View Full Version : Contrast,processing and old lenses?

21-Dec-2007, 22:19
With most lenses after say about 1940 - 50 lens contrast related to image contrast on the negative is quite consitent but where I'm noticing a difference is with the older soft focus optics from the 1800's to the early 1900's.

I fully appreciate the flare factor of an uncoated lens but wonder if anyone is increasing their processing time to compensate in any way. If so by what sought of amount.

I'm finding with a Verito a 20 - 30% increase in development improves the image appeal without altering any of the soft appeal.

Robert A. Zeichner
22-Dec-2007, 05:04
You might say this article was written for those using older classic lenses, many of which are uncoated. The technique described will increase contrast by 1/2 to a full paper grade and involves no special processing at all. Try it. It works.


22-Dec-2007, 06:52
Thanks Robert. Very informative article.

Mark Sawyer
22-Dec-2007, 13:15
Stand and semi-stand development has worked well for me using the older lenses and soft-focus lenses such as the Verito, Imagon, and Cooke Series II. Once you get it down, it lets you increase development times (and contrast), while not blowing out the highlights. With Ilford Multigrade IV FB, I generally find myself printing somewhere between the 0 and 1.5 filter, even with the softer optics. (That's the range where I really like that paper...)

Erich Hoeber
23-Dec-2007, 23:40
I shoot a lot with old lenses and I've found that even with good shading - which is not to be underestimated - I still have to push my development if I don't want to be printing in the 3.5 to 4 range. I also use semi-stand to keep the highlights under control.