You can buy Stouffer products from Stouffer directly.
Originally Posted by Steve McL
I don't understand this either, Ralph and yet it doesn't seem like a simple typing error such as using the wrong word such as "but".
Originally Posted by RalphLambrecht
Maybe the poster will tell us. I am intrigued
What I believe David is saying is that if you have not used a denistometer in the past, using one will help you determine what a good negative should look like. In his case he has used one in the past and now knows what a good negative looks like, so in his case he does not feel that he needs to purchase another one.
How's that for a guess as to what he meant?
Originally Posted by pentaxuser
Wayne R. Scott can read my mind. Sorry if that was confusing.
Originally Posted by RalphLambrecht
Having worked with a densitometer for a few years I think I'm getting good results and I can pretty much tell what I need to do by inspecting the negs directly and by seeing how they print on paper, and I haven't been testing a lot of unfamiliar materials, so I think I can survive reasonably well without a densitometer at this point.
One of the reasons I think the densitometer and the spot meter became such important tools when Adams, White, Picker and others were promoting the Zone System was that a densitometer made it easier to learn to print from a book, without an experienced teacher to tell you what you could improve and how, and even without access to fine prints as examples. If you could adjust your exposure to get a Zone I density of .1 and your development to get a Zone VIII density of 1.2, you were in the ballpark for most grade 2 enlarging papers, and if you wanted to make grade 3 your target paper or wanted to use a softer or harder enlarging light source, it wasn't rocket science to adjust to the Zone VIII target density a point or two in either direction.
What I think Adams may not have stressed enough is that by using this method and looking at negatives that work and negatives that don't work so well, it is possible to educate one's eye to learn to expose, develop, and print without a densitometer, and even to make judgments about the quality of the light and the reflectance of familiar subjects without a spot meter.
So sometimes I wish I had a densitometer again, mainly for testing new films efficiently, but I also think that I can manage without one.
I agree. I also rely on the densitometer heavily during printing to check highlights and shadows. After a few hours in the darkroom, my judgement is clouded and everything stars to look good, but the densitometer keeps me honest and forces me to stay on track.
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I have an old macbeth td504 with the colour neg filter set that was gifted to me gratis. It seems to work well enough for my purposes. It orginally came oem with a spare bulb, that mine lacks, I have not bought one. I think that the photomultiplier tube may die first, and if that goes then I will just bin it.
It is very useful to me to see how to deal with batches of long out of date material, when I start to use it for experiments. Then if the experiments on a given lot of old stock are successful, it is used for general purposes, and sometimes even revenue producting projects.
my real name, imagine that.
This is exactly why I got my sensitometers and densitometers back in 2000. I was anticipating a time when one would basically be shooting 'film of the month' as steady supplies of a 'favorite film' will no longer exist.
Originally Posted by David A. Goldfarb
Now when I'm forced into using an 'unknown' film, I fire off a test strip and I can tell right away its speed relative to my favorite, its response to the developer and see if it has a weirdo film curve.
In fact just last month all my local shop had was Tri-x in 100 foot rolls. I actually had to treat that as an 'unknown.' Looking through my records, the last time I used Tri-x was in 1989!
Oh yea, same for developer. My local shop has been out of the T-max one-gallon jugs for 3 months now and now they don't have any of the smaller jugs either. All I have now is Rodinal which I kept just for my 1:100 experiments. This last month I'm forced to using that at 1:25 for everything (and its really a very good general purpose developer for 120 and bigger). So, I have been putting my testing equipment to good use lately.
BTW, does this mean I don't use the "Massive Development Chart?" Absolutely not! With any test, you need a starting point. So I frequently check that resource for my 'first guess' development time for the test strip.
Last edited by ic-racer; 02-24-2010 at 04:41 PM. Click to view previous post history.