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back alley
11-14-2004, 12:25
for those who use ilford's xp2 film...

how do you normally rate it?

wlewisiii
11-14-2004, 12:32
I always use the mfg rating on all film. I'm just wierd that way I suppose...

William

l.mar
11-14-2004, 12:49
It's my understanding that "pushing" chromogenic B & W films, such as XP2 and Kodak "B & W" does not work that well. That said, I've shot XP2 at 320, and it works o.k. I would be interested in hearing anyone else's experiences with shooting at other than mfg. recommended speeds, as I shoot quite a bit of chromogenic B & W film.

Doug
11-14-2004, 13:15
I always set the camera to 2/3 stop less than the rated ISO of any C-41 film, whether I'm using an in-camera meter or hand-held incident meter.

I've used XP1 and XP2 Super a lot, and have gotten best results at EI 250. I'm now using a lot of Fuji NPZ800 in the 220 size, rated at EI 500.

These films all seem intolerant of underexposure, and are bordering on underexposure at the rated ISO speed. They're typically very tolerant of overexposure, almost impossible to totally block up the highlight density on the negatives.

So treating the films as if 2/3 stop slower than rated is for me a bit of a safety margin against underexposure, and a way to bring some additional richness to the shadowed areas of the image. I really dislike that ugly grainy foggy look of underexposed shadows!

To be clear, I make no mention of my metering or exposure practices to the processing labs. They have their standard C-41 process to follow, and that's fine with me. I have asked for push-processing with XP on occasions when I've used the rated 400 ISO in low-contrast situations to boost negative density. This works fine too, especially for wet-darkroom printing.

Kris
11-14-2004, 13:36
I shoot nearly all C-41 and B&W films at half its nominal speed. Like Doug, I find rating the films at nominal speed will give me ugly grainy foggy look in the dark part. The only exeption is TMax 100, which somehow doesn't like overexposure.

Why is it that negative film nominal speed seem to be faster than its actual speed? Haven't seen in in transparency land.

Marc Jutras
11-14-2004, 13:58
Ilford's documentation on XP2 says it can be used from EI 50 to 800.

There was a discussion about this on photo.net and people were talking about how it's almmost impossible to blow the highlights with it. On the opposite, darker ares can look muddy so anything from 400 up is not so good.

200 and lower seems to be the best. At 50, there's a loss of detail but at 100, it's really beautifull.

Some guy (don't remember his name and can't find the thread) posted a home made test. Here's the picture he posted.

lkgroup
11-14-2004, 14:21
I shoot nearly all XP2 at 200 unless I need the speed and then only to 400. I went though a stage of shooting only Ilford XP2 and developing in Tetranal C-41 kits. I probably went through 50+ rolls of 35mm. Even though I liked the negatives and the prints I always waited until I had 8 rolls of 36 exposed before processing. I wanted to take advantage of the maixmum number of rolls in the chemstry.

I have gone back to Tri-x so I can do 1-2 or so rolls at a time and a more timely fashion.

Leo

peter_n
11-14-2004, 15:21
Used at 320 it seems OK. For some reason I rated T400CN at 400 and that turned out much better. Probably the development lab. :(

rover
11-14-2004, 15:25
I have used 200 because that is what you guys said was best.

Nikon Bob
11-14-2004, 15:41
I was advised at another site to rate XP2 and Kodaks B&W C41 film at 200. I have done this and the results have been good. This makes sense as most C41 process films seem to do better with some overexposure. Underexposure of these films seems to really bring out the grain . Marc's example photos were very informative.

Peter
11-14-2004, 18:55
I personally expose XP2 at 400 as recommended by the manufacturer. I agree with the experience of other members here that XP2 is very tolerant to over-exposure as I have over-exposed 2 stops and the photos turned out very good. But I have rated XP2 at 800 and the result is increased grain and muddy shadow. It all depends what kind of photography you are doing. If one is doing fine-art or portrait, I think exposing XP2 at a slower speed will produce very fine images. If one is doing documentary or street photography and require a bit more speed for the action. A bit of grain may be acceptable and even desirable in my opinion.

Doug
11-14-2004, 22:54
Marc's illustration shows the loss of shadow contrast and detail, that muddy look, that I find even more objectionable than the grain increase. In color neg film there's often an odd ugly color cast in those muddy shadows too, sometimes greenish...

The grainy look comes from the dye clumps being further apart. Here's an example shot with XP2 with CV 2.5/75mm wide open, and underexposed (my cat Cinnamon):

Doug
11-14-2004, 22:57
Here's another in similar light with XP2 at EI 250, not underexosed, with 2.8/90mm Tele-Elmarit wide open (her name is Suwannee):

Pherdinand
11-15-2004, 08:47
It should metter alot, besides rating, how do you meter the scene. I always used it at 200-250 myself, although only in 120-format (never actually tried 135 format xp2). I use a handheld meter in reflective mode, and modify the reading if there's high contrast stuff in the scene (e.g., I underexpose 1-1/5 or even 2 stops if spotlit people are the subjects i want to have correctly exposed).

Pherdinand
11-15-2004, 08:53
"In color neg film there's often an odd ugly color cast in those muddy shadows too, sometimes greenish..."
Doug, i also noticed it, but could not judge if it's in the negative, or if it's due to the lab trying hard to get out some details from the dark regions. If it's not the lab, then, on ANY image the very dark zones hsould look like that, isn't that true? I mean, "underexposure" is just another way to say, there's less light hitting the negative, which is always the case for a scene with contrast variation of 5-6 stops.

Huh, that's a bit confusingly written, so here's what i mean: on a "correctly exposed" frame, there are regions which are "overexposed" (those come out bright) and regions that are "underexposed" (the shadows). In the shadows thus, there should always be this kind of grainy greenish muddy tone - unless it's left to go very dark on the print, by the lab.

In other words, the negative should not know the difference between a part of the scene that is 3 stops darker than the average gray, and a 3-stops underexposed average gray scene; but the lab will see if it's the latter and will print shorter to get some details out. Am i completely wrong?

Doug
11-15-2004, 13:13
I think you're right, that the grainy muddy effect becomes evident when the print is made lighter in an attempt to get nice tones in the medium-tone and light areas from an underexposed neg. When those parts of the picture are exposed properly, the muddy effect disappears into the black.

I can help push those muddy tones into the black by exposing a little more. ;)

back alley
11-15-2004, 20:45
so far, 13 rate it at under 400 and 6 rate it at 400 or over.

i too rate it at under 400, usually 200 and am quite pleased with the results. i'm actually starting to quite like this film.

joe

Solinar
11-16-2004, 10:58
On my medium format cameras with the "Old" Compur- Rapid shutter speed progression I use XP2 @ 200, without a filter and @ 100 with a Y-2 filter attached.

On my cameras that use the "newer" shutter speed progression I expose XP2 @ 250.

Like any other C-41 film the highlights will block-up, if you aren't careful. To me, the shadow detail is worth preserving.

That Guy
11-16-2004, 11:07
I've always rated it, an all other films I use, at the manufacturers rating. And I've gotten results both beautifully detailed and terribly grainy. Mostly I attribute it to how well I composed and metered the scene.

Marc's post was very good and I had to print it out and stare at it and the screen for a good five minutes before I could get a good feel for the test image. The result seem a little deceiving. The subject and background are different in each test image. And aperature settings have changed for each. The "50" looks to be about a 1.7 and the "800" about a 4.5 maybe. So it's hard to get an objective feel for each of the exposures.

However, from the test images, I like the "400" best. The faces have good tonality. The highlights aren't too strong. And the detail in the foreground (paper towels, it appears) is quite evident.

I might have to try this experiment myself.

Doug
11-16-2004, 12:19
Originally posted by Solinar
Like any other C-41 film the highlights will block-up, if you aren't careful. To me, the shadow detail is worth preserving. Of course I agree with you about the shadow detail. I think you'll find though that the blocked highlights are only in the scan or print, and that plenty of detail is there in the negative for you to take.

If you're doing your own scanning, do another scan favoring the light areas, and then you can blend that detail into your final image. If you're doing your own wet prints, you'll find the detail by burning in the bright areas. In my experience, it's nearly impossible to block up the highlights in any C41 neg!

st3ph3nm
11-16-2004, 19:44
I've only used the Kodak C41 b&w so far, and almost always rated it at 400. I tried one film at 800, for the extra speed, and looking for a grainy feel. Didn't work to my satisfaction, really, but I'm not sure how much of that is my lack of skill - none of the shots on that roll were much good at all!

Regarding the greenish cast, I got that with *every* roll until I switched to my current lab. I think it's more to do with the paper they use than anything else.

Cheers,
Steve

Marc Jutras
11-16-2004, 20:44
Returning on the sample shots I posted... These are not mine but were found on Photo.net forum (if you find the author of those, let me know). I noticed the change in aperture and other conditions in that test too.

I currently have a roll of XP2 Super in my R2 and when I get some free time (!), I'll try to run a proper test from EI 50 to 800. Anyone has a suggestion for the best "target"? What kind of scene should I go for?

back alley
11-16-2004, 21:10
nudes?

rover
11-17-2004, 02:24
Yup, the snow is starting to get deep in Edmonton, Joe is going into rut.

back alley
11-17-2004, 05:52
lol

Pherdinand
11-17-2004, 07:17
:D

Alternatively to nudes, how about some camera-and-coffee shots.

Pherdinand
11-17-2004, 07:21
Or - nudes in the snow in Edmonton, Canada. Joe, would you volunteer as a model?

Russ
11-17-2004, 07:23
Originally posted by backalley photo
for those who use ilford's xp2 film...

how do you normally rate it?

Joe

For normal street shooting, I rate it @ 320 and shoot through a deep yellow (#15) filter. For beautiful flesh tones in portraits, rate it @ 200. However, I find the Neopan 400CN, to be a bit better than the XP-2. I'll toss a roll or two into your filter package.

Russ

Russ
11-17-2004, 07:25
Originally posted by l.mar
It's my understanding that "pushing" chromogenic B & W films, such as XP2 and Kodak "B & W" does not work that well. That said, I've shot XP2 at 320, and it works o.k. I would be interested in hearing anyone else's experiences with shooting at other than mfg. recommended speeds, as I shoot quite a bit of chromogenic B & W film.

I.Mar

You're correct. Chromogenic films do not respond well to pushing.

Russ

back alley
11-17-2004, 09:09
Joe, would you volunteer as a model?

been there, done that!

joe

Russ
11-17-2004, 11:13
Originally posted by Pherdinand
Or - nudes in the snow in Edmonton, Canada. Joe, would you volunteer as a model?

Pherdinand

It really hurts, that you wouldn't ask me to model....

Russ

Pherdinand
11-17-2004, 11:59
OK...well, would you, Russ? :)
However, Joe was the one suggesting the subject, that's why I picked him. I have no preference as to who will model nude for Marc... as long as it's not for me :D

taffer
11-17-2004, 12:57
eeerrr...

well as not a very methodic person I've rated XP2 in a somewhat anarchic way. Usually at 250 but didn't hesitate using it up to 800 or so when I had no other option. Agree though that if you have to adjust later to get detail from an underexposed area, shadows get a particulary unpleasant look...

Didn't give more tests to XP2 since I started using Neopan, sorry :(

Marc Jutras
11-17-2004, 14:36
taffer: since you're using Neopan, could you run the little test? I'm planning to try with XP2 Super and Kodak BW400CN.

I think using a fixed aperture with camera on tripod and changing only speed to accomodate the various EI (from 50 to 800) should be good.

As for the subject, I don't feel like shooting hairy dudes with pointy nipples in the snow... sorry. :D Besides, we haven't got snow yet in Montreal (knock on wood).

Kris
11-17-2004, 14:45
Huh Fuji makes C-41 B&W film? How come I've never seen it in the shops?! I'll give it a try if I can find it as Russ said it is somewhat better than XP2. I'm not a fan of XP2 to begin with anyway; have the impression the film produces too much contrast compared to T400CN.

Oscar, are you using Neopan silver halide or C-41 Neopan? What's your finding on Neopan C-41 if you answer yes to the second case?

taffer
11-17-2004, 14:57
Wops yes forgot to mention, *my* Neopan is the normal b&w silver halide one, not the C41...

XP2 and in general C41 b&w film is a great solution to have 1-hour neg processing + cd with scans for usually a good price. I'd keep doing that if I hadn't become addicted to film processing myself...

And in fact those films have their own properties and behaviours against their non c41 cousins so sometimes is interesting to try them all.

back alley
11-17-2004, 17:23
who you calling hairy?

Russ
11-17-2004, 19:21
Originally posted by taffer
eeerrr...

Didn't give more tests to XP2 since I started using Neopan, sorry :(

Taffer

Isn't the Neopan 400, great stuff? Ever since discovering it about 6 years ago, I have competely abandoned Tri-X and HP-5. A tight nice grain pattern and beautiful tonality.

Russ

Russ
11-17-2004, 19:25
Originally posted by Kris
Huh Fuji makes C-41 B&W film? How come I've never seen it in the shops?! I'll give it a try if I can find it as Russ said it is somewhat better than XP2. I'm not a fan of XP2 to begin with anyway; have the impression the film produces too much contrast compared to T400CN.

Oscar, are you using Neopan silver halide or C-41 Neopan? What's your finding on Neopan C-41 if you answer yes to the second case?

Kris

The Neopan 400CN (chromogenic) isn't available in the US. I get mine from a buddy in the UK. Should we make a bulk order for the group members? You find the XP-2 to be too contrasty? Odd, I find it somewhat lacking in contrast.

Russ

Stu :)
11-17-2004, 20:41
Stay tuned to this thread, I got some XP2 cross processed today and printed on colour paper... wierd and wonderful.

The scans will be up later today.

Stu :)

Russ
11-17-2004, 20:56
Originally posted by Stu :)
Stay tuned to this thread, I got some XP2 cross processed today and printed on colour paper... wierd and wonderful.

The scans will be up later today.

Stu :)

Dammit Stu! I've been waiting for 5 minutes now. What's the hold up? :D

Russ

taffer
11-18-2004, 03:48
Originally posted by Russ
Taffer

Isn't the Neopan 400, great stuff? Ever since discovering it about 6 years ago, I have competely abandoned Tri-X and HP-5. A tight nice grain pattern and beautiful tonality.

Russ

Tight nice grain: TRUE
Beautiful Tonalities: TRUE
Scan-friendly: TRUE
Soups well in Diafine: TRUE
...More to discover...

It was mainly yours and others opinion on this film that made me try it. So far so good. Last week I got a 10 rolls set from the store and the guy asked me if I was a photo student. I replied not exactly, but he applied me the student discount anyway.

Then I told him how much I liked that film, which indeed he had never tried. In exchange from the advice, he gave me a free roll of Tri-X as he said it was the only film he used.

I bet if he has already tried Neopan and what does he think about it now :)

Russ
11-18-2004, 07:24
Originally posted by taffer
Tight nice grain: TRUE
Beautiful Tonalities: TRUE
Scan-friendly: TRUE
Soups well in Diafine: TRUE
...More to discover...

It was mainly yours and others opinion on this film that made me try it. So far so good. Last week I got a 10 rolls set from the store and the guy asked me if I was a photo student. I replied not exactly, but he applied me the student discount anyway.

Then I told him how much I liked that film, which indeed he had never tried. In exchange from the advice, he gave me a free roll of Tri-X as he said it was the only film he used.

I bet if he has already tried Neopan and what does he think about it now :)

Not to mention that it's cheaper than the equivalent films too. I once asked my Fuji rep, why they don't push their B/W films all that hard. He said that they just weren't interested in making much money from their B/W offerings. However, they are still putting money and R&D into their B/W and color films. Did I mention that the Neopan negatives also print up rather well onto color paper in the "one hour" Fuji Frontier machines? It's great if you need proof prints. Most of the B/W snaps on my site were scanned from the cheap one hour prints. It even amazes the operator of the one hour machine, where I normally go, how well it enlarges in this method.

Russ

Stu :)
11-18-2004, 15:48
Here we go...

Stu :)
11-18-2004, 15:50
The Cyan look...

Stu :)
11-18-2004, 15:51
...Purple Picket Fence...

Stu :)
11-18-2004, 15:54
...oh spooky...

Stu :)
11-18-2004, 15:55
...hell fire...

Stu :)
11-18-2004, 15:57
...last but not least.

Stu :)
11-18-2004, 16:11
The cross processed Ilford XP2 "negatives" came out as aqua tinted mono transparencies. The printer at the lab set the printer to read C-41 mono film and set the colour correction to auto, hence the photographs are negatives and colours are pretty wild. However... if you take some of the scans flip the curves around in Photoshop (neg to pos), the colours become slightly more realistic, not bad for mono film!

Stu :)

Kris
11-18-2004, 16:18
Whoa I love that Hell Fire! Coincidently, I also fancy that Hellfires mounted on AH-64D :)

januaryman
03-18-2009, 06:10
I had such success with rating it at 200, that I now rate BW400CN at 200 as well and get a similar improvement. Since I do shoot Fuji's color film, Superia 200, I never have to bother too much switching mind/eye gears when shooting Sunny 16. (But I often wonder if it's BW in that Canon P, or did I load color?)

BTW, the switch to Superia was a cost decision. I can now either use the color, or play with it in Elements to convert it to my more usual B&W. It is nice to have that option.

Igor.Burshteyn
03-18-2009, 07:08
I rate XP2 @320 when using camera with auto exposure, just to be on the safe side. Though I exposed XP2 a few times @800ei and had quite usable results (shadows did suffer a bit). In manual exposure mode (on metered camera) I rate XP2 @400 and adjust exposure compensation depending on subject/light.

btgc
04-17-2009, 04:31
I voted for 200, but my stock is well expired; fresh stuff I'd try at 320.
Box speed is for those good at metering - I'm safer with a stop over. And XP-2 gets nicer with little overexposure.