Friday, April 27, 2007

Adox CHS 100 ART

The Adox brand has had a very complex history. Originally a German company formed in 1860 by Dr Carl Schleussner to manufacter photographic plates both for cameras and X-Ray (Dr Schleussener was a pioneer in X-Ray photography).
Fast forward to 1952, when they introduced a range of 35mm films, renound for their thin emulsion and outstanding sharpness, which became very popular with photographers.

Ten years later Adox became the property of American company DuPont, who then licenced the film technology to Yugoslavian company Fotokemika, who kept on poducing the original emulsions under a new name EFKE.

Now into this century, and the films are still produced in Zagreb (Croatia) to the original 1952 specs, but the film has now returned back to the Adox branding- confused?
Well don't be! Adox 100 and EFKE KB21 are basically the same emulsion, not only that they haven't essentially changed since the 1950's
Here is a shot I took on EFKE KB21 (100) in 1991:

So how does the 2007 EFKE/Adox rate?
Firstly the film is packaged quite well, 120 rolls come in a neat container, 35mm come in the type of cassette that can be reused should you 'roll your own' and looks to be the same type as Ilford and Agfa used in the 1970s.
The films feel thin when you load them into the camera (and later in the film spiral for processing).

I set the ISO on my spot-meter to 100 as in my experience these are 'fussy' films that need good exposure and development to give best results. But when you get accustomed to their idiosyncrasies they can be more than rewarding, with smooth tonal range and very good sharpness.
Below is a shot of a local church taken on a rather dull afternoon.

and the 100% crop

If you look at the lower centre right area you'll notice the time on the City Hall clock 3:47, the sharpness is pretty good for a cubic crystal (as opposed to T-Grain) film although in duller conditions I may in future rate this film at 80ISO or process it at 1:50 as the grain is quite visible in the sky area.

This film is one I would use if I wanted high sharpness, but needed long tones with just a little grain.

All Images and text ©Mark Antony Smith 2007


Bill Smith said...

Adox/Efke100 is my favourite medium speed film, great comments on an cool cult film. They are best processed in Rodinal 1+50.


星里 said...

I'm a big fan of ADOX CHS 25 and 50, excellent for stand development in Rodinal 1:200 for two hours with a bit of borax.