|A new project for me - a 17th C stable block and groom's quarters. Read on for more.|
Contax 137 MA, 28mm f2.8 Distagon, Silvermax developed in Spur's HRX.
I shipped my last bottle of Acurol-N yesterday so there's just the excellent HRX left in The Online Darkroom Store if you fancy giving Spur film developers a try. I find it hard making up my mind which of the two I prefer. I suppose you may have to run this through your BS filter since I'm now a retailer but they are both superb!
I liked Acurol-N as soon as I started using it. HRX was more of a slow burn thing but, on balance, I think it has the edge. They're different developers, of course, with Acurol-N producing edge effects for increased apparent sharpness and HRX producing very fine grain along with wonderful tonality.
Adox CHS 100 II is just beautiful developed in HRX. I'm working on a new project at the moment which I'll write about later in the week (early pic above). So far I've shot a couple of rolls of 35mm Silvermax but I want to use the Rollei SL66E as the subject has some great textures and medium format would capture that a little better but I can't find CHS 100 II in 120 size anywhere.
I've emailed Mirko Boeddecker of Adox to see if he can suggest a supplier. The project I have on the go is a 17th century stable block where there are dark interiors and daylight shining in through broken windows. I really can't think of a better film combination than CHS 100 II and HRX for this which is why I'm happy to wait until I can get some roll film.
I'll be getting more Acurol-N for sale in due course and will let you know when it's here but in the meantime you might want to consider HRX as an alternative. I think I said in an earlier post that I'm going to concentrate on Tri X in Acurol-N for my "dull day" photography and CHS 100 II and HRX for everything else and the more I use these combinations, the happier I am with my choices.
Whilst I'm on the subject of Spur products, I have to say that the print developers - Cool Black and Acurol-P - and warm tone additive Acurol-W have not exactly set the heather on fire. Perhaps photographers are happy to try new film developers to see what effect they have on their negatives but think all print developers are pretty much the same. Or maybe it's just a reflection on the size of the darkroom market. It certainly looks to me as if the vast majority of film photographers are only scanning their negatives. (Click here if you'd like a quick run-down on the qualities of the Spur products I sell.)
In terms of keeping the film market going, it's obviously great that people are still using 35mm, medium format and large format. However, unless you're also printing in the darkroom, you really aren't getting the most from the medium.
Old hands know this but if only younger photographers who grew up during the digital age could realise how much they're missing by not working in the darkroom then perhaps we'd see a real renaissance in the film market.