Are you waiting for Lodima or stocking up on Azo?
Below is a post regarding the availability of 11x14 Azo on Ebay and the rather high prices folks are paying for Azo these days. I'd like to hear others thoughts on this.....
I'd be willing to bet that the buyer of this paper probably has an order in with M&P for Lodima. I'm pretty sure all of the other folks paying $2-$3 per 8x10 sheet for Azo also have orders with M&P. The problem is that nobody can say for sure just when Lodima will be available, or if Lodima will ever be available.
I too, have a rather large order in for the new Lodima, but folks still want to produce images in the here and now, not wait in limbo for something that may never come to fruition. Remember M&P were asking us to pony up at the same time Kodak & Ilford were taking orders for ULF film. Due to this I ordered less Lodima and less TMY then I would have if they hadn't coincided. Thanks to J&C's moving sale, I now have lots of ULF TMY, but what I am missing is ULF Azo. I plan to at least double my current Lodima order once M&P announce it is ready to be produced. We Azo users should all count our blessings that M&P weren't using Forte to produce Lodima. If that were the case M&P would be back at square one.
You also have to deal with the issue of single weight paper. If my understanding is correct, M&P have already purchased the single weight paper to coat Lodima on because they weren't sure how long single weight paper would be available. The initial run may be the only run of single weight Lodima.
I don't blame someone for purchasing a known product they can use today. Over the last 2 years, I've managed to acquire what I believe is a lifetime supply of Azo in 8x10 grade 2 and probably 8x10 grade 4. What I still need is some 8x10 grade 3 and 20x24 grades 2 & 3. Keep in mind that I am an enthusiast, not a producing photographer like Ryan McIntosh and so many others on this forum, so my lifetime supply is probably much smaller than others.
I've learned to tune my negatives so that I can get the most from the Canadian grade 2 Azo.
I wish M&P were able to announce that Lodima was ready to be produced, and that we could expect to receive it by summer, but that just isn't going to happen.
The way I see it, there is very little downside to stocking up on Azo. It will last for decades, unlike almost every other currently available B&W paper. My negatives print well on Azo. Afterall, M&P tried to set aside a lifetime supply of Azo for themselves, so they must have had some reservations on the timiing and possibility of Lodima making it to market.
Again, for all of us, I hope Lodima is a smashing success.....and SOON!