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  1. #1
    msbarnes's Avatar
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    Rodinal vs HC110

    Not a better or worse thread, but differences between the two. I started analog photography a few months ago with Trix & Rodinal and I have no complaints, but sometimes I want to try HC-110 because it is just so very popular. I'll probably try it out regardless of this thread but I'd love for you to share your opinions.
    Last edited by msbarnes; 10-08-2011 at 04:00 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  2. #2
    2F/2F's Avatar
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    HC-110 is syrupy and is fairly fine-grained. It also seems to work better with a larger variety of films IME. Rodinal is runny and not very fine grained. I have not liked it with some films.

    I like HC-110 for any film. It is my standard developer. I use Rodinal, T-Max, X-Tol, and more recently PMK Pyro for special purposes.
    2F/2F

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  3. #3
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    Sorry, no answer, just saying that I have the very same question.

    I shot 13 rolls of Tri-x (120) while on holiday last month and developed all in Rodinal 1+50. I contemplated doing some in HC-110. But then I felt that I wanted consistency and decided to use Rodinal only.

    Which left me with the same lingering question that you just asked. Would my results have been radically different had I used HC-110 instead? Less grain for sure. But tonality-wise what difference can one expect?

    I've always been under the (rather unsubstantiated) impression that Rodinal is the European preference while HC-110 is the American way of doing things, and that the difference in result isn't all that huge. Could there be some truth in that? That part of the difference in preference is technical in origin while the remainder is more of a cultural thing? (Think Ansel Adams.)

    All my Tri-x is gone now. Would have to buy new stock to try it out with HC-110. Too much other film lying around, so my personal comparison of Tri-x in HC-110 & Rodinal will have to wait.

    Hopefully others have personal experience with both developers & Tri-x (in its current adaptation).

    Sander

  4. #4

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    According to Kodak HC-110 produces results very similar to those of D-76.
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  5. #5
    hpulley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gerald C Koch View Post
    According to Kodak HC-110 produces results very similar to those of D-76.
    http://www.apug.org/forums/attachmen...0072hc.gif.att

    It is interesting, however, that they compared XTOL and D-76 stock to dilution B of HC-110. HC-110 Dilution A may produce better shadow detail (film speed) and higher acutance but larger grain though I normally use that high dilution only for big pushes.

    From the unofficial HC-110 page, there is an interpretation of this chart at http://www.covingtoninnovations.com/hc110/

    the 2001 Kodak Professional Photographic Catalog contains a comparison chart.

    Compared to D-76, this chart indicates that HC-110 (dilution B) produces:

    Slightly less shadow detail or true film speed;
    Slightly finer grain;
    Slightly lower acutance.
    Apparently, HC-110 has somewhat more solvent action than D-76, but less than Xtol.
    Opinions differ about the effect of HC-110 on grain. Some photographers report coarser grain than with D-76; others report finer grain. This is probably a function of dilution and agitation.

    Opinions also differ regarding acutance, since many photographers report that HC-110 produces high acutance, especially at high dilutions. This is a function of solvent action, which is reduced by diluting the developer.

    Where HC-110 really shines is in scientific work or push-processing, where film is deliberately overdeveloped to increase contrast and speed. HC-110 gives surprisingly little fog even with very prolonged development. In this respect it resembles D-19, Kodak's high-contrast scientific developer. I normally use HC-110 (A) for 10 minutes to develop gas-hypersensitized Kodak Technical Pan Film, which fogs severely in other developers.

    Like Rodinal, HC-110 keeps very well and gives very reproducible results. It is a good choice when failure would be costly.
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  6. #6

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    There are several unofficial websites for HC-110. I have not used it in several years, having been on a D-23 and two-bath kick for a while. When I did use it, I used a higher dilution than Kodak recommends - usually dilution H - and made it straight from syrup. It gives fine results in semi-stand development and is easy to use.

  7. #7

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    I have use HC-110 for years and I like it very much.

    Jeff

  8. #8

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    HC-110 and D-76 may produce similar (not identical) results, but they are very different developers. Rodinal is different from both of them. Rodinal shares with HC-110 the ability to tailor its characteristics by changing the dilution. Rodinal usually shows sharper grain than HC-110 and it may be a bit sharper in general. HC-110 gives somewhat finer grain and a bit higher film speed (usually not enough to be useful).

  9. #9
    Colin Corneau's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nworth View Post
    HC-110 and D-76 may produce similar (not identical) results, but they are very different developers. Rodinal is different from both of them. Rodinal shares with HC-110 the ability to tailor its characteristics by changing the dilution. Rodinal usually shows sharper grain than HC-110 and it may be a bit sharper in general. HC-110 gives somewhat finer grain and a bit higher film speed (usually not enough to be useful).
    That seems to be about it, from my observation.

    Rodinal is also noteworthy for lasting an extraordinarily long time after the container's been opened...I've had it work just fine months and months after cracking open a bottle and mixing it up with water - even when it's dramatically darker in color and seemingly spoiled.

    I usually use Rodinal with finer grained, slower films -- PanF+ and TMX, for example -- as it gives tones I really like and especially noticeably sharper acutance. Haven't used it too much with 400 speed films and up, although I'm curious to try as I've heard good things for it with Tri-X, for example.
    "Never criticize someone until you've walked a mile in their shoes. That way, you're a mile away and you've got their shoes."

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  10. #10
    jbl
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    In my experience, the HC-110 syrup lasts an extremely long time as well. I've had a bottle that I've been working through for a few years now and it's shown no sign of problems.

    -jbl

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