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What About Bob

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There is a past thread on here mentioning this paper brand but it is from six years ago. I didn't get much information from that thread except that the maker of the paper was Inkpress. When I search for the company their about us page is blank and there is no listing of any RC paper. All computer printer paper from the looks of it. In a B&H response; someone there mentioned that the maker of this brand was based in China.

I thought to create a new post to see if more people may have tried this brand of RC paper. I recently bought a 100 sheet package of this brand because it was cheaper. I started using it last night and I noticed a few things about it. The paper speed is faster than Ilford's and it seems finicky with exposing. This could be on account of the very short exposure. I had to cut my enlarger's lens aperture down to f/16 and I am at a four second exposure. With Ilford I would be at f/11 with an average range of nine to twelve seconds for exposure. The Multione prints come up in the developer faster too. I'm probably going to waste some sheets to lock the exposures in. I might need to turn the lens down to f/22 or resort to using ND filters and maybe even process my film slightly different too.

I think it will work out with this paper once the film is scaled down to it and I can lengthen the time of the print exposure. Four seconds is not a long enough of time, also if you need to burn or dodge.
 

MattKing

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I expect that Inkpress is either just re-branding paper manufactured by someone else, or perhaps cutting and packaging paper manufactured by someone else.
Its paper speed may be a result of having more than the usual amount (with most modern papers) of trace amounts of developer incorporated in the emulsion.
 
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Kino

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Read through this thread; I did a quick and dirty comparison to Ilford MG RC contact sheets.

 

Paul Howell

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I've use Multitone for workprints, no issues with quality control, have not tone it, for presentation prints I generally print on Foma FB so my use is only to get in ball park before I figure which grade I want to use.
 

Rick A

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I use Multitone Pearl for contact printing proofs of my 5x7 and x10 negatives. It's decent and cheap, compatible with Ilford VC filters.
 
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What About Bob

What About Bob

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Read through this thread; I did a quick and dirty comparison to Ilford MG RC contact sheets.

Seeing the lower contrast filter examples leads me to believe that something slightly below a grade 2 would work out with the negatives I have made so far. This paper is punchy. The blacks print down strong and can look really good; though in some instances they can get a little inky. The midtones is where this paper shines when you nail the exposure. This paper will take me a little time to adjust and work with. Either use a lower grade filter or slightly expose the film a little more and minus development slightly to make a flatter negative. Since I am using D23 I may be well on my way.

What were your exposure times for the paper at f/11? I had to stop down to f/16 and was getting a very short four seconds for exposure. This is way faster than the Ilford paper I was using. I may have to get out my old CP color filter kit and stack equal amounts of CMY just to knock down the light output.
 
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What About Bob

What About Bob

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Smith College Greenhouse - 01/25/2024
Hasselblad 501C and 80mm lens with the A12 film back that I put new light trap seals in :smile:
Kentmere 120, 400 ISO developed in D23 1:1 for 14 minutes at 68F/20C
Multitone RC, pearl - exposure 4 seconds at f/16 with burned edges; quickly for slightly less than a second at the upper parts of the image.
No contrast filter; assuming a grade 2 or 2.5 default???
Liquidol 1:9 for 2 minutes at 68F/20C, 30 seconds in Sprint yummy vanilla stop bath and TF-5 stinky ammonia fixer
 

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What About Bob

What About Bob

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I expect that Inkpress is either just re-branding paper manufactured by someone else, or perhaps cutting and packaging paper manufactured by someone else.
Its paper speed may be a result of having more than the usual amount (with most modern papers) of trace amounts of developer incorporated in the emulsion.

I was amazed at how fast the image started coming up. After a few seconds the image was quickly appearing.
 
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koraks

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I think it will work out with this paper once the film is scaled down to it and I can lengthen the time of the print exposure.

Don't confuse contrast with exposure. If you change your film development, you're primarily influencing the contrast of the negative. This is unrelated to the amount of exposure the paper needs. If you want to adjust print contrast, use contrast filters. If exposure times are too short to your liking, stop down or use an ND filter.

Having said that, if you have consistent problems with print contrast; i.e. everything is too contrasty even when printed at grade 1, or everything is too bland even if you print at grade 4, then adjust negative development. Looking at your cactus pic, it's possible you're overcooking your negatives a bit.

So remember this very well: exposure speed and contrast are different things. You'll go crazy if you mix them up!
 
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What About Bob

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Don't confuse contrast with exposure. If you change your film development, you're primarily influencing the contrast of the negative. This is unrelated to the amount of exposure the paper needs. If you want to adjust print contrast, use contrast filters. If exposure times are too short to your liking, stop down or use an ND filter.

Having said that, if you have consistent problems with print contrast; i.e. everything is too contrasty even when printed at grade 1, or everything is too bland even if you print at grade 4, then adjust negative development. Looking at your cactus pic, it's possible you're overcooking your negatives a bit.

So remember this very well: exposure speed and contrast are different things. You'll go crazy if you mix them up!

Can't believe I missed the alert for this thread.

Those were two separate objectives 1. to scale my negative down in film development and then 2. later on deal with cutting down of the light source to get a longer print exposure time. I should have split those two items up.

This paper is a pain to work with. This paper has a punchlines that I haven't been able to tame all that good. Even with a mildly flat to normally processed negative this is the punchiness result that I get with this paper. I have negatives that print fine on the Ilford materials but not on this stuff.

For those who have worked with this paper are you using a condenser or a cold light source? Would an alternative print developer be better to use with this paper? I looked above and saw that it was mentioned that there could be the possibility of more incorporated developer included in the emulsion. If so then there may be too much of it in there? Once the paper hits the tray it takes about a second or two and the image very quickly appears and looks like it completes in a few more seconds. Seems way too fast
 

koraks

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Once the paper hits the tray it takes about a second or two and the image very quickly appears and looks like it completes in a few more seconds. Seems way too fast

Sounds like your paper developer is on the active side. This doesn't hurt in principle. It just means you can get away with a shorter development time. Rejoyce; saves you some time. I often mix my paper developer rather strong because of this! Besides, RC paper tends to develop out pretty fast to begin with, so it's not all that outlandish.

I looked above and saw that it was mentioned that there could be the possibility of more incorporated developer included in the emulsion

No doubt. Doesn't matter.
If you want to test this, take some water and dissolve half a teaspoon of sodium carbonate in it (cleaning soda is OK). Then take a piece of exposed but unprocessed paper and put it in the water. Agitate. If it develops some tone, you know there's a developer incorporated in the paper. Again, it doesn't matter if there is from a practical viewpoint, unless you're trying to do lith prints or something. So it's a moot point.

The advice remains the same - too much contrast, reduce the paper grade. Still too much contrast on grade 1, revise negative development.
 

Kino

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Inkpress Multitone photograhpic paper products, from what I can tell, are probably adapted graphic arts emulsions, so their natively high contrast is not surprising.

I have a box each of their Regent Royal Hard Dot Camera Film 4x5 5x7 and 8x10 to experiment with for enlarging negatives for Cyanotype. (Adorama sells this)

You may not be able to tame it enough for fine printing unless, as Koraks says, you alter your film developing regimen just for this paper. I suspect that is why a lot of people will only use it for contact printing or if they already shoot a very low contrast developer like XTOL.
 
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For starters, it sounds like your developer is either 1) too strong at the dilution you're using (dilute it more) or 2) it's not a good match for this paper (try a different developer). Yes, the paper almost certainly incorporates a developer agent in the emulsion (many RC papers do), but regardless - if the image appears fully developed in mere seconds, something's not right. You shouldn't need to pull a print from the developer in less than 45 seconds.

Secondly, if you are getting 4 second exposures for correct print density, then you need to adjust the light intensity. I don't like working with exposure times less than 20 seconds - it gives you no time to manipulate the print, and if you need 3.5 seconds (or 4.5 seconds) instead of 4, you're going to have difficulty getting consistent results. The longer the exposure, the easier it is to engage in manipulating what happens during the exposure.
Close the aperture down as far as you can. If the smallest aperture is f22 and you still get exposure times shorter than 15 seconds, then add an ND filter above or below the lens.

And if you're having difficulty taming the paper's contrast, well - that may not be entirely within your control. I mean, this paper is cheap for a reason. You can't expect it to match the performance of an equivalent Ilford product. You may do yourself a favor and avoid using the cheapest materials you can find. Ultimately, that's only going to lead to inferior results. I don;t really want to be "that guy" who recommends buying the best materials you can find, but I gotta say - if I bought cheap/discount Chinese RC paper, I wouldn't be the least surprised if it was difficult to work with and gave poor prints, no matter how it was exposed/developed.
 

koraks

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Inkpress Multitone photograhpic paper products, from what I can tell, are probably adapted graphic arts emulsions, so their natively high contrast is not surprising.

The ISO R definitions of grades 1 through 4 (the range this paper can produce) are fairly specific. I don't believe, for instance, that this paper's grade 1 is much more than any other paper's grade 2 or so. The contrast brackets are fairly small.
 

GregY

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My experience with the paper has been pretty neutrail. I use a vc cold head light. I've made christmas/new years card on their 5x7 and some test prints on 11x14. I'd try adjusting your developer dilution and perhaps try some denser negatives.
 
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What About Bob

What About Bob

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@koraks - I am using Liquidol at 1:9 dilution. I'm almost done with this container and have a new one to open soon.

I am feeling experimental and the mad scientist is in me. I have an idea. Since I have some raw chemistry on hand I could make something up. Thinking along the lines of a softer developer. Something like POTA but for paper. That would require phenidone. Currently I have metol to play around with.

I will be purchasing some extra sulfite and other chemistry soon so I can throw phenidone in with the purchase. I'm curious to see if this paper can be brought down some.
 
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What About Bob

What About Bob

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@retina_restoration - I understand full and well and agree that you do get what you pay for. Unfortunately I have to economize. This can lead to more wastage with trying to come to a balanced middle ground on quality and control through mountains of testing but on the flip-side it means that I am doing more photography.

Prices are not going back to where they were. I am still in search of alternatives. I can get some of the better stuff once in a while.
 
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What About Bob

What About Bob

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Inkpress Multitone photograhpic paper products, from what I can tell, are probably adapted graphic arts emulsions, so their natively high contrast is not surprising.

I have a box each of their Regent Royal Hard Dot Camera Film 4x5 5x7 and 8x10 to experiment with for enlarging negatives for Cyanotype. (Adorama sells this)

You may not be able to tame it enough for fine printing unless, as Koraks says, you alter your film developing regimen just for this paper. I suspect that is why a lot of people will only use it for contact printing or if they already shoot a very low contrast developer like XTOL.

I'm going to look into highly compensating development to flatten things out further with film development. That and work on a softer developer for the paper. Chances are high that these two avenues may not produce the results that I am after. If thing go south with this I will look into another brand of paper. I may even have to go smaller in size to save on cost.

I will do these experiements for a limtied time and then stop. At least I will have extra chemistry on hand for other things later on so it will not be a total waste.
 

Don_ih

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The Multitone paper was not manufactured in China. See here.

Something like POTA but for paper. That would require phenidone. Currently I have metol to play around with.

This paper will probably look the same no matter what developer you use. However, if you want lower contrast, phenidone is a developing agent to avoid. Make D72 with increased potassium bromide and possibly decrease the hydroquinone a gram or so. The restrainer is what may soften the final print a bit. But pretty much every rc paper is almost impossible to significantly alter, in terms of how it looks when developed fully. And it's a bad idea to pull a print.

I'd suggest ensuring that you are fully developing the print and see if you're actually giving too much exposure.
 
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What About Bob

What About Bob

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The Multitone paper was not manufactured in China. See here.

This paper will probably look the same no matter what developer you use. However, if you want lower contrast, phenidone is a developing agent to avoid. Make D72 with increased potassium bromide and possibly decrease the hydroquinone a gram or so. The restrainer is what may soften the final print a bit. But pretty much every rc paper is almost impossible to significantly alter, in terms of how it looks when developed fully. And it's a bad idea to pull a print.

I'd suggest ensuring that you are fully developing the print and see if you're actually giving too much exposure.

Thanks Don for pointing the origin out. You would think they would have the origin written on the packaging.

I develop for 2 minutes in Liquidol. I'm at f/22 with some ND and things are still hot. Few have said that they haven't experienced any control or quality issues. Could be that this paper works better under certain specific conditions. I am envisioning a murky or muddy mess with the added punch still being there with my idea of using a softer print developer. I agree that the paper will more than likely come off as looking the same as it does.

I was going to get the extra chemistry last night, bromide was one of those, but decided to hold off on that so I bought a 5 pound container of sulfite and some Kentmere paper instead. I think my chances will be better with this paper. Their film is good so the paper should be too.

Now what to do with this extra paper. Lesson learned.
 
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What About Bob

What About Bob

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No I haven't. I am currently using a PH140 75W bulb. The operating manual states that a 100 watt bulb can be used also but I'm not seeing anything lower for that model of bulb. I will have to keep looking around.
 
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I will give that a shot. Thanks Don.

I have a story about using a bulb that had lettering on it when I first started printing back in 1992. One of those times of being young and eager while not thinking.

My first enlarger was a Beseler Cadet II. One day the bulb died out and the local camera shop didn't have any replacements in stock so I used a 75 watt GE. The left side of the bulb was touching the metal chassis. I was printing and noticed unevenness and the black lettering on the baseboard and decided to take some sandpaper to the bulb thinking this would lessen the black text. I got it to where the letters were practically gone. Put the bulb back in then noticed a textured pattern now on the baseboard and the unevenness of the coating. I got my hands on some of my mom's white nail polish and coated the bulb with a couple of layers. The coating was on the uneven side so I coated it even more until it looked a little bit better but not quite still.

I should also note that my enlarger was also in the same closet that I used to load film into the tank. This closet was in the living room and was probably around 3 X 3, it was small and cramped and had clothing hanging up right above my head. Heavy coats too. I was crunched in and sitting down with the Cadet making exposures. This was before I had the set up for trays and safelighting. I processed prints in a Cibachrome tube.

So now I have a bulb that has been sandpapered and now coated with mom's nail polish. I turn on the enlarger and focus the negative. For some reason I got up and left the closet to search for something, The light was left on. I wasn't away for too long. Upon turning the corner from my room to the living room I am witnessing white smoke coming out from the closet and a pungent stink. I am at he closet and all I saw was white and the bulb was still on. I immediately killed the power and let the closet calm down and let it air out.

When things cooled down I opened up the housing's front drawer and saw that the bulb was half and half. the whole left side was charred from touching the metal while the other half wasn't. I was amazed at the even split between the halves.

After that I held off and waited until the right bulb was back in stock. Lesson learned.
 

Don_ih

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Luckily, you didn't burn down the house.

I had a Junior Safebulb that had some red worn off the side. I glued tin foil to it and it lasted 6 years....

The good thing about the LED bulb is it doesn't get hot. It's also cheap and the white plastic diffuser is normally pretty consistent. It doesn't hurt to try and you can always use it in a regular lamp if it's not working in the enlarger (need to check for even illumination).
 
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