PMK Pyro : LUSENET : B&W Photo - Film & Processing : One Thread

Well, I've begun to use this developer in earnest for about a month now with two films, TMax 100 and Pan F+. I would say that the results with TMax are excellent, and simply phenomenal with Pan F+. If only Ilford made that film in 4x5 sheets!

Anyway, my question. I had previously calibrated a system using Rodinal 1:50 with these films (with excellent results), where I altered both film speed and development time in order to manage the contrast in the scene being photographed. For example, with TMax100 (in sheets), I would vary the film speed between EI 32 - 160, to go from N-2 to N+2. So, my question ; what are others' experience of altering EI & development in this manner with PMK? If I alter the amount of sodium metaborate (maybe less for N-, and maybe more for N+, will this enable me to manage difficult contrast conditions in a reliable and consistent manner? Alternatively, is it worthwhile to use Amidol to increase film speed, particularly where you want to go N+ ? Interestingly, there seems to be a distinct correlation between PMK dev times, and those for Rodinal 1:50, and I suppose another way to word my question is whether both developers invoke a similar effective speed out of films.

-- fw (, May 17, 2000


My experience is that most films developed in dilute Rodinal and PMK require an EI that is approximately half their ISO rating. Gordon Hutchings gives some recommendations for plus and minus development-- his book is still the best resource for technical data. I have had good results with adding amidol to PMK--one-half to two-thirds stop speed increase.

-- Ed Buffaloe (, May 17, 2000.

As Ed said, Gordon's book is the ultimate resource; The Film Developing Cookbook is also good. Hutchings recommends 1/3 to 2/3 more exposure for most films, and gives times for N+ and N- development.

I'm still brand new to PMK, but am very encouraged by it. I believe it is even sharper than Rodinal and has a better scale, too. Keep us posted on your results!

-- Brian Hinther (, May 18, 2000.

How do you consider Tmax100 in Pyro is an improvement over Rodinal 1+50? (seeking solid information. Not intended as a wise ass question -- please no flames).

-- Bill Mitchell (, May 22, 2000.

I love pyro, but TMX in Rodinal is miles above TMX in pyro for me...very acute, no worry about 'will it stain well or not'. TMX with Rodinal at 1:50-1:200 is beautiful.

-- shawn (, May 24, 2000.

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