Talk to me about Rodinal and toy cameras...

Discussion in 'Lo-Fi Cameras' started by mtbbrian, Feb 26, 2011.

  1. mtbbrian

    mtbbrian Member

    Messages:
    309
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    Location:
    Salt Lake Ci
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have been giving a lot of thought about processing my own film, it's something I have experience in, but something I haven't done in a good 17 years or so.
    I have only used Kodak developers, D-76 and Tmax, but have hearing a lot about Rodinal and the "Rodinal like" developers that are available today.
    So I was wondering what your experiences are with it.
    What dilution do you use and why? I understand the dilution use can affect the sharpness is that true?
    How does it affect the sharpness of your Holga images?
    Do you let it stand or do you agitate it at all?
    Anything else you can add would be great.
    Thanks!
    Brian
     
  2. brian steinberger

    brian steinberger Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,547
    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2007
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Shooter:
    Med. Format RF
    Hi Brian, many times with holga cameras since there is only one shutter speed you are underexposing the film frequently. Rodinal may not be the best developer to use with holga cameras for that reason. Many people use Diafine, Xtol or DD-X to salvage as much shadow detail as possible. However rodinal does sharpen up the slightly soft holga image and produce a look no other developer can. When I do use rodinal I use it 1:25 or 1:50. Dilution does influence both contrast and grain. The lower the dilution (1:25) the grainier and also the more contrasty it performs. Opposite at the other end. As far as agitation, many agitate once every two or three minutes to help shadow detail. I personally agitate every min. I wouldn't recommend agitating anymore than once a minute. Rodinal tends to not like alot of agitation. For most of my holga work however I like good old ID-11 1:1.
     
  3. xya

    xya Member

    Messages:
    271
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2010
    Location:
    Calais, Köln
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    for me it's the easiest and best standard developer you can buy. I use 1:25 at 20° c which I found gives best results in minimum of time. move slowly but steadily the first 30 seconds and then 2 times each 30 seconds. ilford times: 6 min. for pan-f, 8 min for fp-4 and hp-5. I don't own a holga, but contrast and sharpness are at their best.

    kind regards

    reinhard
     
  4. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    6,824
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2005
    Shooter:
    35mm
    As fine as it is I personally wouldn't use Rodinal for developing the dodgy exposures inherent to toy cameras, I'd use something that was a lot more forgiving. That will be 2 cents please.
     
  5. mtbbrian

    mtbbrian Member

    Messages:
    309
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    Location:
    Salt Lake Ci
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Two cents? I don't even know you!
    How the heck are you JB? Long time no see.
    Then what would you recommend Jason?
    Brian
     
  6. noblebeast

    noblebeast Member

    Messages:
    555
    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2003
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Switching from home-brew Xtol to hc110 made a big difference in my Holga and other toy camera images. They seem sharper, even though Xtol is touted as producing sharper negatives, and it gets the contrast up to the point I rarely have to use filters with the enlarger (toy cameras often produce negs that are contrast-challenged). I use the hc110 as a one-shot, diluted 1:63 and minimal agitation (5-8 secs every two or three minutes, depending upon how badly my mind is wandering). For development times I find out what the suggested time is for a particular film in hc110 dilution B, then double it - that gets me into a pretty forgiving ballpark. The higher dilution combined with minimal agitation is rumored to produce more acutance, which then will hopefully translate into more perceived sharpness. Anyway, I'm pretty happy with it. The rolls that come out of my Holgas usually contain images from an assortment of lighting conditions, and the hc110 handles them all well. One caveat from personal experience though: if shadow detail is of supreme importance to you, you will either have to do some tests with times/dilutions involving the hc110, or perhaps try the Xtol; in my experience the Xtol was giving me negs with better shadow detail but with the contrast deficit I mentioned before (I tried increasing development time by as much as 30 percent, but contrast did not budge perceptibly). I'm just too lazy to do a bunch of testing to pursue the potential of either developer - the hc110 gets me closest to what I want without a lot of fuss. And trying to test film/developer combos with the fun vagaries of a toy camera would demand more humor and patience than that of which I am probably capable.

    Joe
     
  7. Matthew Rusbarsky

    Matthew Rusbarsky Member

    Messages:
    174
    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Hello Brian- With toy cameras I try to shoot a roll in a single lighting condition, meter carefully and develop accordingly. If I end up with a roll where the EV was all over the board, I turn to Rodinal 1:100, 1 hr stand. If I have drastically underexposed, I use 1:100 semi-stand for an hour or two. A few months ago I took an old Brillant out after midnight. I loaded Tri-X, left the meter at home and counted off exposures in my head. Developed semi-stand 1:100 2 hours. After I saw the negatives I went back with a good light meter. I figure it was a 6 stop push:

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,727
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2006
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    D-23 is very forgiving of exposure variations and you can "push" underexposed film with less chance of the highlights blocking up.
     
  9. musila

    musila Member

    Messages:
    30
    Joined:
    May 25, 2010
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I just shot a roll of Fomapan 100 and developed it with their R09, which is supposively Rodinal, but it seems to be a bit more diluted than Afga's. I didn't meter, but it was an a sunny day, probably around an f/11 with the sunny 16 rule. Developed 1:50 for 14 minutes at 20C and the negs were printable without filters.
     
  10. MaximusM3

    MaximusM3 Member

    Messages:
    756
    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Location:
    NY
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
  11. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

    Messages:
    8,006
    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hi,

    Technique, lens, film flatness, and the focusing calibration of your camera will affect your sharpness the most. No developer will correct for shaky technique or a lens that isn't sharp. So, no; it won't improve the sharpness of pix from your toy camera in that way. However, if you dilute it a lot, it will accentuate the sharpness of anything that really is sharp on the negative. What I am saying is that it cannot make a soft lens sharp, or cover up for any other technical issue, but it can increase the sharpness of whatever is already sharp.

    I usually use it at 1:50 or 1:100, though I have used it at 1:200 just to see what would happen. I don't see much reason to go to 1:200, personally.

    You usually start to see the haloed edges and extreme grain once you go to 1:100 and use a minimal agitation or standing development routine. I use it at 1:50 for normal negs, and 1:100 for "special effects." I've never tried it at 1:100 for normal development, so I don't know what it looks like.

    HC-110 is a very good general purpose developer that is available off the shelf. It will be kind of like using Rodinal in that they are both highly concentrated from the bottle, and you use very little concentrate to make up your working solutions. However I think HC-110 is a "better" general-purpose all-around developer due to how versatile and forgiving it is. IME and IMO some films just look "weird" in Rodinal, no matter what dilution. There aren't any films that give me trouble when using HC-110 (or D-76, or X-Tol, etc.) It doesn't get a whole lot easier to use than HC-110, unless it is Rodinal or pre-mixed PMK pyro. No powders, no clip tests, etc. It keeps forever and develops film exactly the same every time IME, no matter how old. My problem with powdered mixes when I used them was inconsistency from batch to batch. I had to make it up fresh all the time in small batches to get the consistency I wanted...and I hate mixing powders. YMMV.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 15, 2011
  12. erikg

    erikg Member

    Messages:
    1,461
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2003
    Location:
    pawtucket rh
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Lots of good advice here. For toy cameras I like using a print developer: dektol, sprint, ansco 130.
     
  13. wilfbiffherb

    wilfbiffherb Member

    Messages:
    309
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2010
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    all my blkack and white images are rodinal in toy cameras. i like to use 1:25 most of the time as it gives greater contrast. i dont see a problem with it and ive used all types of films