Adox CMS II 20 tips? Experience stories?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by ChrisBCS, Mar 16, 2017.

  1. ChrisBCS

    ChrisBCS Member

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    Getting back into film, this is one of the first beasts I'd like to play around with for full outdoor lighting shots. 120 size.

    Any cautions, notes, difficulties, etc. you'd like to pass on would be amazing.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

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    I've been looking at this myself.

    I cannot find the Adotech developer at any US distributor.
    It appears you have to order it from Fotoimpex or other German dealers.

    - Leigh
     
  3. michael_r

    michael_r Member

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  4. Alan9940

    Alan9940 Member

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    I've shot quite a bit of CMS 20--both the original version and the newer II version. First, it's a sloooow film; I expose at EI12. Make sure you use the corresponding film/developer combination; don't mix-n-match. For example, the newer CMS II shouldn't be developed in the old Adotech formulation. The newer Adotech III developer is much easier to deal with so I'd highly suggest using it over the prior version. If you handle the film and developer correctly, you'll realize very fine results that are consistent with larger format film IMHO; that is, 35mm will provide MF quality, while MF will provide LF quality. Printing it (analog darkroom) can be challanging because you can't see the grain to focus on it! :smile:

    Good luck!

    Leigh - Adotech III developer is available from Freestyle. Well...I just checked and it's out of stock until 4/7.
     
  5. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

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    Thanks, Alan. I'll try them again in a couple of weeks.

    - Leigh
     
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    ChrisBCS

    ChrisBCS Member

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    Thanks everyone! Definitely think I will give this a go!
     
  7. howardpan

    howardpan Subscriber

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    I have developed it successfully with Perceptol 1+10 semi-stand for 60 minutes.
    I believe my EI was 12, but my shadows could have benefited from a lower EI.
    Be sure to fix for less time (read the instructions).
    It is a very delicate film; thinner and more susceptible to damage from "rough" handling.
     
  8. Pioneer

    Pioneer Subscriber

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    I use this film in 35mm and have had very good luck with it. I'll see if I can find some examples on my portable drive tomorrow. The problem in 35mm is the very slow speed. When I load a roll I need to be prepared to use it on subjects which do not move, or at least move slowly. I do expose at EI12 for the improved shadow detail and improved skin tones. But shooting at box speed can provide some interesting high contrast effects as well on days with very dull, low contrast light.

    I prefer to print this in the darkroom since I feel I am really losing the benefit of the very fine grain and amazing resolution by scanning it. If you scan then save yourself some money and frustration and just use TMX or Delta 100. However, if you do things right it is possible to get some really nice 11x14 prints from a 35mm negative.

    I find that if I use the suggested developer I am far happier with the results than I have been when I tried making do with an alternative developer.

    If you aren't rushed this is a great film for landscape and architectural work.

    I recently picked up some of this film in 120 to try on 6x9 and, if that works as I expect it will I intend to give it a try with 4x5. If the tonal quality is there, the detail in a 8x10 print from a 4x5 negative should just go on and on forever.

    I try and stock up when developer is available because I find it can go out of stock quickly in the US.
     
  9. Agulliver

    Agulliver Member

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    Has anyone tried developing it in more mundane chemistry such as D76, ID-11 ?

    I understand it can be done but the best results are obtained with the bespoke developer...just curious as to what can be achieved with something off the peg.
     
  10. Alan Johnson

    Alan Johnson Subscriber

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  11. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    In Texas sunshine with a moderately wide angle lens such as a 28mm and developing in Adotech III which is said to give you box speed then you could easily hand-hold at f11 or f8 with a very good depth of field. It might be ideal for outdoor shots at the likes of a wedding and might rival MF in terms of large/small group prints.

    It would be interesting to print at say 16x20 and compare it to the same size print taken from an MF negative. From all the articles I have seen it should stand comparison at 16x20 and maybe even a little bigger.

    pentaxuser
     
  12. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    I have never had any luck using microfilms for general purpose photography. You are faced with the twin demons; untamable contrast and the lack of any exposure latitude. I have the formulas for over a dozen special purpose developers said to work with these films, in my estimation none provided acceptable results. One thing that might be tried in order to get a bit more negative density is a direct sulfur toner such as Kodak T-8. Such toners are routinely used to provide archival stability for microfilm. As a plus they also act as an intensifier.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2017
  13. Richard Searle

    Richard Searle Subscriber

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    I got a roll, just to try and developed it in DK76B (like D76) at 1+1 for 15 minutes. It didn't come out as high contrast as I had expected. See attached for quick proof print.
    It was a sunny morning, or sunny as it gets in Gloucestershire in March.
     

    Attached Files:

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  15. RattyMouse

    RattyMouse Member

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    Is that a poor scan or is the sharpness on this negative that low?
     
  16. Richard Searle

    Richard Searle Subscriber

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    Poor scan.
     
  17. Richard Searle

    Richard Searle Subscriber

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    Does this look better? Scan 2.jpeg
     
  18. Alan9940

    Alan9940 Member

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    FWIW, in my experience the sharpness of this film is exceptional, at least when developed in CMS developer; which is the only one I've ever used.
     
  19. Pioneer

    Pioneer Subscriber

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    I have only used Adotech to develop this film, with very satisfactory results btw. Though you indicate it came out better then you expected, the image seems extremely contrast y to my eye. That may be your developer, your agitation, or it may just be the time of day when the exposure was made. It could also be a little bit of each. Traffic Surveillance films are notoriously sensitive to developer and to agitation.

    Considering the time of day it would appear that you used a very open aperture setting and it has resulted in some softness in the main building, particularly in the upper story. It can be so easy to miss focus by just a tiny bit when you are wide open, or close to it. This film is so sharp it shows these focus issues very quickly. I certainly do not have the sharpest eye any longer but it seems that the actual focus my have been on the building just to the right of center.

    I suspect that this negative may be difficult to print well in the darkroom.
     
  20. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    I thought the first scan was less contrasty with more detail in the highlights and shadows and overall better but we are back again to the old question: Is it the scan/scanner or the negative that may be at fault?

    The proof of the pudding is in the print. It would be great to see a print from the negative,if possible

    pentaxuser
     
  21. destroya

    destroya Subscriber

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    i shot 2 rolls and developed it in the dedicated developer. the negs were very high contrast but i was able to print them on grade 1. i was shocked at how much detail there was and how there was no grain in an 11x14 print from a 35mm neg. i have 4 more rolls but having to shoot at EI of 12 means tripod only. and then why not shoot 6x7 or 6x9? yeh the results could be ver close, but then i can shoot a lot of different films and use a lot of different developers.

    for me, the novelty of using specialty films has worn off.
     
  22. Tor-Einar Jarnbjo

    Tor-Einar Jarnbjo Member

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    I am honestly not quite sure why people are having such a hard time with this film. Especially with the latest version of the film (CMS 20 II) and the corresponding developer (ADOTECH III), exposing at ISO 12 in sunny weather or ISO 20 in cloudy weather and developing according to the instructions, I usually get negatives, which are easily printable. I must admit that I don't scrutinize the developed film with gamma or density measurements. As long as I can achieve beautiful paper prints with reasonable gradiation control, I am more than happy.

    Even if I am also shooting medium format, I have only tried the 35mm-version of the Adox CMS. My medium format lenses are not nearly close enough in sharpness to take advantage of the CMS' resolution. I should perhaps give it a try to be sure, but I doubt that actual exposures on the CMS are much sharper than e.g. on Fuji Acros, unless you have medium format lenses in the price range of a medium class family car.
     
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    ChrisBCS

    ChrisBCS Member

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    I may use this film to shoot some storm/tornado shots this Spring. Have folks shot it with a #29 red to make things more contrasty?
     
  24. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    Tor-Einar Jarnbjo and ChrisBCS: welcome to APUG :smile:.

    I have used CMS 20 developed in Adotech and Technidol: no problem at at with the contrast. Developed in Rodinal: can be tricky.
    In any case grain is so small that you cannot believe it - in 50x60 cm print, on close inspection (print in front of your nose) you cannot see any grain at all:
    http://darkosaric.deviantart.com/art/Helsinki-3-87834014
    http://darkosaric.deviantart.com/art/Mostar-14-612824176
    http://darkosaric.deviantart.com/art/Birds-129624241
    http://darkosaric.deviantart.com/art/Warsaw-41-129501440
     
  25. Hatchetman

    Hatchetman Subscriber

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    I have some Technidol but no CMS II. Do they sell it in US? Different name?
     
  26. Tor-Einar Jarnbjo

    Tor-Einar Jarnbjo Member

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    'Freestyle Photographic Supplies' seem to stock the entire Adox product line. They have the CMS II as 35mm, 120 and 4x5" sheet film and also sell the recommended ADOTECH III developer. B&H sells the films, but not the matching developer.

    The price is however quite steep compared to here in Germany. Freestyle wants 46$ for four 35mm-rolls and developer. Here in Germany, I only pay about 30$, which is just about what you pay for Ilford films and cheaper than e.g. Fuji Acros.