what is Durst Printo system for?

Discussion in 'Film and Processing' started by murrayatuptowngallery, May 25, 2008.

  1. I was just given several (4-5) boxes of Durst Printo stuff. (Actually, I should
    look inside the boxes to make sure that is what is really in there).

    I am not sure what it's for. I assumed color processing or prints, and
    narrow-mindedly decided I don't intend to do that...I fear finding color paper
    may be harder than b/w at some point in the future.

    Today I read that the system may be usable for b/w processing.

    Then I had the thought...can it be used for C41 or E6 film processing? That is
    something I see myself possibly wanting to do.

    I think there is one Therm unit and three Intro units. I'm not sure if the Intro
    is a Tank, or if I also have a 5th box that says Tank.

    I am not being open-minded enough about the capabilities, so any help would be


  2. Its for making prints, hence the name.
    It is usable for B&W but theres not much point. You can do that under safelights, although, if you want to not be bothered with agitating chemicals i guess thats a reason to use it.
    It cannot be used for film. Get a Jobo for that.
  3. Just a thought - The college where I went to use the darkroom had a processing machine (an Ilford 2150) for B&W and it was great as it removed any variables from the print making, leaving just the enlarging, exposure etc to get right. (I think there should be a significant pause after that statement!) :)

    PS your chemicals would probabhly last a bit longer out as well.
  4. Ha...been 12 years, so I will not ask the same question.

    Time to clean the garage. Haven't made use of it in the last 12 years...probably won't in the next 12.

  5. The Durst Printo system was specifically designed to process colour paper prints using RA-4 chemistry. It replaced the previous amateur/semi-pro Durst roller-processors which couldn't cope with the increased temperature and throughput speed of RA-4.

    A Printo system could be used for automatic processing of B&W resin-coated photographic paper. Leaving your hands dry and free to concentrate on the enlarger exposure.
  6. Kodak stopped making black and white paper some years ago, but I
    believe still makes color paper. Though everyone I know (that is labs,
    not people) uses Crystal Archive.

    Most color paper is used in laser scan digital printers, but it is supposed
    to work just fine the old fashioned way, too.

    And Ilford, I believe, still makes black and white paper, but not color paper.
    As I understand it, there are digital printers for black and white paper,
    but not so common. Easier to make black and white prints on color paper.
  7. I had a Durst Printo and used it exclusively for Ilfochrome. A beautifully and ingeniously designed processor (Paper only) for color prints; no pumps (and no pump failures), reliable chemistry heating system, a gear system for moving the print from one bath to the next, very effective squeegee rollers to prevent chemistry carry-over, etc., etc. I wax poetic just thinking about it :)
    About two years ago, when I finally stpped printing Ilfochrome, I sold it for a fraction of the original cost.
  8. You can still use it for RA-4 prints however an ACP processor (Thermaphot 2-bath) is then cheaper and easier to become.
  9. What?
    How is £1400 for a little processor that'll only do 10"x8" prints cheaper than a used Printo system that can make 16"x12" prints?

    Easier to come by? Possibly, but no way cheaper or easier to use.
  10. Durst Printo Darkroom Paper Processor RA4 RARE | eBay

    $16 (plus $76 shipping to US)

    sold already
  11. I still have my Durst Printo (7 modules in all) and plan to use it once I get my darkroom up. You really don't need all those modules 2 modules will do for B&W and Color. You might want to use a 3rd module which I think is called the INTRO module which is used to turn ON/OFF the unit and also allows you to insert paper into the machine without a lot of fiddling around in the dark.

    For a more fancy work flow you might want to add a washing module and/or a drying module, but this is not necessary especially if you don't have a lot of room. The reason why you can develop B&W and even color in just 2 steps, is that the first module the one with the Developer squeezes most of the developer from the paper before guiding it to the second module with the Fixer, so there is no need for a Stop Bath step. Unfortunately, Durst does not manufacture these units anymore and they are extremely hard to find on the Used market. So if something like the Rollers wear out(which they most certainly do), or something else breaks down you can kiss that baby good-bye.
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2020
  12. The Durst Printo was also made by Thermaphot. 10 years ago I bought my Jobo CPA-2 for free. I ordered a new elevator and a new re-circulation pump which I found at that time already expensive for Eur. 300. However now the prices for Jobo spare parts are insane. A Thermaphot ACP-252, 25cm wide, 2-bath I bought new in 1999 for DM 2100 which is now approx. Eur. 1050. I have used it for RA-4 but also for B&W (PE/RC only). Sometimes you see then for a few hundred euro or even less. The question is then how good the rollers still are. Spare parts are very difficult to become now.
  13. The Thermaphot 302 (30cm/12" wide) would be the nearest equivalent to a 2 unit Printo system.

    It appears that it's no longer available new, but used Thermaphot prices seem much higher than those for any Printo. When they come up at all.
    A lot of parts should be 3D printable, or substitutable by aquarium pumps and off-the-shelf synchronous motors, etc.

    I had to lathe turn several new rollers for an old Durst RCP20 that I bought about 25 years ago.
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2020
  14. Tell you the truth, I found and still find the prices for Jobo, Thermaphot and Durst Printo products ridiculously outrageous since they are 90% Plastic . In my opinion, it's one of the biggest rip-offs the world has ever seen, since there are plenty of cheaper alternatives on the market if you are not impressed by name-brands, "German Engineering" and/or are willing to use a little elbow grease.

    I got my Jobo CPE2 for peanuts, $25 when I went into the local photography retailer to buy some B&W filters and this was a shelf model ! This is when they where trying to clear out most of their legacy stuff(film), to bring in the new Digital.

    I still have my CPE-2 plus tanks, but I rarely use it because I rather develop my film by hand the old fashioned way. Maybe one day I will find use for it, but since I rarely shoot film any more it mostly sits there collecting dust. Take a look at these prices for the CPE2 now called the CPE3:

    Jobo CPE-3 Colorprocessor Kit

    Jobo Lift for CPE-2 Plus Processor
  15. Yes Jobo stuff is expensive, but then the price of almost anything film-related is inflated out of all proportion lately. In comparison with some of the 'Kickstarter' processors, a used CPE-2 looks like an absolute bargain.

    Anyone willing to waste spend 3 or 4 hundred on an ancient 35mm camera obviously isn't too short of money - common sense maybe, but not money.

    My used CPE-2 needed some de-rusting and adjustment when I bought it several years ago. It quickly repaid itself in C-41 and 5x4 sheet film processing, which it does superbly and with minimum fuss and use of chemicals.

    Jobo's spirals are also easier to load than the competition (i.e. Paterson) - aside from SS spirals.

    So 'overpriced' is entirely relative.

Share This Page