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  1. #1
    Sean's Avatar
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    Hi,

    When I took a color class in college I remember having to do everything in total darkness. Was wondering if anyone here has used the new led safelights geared for color? I've seen one by Nova and a few other companies that claim they are safe for color papers. I'd rather do my color in trays by safelight rather than tubes..

  2. #2
    Eric Rose's Avatar
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    As far as I'm concerned there is no such thing as a safe light for color. There are lots of old kreonite ra-4 processors out there for sale. Pick one up and away you go. Processing in 5 minutes from start to dry finish. It's the only way to go. I would not even consider trays, if you have to go manual use the tubes. Less chance of scratches etc.
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  3. #3

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    I can't even see how a color safelight would work. B/W paper is sensitive to certain wavelengths more than others. Hence the uniquie color of safelights. And even they will fog paper after a certain time.

    But colro paper is sensitive to all visible light. How can that work?
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  4. #4

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    Sean I know nothing of any safelight for color. Part of the magic of printing color is learning to trust yourself in total darkness doing things viscerally, you'll even be changing the color of the light for burning eventually. I also agree with Eric the less you handle the papers while in the chemistry the less oppertunity for error.
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  5. #5
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    I have a Jobo LED safelight that I use for B&W, and it does have two settings for color. I haven't printed color neg, though, for ages (long before I acquired this safelight) so I don't know how effective it is for such use. When I did print color, I used rotary drums.
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  6. #6
    Ed Sukach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by David A. Goldfarb
    I have a Jobo LED safelight that I use for B&W, and it does have two settings for color. I haven't printed color neg, though, for ages (long before I acquired this safelight) so I don't know how effective it is for such use. When I did print color, I used rotary drums.
    Me too. I haven't tried it for color either.
    Carpe erratum!!

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  7. #7
    AllanD's Avatar
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    I have a Durst safelight that is an array of amber LEDs in a rectangular matrix. It gives just enough light to make moving about the darkroom safe, but only just. The down side is that the light levels are so low that it takes several minutes to acclimatize. Turn the room lights on then off, and you are back to struggling in virtual darkness anyway ! Even so, I'd rather work with it than without.

    I did a quick test and it showed no fogging on Fuji CA after five minutes. The light is positioned 2 meters from the paper. I process in an old and rather blackened Nova tank, so the high risk period is (mostly) limited to the time the paper is on the easel. Exposures must be short for RA-4 paper, so I feel that the risk of visible fogging is small.

    I read somewhere that colour safelights only work by limiting the wavelength of light output to a gap in the sensitivity range of the paper. Of course, the characteristics of papers vary, so a light that may be workably safe for one paper may fog another. However, no light will be fully safe; the best one can hope for is that no visible fogging will occur in the time it takes to expose and process.

    I took a chance with the Durst safelight, but with darkroom equipment prices as they are it wasn't a big money gamble.

    By the way, the best thing I did was to buy the Nova processor.

  8. #8

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    Interesting. I guess in a way it isn't that different from developing by inspection in theory. You can use XXXX light for XXXXX before it fogs things. Work at a decent clip and you will be safe.
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  9. #9
    OPTheory's Avatar
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    Strange. According to this article you can use a yellow one...
    http://shutterbug.com/techniques/fil...g/0902sb_ever/

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by EricR View Post
    As far as I'm concerned there is no such thing as a safe light for color. There are lots of old kreonite ra-4 processors out there for sale. Pick one up and away you go. Processing in 5 minutes from start to dry finish. It's the only way to go. I would not even consider trays, if you have to go manual use the tubes. Less chance of scratches etc.
    I agree completely with Eric. Forget the safelight - learn to see with your fingers.

    Processing in tubes is much better than trays but to get best consistency a processor is the way to go. However running a processor isn't a cheap affair be prepared to make a lot of prints to make it worht your while.
    Don Bryant

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