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  1. #1

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    Shoot Tri-X at 100, or Use a Polarizer?

    I recently bought an early Nikon Q 135 3.5 lens. It's a non ai lens, and surprisingly sharp! The only Nikon cameras I own are a Nikkormat FT2 and an EM that I hacked to shoot non ai lenses. The problem is that I normally shoot Tri-X w/ a yellow filter, and need more shutter speed to open the lens in bright sun to shoot portraits. The lens gives nice bokeh at f3.5 if you get the right background, but both my cameras top out at just 1/1000. I have: plenty of Tri-X, a yellow filter, and a polarizer. So my options are: 1-to shoot w/ the yellow filter and the polarizer. That should give me plenty of opportunity to open the aperture, but I'm concerned about vignetting and image degradation. Or, 2-just shoot w/ the polarizer and set the iso at 100, figuring that the polarizer will cost me 2.5 stops. Not sure I'll get the added contrast the yellow filter gives me w/ this idea though. Or, 3-just use my regular yellow filter (which seems to lose about a stop), and set the iso at 100. I could always buy some 100 iso film of course, but I do like Tri-X, and it's already here. My developer is usually D76 by the way. However, I have Acufine and Fomadon R09 as well. What I DON'T want is to end up w/ flat negs or big grain. Any ideas?

  2. #2

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    Why not use a ND filter?

  3. #3

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    I thought of that. Two reasons I guess. I would have to buy one, and I am concerned about the same issues in 1 above....image degradation and vignetting when used in conjunction w/ the yellow filter. I really like the K2 filter to add contrast and punch up the skies a little.

    I was thinking of going out and shooting tomorrow, so it would help if I can get by w/ what I have, as I would have to order a ND filter.

  4. #4
    donkee's Avatar
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    Try the yellow and the polarizer. I shoot both on a 50mm with no vignetting. A 135m would have less of a chance of that happening. You might like the result.

  5. #5

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    I think I will try the yellow filter and the polarizer together. It should be possible to see vignetting in the viewfinder using an SLR, but I've been fooled before. I'll probably shoot a series of shots using different combinations, then develop and see what looks best. Thanks.

  6. #6
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    A CPL should be 2 stops on average, and if it's sky contrast you want, it'll get you that. The only drawback though is that it will (depending on adjustment) probably erase all the specular highlights, the result of which is that skin can look flat and plasticky or over-madeup. I would not expect any vignetting from two stacked filters on a 135mm lens on 35mm, as long as you don't use a step-down ring! And even then, it'll probably be mostly equivalent to using a smaller aperture.

    Shooting one stop over (EI100 with the yellow) will be no problem for the film at all. Plenty of people shoot TX at 200 and deliberately so.

  7. #7
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Shooting wide open and concerned about vignetting and image degradation? Wide open produces these two effects.

  8. #8

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    I would use a 100 speed film to begin with and not bother with a filter. T-Max 100 and Ilford Delta 100 are excellent films for example. They can be developed with your D-76. Contrast could be increased if necessary with development time or printing on multigrade paper with filters. Use your Tri-x for the times you need a film with more speed.

    http://www.jeffreyglasser.com/

  9. #9
    TheToadMen's Avatar
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    I wouldn't use a polarizer, unless I really want/need it. It will needlesly effect your image (as described above).

    For your purposes I would get a ND filter and/or shoot Tri-X at ISO 50 or 100.

    If you're willing to use an other film as well, try Ilford FP4+ at ISO 60 or 150.
    "Have fun and catch that light beam!"
    Bert from Holland
    my blog: http://thetoadmen.blogspot.nl
    my Linkedin pinhole group: http://tinyurl.com/pinholegroup


    * I'm an analogue enthusiast, trying not to fall into the digital abyss.
    * My favorite cameras: Hasselblad SWC, Leica SL, Leica M7, Russian FKD 18x24, Bronica SQ-B and RF645, Rolleiflex T2, Nikon F4s, Agfa Clack and my pinhole cameras

  10. #10

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    For the same reasons you mention I often shoot Tri-X at 200, even 100. I use Rodinal, I used to use D76 and loved it, but I like the storage capabilities of Rodinal better, which is the other reason to shoot it at 100, to get less grain.

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