightly higher D.min /amber touch/staining in unexposed regions of color paper, which other wiles shows still good contrast and color reproduction. If fogged by light or mistreated by wrong storing temperature this will not help…

    Regards, Stefan
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2012
  13. RedSun

    RedSun Member

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    Attached is the test print with the paper I struggle with.

    Enlarger: Saunders 4550
    Schneider Componon-S F2.8 55mm stop at F11
    Fuji PIII paper, probably 4 years old
    RA-4 chemicals are good, tested with Fuji Super C paper
    Filter setting: 57Y/22M.
    Exposure time 25/20/15 seconds
    Old Kodak film (gold or max?)
    8x10 enlarging from 35mm

    I'm not sure if the print quality is acceptable. To me, the contrast is still too low. Colors get much better. The exposure time is very long. With my Fuji Super C paper, the exposure time is 16 seconds at F16 stop.

    img018.jpg

    Is this paper good? or the images say the paper is too old?
     
  14. Bob-D659

    Bob-D659 Member

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    I'd open up a stop and try 13 seconds, you might have some motion blur and diffraction from using f11. Without seeing the real print, it's hard to tell if it has a problem or not, from the scan it looks halfway decent. I try to keep exposures around 8-12 sec, even replacing the 250w bulb wit an 80 w one for small prints.