I think importers and retail outlets seem to often declare products discontinued when THEY can't or won't be getting any more, perhaps to discourage you from shopping for it elsewhere and maybe encourage you instead to buy another product from them. B&H seems to have perfected this system.
Simon answered the question. The fine grain surface has not been made for some years now, certainly never since Harman bought the Kentmere Brand, which is very sad for me as it saw the demise of one of the best warmtone papers made, the Kentmere Fineprint Warmtone fine grain, a unique paper. Kentmere fineprint in now ONLY available in Glossy, and has been for a long time, I am a long term Kentmere user and when the Fine grain surface went I cried into my fixer.
Originally Posted by koja
If you have been able to get the Fine Grain surface then it must be pretty old stock, so enjoy it while you can, I think the nearest surface to the old Kentmere surface is used for one of the Foma papers,
I might be incorrect, but it certainly seems to me that the quality of the coating of Fineprint went up
after Harmon acquired it. With the older paper I sometimes got some "zits" of uneveness, and it recently happened to a friend of mine who got ahold of some older paper shipped by someone who
didn't properly rotate their inventory. I like Fineprint because it can be coaxed into a rich true cold
tone using amidol and gold toner, and makes a wonderful complement for the other direction of
tones possible with MGWT.
Kentmere had their own coating line at their factory in the Lake District. When Harman took the photographic side of the business over, the coating was understandably transferred to the Ilford factory in Cheshire. It is quite likely that this meant quality control improved, as Kentmere were quite a small outfit.
Humm, you've mentioned this before. Does anyone know how well it responds with cool tones using more commonly available (and less staining than amidol) materials like Moersch SE-6 and Selenium? Or even LPD mixed strong for cool tone? That could be something I'd like a lot, but I don't see myself mixing amidol developer and investing in gold toner just for this one paper and effect.
Originally Posted by DREW WILEY
Roger, selenium alone won't give a cold neutral black. You'll get more of a chestnut brownish bias
to the black - not brown per se, but an unusual effect a bit different than other papers. Might be
agreeable for certain images. Same with developers. The MQ or PQ cold tone developers that might
work for other papers won't achieve a true black on Fineprint. They classify it as "neutral" tone,
and the silver iodide emulsion is rather unique. Amidol is cheap to use. It's very effective and one
rarely needs as much of it as some of the recipes call for. But there's certainly no harm in using PQ
cold developers. You'll still get a rich print, but with an image color a little more like MCC.