TMX and dilute XTOL (1:3) : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

Greetings from Boston, I have been happy with 4x5 TMX in full strenght XTOL @ 20C. I would like to extend my abilities to handle high contrast situations by using a compensating developer. I will be testing XTOL at 1:3 for its behavior with TMX. I have read all that I can get ahold of but it seems like an uncommon thing to do. Since this is a use of my precious time I am writing to ask for any tips you may have to help me with my experiments of using dilute XTOL as a compensating developer with TMX. Thanks in advance. Keith

-- Keith Baker (, January 31, 2001



I wouldn't do it. TMAX is one of the films that doesn't respond well to dilute XTOL. You might have one batch look beautiful and the next will be very underdeveloped, and this from the same batch of stock developer. You might try some of the more dilute Rodinal mixes or PMK. Just for the record Kodak no longer recommends 1:3 dilutions for XTOL.

-- Kevin (, February 01, 2001.

Stay away from dilute XTOL. I tried and tested it many times, and my results were inconsistent. Kodak said the problem must have been with my technique. (I use a Jobo, by the way). I am sure the problem was the XTOL. When I started mixing my own developer, I got consistent results.

-- William Marderness (, February 04, 2001.

I haven't had much luck with TMX in XTOL either. Which is a real drag, because I use XTOL in a deep tank setup in my home darkroom, and it's been an incredibly stable developer (full strength/replenished) and has given me consistent negs. with more traditional emulsions, but not the T grain stuff or any Delta films. For them, I have to fall back on TMAX RS in another tank. I can't comment too much on using it in dilute forms, I'm from a more commercial background & prefer the predictability of a deep tank...but I would think something like Rodinal 1:50 might work, or even Diafine for really contrasty scenes. Although, Diafine has always worked best for me with traditional films as well. Just out of curiousity, how were you running your TMX in the straight XTOL anyways?

-- D. K. Thompson (, February 06, 2001.

OTH, I have been using Xtol at 1:3 75F for about a year. Excellent results with Agfa APX 100 and Ilford Delta 400. For N Plus expansions I use it 1:2. With Ilford Delta 3200 I also use it at 1:2. If you'd like my specific time and temps just ask. I have them on the wall back at the lab. I do not know, nor do I try to remember, processing times. To do so can lead to errors.. I always look at the data on the wall.

-- joseph walsh (, May 04, 2001.

Just make sure that you have enough developer in solution to do the job. This means that you may have to use higher volumes than normal. The amount of stock per square inch of film can be had from the Kodak site. With important work I would test the particular new batch of developer first. I have not had any failures so far but there are lots of reports of failures with Xtol.

-- Pat Raymore (, May 04, 2001.

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