Is Emaks Slow To Develop?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by dancqu, Jun 24, 2008.

  1. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    For some time I've thought I was giving Emaks FB Glossy
    plenty of time to fully develop. I've lately experimented with
    contrast control through shorter exposures and longer development.
    Now I've found with normal exposures increased density is quite
    evident up to at least 100% more development.

    Short or long exposures, short or longer development, blacks
    have been very good. What's the answer? Dan
     
  2. Neal

    Neal Subscriber

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    Dear Dan,

    You are not alone in this observation. There was an article in the May/June 2004 View Camera magazine comparing multiple papers and developers using developing times ranging from 2 to 6 minutes. Some combinations required the full 6 minutes before it met the author's approval. I think these were his personal visual observations rather than using a densitometer or even a scanner, but I'm confident they are legitimate.

    Neal Wydra
     
  3. edtbjon

    edtbjon Member

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    Yes, Emacs is kind of "special" and very old-fashioned. Apart from the difference in between production runs, you've ran into another peculiarity. Once you find the receipe though, the results can be very good indeed. In general these papers are at their best when you want good separation in the shadows, which you seem to have noticed.
    But again, the next box of papers can respond in a different way... Emacs paper used to cost substancially less than e.g. Ilford paper, but some of that money had to be used to get on track again when buying a new box of papers.

    //Björn
     
  4. Chris Breitenstein

    Chris Breitenstein Member

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    I use Emaks grade 2 in Ansco 130. I find that 2-2 1/2 minutes is more then enough development time.
     
  5. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    My findings may be due to the metol only developer I've been
    using; Beer's 1. Ansco 120 is a same developer. The two may
    be slow with any paper because the metol is not regenerated.
    Hydroquinone though does regenerate metol and does it in
    situ. I'd think that could only work to speed development.
    Glycin may also regenerate metol.

    Beer's is similar to A. Adam's split version of Ansco 130.
    Both, with the addition of hydroquinone, allow for contrast
    control. I'll need to test with one of the blends to verify
    my theory. Dan
     
  6. Neal

    Neal Subscriber

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    Dear Dan,

    Your abilities with Chemistry are well beyond mine! I wish you success in your endeavors.

    Neal Wydra
     
  7. mmcclellan

    mmcclellan Subscriber

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    I love this paper and use it all the time. My standard developing time is 3 minutes (2 for almost all others) and I sometimes split that between Selectol-Soft and Zone VI Developer. Since that is my standard, all the testing is done with that time, so I seldom if ever find I need to go beyond that.

    It's truly wonderful paper, though!
     
  8. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    I wonder what you'd find if two exposed
    the same prints were given 3 and 5 minute
    development. I suspect you have made some
    similar test. Has the additional development
    time made any difference? Dan
     
  9. Richard Jepsen

    Richard Jepsen Member

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    Emaks is 2x faster than Forte Polywarmtone Plus if you are discussing projection speed. Tray speed is similar to most other non developer incorporated papers. Two to three min should fully develop the paper tones with LPD, Dektol, or Ilford PQ. Any fiber paper takes about 40s for the entire faint image to appear on the paper.

    This is an outstanding paper even if graded. I working around contrast issues by alternating between a condenser and dichro head using grade 2 and 3 without relying on a normal/soft paper developer to control contrast. I appreciate the rich blacks, separated mid-tones, and ability to tone to a light grey brown or cooler print color.
     
  10. Sparky

    Sparky Member

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    SINCE it's graded you mean...? Okay- I'm a graded paper snob... despite popular opinion - I find I get much greater depth and 'snap' out of graded papers - even compared to the most recent species of multigrade papers. Maybe I'm alone in this.
     
  11. Sparky

    Sparky Member

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    I did JUST that last night. Purely by happenstance, though. And I found I got warmer print color and about 1/3 grade more contrast going for about 5 mins. These are only preliminary observations though and it was hardly a 'controlled' test. I'm looking at my dried tests today and trying to figure out what to make of it. It's no surprise that you get increased density out of a longer dev time. Graded papers (and multis for the most part) always have responded this way... but graded ones more so. Anwyay- I'm going to get to the bottom of this mystery tonight hopefully and I'll let you people know what I find. The warmer print color kind of surprised me though.
     
  12. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    So increased density as well. Which developer at what
    strength and which Grade of paper? Dan
     
  13. Sparky

    Sparky Member

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    Well - you'll ALWAYS get increased density beyond a few minutes with ANY paper, in my experience. But with that can come fogging too. At any rate - I was just using dektol since my ansco 130 is shot. It's grade 3. I'm not sure about those results now... I tried to replicate - it's very odd really. It could have been the one that was developed for shorter time. They're a slightly different color though just a BIT - but it could WELL be due to turning the lights on too early into the fix...
     
  14. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    Just checked back on an article by Phil Davis which he
    wrote for D-Max. He was testing some Forte papers. Papers
    reached a D-Max with 45 seconds development within areas
    of greatest exposure. That agrees with my results as per
    a earlier post. With less exposure D-Max is achieved
    but with more time in the developer. He went as
    far as 180 seconds. My results agree.

    The up-shot of all that is contrast control by using least
    exposure for desired greatest density coupled with extended
    development. Visa-versa for lower contrast; longer exposures
    and shorter development. Phil settled for 90 seconds as results
    were very near maximum contrast.

    Save for achieving maximum contrast, over expose and pull
    process. That is, do not develop to completion. Dan
     
  15. Sparky

    Sparky Member

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    Right - well it gets you on the straight line of the curve. Otherwise you start riding up on the shoulder and getting blocked up shadows again...
     
  16. Richard Jepsen

    Richard Jepsen Member

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    My intended message is graded paper is not as flexible as VC. However, because of Emaks rich tonality, tone, and resistance to curl, I find I am using Emaks more and more. Great paper.
     
  17. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    I take it you are speaking of pull processing. I've pretty
    much come to the conclusion that developing to completion
    is a myth. I'm quite certain that those using 2 to 3 minute
    processing would find their prints very noticeably shy of
    being developed to completion.

    The amount of time to completion depends upon the
    developer and paper. Exposure is not a factor because
    to completion means the development of all image silver.
    For any one combination, development to completion is
    some fixed time prior to the formation of fog.

    Few I'd say have actually tested to completion any
    specific paper/chemistry combinations. I've only
    recently gotten down to it myself. Dan
     
  18. Richard Jepsen

    Richard Jepsen Member

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    David Vestal's, The Craft of Photography, ISBN 0-06-014497-1, wrote when using extended development one can both increased or decrease contrast by one grade with cold/neutral papers. He used Kodak D-72 & GAF 120 paper developer with Kodak, Dupont and Agfa papers. He wrote on page 248 - 250 that water quality affected outcomes. He recommended exposure compensation as all tones slide darker throughout long developments. A rule of thumb is to give 20 percent less exposure for a 5 min development vs a 2 min one and 20 percent less for a 10 min development vs 5. He recommended fresh developer, clean trays, and low fog paper. He wrote extended print development lowered contrast using NYC water and raised contrast in other locations. I think Richard Henry in his book disagreed that contrast increased significantly using the technique. I'm somewhat of a skeptic that a slight alkalinity of the water used to mix paper developer can make that much difference. I don't use the technique so I can't speak from actual experience.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 30, 2008
  19. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    RJ, that reference to Mr. Vestal is another example of some
    experienced fellow doing some testing and observing results.

    This specific case is of the most elementary sort dealing with
    exposure time and development time then noting the results.
    Any darkroom worker's short session. I know Mr. Vestal is a
    Much experienced fellow. How much though should we rely
    on other's for assurance? Have we no belief in what our
    own eyes tell us?

    I digress. I've run a couple tests of the nature above mentioned
    and find that extended development can, from at least one
    Currently available paper, Emaks, reduce exposure by at
    least one third and perhaps by as much as half.

    Now that I've the matter well in mind more tests with more
    exact results are in order. I may even mount my step wedge
    for some ballpark contrast comparisons. Dan
     
  20. Richard Jepsen

    Richard Jepsen Member

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    I've re-read Dr.Richard Henry's, Controls In Black-And-White Photography (1983) and Vestal's book. Richard Henry used scientific methods to challenge statements regarded as gospel. He refuted Vestals claim about alkalinity in water affecting print contrast.

    He writes that Adams and Looten agree that increasing the time of development produces an increase in contrast and decreasing time of development lowers contrast. Henry claims any increase in the contrast by extending development was small. He goes on to discuss apparent contrast to the human eye. He tested real prints with people but mentions the viewers were equating increase contrast with darkening of all picture areas which does not fit the definition on contrast used by photographers.

    He wrote you can compensate within certain limits for underexposure by increasing print development times. The RD increased from 1.74 for 1 min to 1.97 for 8 min, an increase of 13%. Over a span of 8 to 18 sec exposure, a 2-fold variation, he could compensate the print RDs.

    If I read this right, he agrees contrast was increased with the materials he used at the time but the increase is somewhat small. On the other hand there was the sentence about apparent contrast.

    Next time I'm in the darkroom I will try it again. The tired the technique once with Gallerie I got poor results. Now I switch between light sources and tone for contrast control. I'm happy so far with the results.
     
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  21. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    The Phil Davis example I earlier mentioned reached
    Maximum density within 45 seconds. Additional time
    in the developer did not produce any greater density.
    It did though increase the contrast. Looking at the
    curves he has plotted I'd estimate a half grade
    +/- increase in contrast.

    From reading posts this thread Emaks develops more
    slowly than some other papers. Likely not so slow as
    was thought having in mind developing to completion.
    As Sparky has mentioned additional development will
    ALWAYS increase density and push shadow areas
    over the shoulder.

    I wonder, does any one develop to completion? Have
    I missed the meaning of the term? Often I read the
    dictum, prints are "developed to completion" Dan
     
  22. Richard Jepsen

    Richard Jepsen Member

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    Develop to completion may be a squishy word but I understand it to mean the time to produce a nearly max black and full range of available tones. That is my normal practice.

    I enjoy sticking my nose in old photography books. With the passage of time and change in materials, dated info gets mentioned on the web which had it's source in older publications. Knowing that, I still point readers to references so they can read for themselves. David Vestal wrote two authoritative books not void of errors. Regardless, David was a great contributor in Popular Photography 35 years ago and still writes for Photo Techniques.

    David Vestal posed this question in his book, The Art of Black & White Enlarging. "Does developing the print longer make it richer?" Quote, "Some say so, I've (Vestal) said so myself. But I never tested it objectively before." He went on to develop step tables for 2, 5, and 10 min. Too many of the 10 min tests were stained and he dropped them from further testing. He measured the useful range of tones in each step table print. The useful range (his term) is an approximation of the tones that can be seen distinctly in prints, not getting lost in blackness or whiteness. His conclusion is that the average gain was less than 1 percent and that prolonged print development made no difference in richness that you'd notice.

    Richard Henry and Vestal both mention that seldom does adjusting developer dilution control contrast if you let the paper develop to completion. Different print developers (high/low energy) are effective in changing contrast. If you develop for less than 60s it is difficult to achieve uniform development.

    From reading it appears there is a slight bump in contast with under exposure and over development. I'm reasonably sure the enlarger light source produces a larger contrast shift. Below is one Vestal quote and paraphrase on printing.

    "To get a good print, you first need a picture that deserves one - a picture that's visually alive in some way that can reward a viewer. Most good pictures have fixable faults, and we should make all necessary repairs; but avoid repairs that kill the picture. "

    When a paper fits the picture - technically in contrast behavior and tone range; esthetically, in color, surface, and tones - the printing is excellent and nearly effortless.

    I like the part about effortless.
     
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  23. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    [QUOTES=Richard Jepsen;649774]
    "Develop to completion may be a squishy word but
    I understand it to mean the time to produce a nearly
    max black and full range of available tones.
    That is my normal practice."

    Undefined. Phil Davis would not agree as near Max Contrast
    was his end point; the 90 second development, 180 seconds
    producing very little more. The 45 second development did
    though produce the same Max Black.

    "Richard Henry and Vestal both mention that seldom does
    adjusting developer dilution control contrast if you let the paper
    develop to completion. Different print developers (high/low energy)
    are effective in changing contrast."

    And a good thing as I use developers very dilute. As for
    energy levels I believe the reference is to those developers
    which incorporate hydroquinone or other agents activated at
    high ph and share hydroquinones disproportionate reducing
    characteristic.

    "To get a good print, you first need a picture that deserves one
    - a picture that's visually alive in some way that can reward a
    viewer. Most good pictures have fixable faults, and we
    should make all necessary repairs; but avoid repairs
    that kill the picture."

    "When a paper fits the picture - technically in contrast behavior
    and tone range; esthetically, in color, surface, and tones - the
    printing is excellent and nearly effortless."

    "I like the part about effortless."

    The article; The Non Cosmetic Print if I recall correctly. Dan