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12-05-2008, 09:31 PM   #1
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Tri-X! I Get it Now!

short addendum to this thread here https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/43133-travelli...k-edition.html

i got back my B&W. all i have to say is WOW! who knew greys and blacks could be so rich! and i love the grain in the photos, gives it a bit of texture and it is more organic unlike digital noise.

before i tried film i thought, why would any one shoot film. and then i thought, why would anyone shoot B&W? those guys must be old folks who are clinging to the past. but after seeing the results i'm convinced! i have 14 rolls of tri-x in the fridge with lots of other homey's to chill out with. seriously, i'm gonna put aside my K100D for a while and concentrate on film.

thanks a lot to this sub-forum for keeping film alive!

rest of the photos are here Zenfolio | Simon Tam | Tri-X Blast from the Past







12-05-2008, 09:38 PM   #2
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Nice! In particular #1 wouldn't have work in color - it would be too busy!
12-05-2008, 09:46 PM   #3
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Nice work!
I remember when T-max came that the discussions on how it compared with Tri-X was that Tri-x had better edge sharpness, despite bigger grain. I've recently tried the Ilford film that is processed in color-chemistry, but don't like the structure of the film. I think I also must get back to the films of the past.
12-05-2008, 10:17 PM   #4
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Now you know why us "old guys" pine so winsomely for the good old days of film. I would love to have a 100 foot roll of Panatomic-X...Heck, if you can get me a 100 feet, I want 10 100ft rolls! It could easily be pushed (with proper development) to ISO 100 with extremely fine grain and a tonal range that did not end. We are talking details in the clouds and in the deep shadows on the same negative.

Steve

12-05-2008, 11:08 PM   #5
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Tri-X: the Kodachrome of B&W.

TMAX has a godawful muddy tone. Apparently, Tmax has a "flatter" spectral response curve, which is great for the Zonies, or any one who wants to shag around with filters for hours.

I'm neither. I want to lock and load and shoot from the hip.

Tri-X will make you a believer, and it seems it has.

I'm guessing you pushed it two or so stops, from the tone. If not, then it's the scanner.
12-06-2008, 12:27 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by lithos Quote
Tri-X: the Kodachrome of B&W.

TMAX has a godawful muddy tone. Apparently, Tmax has a "flatter" spectral response curve, which is great for the Zonies, or any one who wants to shag around with filters for hours.

I'm neither. I want to lock and load and shoot from the hip.

Tri-X will make you a believer, and it seems it has.

I'm guessing you pushed it two or so stops, from the tone. If not, then it's the scanner.
I echo your sentiments regarding TMax. There may be some way to get around the lack of local contrast, but who has the time or the money to fiddle with all kinds of different developers. I read somewhere that deliberate over-development in good old D-76 was the key to good results. Some others are claiming that very long development in diluted FG-7 does the trick. Who knows?

There is something special about the grain of films like Tri-X. The grain size is dependent somewhat on the amount of light present. Well-lit scenes appear almost grainless while dim indoor or night shots have the characteristic "gritty" appearance. I think that is what gives Tri-X images their "pop" and "edge" beyond the actual contrast present in the scene.

Steve
12-06-2008, 02:05 AM   #7
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Congratulations. I feel the same way about Tri-X, and I only just have one film processed so far. I thought it was just some pseudo-connoisseurship, where people were talking about things that were greater in the past, but I was blown away. Digital is not gonna match B&W film, for feel and the special mood it can create.

I also feel that this film forum is more fun to be in at the moment. A lot of great older posts, and a lot more about photography, instead of endless technical discussion with how many lines a new lens can resolve.

You’re showing great work. The first one is top notch.

Are the JPEG’s scans that you get from the lab, good enough quality that you can do real PP on them ?
12-06-2008, 02:31 AM   #8
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The two things I've heard about TMAX devving are both polarised, as far as common developers go: either only use TMAX dev, because that's what it's designed for, or only use D-76, because Kodak didn't know what the hell they were on about when they made TMAX film.

So I just said "Eh" and stuck with Tri-X and D-76. I like my film to have character. It's those little "flaws" that make things great.

I know, TMAX is closer to technical perfection. But nowhere near my idea of artistic perfection.

I'm sorry, I rabbit on about this film a lot.

That, and let's not forget to mention the free extra stop of latitude it has, or its price (down here, roll of Tri-X 35mm is about $8, TMY is about $12).

K100d, how did you get this developed? DIY or at a store?

Fuji's Neopan is another great film, and my favourite behind Tri-X. Try some if you can find it; often Neopan 400 is priced about the same as Tri-X. A very crisp film, with delicate tones. Great for portraits.

Tri-X is very film noir, which I love. Pretty much all of the black and white shots I put up are on Tri-X at ISO3200.

12-06-2008, 05:05 AM   #9
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If it's true that TMax is a low-contrast film, would that make it better for scanning?
12-06-2008, 05:09 AM   #10
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I never really liked the results I got from tri-x, too much grain for me with 35mm. I'm with steve pan-x was my favorite.
12-06-2008, 07:22 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I echo your sentiments regarding TMax. There may be some way to get around the lack of local contrast, but who has the time or the money to fiddle with all kinds of different developers. I read somewhere that deliberate over-development in good old D-76 was the key to good results. Who knows?
Steve

Me. That works. A little extra time in either D-76 or (less extra) with the Tmax developer will do a lot for that. It's not my favorite stuff, (Though I *love* the P3200. Haha. ) ) but the way I tend to process for a bit of a denser negative, it's not bad. Contrast isn't hard to get in B&W, though it kind of defeats the purpose of the stuff to cook it too much.. But... This makes it serviceable... I got like a brick of the stuff for a buck a roll from some supermarket's expired bin, mostly the 100. It's been ....slowly getting out of the freezer now and again. (I don't think too much of the 400, honestly, compared to other options, the 100 has some OK qualities for me.)

If you like contrast, try some Neopan Acros... if you put that in T-max developer, you get... lots. Maybe really too much. Don't overcook that stuff though, nerve-wrackingly-short developing time as it has. I've just been trying the Neopan 400... I like that better in D-76.

Ilford HP-5 is a fave of mine, by the way, oh,XP-2-trying person. I was never impressed with the C-41 black and whites... ( Kodak's is pretty good as these things go, but you don't get a conventionally-printable negative out of it.)

That sort of film doesn't compare to true B&W, though.
12-06-2008, 07:33 AM   #12
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Tri-x definitely has a look all it's own, and is fairly easy to get beautiful results with. talk about latitude. It's my favorite film in smaller formats.

Tmax400 is, in my opinion, the best film ever made for large format. I've never shot much of it in small formats, but if treated the same, I guess could yield the same amazing results. With Tmax400, you can build contrast to the moon. Tri-x will not. For silver chloride paper, or for pt/pd and other alt processes, tmax is miles ahead.
12-06-2008, 11:15 AM   #13
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I'll be getting my Pentax MX with the SMC Takumar 50mm f1.4 lens serviced by Eric Hendrickson sometime in Jan 2009 to add (hopefully) to a used Pentax 67II with the S-M-C Takumar 6x7 105mm f2.4 lens that I plan to acquire at approximately the same time..

I plan to set aside my Pentax K10D for awhile and concentrate on using the two film cameras for the next year, or so..My intentions are to carry both cameras loaded with Kodak Tri-X Pan B&W film when I go out..This way I can concentrate on learning the new (to me) 67II medium format camera..If a situation presents itself where the f2.4 maximum aperture of the Takumar 6x7 lens is too slow, then I will have the MX with its faster Takumar f1.4 lens with me to attempt the shot..Since both lenses will have approximately the same field-of-view I will be able to focus on composition & framing, & not on whether or not I should change to a lens with a different focal length..I intend to deliberately "limit" myself in this fashion so that I can concentrate on re-learning black & white photography..I figure that the fewer variables at first the better off I'll be, & the faster I'll learn..

I want to get back to my roots where I shot Tri-X all the time & developed it myself..I do not recall what developer I was using back in 1977-79 when I had 7-day-a-week access to the post darkroom at Ft. Lewis, Washington for the princely sum of $2.50 per month..In those days all I had to pay for was paper to print photos on..

I loved this film then for its ability to be used in so many different situations hand held..I tickles me sometimes to read the current debates over fast lenses..Most amateur photographers in the 1960's & 1970's fielded cameras with a maximum aperture of f2.8 to f2.0..With Tri-X loaded in the camera these lenses allowed us to shoot in some fairly dim low-light situations..

When I purchased my first MX it came equipped with a M 50mm f2.0 lens..This is what I learned on, and since I never knew any better I was perfectly content in those days to shoot all the time with that lens..I learned to work around that lens's limitations without constantly lusting for something better..I did occasionally wish for a longer lens with more reach..It's amazing how when you can only afford a single tool, and when you are uneducated & ignorant as far as other choices are concerned; how one just learns to make the best photographs possible with the particular camera & lens combo that you own..

When I start developing again I am leaning towards using Diafine as my developer..From what I have been reading lately on photo.net & The Figital Revolution Tri-X developed in Diafine has a wide latitude that ranges from ISO 320 to ISO 1250 when developed using the stock times..My thinking is that using Diafine with Tri-X will allow me to reduce some of the variables in re-learning developing..

Anyone here have any thoughts on developing Tri-X in Diafine??..Any comments or suggestions will be gladly welcomed..

Also, do any of you old-timers or young-timers (new word?) shooting B&W film still use colored filters??..

LONG LIVE TRI-X !!!!!!!!!!

Bruce
12-06-2008, 01:29 PM   #14
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thanks everyone for the replies, glad that we have quite a Tri-X crew on PF

processing was one in a lab, and scanned with a Noritsu machine

edit: and no need to PP B&W really, it looks great as it is

Last edited by k100d; 12-06-2008 at 07:16 PM.
12-06-2008, 07:09 PM   #15
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Anyone here have any thoughts on developing Tri-X in Diafine??..Any comments or suggestions will be gladly welcomed..

I guess it's pretty valid... I've been intending to try it, at one point someone was promising me a whole bunch of Tri-X, and I was wanting the speed for where I was.. (high latitude, dark early much of the year) Anyway, I've been putting it off cause I don't want to move it and want to check out what it does for HP5 Plus first, , and I've been trying on Neopan in various developers, etc, etc. I guess Tri-X is where you really get the best speed bump, though.

You do lose the fine control in the tank, I understand, but it's pretty goof-proof and uniform if you rate it right in camera.

Anyway, I'll probably try it eventually, ...I'd like to try and keep the number of films and developers I run down to some sane number, and I've got an itch to finally try Microphen.

Also, do any of you old-timers or young-timers (new word?) shooting B&W film still use colored filters??..


Not like I used to... Partly cause I haven't replaced most of them, partly cause I've been working with a lot of subjects and conditions that don't need them, and also cause I've been casting about with different films and developers looking to update my look... I keep forgetting to keep an eye out for reds and black softnets, actually. (Goths need portraits, too! )
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