Eastman Double - X? What can it bring to the table?
After reading the post http://www.apug.org/forums/viewpost.php?p=1364621 by Mustafa, I have to admit, I am a tad bit curious about Eastman 5222 Double-X 35mm film.
What I really would like to know is exactly what does it bring to the table? If I use this, will all my shots look like they come from Schindler's List? Who uses it here and is it worth the hassle obtaining and shooting through the relatively long lengths of the film?
It has an old timey look and feel too it. The tones are quite nice shot at 100-200 speed. I personally like it best in rodinal and d76. I do not like the look of it pushed, even slightly to 400, but there are many who shoot it at this speed.
For a student photographer, you just cannot beat the price if you bulk load plus the 30% off kodak educational discount if you are in the USA (must be student and fax order with school purchasing order).
Its good stuff, a bit of a pain with the long rolls, but it is unique because of this, and the history behind it aswell. Also since its cine film, I have no worries cranking it through a trigger winder, or powerful motordrive. It also dries flat.
I have been working through about 1000ft of this myself. I have given away a number of these rolls to friends for them to try. Maybe if you can find someone where you are, you can shoot a roll and see if your up to taking that path. 400ft = ~80 rolls, which is very manageable and not that much actually. 1000ft = ~200 rolls which will keep you in stock for a bit.
I am probably going to take a break from it for awhile, and switch back to my last rolls of agfapan 250, which is just an awesome cine film stock. but after my last 30 rolls i have left, that will be the end of that. =[
Also there is a very long and continually running thread on it on the rff.
Cheers for that - I have to admit that from the few examples I have seen on the net, it does have a certain feel and look to it.
Any Aussies shooting it? I'd be curious to try out a roll.
I was given five rolls of this and I have just used the last roll. It has taken all five rolls to work out the development. Using the times stated on the Project Double X website for Microphen, I got very dense negatives initially when using it at EI 400.
I have since reduced the development time until I got it how I liked it. I am now considering if I should buy a bulk roll. unfortunately, I gave away my film loader last year!
"People who say things won't work are a dime a dozen. People who figure out how to make things work are worth a fortune" - Dave Rat.
I too am curious about this film. Can't say I am wild about it from the examples I have seen elsewhere. Anyone have any shots with XX to post here? [EI and dev info would be useful]
Last edited by mhanc; 07-10-2012 at 05:52 AM. Click to view previous post history.
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Eastman Double-X Examples
Double-X is a cinema negative film that is expected to be printed through several generations before it goes to the final theater print. It has lower inherent contrast than still films to offset the higher contrast of the release print positive film as well as the contrast gained by each printing generation. In my experience, it captures more shadow detail with exceptional mid-tones. It is an older style film that has a different grain appearance when compared with modern films like NeoPan 400, Tri-X, or HP-5.
Most of the time I rate it at EI 250 and use Microdol 1+1 or 1+3. It also produces fine results at EI 400 in Ilford DD-X.
Here are some examples:
EI 250 in Microdol 1+1
EI 400 in Ilford DD-X 1+4
EI 250 in Microdol 1+1
EI 250 in Microdol 1+3
EI 250 in Microdol 1+1
All the images in the Naples gallery are Double-X in Microdol
All the B&W images in the Pompei gallery are Double-X in Microdol 1+1
Microdol 1+1 softens the grain and makes for better scans with my equipment. DD-X provides a bit more speed, but the grain becomes more prominent.
Double-X is may favorite general-purpose film. It captures a beautiful grey scale and retains detail in both the shadows and highlights, even with scenes that contain a wide brightness range.
I've shot a little XX and agree that it is a low contrast film. It renders mid tones nicely, though
EI 250, developed in HC110 1:31 for 6:00 at 68F.
Shot at EI 250, developed in Rodinal 1:50 for 10-11 minutes or so:
In hindsight, I over developed. I'd go for around 9 minutes if I was doing it again.
I'm still working on my first 400' can of it but I really like it. I shoot it at EI 250 and develop it in D-76 1:1 for now. Results are good - very printable. I have no issues with contrast.
I need to start experimenting with it in PMK - I have a feeling it will work very well in pyrogallol. I just haven't found the time yet.
Jim MacKenzie - Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
A bunch of Nikons; Feds, Zorkis and a Kiev; Pentax 67-II (inherited from my deceased father-in-law); Bronica SQ-A; and a nice Shen Hao 4x5 field camera with 3 decent lenses that needs to be taken outside more. Oh, and as of mid-2012, one of those bodies we don't talk about here.
Favourite film: do I need to pick only one?
I find Double-X to be a tad on the grainy side but very nice tones. I too find it develops very dense negatives when shooting at 250 and developing according to the massive dev chart, so I switched to metering it at 400 to compensate a bit. I haven't tried it with a bunch of different developers but that's definitely on my list when I get some time.
I submitted a suggestion to Kodak on their cinema website that they sell it online in 100' rolls and pointed out that ORWO is doing this already. Never heard back, and haven't seen it show up in 100' rolls yet. I sold off some of my excess Double-X a while back and even after trying to compensate for my costs of materials to get it into 100' bags and cans (thus making it far more expensive per foot than just ordering a 400' can from Kodak) I ran out of spare film long before I ran out of people willing to buy it from me. I think Kodak should definitely reconsider not offering it in 100' rolls. Those could be used by both filmmakers (in Eyemo cameras, etc.) and still photographers.
Here are the links to the ORWO products (one slower, one faster than the official ISO of Double-X)
Interestingly they are currently sold out of both of those in 100' lengths. Sounds like a market with some demand, to me!