Fuji Acros in 2-bath or divided developer?

Discussion in 'Black and White' started by russ_kerlin, Jan 6, 2008.

  1. I'm looking for anyone with experience developing Fuji Acros 100 in a two-bath or divided developer OTHER THAN Diafine (e.g., divided D-23, divided D-76, Stoekler, Thornton, etc.).
    1. How pleased were you overall with results and why?
    2. What formula did you use? (provide formula and/or link if possible)
    3. What did you rate the film at?
    4. What times did you use for each bath, the "standard" 3+3 or something else?
    5. How did you agitate?
    Any information would be helpful. Thanks.
  2. A few things you should know to start.

    1 Divided developers tend to compress the highlights so you end up with less separation

    2 They worked better with the older thicker emulsion film compared to todays thinner
    emulsions. Modify the formula with more developing agent to get more absorbed into the
    thinner emulsion. Experiment first on test subjects. a 75% increase is not unreasonable.

    I used the Leica formula on Plus X and Tri xxx for a decade or so. When the newer film
    came out, there was nothing but problems and I tried to go back to Plus x and that film
    had been changed so the old formula no longer worked. I now use homemade D76 and
    mix a liter as I need it. It seems to work well on everything except Delta 400.

    Good luck. It was nice when it lasted.
  3. You can try Tetenal Emofin. It is somewhat costly and I have had to get it from Europe because I don't know where it is sold in the US. If you are looking to control the contrast with ACROS I would recommend Fuji Microfine. You can get it by mail order from the megaperls webshop [www.unicircuits.com]. I don't know what benefit you would get from "pushing" ACROS in a developer like Diafine or even trying to control contrast with another divided developer. It would be like trying to get the image quality of a 100mm lens by using a 50mm lens and a 2X teleconverter.
  4. jtk


    I use Emofin sometimes, mostly with Neopan 400 in order to push while reducing grain. Makes a long-scale flat-looking neg that leads to a scan that snaps up to whatever degree of contrast you want with Photoshop.

    I've not found it satisfactory for pushing Acros to 200...loses shadow details...but it remains fine-grained.

    With R-O9 and with Emofin, wildly different developers, I've found Acros beautiful @ 100.

    I purchased several Emofin kits just before J&H went out of business. Here's a resource for alternatives: http://www.photoformulary.com/DesktopDefault.aspx?tabindex=2&tabid=9
  5. Beutler's is my developer of choice for Acros 100. Nice 'n sharp. Try 8.5 minutes rated at ISO 50.

    It's a very simple formula. Google can find it for you.
  6. I've gotten good results shooting Fuji 1600 at 800 and developing in divided D76. Very low grain for such a high speed film. Divided D76 is rapidly becoming my most used developer.

    I've heard that the "real" speed of Acros is 80.
  7. hi Russ,

    since it's a fine grain film i use this version of buetler's divided developer ( biased for sharpness )

    bath a.

    metol 6.5g

    sodium sulfite 35g

    water to make 1 ltr

    bath b.

    sodium carbonate 12g

    water to make 1 ltr.

    4 minutes in A, agitate first minute then an inversion at every minute
    ( more for even absorption - i don't think there's enough ph in A to start development )

    4 minutes in B agitate first minute then for 10 sec at 3rd minute

    ei is around 80, yours may vary.
  8. Thank you all. Gonzalo, I'm intrigued by your formula. I like the low sulfite to promote accutance, and the sodium carbonate in bath B is interesting. Have you tried with other accelerators, such as borax or sodium metaborate? I typically shoot at EI 64 and develop in D-76 1:1, so the sodium carbonate in a two-bath might be good at compensating my negatives.
  9. hi Russ,

    it's a variation Barry Thornton points out in his last book 'edge of darkness' (?) - its a classic combination ( metol - sod. carbonate ie. beutler's , crawley's fx1 ). yes, i have used borax and sod. metaborate . 12g/L borax goes well with MQ and PQ combinations. i'm using at the moment crawley's fx4 which is a Metol-phenidone-Q developer as a two bath and anything more than borax generates impenetrable highlights ( regarding d-76 1:1 i suspect that carbonate at 12g/L will be too hot ...perhaps borax 12g/L )

    if your prepared to mix your own, fx4 is an excellent MQ style developer with the added benefit of a real 1 stop increase in speed.

    i knocked the sod. sulfite down to 80g/L from the recommended 100g/L as per Thorton's suggestion ( decreases solvency effect of sod. sulfite - improves perceived acutance) recipe available at www.jackspcs.com

    i've also used sod. metaborate as a B bath with metol 6.5g/L and sod. sulfite anywhere between 50 - 80g/L and it gives fine grain with excellent sharpness.

    you can also mix up d76 1:1 agitate for the first minute ( for setting the speed ), let it sit for 4 min. then use a B bath of 12g/L of sod. metaborate for 4min no agitation.

    hope this helps.

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