Need ISO 100 B&W film with a little character

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Peabody, Jan 13, 2013.

  1. Peabody

    Peabody Guest

    I have an old medium format camera that shoots 6x9 negatives on 120
    roll film. I did a test run using Acros 100 film, and while
    everything looked very smooth and sharp, I found the results to be
    a bit blah. I believe that film is a T-grain film.

    I know about Tri-X, but that's ISO 400. And the problem is that my
    camera's fastest shutter speed is 1/400 sec. So I'm afraid with
    400 speed film it just isn't going to work well in daylight - too
    much light. I have no ND filters for the camera.

    Is there an ISO 100 B&W film that isn't T-grain and gives a more
    Tri-X-like result, or am I just doomed to smoothness at that speed?
    Peabody, Jan 13, 2013
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  2. Peabody

    dadiOH Guest

    One of the characteristics of Tri-X is/was that it had almost no toe. The
    H&D curve was pretty much a straight line. And, of course, the sort of
    gritty look (with a bit of enlargement).

    If you can't find what you are looking for - and if you do your own
    processing - try playing around with some of the more energetic, non-fine
    grain developers such as DK-50, DK-60a, maybe even pyro ABC. I have no idea
    if those are still available but one can always compound one's own; a copy
    of Photolab Index would be useful for that.



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    Check it out...
    dadiOH, Jan 13, 2013
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  3. Peabody

    Peter Guest

    I wonder if film developer formulae are still contained in the newer
    editions of the Chemical Rubber Handbook
    Peter, Jan 14, 2013
  4. Peabody

    Noons Guest

    Peabody wrote,on my timestamp of 14/01/2013 6:30 AM:
    Ilford Delta 100.
    Use DDX or LC29, it'll be quite nice.
    Failing that, it's still possible to get some Acros and that can do the trick.
    Note that exactly like Tri-X at 100 is a bit difficult, you may have to try a
    few things.
    The other thin I suggest is to go to and ask there: there are heaps
    of very experienced and very recent users of film there, more than willing to
    part with info.
    Noons, Jan 14, 2013
  5. Peabody

    Clank Guest

    I hate to resurrect an old thread, but I'm new here and just spotted
    this one so thought it'd be as good a place as any to give in.

    Delta 100 is another 'modern' grain film. I'd recommend taking a look
    at Ilford FP4+ - traditional grain film at ISO125; I adore the stuff,
    it's lovely to shoot with. Got a gorgeous contrasty look to it.

    That said, I think you're going to struggle to make it overtly grainy
    in medium format.

    You could try shooting HP5+ with a meter setting at ISO100; the
    datasheet suggests that HP5+ shot at ISO100 can be processed in
    Perceptol for 9 mins (@20C) to get usable results.
    Clank, Mar 12, 2013
  6. Peabody

    Clank Guest

    DIVE in, even.

    Sigh. Good start...
    Clank, Mar 12, 2013
  7. Peabody

    Peabody Guest

    Clank says...
    I was the OP, and it's never too late to chime in. Thanks
    for doing so.
    That sounds like what I'm looking for. I just wonder if my
    local lab will be able to develop it properly. Eventually
    I'll develop it myself, but not at first.

    Actually, it looks like what I really need is PlusX. Right.
    Where is the key to my wayback machine? Sherman?
    I just don't want it to be as flat as the modern T-grain
    films, or at least the Acros 100 I tried (but I'm told TMax
    is the same). The pictures are all very fine grained,
    sharp, accurate, and, well, just lifeless. Of course it
    could be operator error, but I don't remember Tri-X being
    that way. But for now I need ISO 100, or close to it.
    Yes, but I think if I'm going to do that I could just use

    Well, I'll see if I can find some FP4+. Thanks for the
    Peabody, Mar 12, 2013
  8. Peabody

    Whiskers Guest

    There's a lot of information "out there somewhere" about using different
    combinations of emulsion, chemistry, and processing methods, to get
    different effects. Try a local photography club, or public library.

    The final image also depends on the enlarging method, choice of paper, and
    chemistry and processing methods again.

    Unless you can trust the laboratory doing the work to have a very
    consistent approach to every stage of the work, it's unlikely you'll get
    consistent satisfactory results.

    Perfectionists using large format may expose and process each "plate"
    differently; roll-film users might sacrifice a whole roll (and any photos
    already on it) to get exactly the "right" combination of exposure and
    processing for a particular frame. Interchangeable "backs" (eg Hasselblad)
    make life easier and cheaper for people who make a habit of that sort of

    Determine (by experiment) your own personal ISO rating for each emulsion
    and processing combination you use - and for each batch of film.
    Whiskers, Mar 12, 2013
  9. Peabody

    Noons Guest

    pssst: it's called
    and no: I don't own it.
    Noons, Mar 13, 2013
  10. Peabody

    Clank Guest

    They should be able to - it develops well with all the 'standard'
    developers, doesn't require any particularly special treatment; if the
    lab can do traditional B&W, they can do FP4+. I develop all mine with
    Kodak HC110 (mainly because the keeping properties and concentration
    make it so damn convenient…)
    Yup, I'm not a huge fan of the modern grain films for exactly that
    reason. I think FP4+ will hit the mark perfectly - and it's good to
    support Ilford, they're a great company (I've had the pleasure of
    touring their factory and meeting a few of them) and probably
    traditional photography's biggest supporter.

    The traditional grain films also have loads more latitude, which I
    could claim allows me more creativity when it comes to printing them.
    Or could more accurately admit helps cover up for my incompetence as a
    Fair point :). Having given up trying to keep track of Kodak's
    product discontinuations I forget that Tri-X is still available; I'm
    never letting myself fall in love with a Kodak film again since they
    killed E100VS :-(.
    Clank, Mar 13, 2013
  11. Peabody

    Peabody Guest

    Clank says...
    With any luck it won't be possible to develop it with C-41.
    Because if they can use that, they will.

    Is there a particularly good (low cost) place to buy FP4+?
    For the US, I mean.
    Peabody, Mar 13, 2013
  12. Peabody

    Savageduck Guest

    Savageduck, Mar 14, 2013
  13. Peabody

    Peabody Guest

    Savageduck says...
    Should have said - I need 120. Well actually 620, 6x9. But
    it looks like B&H is the best price on 120 too.
    Peabody, Mar 15, 2013
  14. Peabody

    darkroommike Guest

    Freestyle lists a couple of different ISO 100 films and FP-4+ (ISO 125)in 120. 620 film is more difficult, if you have 620 spools you can reload your 620 spools with 120 film--darkroom or changing bag--Google is your friend). The Foma and Arista emulsions are reputed to be very "old school."
    darkroommike, May 13, 2013
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