Picked up "the Theory of the Photographic Process" 4th Ed a week or two ago. Read something real interesting in there yesterday regarding optimum print quality. Page 556 re Figures 19.15 & 19.16. The assumed situation is a studio portrait. Admittedly a different subject, say landscape, may get different results. Their finding was that when striving for the best quality print, long toe film curves with a higher gamma (steeper straight line) could produce the best quality prints (the 100% level) over the widest range of camera exposures. (That is not to suggest that there is an unlimited range.) When the print quality standard is lowered to 90% of best, the short toe - lower gamma film curve had the latitude advantage. Both curve styles could produce prints in the best quality range but the short toe films only reached that "best" level within a very narrow camera exposure range. The author's words "This range is so narrow that it would be difficult in practice to keep camera exposures within it." TXP seems to prove this point to me regularly even for my landscapes and FP4 has displaced my use of Delta 100 and I'm thinking that the shape of the film response curve is the reason. TXP and FP4 simply seem to provide me more high quality prints than say Delta or TMax 100 do. Similarly understanding that this long toe/higher gamma effect can be practical in real life pictures suggests to me that HC-110 or it's equivalents might be a really good option for me, and many others who havent considered them, given their tendency to produce an upswept curve. In the past I had avoided HC-110 because of the speed and grain thing vs say XTol, I didn't know any better. In essence as I came into film photography I got distracted from mid-tone quality into a world of more finicky film curves with better shadows and less grain. This brings me back to the title question. Anybody else had similar epiphanies?