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  1. #1

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    BEST SAFELIGHT... 99.99% safe!!?

    sorry to be so blatant, and although this has been discussed before, i believe it merits another view. Especially for those building a new darkroom, or just wanting the extra lighting without putting out to much dough.
    Recently, a fellow (clothesontheline) was looking for a cheap alternative to safelights, given he was only gonna need it for a day or two to experiment with pinholes at a camp. Helping him look for alternatives i came across diy LED, to a countless others. Thankfully there is no need for that, as there is a company producing red LED's that do not need any fiddling around with and go into a normal light socket (e26, e27). TURNING ANY LAMP INTO A SAFELIGHT ( i personally think that is awesome). Someone had already done a 15 minute experiment with no visible fogging, and i did a 5 minute test at about 1 foot, with 0 fogging as well (at 635nm, i think it's pretty much impossible).

    examples/comparison

    ^^ here are examples as compared to regular 16 w "in the dark foto lamp" similar to a jr safelight.

    I'm not affiliated, but i think this is so great!!!, i was dreading when my bulb was going to die, as i use an architect type lamp in order to avoid fogging, won't have to do that anymore. Again i noticed 0 fogging.


    120V... please keep this in mind, as this won't be compatible in some countries.

    I was using ilford mg1v rc and fiber

    Link to LED safelight
    Last edited by mesantacruz; 06-13-2013 at 02:54 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: additional information

  2. #2
    AgX
    AgX is offline

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    Some warning: this lamp is seemingly made for 120V. Many members must look out for the 230V Version.

  3. #3

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    ooops, good call.. i forgot about that i'll re edit... thank you so much.

  4. #4

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    Make sure the fogging test was good:

    http://www.kodak.com/global/en/consu...Safelite.shtml

    I used red LEDs from superbright to make my DIY safelight, but keep in mind while 635nm might be the peak output these are not typically "sharp cutting" so there is typically an emission band around the stated wavelength. Paper sensitivities might not cut off sharply either, and may extend to higher wavelengths than expected. So a good test of safe time is necessary with any light source.

  5. #5
    jp498's Avatar
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    I've got some LED screw in bulbs from deal extreme. Bright enough red to photograph with my s3 phone. No fogging. I setup a tracklight on the my ceiling for red safelight bulbs and can aim cans where I need it.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by jp498 View Post
    I've got some LED screw in bulbs from deal extreme. Bright enough red to photograph with my s3 phone. No fogging. I setup a tracklight on the my ceiling for red safelight bulbs and can aim cans where I need it.
    I think that this is a good idea. There are parts of the darkroom where you need more light than in other parts. My DIY LED safelights are all over the room. The one near the easel are at a shallow angle so I can see items on the bench but the effective exposure to paper is minimal.

  7. #7
    Bill Burk's Avatar
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    Let's see some prints of shiny chrome objects (like motorcycle engines) which have had the recommended "safelight test" performed on them. It's the degraded highlights that these safelight tests are designed to reveal. The tests are best when you can see side-by-side comparisons with extremes of exposure time. I would more likely believe a safelight safety declaration that suggested the safelight might be safe "for 15 minutes at 4 feet from the paper"

    When you can see one side of the print that had safelight exposure looks just as good as the side that didn't have safelight exposure - then you can declare the safelight is safe for that paper from that distance for that amount of time. I would look - in earnest - for the time when it is not safe. Then I would make sure the paper is only under safelight exposure for less than that amount of time.

    Re-reading, you have given a reasonable guideline: 5 minutes at 1 foot... Let's see what that does to a picture of shiny objects!
    Last edited by Bill Burk; 06-13-2013 at 07:08 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  8. #8
    David Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael R 1974 View Post
    I used red LEDs from superbright to make my DIY safelight, but keep in mind while 635nm might be the peak output these are not typically "sharp cutting" so there is typically an emission band around the stated wavelength. Paper sensitivities might not cut off sharply either, and may extend to higher wavelengths than expected. So a good test of safe time is necessary with any light source.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Burk View Post
    Let's see some prints of shiny chrome objects ... Let's see what that does to a picture of shiny objects!
    I've been participating in these discussions for years, now. I just ordered two of the referenced bulbs and I intend to test them outright (using proper procedures) as well as comparing them to my "safe-tested" conventional safelights. I am convinced that LEDs are the future of general lighting. However, I am YET to be convinced that unfiltered light of any technology is automatically safe based on color - especially at the brightness levels that some have claimed. (NOT referring to the OP. This comes up about once a month.) There are a lot of variables.

    I could be wrong!
    David
    Taking pictures is easy. Making photographs is hard.

    http://www.behance.net/silverdarkroom
    http://silverdarkroom.wordpress.com

  9. #9
    MattKing's Avatar
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    I have and use as safelights two LED bulb arrays that I obtained through the internet. I have done most of the testing included in the Kodak recommended test (haven't reversed the order of the exposure and the pre-exposure) and the bulb arrays I have have passed that test.

    My concern with recommending them to someone who doesn't understand the need to do a comprehensive safelight test is that the LED bulbs are not designed for darkroom use, so the manufacturers are unlikely to test for that use if there is any change or variation in the production process.

    I think the LED bulbs are great for safelight use for anyone willing to test.
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

  10. #10
    Hexavalent's Avatar
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    Phillips (Luxeon) etc., do bin their products according to luminous flux and colour output to very fine tolerances. However, I doubt the off-the-shelf consumer, and particularly the ebay shopper can easily purchase binned items.

    Quote Originally Posted by MattKing View Post
    I have and use as safelights two LED bulb arrays that I obtained through the internet. I have done most of the testing included in the Kodak recommended test (haven't reversed the order of the exposure and the pre-exposure) and the bulb arrays I have have passed that test.

    My concern with recommending them to someone who doesn't understand the need to do a comprehensive safelight test is that the LED bulbs are not designed for darkroom use, so the manufacturers are unlikely to test for that use if there is any change or variation in the production process.

    I think the LED bulbs are great for safelight use for anyone willing to test.
    - Ian

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