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Thread: D-76 question

  1. #11
    CBG
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    Quote Originally Posted by McFortner View Post
    ... I am wondering if there are any other ratios that I can use to stretch out the stock solution? ...
    Don't do it to stretch out the stock. That's false economy. But many people believe that deeply dilute developers have beneficial effects upon sharpness and the releative level of development of the shadow areas of the film i.e. compensated development.

    It should be easy to try the ordinary straight development, and the 1 to 3 ratios and see what works best for you.

    If absolute cheepness is your goal, try a plastic camera, cheepo film, and a powdered coffee developer.

  2. #12
    McFortner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CBG View Post
    If absolute cheepness is your goal, try a plastic camera, cheepo film, and a powdered coffee developer.
    I've done that. I like Caffenol, but I'm trying something else for fun. It gives me a starting point for what I want my pictures in Caffenol to look like!

    I'm just a tinkerer at heart. I may try a Caffenol/D-76 mix one of these days....

    Michael

  3. #13
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fschifano View Post
    That may be true, but not practical unless you're running a lot of film in a relatively short period of time. For me, and I suspect for a large number in the home processing camp, the optimum balance image quality, economy, and consistency happens when the developer is used one shot at the 1+1 dilution.
    With Xtol replenishment is easier on a small scale as the replenisher is fresh developer, but if you use 2.5 litre containers for the dev them it's extremely practical with quite a small volumes of film.

    Ian

  4. #14
    MikeSeb's Avatar
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    Multiply your usual undiluted times by 1.4 as a starting point for 1+1.

    I'm certain that 1+1 visibly increases grain; ive yet to convince myself it really affects tonality or sharpness, at least for D76. But in my Jobo at 75F, the longer times with 1+1 are more practical.
    Michael Sebastian
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  5. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by CBG View Post
    Don't do it to stretch out the stock. That's false economy.
    To put some numbers on this, using the current cost of D-76 at B&H ($5.95 for a 1-gallon packet), a guesstimate for shipping costs ($2.50; it could be more or less than this, depending on how much other stuff you buy, where you live, and how you divide up the costs), assuming 250ml of solution per roll in a tank, and assuming one-shot use, D-76 stock costs $0.56/roll, 1+1 costs $0.28/roll, and 1+3 costs $0.14/roll. This does indeed work out to pretty small savings per roll. If image quality were identical in all conditions, it'd certainly make sense to use it pretty dilute, although the cost advantages would be minor. For saving just $0.14/roll (or even $0.42/roll), though, the differences in grain, sharpness, etc. are probably more important.

    If absolute cheepness is your goal, try a plastic camera, cheepo film, and a powdered coffee developer.
    I don't have a cost estimate for Caffeinol, since I don't happen to have a cost handy for instant coffee. (I'm not a coffee drinker myself.) My cost estimates for commercial developers range from $0.09/roll (for Rodinal at 1+100 dilution) to $0.82/roll (for Clayton F76 1+3 or Paterson FX-50). Some mix-it-yourself formulas go pretty low -- down to $0.02/roll for some simple phenidone/ascorbate/carbonate developers and some Rodinal-type developers. (These estimates are mostly based on prices from 2-5 years ago, though, so they may be a bit higher today.) At anything but the high end of that price range, other costs -- notably fixer and of course film among consumables, but also the fixed costs of developing tanks, cameras, etc. -- will be more significant factors.

  6. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    The best way to use D76/ID-11 is undiluted on a replenishment basis, this is how it's always used commercially. This is how the developer was designed to be used originally and once the developer has seasoned/ripened gives optimal results, with better sharpness, tonality and finer grain. Xtol works well used the same way.

    Ian
    Can you explain this better?
    It's very interesting...

  7. #17
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    When D76 is used on a replenishment basis there's a build up of Bromide & Iodide from the processed films in the developer these reach an equilibrium as the developer is topped up with replenisher, the developer loses a little activity bu becomes better balanced. It's easier to describe the differences between fresh D76 & seasoned D76, the fresh developer is more contrasty, grain is harsher & more prominent, it's not as tonal, in many ways it's behaving like D76 used at about 1+2 without the compression you get at 1+3 but with finer grain.

    D76 was originally designed for Cine film processing so right from it's early inception it had a replenisher, used this way it's highly efficient and extremely economic, stable and easy to use. In commercial laboratories running deep tank systems D76/ID-11 was the standard developer in the the vast majority of cases, I shared a commercial darkroom in the late 70's with 2 other photographers and large quantities of film passed through a deep tank of ID-11 every week, a fresh abatch would be made up every 6-9 months, seasoned with some of the previous batch.

    On a smaller scale I used to do the same with Microphen (ID-68) & Adox Borax MQ, using a 2.5 litre amber glass bottle replenishing as needed, keeping a notebook to monitor the developers behavior. Since then I switched to Xtol but still replenishing.

    This was the only way professionals used these developers and is still recommended by Ilford & Kodak. with replenishment rates in their data-sheets.

    Ian

  8. #18

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    Ian,

    As I'm someone who has invariably used one-shot type developing, Ilfotec HC, Tetenal Ultrafin, and now Pyrocat-HD, how would you compare the image quality of replenished developers to one-shot developing?

    Tom.

  9. #19
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Over the years I've tended to use replenished developers for commercial work, usually processing 10 to 20 rolls of 120 or a dozen or so 5x4's in a session sometimes more. For my personal work I used Rodinal for 35mm through to 5x4 alongside Xtol, I liked Rodinal for it's ability to use dilution rather than just development time for expansion & contraction, N-2 & N-2 particularly, and as I often process away from home a one shot dev is more practiacl in this respect.

    However in real terms comparing negatives and final prints replenished ID-11(D76) or Xtol gives me very much the same final image quality as Rodinal or now Pyrocat HD. My choice is down to economics because with a high number of films using developers like D76, ID-11, Xtol etc dilute to 1+2 which is my preference is just not cost effective, and replenishment gives almost the same qualities while being simple and extremely economic.

    At present my volumes are lower as my commercial work is now rarely film based so the Xtol lies idle and everything gets processed in Pyrocat HD. So yes replenished developers compare very favourably with one-shot if the volume of film is sufficient, and of course deep tanks are ideal for 10x8 & 5x4 work.

    Ian

  10. #20
    cinejerk's Avatar
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    Ian I was told D76 was not a suitable cine developer

    "quote
    D76 was originally designed for Cine film processing so right from it's early inception it had a replenisher, used this way it's highly efficient and extremely economic, stable and easy to use. In commercial laboratories running deep tank systems D76/ID-11 was the standard developer in the the vast majority of cases, I shared a commercial darkroom in the late 70's with 2 other photographers and large quantities of film passed through a deep tank of ID-11 every week, a fresh abatch would be made up every 6-9 months, seasoned with some of the previous batch."


    Ian can you expand on this a little? I was told in one of my threads that D76 was not suitable as a cine developer. Or is that for negative use only???

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