I was wondering...most of my prints are 8x10 or smaller. Shooting 120 film, will I notice a difference in clarity or grain, using 100 (or 125) vs. 400 speed film?
I've typically bought 100 speed film out of habit from my 35mm days, but the thought occured to me that with the prints I make I might be a bit overkill.
Part of the reason I ask, is that I'm thinking of playing with my TLR Ricohmatic 225 w/ out a tripod and the 400 speed film might be more forgiving.
Yes, they'll have a different texture. That said, the look of Tri-X in medium format and larger is classic. Tri-X/PMK is my B&W combo of choice for medium format, Tri-X/Acufine for more speed. Delta 400 is really nice in Perceptol at EI 200 in medium format, or EI 400 in D-76 for a little more grain, but an extra stop.
I'd say, if you want to go handheld, take advantage of the speed and go with a faster film.
as usual, David is completely right about everything!
Yes, there will be an obvious difference in an 8x10 print produced from 100 speed film vs. 400 speed film. On the other hand, subject movement and poor depth of field from handheld work with 100 film will look worse than the increased grain of 400 film.
Personally, I have trouble handholding 35mm without using an EI of at least 200. In medium format handheld I often shoot Delta 3200 rated at EI 800 developed in full strength Xtol for 9 min at 68. Very liberating!
Both texture and gradation is different. I stick to (mostly) FP4+ in all sizes for that reason - it gives the tonality I want. HP5+ is an alternative in less-than-bright conditions, and I'm willing to use Delta 3200 if it's pitch dark. Otherwise it's FP4+ (as soon as I've used up some of my stock of APX 100, APX 400, EFKE R100, PanF and so on)...
I also like EFKE R25 and R50. As you can see speed is not my primary concern ;)
Hey. No, I'm by no means spoiled, but I'm getting ready to order some film, and the thought occured to me that for what I do, I might not need to buy both 100 and 400 speed 120 film. You don't need anything from Photowarehouse do you! I just found out about the $35 minimum order!!
Heh, it doesn't take much film to make a $35 order!
Just depends on what and how you shoot. I'm religious about Tri-X 320 when I shoot 6x6. I just like the tones, textures, and the overall look of it. Because of the subject matter I shoot (primarily) I've had to get good at handholding MF down to 1/8th or 1/4th, so shutter speeds are a huge issue. I never use 100 films, but I'll occasionally use Pan F 50 for an entirely different look.
Man, you guys are good! If I needed a picture to come out I never shoot handheld below a 60th of a second. Maybe I should cut back on the coffee...
A great deal depends on the lighting conditions and the subject matter that you are photographing. If you are exposing in bright light with no subject movement considerations that is one thing. If you are shooting indoors without strobes and a bunch of hyperactive kids that is another.
Another consideration that I see is what format in medium format are you exposing? 6x4.5 is an entirely different matter then 6X7 when we consider 8X10 enlargements.
Back when I shot roll film the rule that I tried to live by was 1/focal length for handheld shutter speed. Different lenses will allow different shutter speeds. I could handhold a 40 mm lens with subject movement at 1/60 second....I couldn't do the same with a 500 mm lens. That would require 1/500 second.
As others have indicated the different emulsions will have different curves and different tonal characteristics.
Ilford discontinued all 220 films several months or maybe a year ago. I was able to get HP5+ in 220 last summer, but can't find it any more. As far as I know, the only 220 black and white films now available are Plus-X, Tri-x 320 and Portra B&W. If anyone knows of anything else, I'd like to hear about it.