Well, as far as I know there are no current slow films that are not relatively high in contrast. Mostly that is because the technology has moved on. TMax 100 is virtually the finest grained film around, with very high resolution and has a very long scale. If you don't like speed, you can easily rate it at 50 or lower with softer development. Acros would be a close second in the graininess category. I find them both finer grained than Pan F. I'd bet they are as fine grained or finer grained than films like CHS 25.
There are those who will recommend the various extremely slow micro/document film options out there with ultra low contrast developers. However even with specialized developers I have seen no evidence these films have anywhere near the exposure scale/lattitude of a general purpose film.
I agree that TMX is probably the closest you're likely to come to FX today. The tonality is not the same, but much closer than Acros. I suspect that the right developer might make it a pretty fair substitute. I've got another bulk roll of Panatomic X, so may do some direct comparisons just for fun. FX seems to have a somewhat unique look, but it would be interesting to see whether that really shows up compared to TMX. A developer that improved the acutance of TMX might help; it is sharp but doesn't always have that crisp of a look. More smooth looking to me than FX.
To me the speed difference between TMX and FX doesn't seem all that large really, maybe a stop or a touch more.
TMX is similar to Pan-X only if your only criterion is fine grain.
The characteristic curve as that different?
Pan-X was a little before my time, but based on what I've read/seen the lust people have for it has more to do with nostalgia than its actual characteristics.
Not to worry. I was a PanX lover and yes, I'd still use some if available, but today's films are absolutely amazing. Spend your early time back enjoying playing around with them. You will enjoy it.
The Adox 25, 50 and 100 "CHS-ART" films were badged versions of the Efke films. They stopped all production last year.
Originally Posted by onepuff
Adox still supply CMS20 (a microfilm style film) and Silvermax (which was a one-off batch and will soon also come to the end of existing stock), plus also an ortho film. They have stated that they will be producing improved versions of the old Agfa emulsions, but that there is still too much old Agfa stock in the distribution networks to make selling a new version economic.
I never used the Panatomic-X when it was available so don't have a clear idea of what can best replace it. If there was a long, low-contrast type of result then you could perhaps pull one of the slower emulsions - PanF, FP4, or Foma-100. The new technology films would inevitably have a different look wouldn't they?
I remember a Kodak publication/information sheet about tmax 100 and Pan-X and Kodak recommended Tmax 100 shot at 50 processed in Microdol-X 1:0 as a 'direct replacement' for Pan-X. As far as I can tell in comparing the few old rolls of 120 Pan-X I still have left, Kodak is correct: thats the very closest I've ever gotten to the creamy tonality of Panatomic-X, and of course the grain (what you can see of it) is different but the tonality and excuse me, 'glow' is there. Try it.
I seem to recall it was a small kodak info sheet that was put out in response to photographers freaking out that Kodak was discontinuing Panatomic-X. Kodak's response that Tmax 100 was the 'replacement' didn't go over very well at all, especially since in those early Tmax days lots of photographers were having a few adjustment challenges. I will look, I may still have that printed info sheet in an old notebook.
Long toe and "glow" being more important than speed (I mean slow...) and grain, I think, in this distinction. I can often, but not always, get the contrast I want from Tmax 100, so I typically don't use it. I grew jaundiced to flat-grained films as having flat contrast, except for Acros.
As a substitue for Pan-X I would recommend trying Ilford Pan F 50. Used to be cheap, now other people have discovered it.
Yeah, I suppse that's partially true with anything that is now gone, but what i liked about FX was that i could soup it in just about anything and get a great neg.
Originally Posted by Michael R 1974
IMO, TMAX is not a great sub for FX. Yes, I can shoot TMAX at EI 50, but playing by the same rules i could shoot FX at 16. I shoot a lot of waterfalls at slow shutter speeds and sometimes and EI of 50 is too high. FX was great for this.
For my $.02, I'd go with Pan-F.