Saturday, April 07, 2007

Adox CHS 25 ART

This film has been around since the 1950's and is the same as the EFKE emulsion that was called KB14.
I had used the KB14 version of this film in the 1980's and found it to be a little contrasty for my taste (which was Agfa AP25) and as most of my shooting at the time was done on 400 speed films, I didn't really persevere in finding a good exposure/development time combination.

Now in the 21st century I find myself trying the film again, this time armed with 3 rolls and some time to 'nail' a setting.
The film is pretty much as I remembered it, contrasty, slow and pretty fine grained, I eventually settled on a development time of 18mins in Rodinal at 1:100 which gives the long range of tones I like for scanning.

Also it must be noted that this is a thin emulsion that needs to be handled carefully, especially in 120 size. With a one min pre-soak (which will look blue when tipped out).

Adox CHS 25 at 18min in Rodinal 1:100, Leica M4-P. Canon 35mm 1.8'S'

The image above was taken early in the day in quite bright sunlight and clearly shows how well this film can handle contrast if processed carefully using a lower contrast developer or higher dilution.

Adox CHS 25 at 8min in Rodinal 1:50, Leica M4-P. Canon 35mm 1.8'S'

below is a 100% crop of the door in the above image which was taken in very bright conditions at mid-day.

As you can see, the detail is good and the grain is fine especially for an 'old tech' type film and certainly OK up to 12x18 (A3+) most of the grain/noise is probably introduced during scanning.

So overall i like this film, with the exception of the excessive contrast caveat which can clearly be seen in the two images posted (the second image was processed 1:50 at recommended times and is higher in contrast).
Who'd have thought the old film was so good, whether films like Acros or T-Max 100 give similar results at higher speeds is debatable but if you like the old tech films and the way they handle this film is worth a try.
All Images and text ©Mark Antony Smith 2007


Charlie Wood said...

I have been using this film, I to find the contrast little high. I developed some in Adolux R09 at 100:1 the negatives were a little thin for the old scanner I had at the time, but the resolution was outstanding, I have a 100ft roll of this film to play with, you can get bulk rolls from retro photographic they are not on the web site you have to phone. I am going to give this film a go in Microdol-x at 1-3 and dilute Rodinal special, some folks use it for tech pan..
One thing I would say about loading this film on-to a Paterson reel in a changing bag is don't be to long as the slightest bit condensation from you hands and you could end up with some very sticky film..

Anonymous said...

The web address for Retro is:-

Photo–Smith said...

Thanks for the comments
Charlie Rodinal at 1:100 for 18 mins is quite nice if you have a 100ft roll let the fun commence ;-)
I used this film when it was KB14 back in the 80's Jessops used to sell it as their own brand for a quid!

I guess back then i wasn't impressed when I compared it to APX25- much too contrasty, but back then I was using D76/ID11 or Ilfotec HC.
Highly diluted Rodinal seems to work fine.