View Full Version : Xtol or microdol?

17-Mar-2008, 15:27
I am looking between these two chemicals. I mostly shoot 125 PX and hear that these two are great developers. Or you would recommend something else?

17-Mar-2008, 15:35
I used a lot of Microdol starting out and it not a bad developer, but I love Xtol. I think it's one of the best non-staining developers available. It's very easy to use, reasonably -priced and every film I've tried looks great in it.

Ron Marshall
17-Mar-2008, 17:55
Another vote for XTOL. Greater speed and sharper than Microdol.

Gene McCluney
17-Mar-2008, 21:57
Microdol gives very fine grain, by dissolving the edges of the grains, thus it also does not give full emulsion speed.

19-Mar-2008, 12:52
I also am a fan of Xtol, I've tested a number of different developers, and I like Xtol, as an excellent all round developer, for grain speed and sharpness. When I don't use it, I use Rodinal for the extra sharpness.

19-Mar-2008, 13:33

Colin Corneau
19-Mar-2008, 14:34
I've had a lab do some of my initial negs in XTol and they printed very well...I can't speak for Microdol, though.

However, you just can't go wrong with good ol' D-76. Terrific developer, lasts forever, stores well (a powder) and cheap too...my 2 pesos.

David Karp
19-Mar-2008, 15:44
X-Tol is very nice. Use distilled water if you try it. I used to dilute it 1:3 before I switched to Barry Thornton's 2 Bath. If you do try it diluted 1:3 or 1:2 then make sure you have enough developer in the solution to fully develop your negs.

Some have used dilute Microdol X (1:3) with success and without mushing up the grain. At this dilution the sodium sulfite concentration is reduced enough that it does not dissolve the grains. See Thornton's The Edge of Darkness for a discussion of using Microdol X or Ilford Perceptol this way.