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  1. #1

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    Fuji Crystal Archive paper type and compatibility

    Although most of my colour printing has been on Kodak Supra Endura, in view of the Kodak paper discontinuance I just bought a box of the Fuji CA paper, apparently the only cut sheet RA-4 paper now available. According to the box and the Fuji PDF this paper is apparently a new "basic" version. However a box I bought around 2005 is Fuji Crystal Archive Professional type 'MP'. It isn't clear whether 'MP' is a current paper.

    From the Fuji site:

    • Fujicolor Crystal Archive ["basic"] - what is available as cut sheets in 8x10", 12x16", and 20x24" in the UK.
    • Fujicolor Crystal Archive Supreme [some sort of better colour definition consumer paper]? - apparently suitable for analogue and digital exposure.
    • Fujicolor Crystal Archive type DPII [a digital only paper, new technology paper].


    As Fujifilm doesn't provide any document to help make a comparison, has anyone here delved into the situation, and where type 'MP' sits within the various papers?

    Tom

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    Tom, Have you opened the box yet? Interested to know what the paper thickness is like. The same as Endura? I'll be buying some of this CA toward the end of the year when my Endura stocks run out. Do keep us informed of how it performs.
    Steve.

  3. #3

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    Steve,

    It feels thinner than Endura. First reaction to image quality is that shadow definition and tonal separation is not up to Supra Endura standards, however I may need to do more adjusting, which can wait until I recommission the Thermaphot as drum processing in the Jobo is rather tedious.

    Tom

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Kershaw View Post
    I just bought a box of the Fuji CA paper, apparently the only cut sheet RA-4 paper now available.
    I realize this won't do you any good as you're in the UK, but in the US, Photo Warehouse (aka UltraFine Online) has a store brand RA-4 paper. I bought some recently, but I haven't yet tried printing on it. I don't know who actually makes it; it's conceivable it's just rebadged Fuji, although the box seems thinner, so I suspect it's got a thinner base than the Fuji paper. I gather that, in addition to Fuji and Kodak, there are two or three other companies still making RA-4 paper, including Mitsubishi and Agfa. I believe Ilford (the ones who do Ilfochrome, not Ilford Harman) also has an RA-4 paper. AFAIK, most of these products aren't normally sold in cut sheets in the usual outlets, but it could be that Photo Warehouse is buying the stuff up in rolls and cutting it down themselves. Maybe somebody in Europe is doing the same thing.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by srs5694 View Post
    I realize this won't do you any good as you're in the UK, but in the US, Photo Warehouse (aka UltraFine Online) has a store brand RA-4 paper. I bought some recently, but I haven't yet tried printing on it. I don't know who actually makes it; it's conceivable it's just rebadged Fuji, although the box seems thinner, so I suspect it's got a thinner base than the Fuji paper. I gather that, in addition to Fuji and Kodak, there are two or three other companies still making RA-4 paper, including Mitsubishi and Agfa. I believe Ilford (the ones who do Ilfochrome, not Ilford Harman) also has an RA-4 paper. AFAIK, most of these products aren't normally sold in cut sheets in the usual outlets, but it could be that Photo Warehouse is buying the stuff up in rolls and cutting it down themselves. Maybe somebody in Europe is doing the same thing.
    An interesting point and one perhaps worth further investigation in regard to the European market.

    Tom

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by srs5694 View Post
    I realize this won't do you any good as you're in the UK, but in the US, Photo Warehouse (aka UltraFine Online) has a store brand RA-4 paper. I bought some recently, but I haven't yet tried printing on it. I don't know who actually makes it; it's conceivable it's just rebadged Fuji, although the box seems thinner, so I suspect it's got a thinner base than the Fuji paper. I gather that, in addition to Fuji and Kodak, there are two or three other companies still making RA-4 paper, including Mitsubishi and Agfa. I believe Ilford (the ones who do Ilfochrome, not Ilford Harman) also has an RA-4 paper. AFAIK, most of these products aren't normally sold in cut sheets in the usual outlets, but it could be that Photo Warehouse is buying the stuff up in rolls and cutting it down themselves. Maybe somebody in Europe is doing the same thing.
    For us Yankees please let us know how the Ultrafine Online RA4 works out.

    I've been buying Supra Endura that is dated 2009 from them. They recently had a sale on eBay but haven't seen it lately.

    The ironic thing for this thread is the Kodak Supra Endura paper I got from them says it was coated or at least boxed in England.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by brucemuir View Post
    For us Yankees please let us know how the Ultrafine Online RA4 works out.

    I've been buying Supra Endura that is dated 2009 from them. They recently had a sale on eBay but haven't seen it lately.

    The ironic thing for this thread is the Kodak Supra Endura paper I got from them says it was coated or at least boxed in England.
    Bruce,

    Previously Supra Endura was coated and boxed in England; later on the paper was shipped over to Brazil and confectioned there before being sent around the world. I don't really understand the economics of this operation.

    Tom

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Kershaw View Post
    Bruce,

    Previously Supra Endura was coated and boxed in England; later on the paper was shipped over to Brazil and confectioned there before being sent around the world. I don't really understand the economics of this operation.

    Tom
    I suspect the answer may lie in labour rates if the process uses much labour. International bulk shipping costs are probably small compared to labour rates.

    pentaxuser

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Kershaw View Post
    Although most of my colour printing has been on Kodak Supra Endura, in view of the Kodak paper discontinuance I just bought a box of the Fuji CA paper, apparently the only cut sheet RA-4 paper now available. According to the box and the Fuji PDF this paper is apparently a new "basic" version. However a box I bought around 2005 is Fuji Crystal Archive Professional type 'MP'. It isn't clear whether 'MP' is a current paper.

    From the Fuji site:

    • Fujicolor Crystal Archive ["basic"] - what is available as cut sheets in 8x10", 12x16", and 20x24" in the UK.
    • Fujicolor Crystal Archive Supreme [some sort of better colour definition consumer paper]? - apparently suitable for analogue and digital exposure.
    • Fujicolor Crystal Archive type DPII [a digital only paper, new technology paper].


    As Fujifilm doesn't provide any document to help make a comparison, has anyone here delved into the situation, and where type 'MP' sits within the various papers?

    Tom
    the "supreme" stuff is the same paper as the basic stuff, just thicker kind of like kodak edge vs kodak royal paper.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by brucemuir View Post
    For us Yankees please let us know how the Ultrafine Online RA4 works out.
    I just made some prints from it -- I did some 4x6 prints and an 8x10 from a roll of Kodak Ektar 100. The base is definitely thinner than that of cut boxes of Kodak, Fuji, or Agfa RA-4 papers I've used in the past, but it's no thinner than what I get from some minilabs. (That's a personal judgment; I haven't measured the paper's thickness.) The back of the paper has a slightly rougher texture than other RA-4 papers I've used. It's also got a bit more curl to it than most other cut papers I've used. There's no back-printing, and the box has no "made in (Country)" marking, so there's little clue of who made it, although there aren't many possibilities. The colors seemed good to me as I was printing, but I'm not the world's best or most discerning color printer. Whites don't seem as pure white as with many other papers; however, I'm using a mix-it-yourself RA-4 developer without a brightener, so the paper might do better with a commercial RA-4 developer. I'll need to print photos from another couple rolls before I make up my mind whether it's worth buying more of this paper, vs. using Fuji or cutting down rolls of Kodak myself.

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