Enter Pyro developers. (I've used Wimberly WD2D+ and Pyrocat on 125 PXP uder such conditions with great success)
Originally Posted by DREW WILEY
I live in desert like sunny S. California. Using pyro developers on Kodak 125 Plus X when shot under cloudless, sunny sky. Yet get all those highlight gradations AND the lower tones and blacks as well. Cake and eat it too.
dang! I am so procrastinating on these 8 B+W prints I need to print today. I'll stop.
I would agree with this and go further to say that in the UK not only was FP4 was considered better than Plus-X, but Tri-X was considered better than HP5. However, we are talking semantics here.
Originally Posted by Ian Grant
“The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”
I love FP4 in all formats except 35mm. In 35mm I use Acros. I love FP4 in 4x5, simply because Acros is much more expensive in sheet sizes.
I did use Plus-X and liked it, but I am happy with FP4. It's likely to be around for a long time, so I use it and enjoy it. I also use Delta 100, but Acros and FP4 are my main films. I am trying to wean myself off of Acros because who knows how much longer Fuji will be committed to film? Ilford is only B&W film, so they have a lot of skin in the game.
Andre - if you think you can get shadow control using pyro and Plus X, it like bragging how fast you
can drive on the Bonneville salt flats in a Volkswagen. Yeah, you've picked up some extra momentum,
but it ain't nothin like a real racecar!
Everyone can like what they want and I like Plus-X.
I get a velvety smoothness and creamy look with Plus-X that I haven't gotten with anything else.
I am lucky to have enough Plus-X to last me few years, so I will be able to enjoy it over time.
I don't expect to match it with anything else, but will make myself happy with alternatives when the time comes.
Last edited by wblynch; 07-26-2012 at 08:19 PM. Click to view previous post history.
- Bill Lynch
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Andre - I guess you'll just have to try something for yourself. While I'll repeat FP4+ would be more similar to Plus-X in image structure than the flat grain films, the fact of the matter is nearly all these top-name medium speed films are very close in terms of macro contrast (ie the H&D curve).
FP4+, TMX, Acros, Delta 100 (and in fact also some of the higher speed counterparts like TMY) - they are ALL characterized by an inherently long straight line and relatively short toes. There are some differences in extreme highlight gradation (Acros having very high highlight contrast for example), and reciprocity chracteristics. But in the shadows and midtones, once you dial in your preferred exposure index and development, these films will all sing (pretty much the same song). They are also all very flexible and can be made to look however you want tone-wise once you learn to control them. In short, from a tonal perspective they are much more similar than different.
“Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”
Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2
Actually good question. Here in harsh S. Cali sun, I always had problems printing FP4+ highlights onto paper when film originally developed in conventional developers such as Kodak D 76 and Ilford ID11. Problem solved with pyro developer.
Originally Posted by MattKing
I've only shot a few rolls of FP4 since 1986 but with no issues before that (or after), even on the odd bright harshly lit days. I've returned to shooting HP5 and it's great in the harsh sunlight in Turkey/Greece etc - it allows me to shoot handheld with LF often at 1/125 or 1/250 @ f22.
Originally Posted by MattKing
I completely disagree with Michael's assessment. Those films each have different personalities and
significantly different curve, recip, and even spectral sensitivity characteristics. Tomorrow I'll lug
my 8x10 up a hill out in the redwoods. For the first two hours I'll be in soft fog, where the several
films might indeed respond similarly, except for speed. Then the mist will either start breaking or I'll
be above it, and all hell will break loose if you don't understand the distinctions. All of a sudden a
steep toe film will render a completely different shadow response than a medium or long toe one,
and in direct sun, the redwood forest itself can easily exceed twelve stops of range. I want a film
which will differentiate between zone 0 and 1, not between 2 and 3, and still retain detail way way
up, even in pyro. Don't tell me simply to minus develop either - that just produces mush in the
midtones! You need the right tools for the job. Plus-X would be worthless in that situation, but
perhaps very elegant indeed in the early mistly hours.