In a world without Tri-X...

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by rubyfalls, Dec 4, 2013.

  1. rubyfalls

    rubyfalls Member

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    So, I had a bit of a panic today. None of my usual sources had Tri-X 120 in stock. NONE. Normally, I'd be all zen and just wait for it to be available, but I actually need it by the 19th. Eventually I did find it, for more than I'd prefer, but those in need have to take what they can get. But I did ponder what I would have used instead.

    My first thought was T-Max. But while I like T-Max for certain things, it would not have given me the look I wanted. At least, not the way I normally shoot it. I've only used Ilford and Kodak BNW film; maybe I'm missing out?

    What would you use if you wanted to use Tri-X but couldn't? Would you change how you shot or developed?


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  2. Shawn Dougherty

    Shawn Dougherty Member

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    I would learn to rough up T-Max 400 a bit, or maybe HP5+ would be better. I'm sure you could get pretty close but you would certainly need to change your exposure/development routine to get there.
     
  3. winger

    winger Subscriber

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    I would likely use HP5+. It isn't exactly the same, but it's a little closer, imo, than TMax. Though I do like TMax, too. I just think there's a little more space for being slightly "wrong" with exposure with HP5+ and Tri-X as compared to the TMax and Delta lines.
    While I'm sure this sounds like heresy to many, I'm usually trying to get a "look" based more on the subject and lighting than on any small differences between types of film. Once it's hanging on the wall, I doubt many people will be able to tell what I used.
     
  4. brian steinberger

    brian steinberger Member

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    HP5. I'd also assume in this situation that if Tri-x were unavailable then Tmax would be as we'll. HP5 is a fantastic film, I prefer it to Tri-x. I have a feeling that may be a reality too soon with the way kodak is going.
     
  5. Chris Lange

    Chris Lange Member

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    HP5+ in a heartbeat. I use them interchangeably already, so it wouldn't be the end of the world.
     
  6. pstake

    pstake Member

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    It would be at least similar to the end of the world!
     
  7. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    B&H photo always has it in stock and you can easily order it and have it by the 19th at a more than decent price.
     
  8. BradS

    BradS Subscriber

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    Ilford HP5+ is a nice film but, to my mind it is nothing at all like Tri-X!
    Faced with the inability to buy Tri-X, I'd go for Ilford FP4+
     
  9. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    ditto
     
  10. jp498

    jp498 Member

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    What are you shooting?

    For people, the spectral sensitivity of tmax400 is different than tri-x and could be a bit different, but not insurmountable.

    For landscape, I've seen many Tri-x photos that seem fairly interchangable with tmax 400.

    I keep a stockpile of what I need for film. Your credit card might get stolen and you wouldn't be able to order, you could have a financial emergency and not be able to buy film. There could a be a storm or natural disaster or terror event preventing shipping.
     
  11. Dr Croubie

    Dr Croubie Member

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    That's also my excuse for when the missus can't fit any shopping in the freezer, "but honey, I NEED those 50 rolls of bulk-loaded 135 TXP, those 15 rolls in 120, and that pack of 50 sheets". If it were gone for good, I'd just use up what I've got and move to HP5 and TMY, I'm not so picky about 'tones' as others, I just shoot the stuff.
     
  12. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    You have to imagine the voice guy from movie previews: "in a world...
     
  13. rubyfalls

    rubyfalls Member

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    Aha! I've never used FP4 - I need to give that a shot.

    And for the many recommendations for HP5+, thank you for reminding me of it. It was my go-to film before I betrothed myself to Tri-X. Typically, I use Delta for 'softer' portraits and Tri-X when i want things to be more stark.

    In this case, I am shooting some women who want a sort of 70s edgy dark and sexy kind of feel, so then plan is to shoot with both Tri-X and Delta 3200. The Delta is for my own learning; inspired by the posts on my other thread on shooting it with a mamiya 645 pro.


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  15. rubyfalls

    rubyfalls Member

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    I should also add that I am NOT a pro and have no aspirations to such. I just like taking pictures of people/things and love everything about film and film cameras.


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  16. NedL

    NedL Subscriber

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    This is what I was thinking too. I would be sad to see Tri-X in 120 disappear.
     
  17. Axle

    Axle Member

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  18. Chris Lange

    Chris Lange Member

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    Don't get me wrong by my earlier comments about it not being the end of the world, 120 Tri-X is by far my most used medium format film, I would be sad if I couldn't get it, but it wouldn't stop me from making pictures.
     
  19. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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  20. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    Same here. I have a stash of TMY at home thanks to a generous friend, but normally when I can't find Tri-X I use HP5+, and the resulting prints are definitely very similar, to the point that I look at prints from both Tri-X and HP5+ and it doesn't even enter my mind to think about what film it is.
     
  21. Dinesh

    Dinesh Subscriber

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    I think the OP was looking for 120
     
  22. Chris Lange

    Chris Lange Member

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    Unique in NJ also stocks it for less than 5 bucks a roll in 120.
     
  23. jwd722

    jwd722 Member

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    At present I have 6 cameras loaded with Tri-X, 3 with 35mm and 3 with 120. In the last 45 years I have used it exclusively except for a few times that I tried T-Max and XP2 (literally a FEW times).
    In a world without Tri-X I guess I would go all digital!!!
    (please don't hate me)
     
  24. momus

    momus Member

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    I'm surprised that you couldn't find Tri-X film. A quick check shows that it's available at Freestyle in 100' rolls for 35mm, in 24 and 36 exposure for 35mm rolls, and in 120 format. Great prices too. I like HP5, and it looks fine in Acufine and D76. While the negs look different than Tri-X, the prints are close enough. Tri-X is such a wonderful film that I'm sure someone will continue to make it even if Kodak goes away. Kodak could sell that formula for a ton of money.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 4, 2013
  25. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    Yes! My mistake! (I actually knew he was looking for 120 but I thought arista premium was only NOT available in sheets, my mistake.

    Either way you can still get Tri-X there.
     
  26. rubyfalls

    rubyfalls Member

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    Thanks for the sources! I'm still learning and discovering. I hit the big A first (because I needed developer, too), they and the other big A were out. I ended up buying from a cam store out of California via the 'Bay. But more sources = more stock.

    Funny, I almost solely use HP5 in my yashica mat 124g, though I pretty much stick to delta 100 in the rolliecord. I don't know why, it just feels right with those old gentlemen.

    But yes, looking for 120; 35mm isn't a problem - I have 25+ rolls of tri-x hoarded away. And not that it matters, but I am actually a lady. Though my horrible language might say otherwise. And I certainly don't mind being taken for a dude.


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