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Author Topic: Scanning & Pyro  (Read 17804 times)


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Scanning & Pyro
« on: April 23, 2012, 12:31:17 pm »

Until Oriental Seagull was no longer available, I settled on developing 120 FP4 or HP5 in PMK Pyro and printing on Seagull VC.  For the past 10 years I have been printing digitally and where from negatives have used Colour Negs processed at a lab and then scanned on a Polaroid Sprintscan.  However I also scanned in most of my Pyro developed B&W negs and have successfully printed these digitally.

I have now resurrected my darkroom and have shot a lot of FP4.  I am wondering however whether PMK is the best way to go if you are going to scan the negatives.  I normally scan at 16 bit RGB, and colour casts etc. can be easily eliminated.  As far as I can tell the resulting images seem extremely good to me.  However would a developer that produces no stain result in a better scanned file than one that does stain?  I appreciate that probably I shall have to test, but the pain of working out new times etc. with a new developer film combination is something I do not look forward to.  So I wondered if anyone here had any thoughts on the effect of the Pyro stain in the context of scanning.

Any thoughts?



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Re: Scanning & Pyro
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2012, 08:15:42 am »

In my experience Pyro developed negatives scan as well, or better than, negatives developed in standard developers. In my case I have been using Pyrocat HD. I think the stain cuts the grain down a bit, and the tonality is very nice. I'm using a ScanMate 5000 and I haven't tried any on a CCD scanner. However I imagine the benefits would carry through.

Moreno Polloni

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Re: Scanning & Pyro
« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2012, 12:45:51 pm »

In the past I've scanned a lot of PMK processed Verichrome Pan and FP4 negs with a Coolscan 8000. The results were quite good and as LGeb suggests you can expect to see some of the pyro characteristics carry through to your scans, namely less grain and a smoother tonality, especially in the highlights. A neg that makes a nice silver print will also scan well, but over a period of time you'll find yourself fine tuning the exposure/development process. I found with Verichrome Pan processed in PMK I got better scans with an extra 1/3 to 2/3 exposure over the rated ASA.
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