I have the Jobo ATL-2300 instruction manual right in front of me. And I am looking right at the paragraph 7.2 which gives the table of Jobo drums and chemical volume for each type of films. Here is what it says.
1. Tank 1510 - 140 ml (not for 220)
2. Tank 1520 - 220x1 240 ml
3. Tank 1530 - 220x2 330 ml (this is an extension tank)
4. Tank 1540 - 220x2 470 ml (this is 1510 & 1530)
5. Tank 1520 & 1530 - 220x3 570 ml
I think if you follow this table you will have problems. Just look at line #4 and #5. It says to use 470 ml to process 2 rolls of 220 on line #4. But on line #5 it says to use 570 ml to process 3 rolls. It only adds 100 ml to process an additional roll. That's only 1/10th of what Kodak says in Z-131. I think this is very questionable. It's too good to be true. At least it should increase proportionally.
There is a note on paragraph 7.2 on the instruction manual. It says: the quantities listed on the tank and drum tables are the minimum needed. Some processes may require higher volumes for proper processing.
I believe these volume numbers are minimum volume required or each tank and tank combination as well as the number of rolls in order that each roll of film is covered by the chemical. If you put 2 rolls of 220 in a 1520 tank you will need a minimum of 470 ml of chemical so that both rolls will be covered by the chemical.
Besides, this paragraph does not specifically say it's for C-41, E-6 or black and white chemicals. I am certain someone can concur that each type of processing requires different volume of developer for a 220 roll. For these reasons I do not think the numbers provided by Jobo are the correct capacity numbers for Kodak C-41 chemicals.
The very first time I used my ATL-2300 after I bought the processor and set it up I got a negative so bad that I could not believe it. I was in panic mode immediately looking for answers. Before that I had developed at least 100 rolls of 35mm and 120 negatives manually using a simple stainless steel tank in my bathroom sink. I never failed a process so badly. I was shocked. I paid thousands of dollars for the ATL processor and the result was much (I mean much indeed) worse than manual processing with simple tanks and reels cost no more than $50. Well, it did not take long for me to realize that the Jobo's guide for chemical volumes was meant to be something else. Kodak's tech pub has all the correct capacity data to be followed.
By the way, using 1 liter of developer for a roll of 220 is not bad at all. A 220 roll is a lot of film. One liter of developer is just one Jobo bottle only. The problem that I am trying to address is that a Jobo ATL-2300 is a fairly large processor. I have to say the designer of this processor probably knew nothing about C-41/E-6 capacity. The chemical tanks are for 1 liter of juice only. Despite that you can use a large drum with a huge number of reels in it you can process only one roll of 220 at a time. This is really brain damaged for a processor costing $8k (when new).
I have processed with 850 ml instead of 1 liter for a roll of 220. The result was good. I have tried 730 ml but the result begin to be problematic.
In my opinion your problem is somewhere else; for example, in temperatures (small volume cools down easily if the drum is not preheated well enough) or chemical contamination or something like that. Have you tried using that small volume of developer but one liter of bleach, fix and wash waters? This way you could find which solution is the problem.
"the quantities listed on the tank and drum tables are the minimum needed. Some processes may require higher volumes for proper processing", I think that this line refers mostly to some very-diluted BW developers. For example, take Rodinal 1+100. Then you have some minimum volume so that you have enough development agent present. OTOH, C-41 and E6 developers are designed for continuous running machines that have quite low replenishment and they have enough developing agent to do the job even with lower volume.
I have always processed two 135-36 rolls (about the same area as with one 220) in 300 ml and never had this kind of problems (with Tetenal chems). We have even reused this 300 ml to process two rolls more. According to your message, we should get horrible results, but we really can't see any remarkable difference with our eyes. No side-to-side comparison done, though.
OTOH, Fuji's C-41 kit instructions say that you can process 72 135-36 rolls with 5 l, that is, 138 ml per two rolls. However, this supposes development time compensation, and with one-shot strategy 24 rolls is suggested per 5 l, that is, 417 ml per two rolls. This should already be almost over-careful.
So, IMO, there should be no reason why you would need 1 liter of chems for a roll of 220. I would say that 300 ml is enough. Please correct me if I'm wrong or if this is different with KODAK chems.
Hrst, thank you for your input to this thread. You pointed out many possibilities of the problem. I believe I have troubleshot through most, if not all, of them. I believe my ATL-2300 is very healthy and the problem is not caused by anything related to temperature control, preheat of drum, chemical contamination, etc. But I will not rule them out and I will keep an eye on these possibilities in my future processing.
I think you brought up one thing that I never thought of before. This is absolutely something to think of. I just checked Z-131 again and it says to replenish with 75 ml of LORR developer replenisher for every roll of 220 processed. This is about 100 ml of working developer. If Kodak says so, I should be able to process a roll of 220 with as little as 100 ml ideally. Of course this is for a roller transport type of processors that usually have a large tank of developer (several liters). They usually have only one roll of film going through the tank at a time (some may have multiple rolls). This is very different from a rotary processing processors like Jobo. But the difference should not make it require as much as 1 liter to develop a roll of 220.
Thank you so much for pointing out about the low replenish rate by those continuous processors. There is no doubt light at the end of the tunnel to me. I will open up my mind and start all over with my ATL-2300 again. I will try out Jobo's numbers again and see what will come out of that.
Many thanks to everyone's input to this thread. Not I don't believe you guys. I just need to hear all your experiences so that I am convinced to try again and find out what I did wrong. I hope to report back what I find in a couple of weeks if not sooner (need to shoot some rolls of something with no concern of losing them).
hrst: So you're saying that you can develop 2 rolls of 120 in 300ml of chemicals, as long as they are treated as single-use?
I think Hrst said to have processed 2 rolls then reused the 300 ml for 2 more rolls. That's 4 rolls of 35 mm film.
I just did a quick browsing through all of Jobo's technical journals (24 issues). I could not find in any of them that mentioned about chemical capacity, including black and white, C-41 and E-6. I could find only in one issue that mentioned tank capacity (number of reels, rolls of film depending on format and chemical volume). I did not see any words that tell to use this much volume of whatever chemical for this many number of rolls of what film. Authors of these technical journals are all respected professionals. I could not find any of them addressing the subject of chemical capacity in connection with the use of a rotary processor.
I am willing to test again trying to figure it out. But I am not convinced at the moment that Jobo's tank capacity equals chemical capacity. Kodak Z-131 specifically says not to replenish and reuse developer for rotary processing. There must be some reasons that Kodak says this. I wonder if the same reasons cause any implication to the developer capacity associated with rotary processing.
I use Kodak C-41 chemicals only. Other brand of chemicals may have different capacity. Jobo ATL-2300 does not allow different volume of chemicals for different steps. I can use only same volume of developer, bleach and fix.
Yeah, we normally do (at our club) 4 rolls with 300 ml, or 6 rolls with 500 ml (that may involve even four to five different processing sessions; between them, developer is poured back to the bottle and reused later). One "roll" means 135-36 or 120. So 220 is "two rolls".
This is just like Tetenal C-41 specifications as well as Fuji C-41 specifications say; you can process about 12 - 16 rolls per liter. We have had no problems, but, as I said, no side-to-side comparison done. We have been quite careful about chemical contamination and washed the Jobo processor well. We use a manual processor Jobo CPP-2. The nice thing is that when you do the final rinse/stabilizer outside the processor, the final wash will also wash the processor quite well.
Fuji's instruction says that one-shot approach should be used when developing "professional films" to "professional standards". I think that this is because the time compensation doesn't necessarily compensate all the color layers similarly (look at http://sorsa-tv.ath.cx/~antalh/siwassakayntiaika.gif ; this is for ECN-2 film but you get the point); and it's hard to know just how much to compensate (it depends on the overall density of the previous films). However, I think that these errors are so small (crossover maybe about 0.01-0.05, density maybe about 0.1) that I reuse my developer. I can't see any difference. I guess that developing film in a random minilab will introduce much, much larger deviations from the standard.
Thank you hrst, this firms my belief in Tetenal chemicals. I'll order a new pack when a get some cash.
BTW, what do you pay for a 5L kit in Finland? Maybe it's worth ordering from there. Here in Sweden the Tetenal chems is only available from one dealer (Photax.se, great service when it comes to analogue stuff) and they charge 859:- SEK for a 5L C41, and 995:- for the E6 kit.
Well :)... In fact I have no more belief in Tetenal chems because of the RA-4 blix that is defective, too often leaves silver in print and gives yellowish stain. So I don't want to buy anything from Tetenal anymore. In addition, Photo Engineer here keeps saying that blix for film is a bad bad thing. So, I've done one side-to-side comparison that showed no problems with Tetenal C-41 blix, but then again, I can't be sure. As I want to be sure that the chemicals really work 100% in every situation, that's the reason we switched to Kodak E6 and Fuji C-41, although these particular Tetenal kits seemed to have worked fine with the promised capacity.
We ordered our Tetenal kits from Nordfoto, Germany, www.nordfoto.de, and Fuji&Kodak kits from AG-Photographic, UK, www.ag-photographic.co.uk . Here in Finland the availability is probably even worse than in Sweden. Telefoto (www.telefoto.fi) sells Tetenal's C-41 kits 1 liter 29 EUR, 5 liter 97 EUR and these are special orders so you have to wait. 3-bath E6 is 49 EUR for one liter -- this is the only kit available from the shelf -- and 99 EUR for 5 liters, again special order. Not so nice.
But, as Finnish post is so expensive, it usually costs about the same or even less to order from abroad.