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06-23-2012, 01:03 PM   #1
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B&W ISO 100 films - expose at 100?

I've bought a few slower B&W films to try - T-Max 100, Delta 100 & FP4. I'll decide which one I prefer and stick to that, as they're more or less the same price.

As I'm new to film photography, I'm not sure if I should expose these at their given ISO or if I should over-expose slightly? From what I've seen, many films seem to benefit from over-exposure 1/2 to 1 stop, but I don't know if this applies to B&W.

What do you find gives the best results? I'll be developing them at home and for the moment I won't be pushing them.

Thanks


Last edited by Jonathan Mac; 06-23-2012 at 02:44 PM.
06-23-2012, 06:16 PM   #2
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Assuming an accurate camera meter, probably the biggest influence of your personal Exposure Index (EI) is the developer being used. Developers like, say, T-Max RS or Xtol will get you close enough if not box speed. And I'm sure Ilford has some.

Films like FP4+ have a lot of latitude. Would you even notice if you were 1/3 stop off ideal exposure if you are scanning, I wonder. I'd think you'd have to have a pretty critical eye, experience or a densitometer to notice with BW film.

That being said I'd suggest shooting your first rolls at box speed, follow the manufactures directions for time and agitation profile and take it from there. As a rough guide I'd say it would be unusual for most developers to be much more than a 1/3 of a stop off from box speed . If it's way more than that I'd suspect the development time and/or the agitation profile as reasons given everything else being equal.

Last edited by tuco; 06-23-2012 at 08:19 PM.
06-24-2012, 12:40 AM   #3
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You can test by yourself, just put your camera on a tripod and shoot the same scene with variation of sensitivity and use the one you like!
06-24-2012, 01:09 AM   #4
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The Massive Dev chart only shows T-Max 100 as EI 80 for Ilfosol 3, which is the developer I'll be using. I don't know if that suggests it should be used at 80 or if it's just lacking info for other EIs.

06-24-2012, 05:53 AM   #5
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You probably have seen this ilfosol 3 data sheet:
http://www.ilfordphoto.com/Webfiles/2008422946292613.pdf

I would not sweat the difference of 1/3 stop, given all the variation in lighting conditions, but at the same time I'd be inclined to follow Ilford's suggestion of EI 80
06-24-2012, 07:08 AM   #6
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In the days of the wet darkroom condensor enlarger users generally preferred slightly denser negatives,
i.e. slightly overexposed and/or overdeveloped rather than underexposed/underdeveloped (or "thin") negatives.

Will you be scanning your black and white negatives? I understand this can be somewhat challenging.
Perhaps someone with experience can suggest best exposure/density for scanning?

Chris

Last edited by ChrisPlatt; 06-24-2012 at 02:52 PM.
06-24-2012, 08:30 AM   #7
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I am on Ilford HP5 exposed at iso 800.
Using iso 800 helps allow a wider range of lighting for each roll of film.
Microphen 1+0 at 8.0 minutes when new
I have an old condensor enlarger.
Seems to work OK
As occasional hobbiest i found it better to do the same each time after getting something that works OK, keeping a written log book.

Using Ilford multigrade paper developer 1+14, 90 seconds, I found keeping the paper and developer temperature exactly at 20C helps consistency.
The most sensitive variant by far is by the exposure time and f-stop under the enlarger.
So next time I will cut a sheet of paper into strips and use the stepped exposure test. I will add that to the routine for every neg because it saves paper and time in the long run.
06-24-2012, 11:09 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jonathan Mac Quote
I've bought a few slower B&W films to try - T-Max 100...
I thought I'd throw in a suggestion for fixing 100TMX if you haven't read it already. 100TMX appears to have a lot of anti-halation dye. It can come out pink looking.

Fix 100TMX with an additional bath of fresher fixer for one minute and wash for 20-30 minutes. I mix a second bottle of fixer and track the rolls of 100TMX processed through it. After 8 or so rolls I mix a new 1000ml bottle of my TF-5 fixer for that purpose. Your milage will vary for a different fixer's capacity but the number I use is half the number rolls it normally fixes.


Last edited by tuco; 06-24-2012 at 11:25 AM.
06-24-2012, 11:49 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jonathan Mac Quote
The Massive Dev chart only shows T-Max 100 as EI 80 for Ilfosol 3, which is the developer I'll be using. I don't know if that suggests it should be used at 80 or if it's just lacking info for other EIs.
The Massive Dev chart is a valuable resource; however, interpreting posted EI's for a developer/film combinations is all pretty much good faith. Did the poster use a densitometer to conduct a speed test and what shape is their camera's meter and shutter in, for example.

Last edited by tuco; 06-24-2012 at 12:03 PM.
06-24-2012, 01:51 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by tuco Quote
The Massive Dev chart is a valuable resource; however, interpreting posted EI's for a developer/film combinations is all pretty much good faith. Did the poster use a densitometer to conduct a speed test and what shape is their camera's meter and shutter in, for example.
I have similar concerns and cautions regarding the Massive Dev chart. For me, it represents a good starting point, but to be honest, for the film/developer combinations I have been using, I don't know where they got their numbers.


Steve
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