Quote Originally Posted by FL Guy View Post

Helps a lot, trying to get some grip around the balance of "speed vs. quality" of image.

In reality, anything above a EI of 1000 is on the fringe of environments that we are typically in, so a compromise for image quality isn't a bad thing.


FL Guy
When I first read AA's "The Negative" I was amazed to see that he found relatively little real film speed change with plus or minus (push or pull) development on a given film. In practical use, I've found this true across negative film in general. So true in fact that I almost never adjust development away from "normal" regardless of the EI I've shot at. I have tested though to see what my EI (exposure placement) limits are.

One of the pillars of the zone system is measuring the important contrast range, the SBR, then using that info to determine the development regime. The choice of development regime (n+/n/n-) for a given situation is in essence independent of the EI choice for that same scene. Changing development in AA's context is completely about fitting the scene onto the paper. Here again over time I've found for myself that "normal" contrast negatives fit most all of my scenes nicely onto my paper.

A concept that is not as well applied or considered though is that for example in my dark scenes I typically print mid-tones a bit darker than in my light scenes, the placement of mid tones closer to black in the print just seems to look normal to me, that means that reducing my camera exposure, placing mid-tones closer to the blacks does not reduce the quality of the print. My subject matter and my sensibilities simply indicate a different EI, placement choice.