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  1. #1
    Klainmeister's Avatar
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    Questions on Enlarging Papers

    As many know, I'm back in the darkroom as of this weekend (!!!!) after a long hiatus while I moved states, finished college and found some work.

    Well, I need to buy some paper soon and I wanted to get some thoughts from everyone. In the past, I used Ilford Multigrade Warmtone with pretty solid results, although I think I've somewhat moved more towards the neutral tone recently. Anywhoots, I want to be consistent as possible--no more chasing this and that for the perfect setup--rather, I'd like to commit to a product and get comfortable with it to reduce variables.

    Questions:
    -I plan on using fiber for my portfolio and for any sort of framing...should I even bother with RC papers or should I just use fiber exclusively so I can learn it best?
    -95% of my negatives are pyro-stained (PMK and Pyrocat) Acros 100, so has anyone found a paper that they like with that combo in particular? Not to emulate, but just some ideas?
    -Any general recommendations for papers? I'm open to trying something new, but I'd like to here experiences. Warm-neutral tone is preferred, since I mostly do Southwest imagery.

    Thanks guys
    K.S. Klain

  2. #2

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    It's really up to you.... I use both RC and Fiber.

    I recently went to a museum displaying journalistic photographs from 1980s and little earlier. It was amazing to see RC prints lasting 25 years with no degradations. 35 year prints showed some yellowing but not too bad. I'd be happy with this kind of performance. I have both framed here at home. For non-critical viewing, having them behind glass, they aren't that much different.

    I like Ilford MGIV and use it for RC and FB. The neutral tone ones do not take brown tones very well. At best, they become slightly warmer. For most of my images, that works. Ilford WT paper gets really warm.

    I'm sure you are going to get all kinds of ideas, recommendations, and opinions. My suggestion would be to start with RC and go though a pack or two, then re-evaluate your options. I don't know about you and your skill levels, but my first 200 sheets or so (after returning to darkroom after few decades), the quality issues/concerns weren't the paper or texture itself. It was ME.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  3. #3
    Klainmeister's Avatar
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    Ha yes, I already know the problem will be ME.

    I feel the same with the Ilford WMT....after I went through 50-100 sheets a few years ago, I realized after I used all the paper, that I didn't care for how warm it was afterall...Whoop! I want to get a lot of opinions because I like to know what tools are in the shed.

    I'm considering some Arista.Edu FB papers to get back into the swing of things. Save a few bucks and allow me to experiment.
    K.S. Klain

  4. #4

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    I don't have ANY personal experience but Adorama's store brand paper seems to have a solid following. I'm going to have to try it myself soon. I tried Arista EDU RC paper and I did not like it. The base was thinner than Ilford and took quite a while before image appeared (compared to Ilford).
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  5. #5

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    get some sistan ( now called AG-STAB )
    to stabilize your prints. they say the rc prints will last that much longer
    if that is used.

  6. #6
    Klainmeister's Avatar
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    Oh interesting....I didn't even know Adorama had it's own. I wonder what the base is?

    Shame to hear about the Arista, I had heard it was Foma 112, which is a paper I have seen in person and liked quite a lot (also had a master printer at hand).
    K.S. Klain

  7. #7

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    Apparently, who actually makes the Adorama paper is a top secret.... A rep only said it's European. I know it's not Ilford.

    Another thing I didn't like about Arista RC was that it tended to separate quite easily. 5 minutes in water caused edges to come apart. I had no issues with tonality. I have to packages of 25 left. You can have one for shipping if you really want to try it. (it's RC though)
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  8. #8
    trexx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tkamiya View Post
    Another thing I didn't like about Arista RC was that it tended to separate quite easily. 5 minutes in water caused edges to come apart. I had no issues with tonality. (it's RC though)
    I am not a fan of Arista RC, either. But I have found a use for it. Paper Negatives.
    D-76 is a standard developer, although not one I use.
    Ansel Adams - The Negative

  9. #9
    martyryan's Avatar
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    the Arista EDU ultra papers are very good and I like the print color better than Ilford MG. The Adorama is also a very good paper, I will bet that it is Harman made, like Ilfords papers the instructions include a chart for speed matching filter settings with color heads.

    Marty

    P.S. I am speaking of the fiber papers from both brands.

    Marty
    Last edited by martyryan; 07-31-2011 at 12:17 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: added info

  10. #10
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    I have had great results with Adorama's paper, both fiber and RC.
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

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