Looking for a new FB paper

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Owen Rocosky, Aug 18, 2013.

  1. Owen Rocosky

    Owen Rocosky Member

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    Hey everyone, I havn't been in the darkroom for a long time and I have missed it so! I am looking for a new B&W FB paper to print on.
    I am open to all recommendations, though I am more interested in neutraltone or coldtone. Anything with a great tonal range is of course optimal. Also cheap is nice, but I would rather pay more if it is a better paper. I am not so interested in glossy either. Any ideas?
     
  2. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    Ilford MGIV.
     
  3. pstake

    pstake Member

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    +1

    Ilford MGIV, to me, is like a staple of photography. Not exotic and therefore sometimes overlooked.

    But I think you'd have a hard time finding any paper at any price with more dynamic range nor as consistent of results as MGIV.

    Its only drawback is that it doesn't Lith but Ilford Warmtone does.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 18, 2013
  4. brian steinberger

    brian steinberger Member

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    Ilford MGIV.
     
  5. Jesper

    Jesper Subscriber

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    Adox MCC 110
     
  6. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    +1 for Adox MCC 110. It is an outstanding paper with a great look and feel all around.
     
  7. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    My vote also goes for Ilford MGIV. It is incredibly consistent paper, is available in many places at a reasonable cost, and is not likely to disappear any time soon.
    The only disadvantages I think Ilford MGIV has is that in most developers it gives a tiny hint of a green warm shadow color, and the shadows are not as well defined as other papers out there. It's not that big of a deal either of them, the green tone disappears almost immediately with selenium toning, but the shadows, well they are what they are.

    Adox MCC 110 is a little bit more open in the shadows, for better or worse. It's a great paper, and I have nothing bad to say about ADOX as a company either.
    It's just that Ilford is Ilford, and they have been such reliable partners over the years, especially with product stability.

    Both papers are fine. You may also wish to look at the Foma range of papers. The Fomabrom 111 (glossy) and 112 (matte) are fine papers. A bit more muted tones than either the Ilford or the ADOX, but that just means you need a bit more negative contrast to begin with, and you are similar starting points. Base is warmer than ADOX and Ilford too.
     
  8. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    My vote is for Ilford Warmtone , its not as warm as one would expect , IMO the best paper out there.
     
  9. Shawn Dougherty

    Shawn Dougherty Member

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    I second that. If you minimize washing times (just what is necessary to keep things archival) it will help keep the paper "cooler".
     
  10. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    Very true; I noticed that too, about it being quite a bit less warm than I had expected. Beautiful paper, for sure.
     
  11. miha

    miha Member

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    Nothing beats Multigrade FB matt (5K) if you like dead matt surface. It's my favorite paper for the surface alone.
     
  12. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    Just some thoughts:

    1. MGWT, while not all-out brown warm, is still warm, not really "neutral"
    2. Re the Adox MCC 110 recommendations, isn't it only available in glossy? Furthermore the glossy sheen was slightly more glossy than MGIV (at least in the batch I tested). It is also said to be on the slightly warm side of neutral (untoned).

    All things considered I'd still say MGIV is the best bet. An alternative might be Oriental VC-FB II, which is neutral but tones more cool-purple in Selenium than MGIV in my experience (although the purple colour is not necessarily viewed as cold the way blue-black is). As far as I remember it is cheaper than Ilford. At least one reliable source told me it was made by Ilford. I can't confirm that either way.
     
  13. brian steinberger

    brian steinberger Member

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    The more I use MGIV the more I've grown to like it as my all around paper. I can achieve wonderful cool neutral prints with selenium, beautiful split tones with sepia/selenium, and nice brownish sepia tones over the entire tonal range by indirect polysulfide toning (similar look to direct polysulfide toning on MGWT).

    One thing I haven't messed with yet is trying to persuade MGIV to split tone in selenium like MGWT. I heard it's possible with redevelopers, but I have yet to try! MGWT is beautiful split toned in selenium and direct toned in polysulfide, but for everything else I prefer MGIV