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  1. #1

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    Kodak C41 b&w film on Ilford multigrade RC.

    I tried to print some negatives last week and I had serious problems. The negative looks very high contrast, just as the proof print Iíve got from the lab. I though I could reduce the contrast by using either filter 2 or 1.5 but there was no detail in the blacks (these are indoor pictures with lost of dark areas) and I couldnít find the right exposure. The best I could manage was to use a 4 filter that gave me roughly the same look as the proof, that I donít like. I also needed to dodge some area on the face but I couldnít get any detail on that, only lighter grey (some detail is apparent in the negative).
    This Kodak film is really orange almost like color film, not the brownish Iíve seen in some of my other negatives.
    Iím still a beginner and any comment will be highly appreciated.

    Thanks

    Rafael

  2. #2
    SuzanneR's Avatar
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    This film can be printed on b/w paper, and there are a variety of techniques to reduce contrast without losing detail in the shadows. My suggestion: post the print you made as an attachment in this thread. You will get lots of very specific suggestions.

  3. #3
    winger's Avatar
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    And keep in mind that this is color film basically. I have usually gotten better results printing C41 B&W by using higher filters (about 3 or 4). It does depend on how it was originally exposed, though.

  4. #4
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    Due to the orange color, this film is intended to be printed on a graded paper.

    The orange color is like using a strong VC filter in the beam and using VC paper it is hard to judge how to adjust the contrast properly.

    PE

  5. #5

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    Ok, following suggestions Iím attaching one print. I think the real print has more contrast than the scan. Iím using glossy paper.

    Thanks
    Rafael
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Grandma 1.JPG  

  6. #6

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    All I can say is good luck. I have tried everything I can think of to get a good print out of this combo, with little success, if you want to cal it that. There are three papers this film will print on: #1 - graded B&W / #2 - color paper, which is really what this film was designed for / #3 - Panalure, which may be impossible to find now. If you want to use a C-41 B&W film, you're much better off with Ilford XP-2 Super, which is a great film and you can print it easily.

  7. #7

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    Exactly, Kodak C41 B&W films can produce a good B&W picture via a RA-4 (color) print, due to the strong orange mask and further specs. And indeed an alternative (was) Panalure. You will also have long exposure times on B&W papers.

    The XP-2 super can produce a good B&W picture on a classical variable contrast B&W paper. But with this film it's much more difficult to get a neutral (B&W) print via a RA-4 process.

    Summurized: Wrong film for what you want. Let the lab made a neutral B&W RA-4 print for you. Buy the right film: E.I. around 250-320 with the XP-2 super and a standard C41 development. Then print it yourself on B&W variable contrast paper. You will immediately see the difference.

    If you're less satisfied with the "softer" images which a chromogenic film always produces, switch to a classical B&W film but then you have to optimize your own development.

    Best regards,

    Robert

  8. #8
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    04 May 2006

    I agree with the previous posts. I have had very few acceptable prints using the Kodak C-41 B&W film. Printing onto conventional B&W paper is like "printing through a safelight", the exposures are very long and low contrast. My student and me have had much better experience with Ilford XP2 Super. I have found that this film prints very much like a conventional B&W film, even though it is a dye based film (like all C-41 films).

    I have a stock of Panalure paper that I use from time-to-time. It works wonderfully, but one CAnnot use an OC safelight filter (must use a #13). Hence you must work in total darkness when processing the print. And it is not available any more.

    My suggestion would be to use XP2 Super and conventional B&W paper.
    Good Luck

    Regards,
    Darwin

  9. #9

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    Thanks you all for your responses. Actually I didnít choose to use this film it was kind of a forced decision. Before starting to do my own developing few months back, I was really dissatisfied with commercial b&w developing unless you took it to a specialty lab (not always available) so I made the switch to chromogenic and Kodak was always available at the local store and not Ilford. I just wasnít aware of the difficulty to make regular b&w prints. I do have some Ilford xp2 and Iíve done few prints that look good to me.

    Thanks

    Rafael

  10. #10

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    "I do have some Ilford xp2 and Iíve done few prints that look good to me."

    If I read this correctly, you have not made good prints from "xp2". Are you using "xp2" or "xp2 super" ? There is a significant difference. I've used the "super" for years and have made excellent prints. I bought a batch of xp2 at what I thought was a great price and that's when I discovered it's not all "super".

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