Poll: Favorite method for developing TMax?

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I'd like to ask people: What do you use to develop TMax? Include developer, times, temperatures, and results.

It seems that a lot of people are using TMax Developer, which is designed to be a push developer (I think). Why doesn't everyone use D-76, which is what Kodak used when creating T-Max? Do other developers work better?

-- Anonymous, July 20, 1997


Ilford ID 11@1:3/Jobo in the 6shooter type drum for 4x5/5x7. Same chemicals for 35mm, different times but still the Jobo. I don't use the Yellow Perils chemistry because I use as few Kodak products as possible. I do use T-Max 100 because it is the fastest B&W film on the market after 15-30 sec or so of exposure, with the finest results. As much as I may personally dislike the Yellow Peril, I will use the finest products I can get.

-- Anonymous, July 20, 1997

Tmax film and Tmax developer were created for each other I believe, although d-76 wll do you well. Don't be afraid of Tmax develper. It provides excellent results, but requires precise controlled processing for consistency. They are both professional products which when used together, IMHO, are state of the art in film technology. I haven't heard of Tmax developer being a push developer, but it is certainly aggressive in building contrast. Not sure if that's the same thing. As far as time tempetures etc. contact kodak which can provide you with a full guide/tech sheet book on using these films, plus variations on exposure indexes. Their tech. support is excellent, and tech sheets usually arrive in three days. Or go to their web page, it has the same info. Just try your search engine under somethng like "TMAX" and you'll find their tech web page.

-- Anonymous, July 21, 1997

T-max and D-76

I believe about 10 years ago that one of the bigwigs at Kodak confirmed, in a popular magagzine, that the original T-Max film was created using D-76, before T-Max developer even existed. However I would imagine that T-Max film has probably changed over time. I have never personally heard of a real comparison between the two developers under controlled conditions and all claims of superiority have been anectdotal.

-- Anonymous, July 21, 1997

Oh, BTW, for the "Poll" my favorite is 4.5 mins Tmax-RS straight, 75 deg., Jobo expert drum, 4x5 sheet film, Tmax 100. Puts my normal at Grade 2. For 35mm I go straight from Kodak's recommendation for drum processing at 75 degrees for Tmax RS dev. , tmax 100 film. Too tired to go look it up down in the darkroom . :-)

-- Anonymous, July 21, 1997

Re: Favorite developer for TMax?

I used to process all TMax film in TMax developer. After testing TMX in Xtol 1:3, I started using Xtol for TMX, TMY and TMZ, with excellent results. I process according to the chart in Kodak publication J-107, I haven't had to adjust the processing times. I prefer Xtol over Tmax developer, and I prefer them both over D-76.

Dana Dana@Source.Net

-- Anonymous, July 21, 1997

My favorite method for T-MAX developing

I loved T-MAX films since Kodak released them on the market. However, I had to work very hard to find a development method suiting my particular needs. I usually shoot on 6x4,5 film with a Mamiya 645 Super, and print with a condenser enlarger (an old Durst M605) therefore needing a slightly lower contrast than normal.

- First I tried the T-MAX developer; yes, I agree, in my opinion it is a push developer. Moreover, it has another defect: it requires processing at 24 0C ! I tried it at 20 0C and the results were devastating. Since I prefer to work at 20 0C (I don'have a Jobo thermostatic drum, so I have to use a water bath), I began searching different solutions.

- At the end of the testing I choose this combination, that I used with success for years: TMX film exposed at 50 ASA (shadow rapidity). HC-110 developer diluition B, 4' 30" at 20 0C. agitation: in the first 30", then 5 tank revolution every minute. This combination satisfied me, but the processing had to be VERY VERY VERY consistent in order to achieve consistent results: a slight difference in agitation and/or developing time produced huge variations on the negative.

- After posting a query in B&W World, i tried XTOL developer, on suggestion by Ted Felton. It is literally fantastic ! Now I switched to XTOL diluted 1:2 or 1:3, achieving GREAT results.

regards Carlo

-- Anonymous, July 23, 1997

I have tried XTOL diluted 1:1 and found excellent response when developing TMY. The temperature and time were as suggested by Kodak.

-- Anonymous, August 18, 1997

I use Ethol TEC 2-solution for 120 T-max 100. I rate at E.I. 320 and get consistent results. You can use temps from 65-80 by simple time changes. Agitation in nikor tanks is three inversions every 30 seconds. I don't use T-max in 35mm, instead use bulk techpan 2415 at E.I. 100. Its hard to tell the 35mm-16x20 tech pan prints from 16x20 6x7 T-max prints.

This developer is hard to get and usually has to be orderd. My store did not list the 2-solution TEC, but I wrote the manufacturer and the 2-solution is available. Don't use the concentrate as it has limited shelf live. The 2-solution stock sloutions have a shelf life refrigerated of 3-4 years! And a 1/2 gallon a-b stock has 200 rolls of 35mm and 120 rolls of 120 capacity.

-- Anonymous, September 09, 1998

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