Several days ago I tested Fortepan 400 and J&C Classic 400. The tests were done as usual. For each film five step wedges were given identical exposures, timed with a Metrolux light integrator, and each sheet of film was then developed for a different amount of time in a 2:2:100 dilution of Pyrocat-HD, in BTZS type tubes using constant agitation in a water-bath. I subsequently read the negative densities through the Visual, Blue and UV channels of my densitometer, and finished by plotting the curves with WinPlotter. The data provided is based on the UV reading since my primary interest is alterntive printing, not silver.
Many have speculated that these two films are the same since they are both made at the same plant in Hungary. I found them to be similar in many ways but different in that the Fortepan film needed less time of development than J&C Classic to reach the same CI. However, both are ultimately capable of reaching a CI of about 0.9, which is slightly higher than I have been able to get with Ilford HP5+.
In any event here are the specifics of the tests.
Development time CI
7 minutes .65
10 minutes .80
15 minutees .85
20 minutes .90
J&C Classic 400
Development time CI
7 minutes .57
10 minutes .68
15 minutes .82
20 minutes .86
For printing with palladium where a negative density range of 1.65 is needed with scenes of normal contrast (SBR of 7) I would recommend 14 minutes of development time for J&C Classic 400 and 10 minutes for Fortepan. This would be with the Pyrocat-HD 2:2:100 dilution, with rotary processing, at 72 degrees F. Negatives developed this way should also print well with AZO.
Thank you again for all of your efforts. It certainly saves us all a lot of time spent in testing or wasted materials.
Sandy, have you tried your tests with tmax 400? Some people at www.michaelandpaula.com forum have reported good results with pyrocatechol HD and tmax 400.
Thanks again for all your contributions with Pyrocatechol hd.
Sandy, what was the EFS for the J&C 400? Can I impose on you and ask you to post the results in SBR and EFS. Since you have the plotter I hope this wont be too much trouble. Near as I can see you have SBRs from 5 to 9 on your tests.
Aaron, I use 400 tmx exclusively for my 8x10 and it works great with pyrocat HD. Much better than ABC or any other pyro formula I tried. Read and look at the tables in Clay Harmon`s article in unblinking eye "testing Pyrocat HD", he has very thorough testing and results for 400 tmax and other films. If you use the Jobo or some other type of constant agitation procedure, his times are very close to what you would need for printing in pd and I suppose azo. I have his tables pined in my darkroom and coupled with the BTZS metering method I have been getting exceptional results.
Thanks Jorge. I have become somewhat weary lately of long exposure times.
Here is information for SBR and EFS you requested.
SBR Development time EFS
10 6 minutes 500
9 8 minutes 600
8 10 minutes 640
7 14 minutes 700
6 20 minutes 800
Remember, these effective film speeds are based on the high density range negative needed for palladium printing and would not serve for silver printing, except with a soft grade of AZO.
I actually did some field tests yesterday with the 12X20 J&C Classic 400. The scene was a mountain stream here in South Carolina, very late afternoon just before a thunderstorm. The lighting was very flat with a SBR of less than 6. I rated the film at EFS of 800 and basesd exposure on an average of two incident meter readings, one in the shadows and another in a fully lighted area of the scene. Exposure was 1/2 second at f/32-45. The negative was developed in Pyrocat_HD, at the 2::100 dilution for 20 minutes at 72F. Exposure was about perfect since I have some detail in the heavy shadows, and the resulting density range is about 1.8.
BTW, I just managed to get the camera and gear back in the carrying case before the rains came, but the half mile trek back to the car left me fully soaked.
I have developed a lot of TMAX 400 in Pyrocat-HD and got very good results. Unfortunatley the last time I actually tested the combination was 2-3 years ago and I am reluctant to post those results now. However, I recently bought a couple of boxes of 5X7 TMAX 400 from Clay Harmon and will likely re-test the film before I use it. TMAX 400 is really my favorite sheet film and if it were available in ULF size I would use nothing else.
BTW, the members of the formum should thank Clay for the results I posted on FORTEPAN 400 because he was kind enough to send me at no cost the box of 4X5 film I used for the tests.
It sounds like you could use a slow film (like efke pl100) for high contrast (sunny) where the speed loss won't be a problem, and tmax 400 for flat lighting like portraits where you can use the speed. I wish EK had tmax in larger sizes, it certainly should be the one film for them to do so, but not much that EK does makes any sense.
Luckily (or unluckily) I only shoot 8x10 so it won't be a problem for me.
Thanks Sandy! wow seems the J&C film is perfect for ULF! certainly beats using fp4. I think I will order me some next time....
Oh, BTW as long as the camera is not wet.....you are ok..lol.....
I know Aaron, I hate fp4 in these situations, once we get into the reciprocity failure area I am always unsure if the negative is going to come out as I think, testing not withstanding.