Is Delta 100 a modern replacement for TriX ? : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I did some film testing the other weekend and found that Delta 100 (in roll film) developed in XTOL has almost the same density curve as what Adams published for TriX developed in HC110. Has anyone used both of these films? Do you find that Delta 100 has a look most similar to TriX? Since I am using mostly roll-film, I need a low-grain alternative to TriX. Thanks!

-- Andreas Carl (, July 22, 2000


NO! Pat

-- pat krentz (, July 22, 2000.

I second that "No." Read the Film Developing Cookbook if you want to learn about various films.

-- William Marderness (, July 22, 2000.

Could you please elaborate on your answer a bit - what makes it different: better shadow details, less muddy highlights, or what...

And where can I find the "Cookbook"? - Thanks!!!

-- Andreas Carl (, July 22, 2000.

Andreas, I have to agree with the rest... NO. Delta, a better alternative to TMAX still IMHO doesn't have the range of luminosity as the older emulsions. The T-grained films were a "cheap" imitation to films as we know them. I may get flamed for this but Kodak is marketing to the masses with this. Ilford has played the catch up game with Kodak because they have had to. If you want a nice film, slow that it might be, try Ilford Pan F. It is a 50 ASA film and is a beaut! If this is to slow for your purposes, there is always Ilford FP4+ (100ASA) or HP5+ a 400 film. Cheers, Scott

-- Scott Walton (, July 22, 2000.

When Sexton and Bond give up TMax So will I. My sens. curves with TMax 100 and TMax dev. give me an almost straight line with a short toe up way past 2.00. Vague descriptions of film characteristics such as "luminous mid range" etc. rank right up there with wine descriptions- "a young but presumptuous blend" George

-- George Nedleman (, July 22, 2000.

Delta 100 in many developers has a curve shape in common with HP5+ and TMX; it's dead straight _way_ out there up to at least 2.0DU. In fact it takes what amounts to heroic measures to put a shoulder into these films and lower densities.

-- John Hicks (, July 22, 2000.

Might as well jump on this bandwagon. I agree with the thumbs down to Delta 100. I initially used this film (8x10) with Pyro developer and had satisfactory results. When I finally got ahold of some HP5 and FP4 I was a much happier camper. These two films from Ilford sing in Pyro.

-- David N. VanMeter (, July 24, 2000.

C'mon guys, films really shouldn't be religions.

I can't simply answer the question because I don't use TX, haven't tested it in any way. If the curve shapes are similar then it _should_ look pretty much like TX; if not, then not.

In many developers Delta 100 has very slightly decreased shadow contrast to about Zone III, then the curve shape is just about ruler-straight out to at least 2.25DU. This shape is consistent and is rather difficult to alter by developer choice, although of course CI can be readily changed.

The curve shapes of Delta 100 and HP5+ are very close matches; indeed in large formats it can be rather difficult to impossible to tell what was shot with which film in "reasonable" enlargement sizes.

-- John Hicks (, July 25, 2000.

John, in which developers *doesn't* Delta 100 have very slightly reduced shadow contrast to about Zone III? Also, have you tried it in DD-X, and, if so, did you have the same increased speed and high grain results (which you characterized as Microphen-like) as with Delta 3200 in that developer? Thanks!

-- Sal Santamaura (, October 05, 2000.

> in which developers *doesn't* Delta 100 have very slightly reduced shadow contrast to about Zone III?

None that I've tried. The only reason I said "many" was that otherwise someone would surely correct me.

> Also, have you tried it in DD-X, and, if so, did you have the same increased speed and high grain results

No, I never have, for precisely the reason that I'd expect more grain and a little more speed, probably too much more grain for too little speed increase.

Actually, based on .10DU for Zone I, I measure Delta 100 in D-76 1:1 to be EI 125 to EI 160 but because of the low shadow contrast I expose it at EI 100.

-- John Hicks (, October 05, 2000.

There is NO modern replacement for Tri-X. You use film because you like it, like what it does or doesn't do, a friend recommended it or someone whose work you like uses it, an article or review said it was good, or some other reason. Tri-X doesn't need nor does it have a 'modern replacement'. It is what it is and does what it does. If you would learn the film for you, use it for a year or so and get the feel of what it will do or not do. Then try it against another one and let the sensitometric curves be a guide but not a defining standard. Look at the prints you make & use a film that gives you the results you like.

-- Dan Smith (, October 07, 2000.


I discontinued using Delta films about 2 years ago after spoiling the film guides on (1) a Leica 35mm camera and (2) a new 6X9 Toyo Roll Film hoder due to the film becoming "glued" to the metal guides rails and deposiiting an ugly black gunck.

I can only assume the film contains some caustic developer product in the emulsion that can react with aluminium.... I have never had this problem with any other product in 25 years of phootography.

In terms of that hard to obtain "classic" 3D tonal characteristic the real sleeper in the Ilford range is HP5 Plus - developed in the Pyro PMK formula (12mins/21degC) it is truly superb and in my opinion one of the very best roll films currently available.

Tonally I didn't find that Delta 100 produced anything special. Sure it's sharp and maybe has a "straight" transfer curve but in my opinion was not very inspiring tonally in PMK. If you are interested in a classic "thick emulsion" characteristic HP5/(PMK)is hard to beat.

Question: Can anyone advise me how to safely clean the guide rails of the above film deposit?

-- Brian Rowland (rowfam50, October 10, 2000.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ