I've been using parodinal + vit-c + borax to make a low pH p-aminophenol + vit-c developer that works well. I tried making a version that replaces the sulfite with ascorbate in an effort to not use sulfite. It's not that I have anything against sulfite, it's something I stock anyway as I use it in my fix, but I wanted to see if it could be replaced. It works well but the problem I find is that I need to use twice as much of the ascorbate version to get the same level of activity as the sulfite version.
Besides the activity level, the major visible difference is in the formation of long needle-like crystals. The sulfite version does this but the ascorbate version does not. I don't know what the crystals are but if they are p-aminophenol that means that the sulfite-parodinal is super-saturated and ascorbate-parodinal is not ... is this correct? It could be that the acetaminophen to p-aminophenol conversion does not complete in the ascorbate version which would explain the reduced activity. Does the conversion to p-aminophenol need sulfite?
Hopefully others with more knowledge about this can reply as I am a non-chemist hack and really appreciate learning from others.