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  1. #11
    Jim Noel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Large Format
    Blog Entries
    Maximum contrast with traditional films - D-19
    [FONT=Comic Sans MS]Films NOT Dead - Just getting fixed![/FONT]

  2. #12
    Chris Lange's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Multi Format
    As Nworth said, D-19 is probably your best bet, but beware its a very hot developer with exceptionally short times along the lines of using Acufine to develop slow film.

    I used it to push plus-x to 500 about 6 or 7 months ago, the negatives and a major contrast curve to them, but were certainly printable, and looked good.

  3. #13

    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Thanks for the answers ! I'll try D-19 ; )

  4. #14
    wogster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Bruce Peninsula, ON, Canada
    Quote Originally Posted by tatanka_jotanka View Post
    Hi, apugers !

    I've been developing b/w film for about one year, but I have never been satisfied with my film contrast. I've been using Ilford LC 29 and Kodak D-76 and I haven't seen a big difference between them. I know that there are many factors (agitating, developer temperature, exposure, developing time and etc.) that can make a contrast in bw film, but I am asking your opinion about the highest contrast developer for b/w film despite those factors.
    Also I'd like to know about fixed-contrast (fixed-grade) b/w photographic paper. Which one do you like the most ? I am using many Ilford multi-grades, but I am to lazy to work with contrast filters to get the result I want. I don't need a very precision result so I want to buy some fixed-grade paper, but I don't know anything about them...

    Thanks for the answers and good luck !
    Unless your negatives are really, really flat, then your better off to simply use paper grades to increase contrast. If your negatives are really, really flat, then you may have another issue. For example a camera meter that's reading hot (under exposed), or your processing procedures are not accurate enough, low developer temperature, or a weaker dilution then should be (under developed), can leave one with flat negatives.

    You want negatives to be of medium contrast, because it gives you more flexibility later on, right now you may like high contrast, 30 years from now, you may want to go back and print the same negative super flat, hard to do if the negative itself is super contrasty.

    There are three ways of changing paper contrast.

    If using a multiple grade paper, you can get a set of drawer filters made for changing contrast, these typically run from 00 (very low contrast) to 5 (very high contrast) in 1/2 grade steps, some sets are made for use under the lens, but I do not suggest having anything more then absolutely required between negative and paper. Generally a set of filters made for one manufacturers paper will work equally well with another manufacturers paper. The instructions for the filters will generally tell you the filter factors so that when going from one grade to another you will know how much to change the exposure.

    You can also use a colour head, with multiple grade papers, some colour heads are limited in the amount of filtration they offer so you may lose some grades the ones at the ends of the range are most likely to not be available, so 00 and/or 5....

    Fixed grade papers, are also a possibility, but the range of grades is restricted, most papers only come in grades 1-3 these days, so finding a paper you like in a surface you like in grade 4 or 5 can be extremely difficult.

    The big advantage to multiple grade papers is that you require fewer boxes of paper around, I always seemed to find that when using fixed grade papers, the grade I wanted to use on a particular negative was the one I was out of.
    Paul Schmidt
    See my Blog at http://clickandspin.blogspot.com

    The greatest advance in photography in the last 100 years is not digital, it's odourless stop bath....

  5. #15

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Willamette Valley, Oregon
    Medium Format
    Quote Originally Posted by nworth View Post
    Higher contrast can be obtained with a developer like
    D-19 or a paper developer while still retaining
    a continuous tone image.
    Adjust the sulfite and bromide levels and what's left?
    Dektol, D-72. As is D-19 will make a good but wasteful
    of chemistry print developer. Typical of carbonated
    metol hydroquinone film developers. Dan

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