Resurrecting old threads again...
I've been using a lot of different papers lately, including some very old and rare ones. In most cases the visible differences are in the tonality, and "feel", not sharpness. I have tried all the papers by enlarging the same 4x5" negative to 8x10", so the only difference is the paper.
There is, however, one exception: Ilfospeed G3, matte. This paper (bought around 1985) is visibly and obviously sharper than anything else I've tried. Looking at the print with a 20x loupe, the only "softness" I could see came from the negative (confirmed by checking the negative at 60x and 400x under a microscope).
Thinking that the higher contrast (compared to the other graded papers) could have caused higher apparent sharpness, I dug deep in the drawer and pulled out an ancient pack of Agfa Brovira grade 4. The Ilfospeed was still sharper.
Unfortunately I do not own this paper in any other surface than matte, or any other grade than 3. But I will try to get hold of some more.[/b]