XTol - Dilutions higher than 1:3 for Compensation?

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In spite of Kodak's removal of times for XTol dilutions higher than 1:1, I've had success with XTol 1:3 with 35mm TMax 100 (at EI 64), and have no plan to change this combination for normal contrast range subjects.

Question: To control the density range of high contrast subjects while retaining good shadow detail, have you used higher dilutions of XTol (eg. 1:5) for use as a compensating developer? I want to test higher dilutions of Xtol to see if I can get a compensating effect without the increased grain of Rodinal 1:100, and am interested in any general comments on your results, and any specific times, temp's and agitation recommendations.

I'm also testing TMX with TMax/RS developer to try John Sexton's recommendation for 1:15 TMax/RS as a compensating developer, and to see if TMax/RS will give higher edge sharpness while retaining the tonal range and smoothness of XTol. Haven't tried the 1:15 dilution yet, but processing TMX in 1:9 TMax/RS to establish a baseline has resulted in the expected trade-off of higher sharpness for increased granularity - first results indicate this combination gives about the same sharpness and grainularity as Delta 100 in XTol 1:3, but with more speed (EI 100) than TMX in XTol 1:3.

-- Dave Williams (davidw@ca.ibm.com), January 12, 2001


When using dilution higher than 1:3 as suggested 1:5 I would recommend to use the same amount of stock developer. If you use 1:3 dilution of XTOL as 300ml, which is 75ml XTOL stock, use 75ml XTOL for 1:5 yielding in 450ml developer solution.

-- Marc Leest (mmm@n2photography.com), January 12, 2001.

As a test I developed two test rolls of TMY, shot with a high contrast scene, using 100ml of XTol stock sol'n with 500ml of distilled water for a 1:5 dilution. First roll developed for 18 minutes at 68F, with 30 seconds initial agitation and then 10 seconds agitation every 2 minutes, was quite under-developed (dmax = 0.95). Second roll developed for 23 minutes at 68F with same agitation yielded beautiful negs - typical XTol fine smooth grain, with a noticable increase in density of zone 2 and 3 shadow areas, but without blocking up the highlights. Appears to be about an N-2 result, while surprisingly delivering about EI 320. Interesting enough to justify further testing...

-- Dave Williams (davidw@ca.ibm.com), January 21, 2001.

Any further conclusions about this?

-- Ed Hurst (BullMoo@hotmail.com), March 12, 2001.

Dave...did you get any further with your tests?

-- Jim (p645n@hotmail.com), March 18, 2001.

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