View Full Version : Experiences with Ektapan 8x10 film?

Nick Morris
15-May-2004, 06:16
I recently acquired 100 sheets of Ektapan 8x10 sheet film. I was wondering if anyone has used this film on a regular basis, and if so, what rating, developer, and developing times seemed to work best for this film, in your experience. I usually use Tri-X in HC-110/B, process in trays, and primarily shoot people, places, and things outdoors in natural light. If you have used both films, are there significant differences in the results-shadows and highlights? Charts/graphs in Kodak's material show very different curves, but I really don't know how to interpert the graphs. All tips on using this film are appreciated. I got a good price on this outdated (1993), but kept-frozen film. I understand that Kodak has discontinued it, though B&H continues to show it in inventory. I plan to go back to Tri-X, or possibly HP-5 when this is used up. Thank you.

John D Gerndt
15-May-2004, 07:38
Without going into a long learning curve and because you have one old box to go through, I suggest the following: shoot a scene you know will turn out fine with Tri-X and HC-110. Shoot the same thing with your Ektapan (because of its age I would use 50% more exposure than Ektapan advises) and develop it the same way. You will get a bad negative. You have delt with bad negatives before: make the necessary adjustments.

With any luck you’ll have a good negative in 2 or 3 tries and the rest of the box is a go!


David A. Goldfarb
15-May-2004, 07:48
Ektapan is beautiful for studio portraits, and I'm sure it would be fine outdoors as long as you don't let the contrast ratio get out of control. I process it in ABC 1+1+1+7, 68 deg. F., with constant agitation by shuffling in trays, 10 minutes for normal contrast on Azo grade 2. I only use this for formal portraits where I can control contrast with lighting, so I haven't worked out N+ and N- times. It also retouches well with pencil in 8x10" and larger.

I also shoot TXT, and go 12 min. in the same soup for normal results (Old TXT--haven't tried the new version in 8x10" yet) on Azo gr. 2.

I would say that with Ektapan there's more going on in the midtones and smoother gradation for portraits, while TXT conveys a stronger sense of line. I think of TXT as more suited to an Avedon portrait look (and he does shoot Tri-X), while EKP lends itself more of a Karsh look (not sure what he used--probably Tri-X as well, just to make life confusing).

David A. Goldfarb
15-May-2004, 07:49
P.S.--I rate EKP in ABC at EI 50 and TXT at EI 160.

Jim Rice
15-May-2004, 08:06
I thought Karsh used Verichrome.

Sidney Cammeresi
15-May-2004, 08:24
I have some Ektapan in 11x14. I shoot it at 50, and my normal development time in PMK is 8 minutes for contact printing to enlarging paper.

I don't know if it's particular to PMK or Pyro or what, and granted, I have not done lots of testing since I don't have much of the film either, but it seems like it has a very serious toe.

David A. Goldfarb
15-May-2004, 14:49
Verichrome Pan and Ektapan have a certain tonal affinity, so it wouldn't be surprising if Karsh used Verichrome Pan.

Sidney Cammeresi
15-May-2004, 17:37
Err, I misread my development time I posted above. For normal contrast, I develop Ektapan in PMK for 12-14 minutes.

Nick Morris
16-May-2004, 06:25
John, David, Jim, and Sidney - Thank you for your responses.

Scott Walton
17-May-2004, 07:11
I absolutely loved Ektapan even though it was almost twice the price. The tonal scale was superb and being that it was a lower contrast film and extremely fine grain, the film was excellent. I used it in studio and loved it so much that I ventured out and shot it on contrasty situations with excellent results (smooth tones with great ranges from deep rich shadows to sparkling highlights). It has been said that Ektapan replicated the tones of color. It's true! You'll love it and the developing too! If you like TXP, your going to love Ektapan, a very silver rich film, albeit a slower film. In 4x5, it is still available (you have to search) but it is around $90.USD/4x5 100 sheet box but it is worth it. Most any developer works great as I have used it with HC110B, D23, Divided D23, D76, Divided D76, Rodinal 1:100, Sprint (D76 equivalent), Diafine, Acufine and a few homebrews I tested out.

Nick Morris
17-May-2004, 15:56
Scott, Thank you for your response.