Testing J&C Classic 200. Same as BPF 200?

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sanking

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Yesterday I ran a set of BTZS type tests of some J&C Classic 200 film. Five step wedges were given identical exposures, timed with a Metrolux light integrator, and each one was then developed for a different amount of time in a 22:100 dilution of Pyrocat-HD, in BTZS type tubes using constant agitation in a water-bath. I subsequently read the negative densities through the Visual, Blue and UV channels of my densitometer, and finished by plotting the curves with WinPlotter.

Consensus opinion on this list and in other forums seems to be that the J&C Classic 200 film is same as Bergger BPF. For that reason I based my exposure and development times on previous tests of BPF film, which turned out to be too long to provide me with as much information as I like to get from this type of testing. However, a comparison of the results from testing of the two films showed some interesting differences. I don’t have any idea who really makes these two films, but if they are made by the same company there are some substantial quality control issues involved.

BPF 200 and J&C Classic 200 are similar in that both are thick emulsion films that respond well to Pyro developers. And both give off in the pre-soak water the same blue/green dye from the anti-halation layer. But that is about it for the similarities.

The fundamental differences I observe from the tests are.

1) J&C Classic 200 develops to a given CI much faster than BPF200. For development to a density range of 1.60 (UV reading) for a SBR of 7, BPF 200 needed about 9 minutes of development at 70F, J&C Classic only 4:30 minutes.
2) J&C has a higher effective film speed than BPF 200. With development of J&C film for alternative processes I would recommend using the recommended film speed of 200 for use in the field. By contrast, BPF 200 needs to be rated at about EI 100, even when processing to a high CI, and even lower if developing for silver gelatin printing..
3) J&C 200 will develop to a higher maximum CI than BPF 200. With Pyrocat-HD used at the 2:2:100 dilution at 70F I was able to get a maximum gradient of about 0.95 with 9 minutes of development with J&C Classic 200. By contrast, BPF reached a maximum gradient of only about 0.80 at 20 minutes of development. This suggests that J&C Classic 200 would be a much better film than BPF 200 for use in low contrast scenes, especially with negatives meant for alternative printing.

For dual purpose negatives such as AZO and PT./PD, or AZO and Carbon, or AZO and Kallitype, Pyrocat-HD and J&C Classic 200 are a very nice combination. A negative developed to a DR of about 1.3 for AZO will have a much higher effective DR with alternative processes that use UV light because of the increased filtration of this light by the stain, so it would work well for a process such as palladium that has a paper ES of about 1.75.

What I would recommend in terms of development of the J&C Classic 200, using Pyrocat-HD 2:2:100, for AZO and Palladium printing, is the following.

SBR 7.5 3:30 minutes
SBR 7 4:30 minutes
SBR 6 7 minutes
SBR 5.5 9 minutes

Of course, these are ballpark figures so be sure to test first before developing important negatives.

Because of the short development times with the 2:2:100 dilution some might well prefer to use the 1:1:100 dilution, especially if working in SBR conditions over 8. Unfortunately I just had a few sheets of the J&C 200 film to test and can’t provide any further data at this time.


Sandy King
 

Donald Miller

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Sandy,
Thank you for taking the time to do the testing and to share the results. I for one appreciate your efforts.

Best regards,
Donald Miller
 
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sanking

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I hope the information is useful to you.

Two more quick notes about the tests.

1. The recommended target density range of 1.3 for AZO printing, which will translate into an effective DR of about 1.7 for UV processes, should be based on a blue channel reading.

2. Times are based on rotary develoment in tubes, with constant agitation. For tray development with intermittent agitation increase all times by about 15-20%.

Sandy King
 

Annie

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Serendipitous posting!! I am just about to commence my first attempts at Pt/Pd printing and Classic 200 is one of the films I am intending to use..... Thank you Sandy for generously posting your data.
 

Tom Duffy

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Sandy,
I second the gratitude being offered. I'm now using pyrocat with Tri-x 320 at 2:2:100 in my Jobo and couldn't be happier. the prints, mostly from 5x7 and printed on Bergger VCCB, are the finest I've ever produced. My print exposure times have been halved, compared to Rollo Pyro and I am no longer concerned about uneven staining of the negative.

Unlike some of the "purists" you recognize the advantages of the Jobo and allows me to "steal" the results of your testing with very little adjustment. This really helps the weekend photographer.

Thanks again,
Tom
 

Jorge

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Tom Duffy said:
Unlike some of the "purists" you recognize the advantages of the Jobo and allows me to "steal" the results of your testing with very little adjustment. This really helps the weekend photographer.

Thanks again,
Tom

Not only the weekend photographer, I have literally stolen Clay and Sandy`s data and have it taped on a board in my darkroom. :tongue:
 
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sanking

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But remember that the data on J&C Classic 200 film represents my first testing oif this film, and is not backed up by any field testing.

And there may be consistency issues. It is my understanding that both Bergger BPF and the J&C film are made at the same plant. Are the differences between the two due to some tweaking of the emulsion, or are they due to other factors such as aging, quality control, etc? Only more experience in working with the film can answer these questions.



Sandy King
 

cmpatti

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Sandy, thanks for posting these results, which I imagine are useful to many.

If the differences between JandC and Bergger are, in fact, due to quality control problems, rather than intentional emulsion "tweaking," they are pretty profound quality control problems. In that case, I guess we'd expect to see extreme consistency problems in the behavior of different lots of these films. (In fact, variations of this magnitude--nearly 100% in developing time--would make these films pretty much unusable, at least to me.)

Has anybody who uses either of these films regularly observed such a thing?
 

Donald Miller

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While my first order of Classic 200 is enroute at this time, I have used Bergger BPF 200 for some time and I have not encountered any such inconsistencies in my experience. The things which Sandy described about BPF 200 have been my experience (will not expand to the degree that the Classic seems to have in his testing) The film speed on the Bergger film with ABC is 80.
 

PJC

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Greetings,

Sandy, thanks for sharing your data!

WRT Bergger and J&C Classic... On another forum John Horway (not sure if I spelled his name correctly - sorry John) commented that while both films are made at the same plant, they are made to different formulations. The formulation used by Bergger is "proprietary." I don't know how true that is, but Sandy's results bear this out.

Regards, Pete
 

Donald Miller

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Having just finished my first same scene, same developer comparison of Bergger BPF 200 and J&C Classic 200, I can verify that there is no comparison between these two films.

The scene had a SBR of 4 and I developed two sheets of 4X5 film in Pyrocat HD at a 1-2-100 dilution.

The Classic 200 with a 13 1/2 minute development at 75 degrees had a net peak density of 1.20 (after subtracting for FB+fog). This is one of the finest negatives that I have ever observed coming out of my system. Development was very even and details are sharply delineated...this is one that I look forward to printing. Development was much more even then ABC pyro which is certainly a good developer...but not on the par of Pyrocat HD. PMK, which is a good developer for enlarging is "far and away" removed from the results that I have obtained with Pyrocat HD.

The Bergger BPF 200 with a 20 minute development time (same temp and same dilution) arrived at a .90 net peak density (again subtracting for FB+fog). Certainly this will print ...but not with the same ease and with a considerably higher paper grade.

Had I wanted to contact print on Azo, I would have followed Sandy's recommendations. These negatives were developed at the higher dilution for enlarging purposes.

The Classic 200 was exposed at one stop faster EI then the Bergger. (125 vs. 64).
 
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sanking

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I need to add a coda to one of my previous messages on testing J&C Classic 200 film. It turns out that the digital thermometer used to measure the temperature of the developer and the water bath was low by about four degrees. So what I thought was 70 degrees F was in fact 74 degrees F. Adjusting my previous recommendation I would now suggest adding about 15-20% time to the previous time recommendation and have adjusted the times accordinly below.

For development of J&C Classic 200, using Pyrocat-HD 2:2:100 at 70 degrees F, for AZO and Palladium printing, use the following times.

SBR 7.5 4:15 minutes
SBR 7 6:00 minutes
SBR 6 8:30 minutes
SBR 5.5 10:45 minutes

Negatives for silver printing should be developed for about the same times as above, but using the 1:1:100 dilution of Pyrocat-HD.

For clarification, the above times in the lighting conditions described will produce an effective negative density range of about 1.6 for palladium printing using UV light, and an effective printing density range of about 1.30 for AZO printing. The dual purpose nature of the negative is of course due to the stain, which functions as a highly efficient filter to UV light. In measuring the difference between a blue channel reading and a UV channel reading I have found that there is a much greater difference between these two readings with Pyrocat-HD than with PMK or Rollo Pyro. This is due to the fact that the yellow/brown stain of Pyrocat-HD provides greater actinic filtration than the greenish/yellow stain we usually see with PMK and Rollo Pyro.

Sandy
 

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Sandy or Don, did any of you get the J&C 400 film? what were the EI for the 200. If the J&C 400 exposes at 400 it would be a great film for ULF! or even at 320.....no?
 
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sanking

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Jorge,

I just ran a set of BTZS tests for both the J&C Classic 400 film and Fortepan 400 with Procat-HD 2:2:100. Don't have time to post the results today but will try to do so here within the next day or so.

Sandy
 

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Hi Sandy,

I too am about to try JC 200 8x10. Have you any experience with this film for SBRs >10 using Pyrocat HD of course?
 
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sanking

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Franceso,

Wish I could give you some good advice but I have only tested JandC Classic 200 film with the 2:2:100 dilution of Pyrocat-HD and at this dilution Pyrocat-HD is much too energetic for SBRs of greater than 8.

I could interpret from my data and conclude with some confidence that for silver gelatin printing you could handle a SBR of 8 with the 1:1:100 dilution, at a development time of about four minutes. But beyond that I won't speculate.

However, if I were working with these kinds of high contrast scenes I would dilute the developer even more, say to 0.5:0.5:100, and run some on-site tests. And two side benefits of further dilution would be even greater acutance and slightly greater effective film speed.
 
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sanking

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To the best of my understanding JandC Classic 200 and 400 are same as FomaPan Classic 200 and 400.

Makes sense to buy it in Europe since it is made there!!

BTW, I also tested the Classic 400 and found it to be a very nice film with good capability for N+ development, at least as good as Ilford HP5+. In fact, bought a box of 25 sheets of it in 12X20 and plan to work with it in the coming weeks.



Sandy
 

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Any thoughts on J&C Classic 200, dilution 0.5:0.5:100, SBR = 9, 6 mins? Would such a negative and dilution combination still allow it to be a candidate for PtPd? Azo?
 

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Just experimented with Pyrocat HD 3:3:600 ml dilution on Classic 200 rated at 200, for 6 mins and 12 mins. Result: barely discernible rendition of the scene. For all intensive purposes the scene, which had an SBR=9, did not develop. All I got was very close to clear film. Can anyone explain whether such dilutions are too weak or that my times were too short?
 
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sanking

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Francesco said:
Just experimented with Pyrocat HD 3:3:600 ml dilution on Classic 200 rated at 200, for 6 mins and 12 mins. Result: barely discernible rendition of the scene. For all intensive purposes the scene, which had an SBR=9, did not develop. All I got was very close to clear film. Can anyone explain whether such dilutions are too weak or that my times were too short?

A dilution of 3:3:600 of Pyrocat-HD is not too weak but you will need very long develoment times. And you must be sure to start with enough developer for the film. I sometimes use stand development for 120 roll films such as FP4+ and TMAX 100 with a 2:2:400 dilution but development times are very long, up to 45-60 minutes. I use a minimum of 16 ounces of developer per roll of 120 film.

You have have also made a mistake in metering the scene but for sure your develoment times are way too short for this dilution.
 
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