Quote Originally Posted by Truzi View Post
Well, I am fairly consistent, but not necessarily good, lol. I also plan to do regular processing - it won't all be experimental.

If I only use one given developer, in the same dilution, at the same temps and times, I will get better at it, but won't learn much. What I learn will be by mistake, not on purpose.

After all, it's your darkroom and photography, you can do whatever you want, and I actually encourage it. If trying different developer is what you want to do, by all means, buy 5 different kinds and try them out. D-76, XTOL, HC-110, Rodinal, and Diafine comes up in forum conversations, so that'll be a good place to start. You asked if you will see some obvious and noticeable difference from your (self-admitted) novice and inexperienced eyes. My answer to that direct question is NO. You might see some difference but you have no basis to tell if the difference is due to the developer or process variance. It doesn't change THAT much with different developers even when you intentionally do something. You can often print differently and make them all look pretty much identical. Conversely, you can just stick with one and print differently to get different looks.

One thing I might tell you is that I might use the same developer, D-76, but I don't process with same dilution, same temp, and same time. Sometimes I use 1:1, sometimes I use stock. Sometimes longer, sometime shorter dev time. All these aren't experimental. There are routine and valid reasons for doing these changes.

I think you have your mind set on trying out different formulations because you are trying to convince us why, when most people are saying don't bother, at least not yet. Go right ahead and enjoy it. I may ask opinions on forums like you do but it is my darkroom and my photography. Sometimes I do things because I want to. There's nothing wrong with that.