I used a lot of Brovira when I started out because it was one of the papers my father used. It was a neutral black in Dektol. Toned in KRST, it would intensify slightly and go to a fairly typical "cool" (depending on how you see it) purple-ish. Noticeable but not overwhelming, which was nice. Of course others may have used KRST less dilute than I did, so perhaps they got more pronounced coloring. Oriental toned more strongly.
I found Kodak Elite FA, Ilford Gallerie, and Oriental were all great graded papers and to be honest I'd probably find it difficult to tell the difference between any of them (including Brovira) in a blind test. This seems to agree with Richard Henry's tests (which exploded several myths).
Once Kodak Polymax FA came along that was the end for me and graded papers. It was an exceptional neutral toned paper that worked very subtly in Selenium, looked every bit as good as Brovira or any paper I had ever used, and offered VC control. Ilford Multigrade IV would be the equivalent now.
As is often the story, as fine a paper as Brovira was, I strongly suspect much of the nostalgia for it has little to do with objective data/evidence. As Ansel Adams so wisely remarked: "the good old days are often the product of a failing memory". There's also a lot of unfounded bias out there. People will talk about the specific mid-tone tonality of paper X or the shadow detail, d-max etc of paper Y, highlight separations of paper Z, but most of it is unfounded nonsense, myth etc. For example, how many people decided Oriental was the best because of Brett Weston?
I didn't use the warm tone Agfa papers so I cant comment personally. However I would guess warm toned papers in general are the papers people miss most, because the choice is more limited now, and the cadmium thing seemed to hit warm toned papers pretty hard.
Last edited by Michael R 1974; 03-31-2013 at 08:34 PM. Click to view previous post history.