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Thread: XTOL and grain

  1. #11

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    I never use Xtol At 1:2 with 35m film; 1:1 is as far as I go being that the format size can use all the benefits it can get to give a nice enlarged print. If you use it straight and you get what you determine to be lot's of grain I would consider the film. Maybe use the grain for it's effect and graphic nature?
    W.A. Crider

  2. #12
    gainer's Avatar
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    Check for fine reticulation. I found some on one brand of film, but I had to use a 30X microscope to see it. Look in the space between frames. I have been careless with temperature control between fix and wash lately because most modern emulsions are hard enough to take it. I do not use a hardening fixer, either, but the reticulation does not appear on FP4+.

    This reticulation can show as grain, and can cause intensification of grain. It may depend on whether your enlarger diffuses or condenses.
    Gadget Gainer

  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by srs5694 View Post
    I've just reviewed some sample scans I've made with Fomapan 200, and I also see XTOL producing worse grain with this film than some other developers. For me, both D-76 and Ryuji Suzuki's DS-10 produce better grain, at least in my samples.... For me, PC-Glycol and DS-12 produce results that are similar to those of XTOL.
    I forgot to mention: I used 1+1 dilution with the D-76, XTOL, and DS-10; 2+1 with the DS-12; and 1+1+48 with the PC-Glycol (using 15% sodium carbonate solution as the "B" stock). As others have suggested, changing the dilution can affect the graininess of results.

  4. #14
    Tony Egan's Avatar
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    I'm a regular user of Xtol 1+1 with Ilford, Fuji and Kodak films in many film sizes. "Excessive" grain has never been an issue with this developer. I have only used Rodinal a few times in 35mm and did not like the grain. In my limited experience Rodinal produced more grainy negs than Xtol so as others suggest it appears there are factors other than the base characteristics of these two developers to be considered.

  5. #15

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    It is there in the scan if you look at the sky. It reminds me of SFX and Rodinal. Skies are the giveaway. Even D400 and Rodinal give the popcorn effect with sky. I think I used HP5 and FP4 as well before reaching, for me, the inescapable conclusion below.

    Rodinal may last forever and mine certainly will as I can't see me using it again. Still it had the benefit of convincing me that I wasn't a grain person.

    pentaxuser

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by pentaxuser View Post
    It is there in the scan if you look at the sky. It reminds me of SFX and Rodinal. Skies are the giveaway. Even D400 and Rodinal give the popcorn effect with sky. I think I used HP5 and FP4 as well before reaching, for me, the inescapable conclusion below.

    Rodinal may last forever and mine certainly will as I can't see me using it again. Still it had the benefit of convincing me that I wasn't a grain person.

    pentaxuser
    Yes the sky is the giveaway for sure. I went through a really serious test with Rodinal and this film as I really want to get to know the ins and outs of it as well as what developers it responds to good or bad. I will say though, after making a few more prints, if you have an image without allot of continuous tone, like a close up of driftwood, or leafs on the ground, etc. the Rodinal is so super sharp. Almost surreal sharp. I know if I do a body of work like that I will without a doubt grab my bottle of Rodinal (1:50).

    I really like this film allot and bought a bulk roll just to plug into it with the few developers I use to see what combinations are good and for what they are good for.

    Into XTOL now and will try Pyrocat HD next.
    "EVERY film and paper is good .......... for something"
    Phil Davis

  7. #17
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    Efke & Pyrocat

    Hi Mike,

    I went ahead and printed the image we talked about (to 8x10) just to see what it looked like. This is a crop to 5x7 from the actual 8x10 image, as I didn't want to choke things too badly with too much wasted band width. Although it isn't as sharp as I would like to see it, the grain is certainly small enough. Still think you might want to give this combination a try for fun and small grain. Since you have the original image and test film, I was curious to see what you might find with your test print. Best, tim
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 57crop.jpg  

  8. #18

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    The most common reason for grain like that is reticulation. That is where a temperature change causes the film base to expand/contract at a different rate from the emulsion, causing the emulsion to clump up to some extent.

    Keep all your solutions from the pre-soak (if you use it) through the fixer within 1/2F degree, or you will never know what your film is capable of. Using a water bath is often helpful.

    Joe Cantrell

  9. #19
    gainer's Avatar
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    I can't tell for sure from the posted photo, but it seems that the sky reflected in the still water is not as grainy as the direct sky, which is mostly a diffuse reflection from the clouds. Could it have something to do with the spectral response of the film? A mirror is not always a true mirror and films certainly do not have uniform spectral response.
    Gadget Gainer

  10. #20
    dpurdy's Avatar
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    I just looked at the original posted image and I don't get it. It looks like 35mm printed to that size. My one experience with foma gave me the impression that it is kind of grainy for the speed. I think if grain annoys you, you should use a different film.. like Acros or Tmax 100.

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