Funny thing is that I can get excellent results with the digitally optimized ilford b/w papers under the enlarger, both fb and rc. Granted, it prints just like grade 4 galerie, but this oftentimes is just the ticket for mural prints. Other than that, I don't notice any differences between galerie digital and conventional b/w papers in terms of exposure and tonality.
I would love to hear what PE or Simon Galley has to say about the digitally optimized papers and their incompatibility with traditional tungsten/halogen exposure.
I don't know exactly what paper you people who have problems are printing with, but I am using the current Fuji Crystal Archive Type II cut-sheet paper and simply am not having any of the problems talked about. I have been printing with Kodak papers for 30 years and see little difference with the current CAII paper other than a little higher contrast I mentioned earlier and it is faster. Have you used cut-sheet paper or just from rolls? Since they will be exposed with different light sources, perhaps Fuji manufactures each with different response characteristics. If you haven't used the current cut-sheet version I suggest you try it before bad-mouthing it. If there was anyone out there reading this thread thinking of trying color printing , you have probably scared them away by now.
Last edited by RPC; 10-13-2013 at 08:18 PM. Click to view previous post history.
That's precisely why we need, as I asked, for everyone on APUG who has had experience of the new Fuji paper to give us their experiences as you have.
Originally Posted by RPC
I have no doubt that frotog's opinion is genuine as indeed is Drew Wiley's but as things stood it was simply two APUGers with diametrically opposed opinions which doesn't help those who want to try RA4 printing and don't want to try cutting their own sheets from Kodak roll paper which it seems does not suffer from the same problems as the Fuji paper if I have understood frotog's contention correctly.
Last edited by pentaxuser; 10-13-2013 at 05:48 PM. Click to view previous post history.
In case my opinion matters... I've been color printing only since the beginning of this year. I'm using Fuji CA Type II (lustre) and Kodak RA/RT chemistry. I process in drums at 94F. I like the results I'm getting. You can look at my gallery: Everything in color (Polaroids excepted) are scans of 8x10 color prints, with no corrections in most cases. The paper works for me, but I'm admittedly a "casual" printer. I don't inspect my prints with a microscope or run complicated color matching tests. I find the process no harder than black and white.
The cut-sheet CAII is the same as CAII in rolls. According to the fuji rep that I spoke to, it is their least expensive silver halide color paper and is expressly marketed to their minilab clients. The cut-sheet packaging is the exact same digitally optimized emulsion on the same thin budget base - only difference being that it is packaged in sheets for the student or home hobbyist.
Originally Posted by RPC
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Like many others, I use fuji and kodak paper with an enlarger and get excellent results.
To anyone reading this with an eye on starting colour printing, I say do it.
With the exception of Bob, the naysayers are trying that little bit too hard to sound oh so intelligent, with super-critical faculties, when I suspect the opposite is nearer the truth.
All one has to do is visit Fuji's website, or take a sneak peak at an actual dealer's price list, to realize that "Crystal Archive" is a suite of products, just like I said, and not one paper. But otherwise, every variety I've tried has similar color balance, though contrast, sheen, and
paper surface, and even base material, differ between specific papers. Good chemistry is important. I've printed chromogenic papers for
three decades, and CAII is just as easy as any of them. If you understand the optical parameters of either colorheads or lasers you start
to realize that the sensitivity peaks to the paper have to be similar. A damn tech sheet will show you that if you know how to read it. And
Mr. Pentax - I don't have a "diametrically opposed opinion" - I actually use these products! The other dude repeatedly makes statements to
the effect he doesn't even know what it is. Don't believe me - fine. Just go to the damn Fuji website and look for yourself. It ain't all
minilab product. Go to the horses mouth - learn to print it yourself instead of depending on some ridiculous web chatter by people who have
never even touched the stuff.
I also use Fuji color papers and see no problems. Excellent products. My only difficulty is that they have such a huge variety of papers, and it's hard to figure out from their web site which one I'd like the most. Verbal descriptions are not always a good indicator to the characteristics of the paper. I wish Fuji would offer a sampler pack so I could try them out and buy a roll or two of the product that suits my style the best.
Originally Posted by pentaxuser
The new papers have much sharper contrast and much stronger/cleaner colors, so color mistakes such as color cross-over on negatives or unintentionally mixed lighting are much more visible. Subtle near-gray scale prints require higher skill level from the printer compared to when one used the old papers. I suspect that's because the old papers had much muddier colors than the modern ones. I personally like the new papers better - you can always muddy up your negatives by adding carefully constructed masks or adjusting processing, but it's nearly impossible to clean up colors of a muddy paper. Really, that should not be a deterrent for the new printers.
Excellent point, Eugene. Part of the problem isn't that the paper has changed as much as films have. Having more saturated, more contrasty
color neg films available means there is less room for error in printing. That just comes with the territory. It's still far easier than printing chromes, but some of these newer pro films need proper color balance to begin with. But realize that some of the papers on their website are no longer in production, like Super C and Type P, though they are still commonly available until supplies run out. Everything being made now is somehow based on the CAII formula, even the expensive Fujiflex product. Neither Kodak nor Fuji are particularly good at communicating to potential new users. Over the years, I've learned that often, to find out the facts, you have to test for yourself. That takes time and money, but it's also a fact of life in photography, because supplies always keep changing.
we are very happy using Fuji CA DPII. the cut sheet paper here in the UK is thinner in the base and therefore kinks more easily, the roll paper seems to be better but we don't have much evidence to back that up, maybe it's a tactile thing.
regardless of whether it's better or worse than old papers is irrelevant, it is all we've got so we make the best of it.
if you aren't getting what you want then you pull out a few tricks to get the print where you want it. improvements in film stock help.
we just keep on going regardless, it still beats any other print technique out there and gets the best results so simply. i speak with the other pro lab printers in london and no one is complaining about paper and i see great print after great print being made.
i know here i'd rather be working day in day out so you just get on with it.