PH212/150W or PH213/250W Bulb?

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by Phillip P. Dimor, Dec 29, 2008.

  1. Phillip P. Dimor

    Phillip P. Dimor Member

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    I spent an hour or so setting everything up, managed to make one test strip when my enlarger bulb finally gave up the ghost.

    I use an Omega D2 with medium condenser mostly, sometimes the 4x5 condenser. The bulb that i've been using (for 6+ years) is a PH212.

    I do print 35mm with this setup, but with the medium condenser and a 75mm lens. My times are longer. Generally my times are longer (I don't mind this usually).

    Stupid question, should I spring for the 213? I read someone that it's rated for 3 hours (3 hours!?) whereas the 212 is 100 hours.

    Anyone use a 213? Bad idea? Too hot? Too bright?
     
  2. Erik L

    Erik L Subscriber

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    Not sure, but you might end up with really short exposure times limiting your ability to dodge/burn effectively. My d5xl uses a 75w for normal printing but I sometimes put
    in a 300w for contact printing on slow papers, the housing gets hot with times over 45 seconds with the 300, cool to the touch with the 75. I'd stick to what is recommended
    on the condenser housings nameplate if it is noted. I don't know what's up with that 3 hour rating, seems kind of low but what do I know:smile:
    Erik
     
  3. Phillip P. Dimor

    Phillip P. Dimor Member

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    You know, that is good advice. And I do agree, 3 hours seems wrong and is probably an error on the particular website I saw.
    My nameplate recommends a PH211/75W. I think I'll just get what i've been using (PH212).
     
  4. Phillip P. Dimor

    Phillip P. Dimor Member

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    Ended up with another PH212 as that is what i've been using. The Omega DII head has a plaque on it which recommends the usage of a PH211. I like the extra light as my times are generally long.

    I bought the original bulb with the enlarger, 8+ years ago? It was used when I bought it.. To think of all the prints that came out of it.. I threw the enlarger in the back of a pickup truck and drove it home, years later I drove it down the east coast. Some bulb!
     
  5. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    My Omega Super Chromega D came with a 250W bulb, but it has a cooling fan and a voltage controller.

    Steve
     
  6. jfish

    jfish Member

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    Not sure if you referring to a post I made, but 3.5 hours is indeed the life of the 213 bulb. Most likely the 212 also. I even used to have a timer/chronograph wired into the bulb that kept track of the time, since I was printing series and if the bulb was getting close to half way age, I'd change it out so as to keep the time and contrast I'd decided on as accurate as possible. (you lose about 1 grade of contrast and about a stop of speed between a just gone out bulb and a new one). Anyway, the life is about 3.5 hours, and makes sense considering all the on and off the bulb is "exposed" to (pun intended). If you were to keep the bulb on continuously, you'd get about that 100 hours, but the on and off, especially when doing quickly between burns, the life expectancy drops considerably.

    Hope that helps.
     
  7. Phillip P. Dimor

    Phillip P. Dimor Member

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    Actually no, I had seen it on a website and figured since they listed the 211 as having a life of 100 hours it must be a mistake but what you say does make a lot of sense.

    As the bulb 'goes', you do notice a difference in the prints?
    I've noticed for a while that mine have needed more contrast. I had no idea! Then one day I was printing and saw the light 'flicker', which it never did before. I had a weird feeling and thought hey it's going to pop. It did, with the next exposure.

    Thanks for that!



     
  8. fschifano

    fschifano Member

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    I'd use the recommended lamp myself, and live with the long exposure times. The lamphouse is designed to dissipate the heat generated by the recommended lamp size. Running it with a higher wattage lamp means more heat that the lamp house cannot dissipate as efficiently. More heat = shorter lamp life. It's that simple.
     
  9. jfish

    jfish Member

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    Yes I noticed about a grade difference and about a stop slower from a just popped one to a new one. But I really noticed it about half way through the bulb's life...at 1.5 hours or so, and it was mostly the time as I could control the contrast with agitation.

    fschifano wrote: "More heat = shorter lamp life. It's that simple."

    Actually the life is shortened by the energy/electricity affecting the wire coil inside the bulb with it going on and off so much and not the heat. The heat inside a bulb stays pretty much the same once it is on.
     
  10. Terrence Brennan

    Terrence Brennan Member

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    I have a selection of lamps in my darkroom, PH211/75W, PH212/150W, and PH213/250W for use with my D6. I change them as conditions require; for example, if I am making a full frame (8x8) print from a 6x6-cm negative, which has been properly exposed, I find that the PH211 will do just fine. Denser negatives will require correspondingly more exposure, so I will employ the higher wattage bulbs, as required.

    I often use the PH212 bulb wired through a standard lamp dimmer, set for 93 volts; this lowers the lamp output by about a half f/stop, but increases the lamp life considerably. I NEVER use the PH213 bulb unless it is wired through said dimmer. Several years ago, I printed a very dense negative with the PH213, without using the dimmer...the result was one well cooked negative! If memory serves, Omega specified that a cooling fan be used with this particular bulb. I don't own a cooling fan assembly for the D6, but I have had good results with the PH213 at 93 volts, and no more heat damaged negatives.
     
  11. jfish

    jfish Member

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    Beseler included a heat absorbing glass with it's 45 series of enlargers though I never used it. Never seemed to need it.
     
  12. Phillip P. Dimor

    Phillip P. Dimor Member

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    I really appreciate all of your replies, it's given me a lot to think about.
    My friend had a very nice D6 and a stash of PH211 bulbs. He often printed dense negatives and his times were often around 1 full minute if not longer.
    I remember thinking that my times were definitely under a minute almost always.

    I thought of installing a fan (or hacking one in) but decided that if i've gone this long without one then it's probably not worth it though.
    If I were using the PH213 though i'd definitely work something out.

    I like the dimmer suggestion and I may just go that route. I can live with a loss of 1/2 stop (or even 1 stop).
    I was just thinking right before I read jfish's post that heat absorbing glass might be nice with a PH213. You could probably cut the glass to fit the filter holder, at least on my old-style head.
     
  13. Vaughn

    Vaughn Member

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    From the manual for the D5...Under the title, "Lamp Replacement/Condenser Lamphouse".

    "...For increased light output, 150 watt No.212 or 250 watt No.213 lamps are available...When using these wattage lamps, the use of heat absorbing glass is essential, and the Omega exhaust blower is recommended."

    my guess is to protect your negatives from the heat.

    Vaughn
     
  14. bowzart

    bowzart Member

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    I frequently used the 213 bulb in my D3V over a very long period of time; many years. I didn't go through that many bulbs, either. I have not noticed a great deal of shift and/or deterioration, even (especially) when printing color. I made a practice of giving all of my bulbs unique names and recording the particular bulb on my printing data. I changed bulbs in and out a great deal, according to the project I happened to be working on.

    The 213 is very useful in making large prints. While it does generate more heat, it is not on as long, so I suppose it balances out somewhat. Since I would start printing a particular negative and print through to the finish, then set that negative aside until I had occasion to print it again, I suspect that whatever change had occurred in the bulb would be relatively insignificant in comparison to the changed emulsion characteristics with new paper.

    I always used a heat absorbing glass with this setup. Negative "pop" where the negative heats up and changes its shape resulting in a change of focus is more likely to occur without a heat absorbing glass. That drives me nuts. When making smaller b&w prints, I would normally use a 212, although I also might use a 211. Whenever a bulb is changed, changes in the print are inevitable.

    Using a dimmer will shift the color; lower voltage will go redder. This will not only influence color prints but prints using vc filters, and most likely, graded papers as well.