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  1. #1

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    developer for 400 asa film at full box speed

    I have a few old 35mm compact cameras that I like to use with 400 asa film: 400tx, hp5, 400 delta and tmax400 (just about any 400 B&W film) My question is can you recommend a film developer off the shelf or home brew that will give full box speed? I also want to develop different branded films altogether in one (four reel) paterson tank.

  2. #2

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    Yes, D-76, ID-11, and XTOL will all deliver box speed from the films you've mentioned. Microphen, and perhaps DDX will deliver slightly more film speed. I'm sure there are others. I'm sure someone will expound upon the virtues of stand processing in highly dilute Rodinal as well. On that subject, the less said by me the better because I don't feel like starting a pissing match. If the films all require the same development times, there is no reason not to develop them together. That's not often the case, so I suggest you check the manufacturer's tech sheets before proceeding.

  3. #3
    fhovie's Avatar
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    all of the above and PC-TEA
    My photos are always without all that distracting color ...

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bogeyes View Post
    I have a few old 35mm compact cameras that I like to use with 400 asa film: 400tx, hp5, 400 delta and tmax400 (just about any 400 B&W film) My question is can you recommend a film developer off the shelf or home brew that will give full box speed? I also want to develop different branded films altogether in one (four reel) paterson tank.
    It's highly unlikely that you'll find a single developer that will deliver the same development time for that many different films. Your best bet is to download some documents from the various manufacturer's web sites and do some comparisons. Kodak and Ilford (and Fuji) all have published documents with development 'starting' points for their films. The Kodak doc for XTol will have times for all of these films, so that might be a good place to start.

    Ed

  5. #5
    mrtoml's Avatar
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    I develop different brands at box speed in the same tank using Prescysol EF.

  6. #6
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    I have found X-Tol to be very good for 400asa B&W films
    If you want a developer where you can develop all your films (regardless of speed) in one go in a multi reel tank You might like to give Diafine a try. You will get quite a speed increase with TX and HP5+

    Charlie

  7. #7

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    [ I also want to develop different branded films altogether in one (four reel) paterson tank.[/QUOTE]

    I assume that you can set the ISO/ASA on these camera, as already mentioned Dianafine in the only developer that you develop different brands and different ISO in the same tank. I think HP5 and TriX are rated at 1200, but I dont recall the speed for Delta or TMX. The time is 3 mints in Solution A and 3 mints in Solution B, water for stop, then fix. Mixing Tgrain such as TMax 400 with TriX can be a problem with the fixing times.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by mrtoml View Post
    I develop different brands at box speed in the same tank using Prescysol EF.
    Just had a look at prescysol and it looks like it will suit my needs, it is quite expensive at £16 inc shipping. Is there a variation of pyrocat hd that will achieve what I am after?

  9. #9

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    yes i was going to suggest pyrocat hd. prescysol seems very similar.

    can develop different kinds of films at box speed in the same tank with the same timing.

  10. #10
    jd callow's Avatar
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    I'm no B&W expert, but it would seem to me that you first must do an excellent job of metering so that you will be exposing for the speed of the film. It may seem pedantic, but if you were to use a spot meter and compare it to an incident reading you might be surprised.

    I can't speak to one dev for all films, or even which dev for which films, but I can suggest that you investigate semi stand dev (thank you Don Cardwell). Semi stand seems to, in my limited experience, allow for 'better' development across the entire tonal range. Semi stand allows you get the shadow detail whilst avoiding blocked up highlights. The end result tends to come closer to meeting ones (or my) expectations with regard to b&w film speeds and contrast range.

    YMMV -- greatly

    *

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