Ilford MC Filters........
It looks like I am going to have to invest in a set of multicontrast filters. I am guessing since I most likely will be using Ilford papers I should look for Ilford filters. I have been avoiding makeing this purchase since Dupont brought out Varigam papers. I have never liked the look of prints made on multicontrast papers, but I guess now is the time for me to bite the bullet since what I like is but a fuzzy memory. I mean no offense to anyone using or liking multicontrast paper, it simply is a personal thing with me to use and like graded paper. I just was given 500 sheets of Ilford MC paper and want to try to use it. Seems it's just a another one of those things in photography pushing me in a direction I really don't want to go. but any way, is the Ilford
set of twelve what I need? I will be making a few contact prints and of course some enlargements. About how much cash am I going to have to part with to start using my freebie paper. I have no clue what Multicontrast filters are selling for. I haven't checked ebay since I am not sure I want to buy some one else's scratches and finger prints. Will most likey do so here very shortly, but I thought I would ask here first.
Thank you for any thoughts!
Like yourself, i would and do use graded papers; however for my classes we do use MC papers along with the filters and they are Ilford.
Be prepared for sticker shock when buying retail as a set is going to be costly. If you could find a good conditioned used set it might be a better use since you are only going to be using these until the "free paper" is gone.
just my .02 worth.
The MGIV is pretty good, nothing at all like the old variable grade rubbish
( it also is absolutely NOT ELite ! )
But Ansco 120 works very well, as does 2 bath.
And you can get a longer toe than anybody ever talks about, and nice blacks. A very useful paper, with some charm.
If you're used to using graded papers, you can always cheat and use the stuff unfiltered. A nice rich yellow and magenta filter can carry the load instead of breaking down for the whole kit.
"One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid,
and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision"
The full Ilford 6"x6" (above neg) set is about $50, new at B&H. The smaller ones with the below-lens holder is about $75.
FWIW, I also use Ilford MGIV, and its not bad at all.
[COLOR=SlateGray]"You can't depend on your eyes if your imagination is out of focus." -Mark Twain[/COLOR]
Rio Rancho, NM
Hmm, I got my box of 6x6in for $25 a few years ago at Hunt's in MA.
BTW: I hear Cachet is Varigam, and that Freestyle had some in stock last Fall.
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If you have a blue and green filter or yellow and magenta you could get by with split filter printing to see if you like the results before investing any money.
JandC has a wonderful graded paper in their Nuance. I am moving at least part way back to graded for myself.
My Ilford set of filters is very old, I do clean them but they have a few scratches and smudges. Never a problem as they are behind the neg. Charlie, the Ilford MG FB WT is a really good paper. Specially with negs a little long in the toe. My favorite filter is the 2 1/2 processed at 2 1/2 min. (funny how that works out) Anyway they usually start to come up about 45 seconds. I do pre- soak and squegee to swell the paper. I find that negs a bit under (1/3) over processed (14 min) agitation: 3 @ 30 sec then 8 @ 2min 3@ 30 2 @1min seeems to work great for this paper. Good luck with it!!
Stop trying to get into my mind, There is nothing there!
Wow, Thanks a bunch! I really appreciate all the help! Something I have been putting of for a lot of years, is about to happen. Thomas, you said something I haden't given much thought to, that is placement of the filter.
I would much rather have the filter behind or above the neg than below the lens. I bet that means I need the 6x6 size rather than the 3 1/2X 3 1/2 size.
Oh, Oh just had another thought. Thomas your same comment woke me up! Reminded me that perhaps I don't need the filters after all, I have my D 5 Chromega in storage. The color head should handle my filter necessities. I have only used it for printing color negatives, but I am quite sure it will also handle the multigrade paper. Sheesh what a dummy! Well back to the drawing board!
Thank again everyone!
I too used to use Varigam. It wasn't very good, at best. However, in my opinion, the current Ilford MG IV fiber base paper is superior to any paper I have used - including most of the graded papers that have disappeared. If you learn just a bit about working with it you can do more than was ever possible on graded papers. The tonality is superior, the contrast range possible is greater - all in all it is just a great improvement. And filters under the lens do not have a detectable effect on image quality - both in my opinion and, if you don't trust me, have a look at Ctein's book "Post exposure".
In my own case, old ideas that I have seen proven many times die very hard with me. Perhaps I am totally wrong in what I believe, but I know it is possible to modify the quality of the light being projected (Penumbra) through an enlarging lens. I am not saying you and Ctein are wrong, but simply I disagree with the theory that another element introduced in the Penumbra has little or no effect on the final image. I admit I have never read Ctein's book, and most likely won't so I will take my silly notions with me to my grave.
Thank you for giving me something else to consider and I assure you I will consider your information. Right now I am trying to recover from my dumb mistake of believing I needed MC filters when I already own a late model color head enlarger.
Again I thank everyone for their interest and sharing their information with me!