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New And Old Film Emulsions
I have seen on this board talk about Efke, and ados films as being 'OLD

What's the difference between the old and new film s and their emulsions!!

Thanx for your answer! What does an OLD type film print look like?

And with regards a past thread on the demise of B&W Etc.,it is sad to see that ILFORD are selling up in the UK,there's no buyer as yet!


you need to see the difference. Obviously the difference is in the negative and not on the print so only parameters that are affected by film behaviour can be seen (e.g. not the tone of the paper etc. sometimes people mix this and think a sepia toned picture must have been taken on an old style film ;-)

Usually what you can see is that the shaddows have rhicher details and the oveall tonal range expands more thus making the images more like the reality. You can see better if surfaces have been wet or dry and all the textures become more alive.

Other hand: if you keep shooting the same film format: more grain.

You need to test this for yourself. As I said before for some people a modern film is the best choice and for others not.

Everyone has to make up his mind and the best way is to simply try a roll and then stick to it or not.

Ilford: They announced yesterday that all b&w products will be stopped.

This does not surprise me as the situation was devastating over the past years.

These huge factories were living on third world export markets of countires which were sofar behind that b&w actually still was a mass market product.

With these countries moving rapidly towards digital the big plants will have to be shut down.

These markets only I expect to be over 20x bigger than the whole worlds artists photographers demand together.

I saw a nice thread on where people asked agfa to start selling APX sheetfilm again. 100 photographers or so signed it of the total of 2500 APUG members.

Nice try but far away from reality.



Where did you see the announcement that Ilford were stopping B&W Stuff!


you really need to see the difference. The proof is in the pudding. To make a valid comparsion between different films you have to expose them for their real speed and develope them to the right contrast. Overdevelopment and underexposure is the easiest way to ruin any film.

As an aside with respect to one film being better than the other there is hardly a film more controversal than Kodaks TMAX 400. Use it outdoors, soup it in a higher concentration of HC110 and you'll hate it too. At least I did. But use it indoors for portraits, developed in XTOL 1+1 or lowly D76 1+1 and you will ask yourself what this talk about plasticy midtones is about. Look here: [url=""][/url]. Or use it with a staining/tanning developer like PMK, Moersch Tanol or Pyrocat-HD and TMY - to my own surprise - shines even under outdoor conditions. Its more a matter of "how" than of "what" which makes me optimistics that we may still do fine in the not too far future when our choices of materials get more and more limited.

There is one difference, though, between "old" and "new" that hasn't been mentioned yet: spectral sensitivity. The sensitivity of most "old" emulsions ends earlier towards the red end of the spectrum and no kind of filtering will compensate for that. Such films inevitably look different and you may or may not like this kind of difference.

BTW. Mirko: can you name the source for the statement that Ilford has decided to shut down production of B&W products? I have yet to decide what to put on my next order!


Niall, Stefan,

some things are for sure and some aren?t with respect to Ilford.

For sure is:

1) Ilford separated their digital from their analogue business

2) The analogue section went bankrupt on Friday last week.

Not for sure is if the b/w production will really stop.

Even though this was communicated by Ilford employees I think the last decision will be made by the new managment and one week is too short to make a definite decision on such an important aspect.

We will see what happens. If they are able to lay off workers under bankrupcy protection without social plans they might be able to continue.

If they have to pay off the workers with social plans that will be it for Ilford.

It is like this in our semi-socialistic european democracys. In time adaption of companies to new market situations is by law impossible.

A market reduction of 25% per year will force any labour intensive company located in europe into bankrupcy- even though technically it could survive because it is impossible to reduce costs at the same speed. You have to keep paying excess staff until they retire or you have to pay them 1,5 years of wages to compensate them. Where to take this from if you are already struggeling to survive ?

No bank will give you a credit for paying off excess staff as it makes no economical sense.

On the day where your debt to your employes and suppliers exeeds your capital you have to declare bankrupcy.

So this is more of a technical thing than really the end.

I suppose Ilford saw this bankrupcy as their last chance.

We wish them all the best. Hopefully some jobs and parts of the factory can survive.

We saw this coming so we have stocked HP5 and FP4 raw material for 35mm and 120 for at least a two years supply.

So in case there will be some months without deliveries we can constantly supply film.

Unfortunately things developed much faster than we thought so it will take us a few weeks as well to have the first ready made films available.

I understand the economics of your argument!

But, what your really saying is they have all but said,they are shutting

down the B&W!

Right! No one actually said it!

Hi Mirko,

Ilford is "under administration". That's completely different from bankruptcy. It corresponds to German "Verwaltungsvorstand", meaning that a venture capital group tries to get the most out of its investment and has decided about "take it or leave it".

So, I do not see any need for panics. They'll be re-structured, some people get fired, but we will be able to buy Ilford stuff for the next some years. Hopefully.

Otherways: Foma is on market, Agfa will stay on market, Efke (ooh, don't they stop my favourite R50?) will stay on market. Even those Maco or Lucky stuff will be sold tomorrow, too. Nevertheless, I won't buy it.

Do you have any information regarding this so-called german firm producing this announced Rollei R3? Actually, I have some difficulties in believing Ilford-based emulsions being produced in Germany.

Best regards,


who said that R3 uses "Ilford-bases" emulsions?


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