Sharp Negatives

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by photomc, May 16, 2004.

  1. photomc

    photomc Member

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    Good day all, just posted a couple of images in my personal gallery and am happy with them exceept that I can not seem to get that they do not seem as sharp to me as they should. Used Ilford FP4+, in Rodinal 1+50.

    Is it the film + developer combo? Many of you seem to produce such nice images that have that 'bite' to the overall scene. Is it the exposure? The images mentioned above were done f/16 - 30 sec, the light was flat, sky was overcast, but even so they do have the look I was looking for.

    Any suggestions would be welcomed. These were negative scans, except where noted.

    Thanks,
     
  2. jd callow

    jd callow Moderator Staff Member

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    I can't answer the development issue. 30sec exposures can suffer from camera shake very easily -- wind, footfalls, nearby traffic etc... My studio is on the third floor 2 blocks from some train tracks. The train going by causes camera shake in my studio.

    Have you had success with this lens/camera combination with other films?
     
  3. photomc

    photomc Member

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    My mistake, that should read 1/30 sec not 30 sec.

    Have had the camera for a while, but have used only Kodak PXP and Ilfor FP4+.
     
  4. Tom Duffy

    Tom Duffy Member

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    I assume the softness is in the negative, not just the scan. FP4 and Rodinal should be a good combination.

    A couple of things come to mind in terms of how you took the pictures and processing procedures. mirror lock, cable release? also f16 is not a particularly sharp fstop for medium format. f8 might be considerably better in terms of resolution loss due to diffraction.

    Quality of the light may come into it as well. flat lighting and plus development won't give the same apparent sharpness as more contrasty lighting.

    Finally, development. I process in jobo, with continous agitation. Rodinal never gave me the accutance improvements I expected. Rodinal's sharpness is improved with a higher dilution (1:100) and more minimal agitation.

    Pyrocat HD and PMK gave me more apparent sharpness than Rodinal 1:50 in my jobo.
    take care,
    Tom

    edit: just saw the exposure time is 1/30. mirror shake could be a problem (usually worse between 1/4 and 1/30 sec.) BTW, you did use a tripod? at that shutter speed, it's the only way to get a sharp neg.