I am revisiting the world of formulating my own developers after some time, akin to cooking for myself as opposed to eating out for every meal, because I like to know what's going in my body. Anyway, as a current user of prescysol, I'm interested in staining developers capable of delicate highlight retention and have a couple questions. I find Prescysol to have unusually fine grain, great sharpness and incredible highlight retention. One area where it lacks, subjectively, is toward the bottom of the scale where it becomes flat and lacks local contrast. Until now I have used Delta films but will probably move toward conventional films.
I use partial stand agitation for the usual reasons: compensation of the highlights and edge enhancement. My questions are:
Is it possible to use a relatively dilute pyrogallol developer with minimal agitation, or does this necessarily cause streaking? For example, PMK looks very appealing but it seems to require almost constant agitation. Would adding glycin to a pyrogallol formula help with streaking, or would this agent combination lessen the stain and/or act subadditively? Would glycin enhance gradation in any way? Obviously I would love to keep the sulfite very low in order to maximize stain and acutance.
If I stay with catechin, what can I expect from the addition of some glycin? I'm interested in formulating a staining version of FX2 or similar, with compensation, very high sharpness, some grain masking and appealing tonality across the scale. Or does highlight compensation necessarily sacrifice separation elsewhere on the scale?