View Full Version : Developing C-41 in Jobo CPE/CPA/CPP... Questions

10-Jun-2010, 13:59

I've been developing Foma and FP4 for the last six months in a combi-plan tank. I'm currently developing a large volume of work... and it's a pain in that tank!

I will do a project in India in the fall, where I want to shoot 4x5 color. Lab prices in Denmark are hideously high and since it will be a large amount of negatives, I thought this would be a great excuse to get a color processor and do the work myself... but I have a few worries...

- Is it remarkably more difficult to do color processing than BW when using a temperature controlled processor? To see my 'current state', check this link:
(foma100, Caltar210, xtol 5:30min, straight out of an Imacon FT848, PS jpeg qlty 6)

- What would you suggest, a Jobo CPE 2 Plus, CPA 2 or CPP 2... not sure, what the differences are?

- I will buy the item used. Is there anything in particular, that I should look out for?
... for instance on this item: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=270588113192&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT#ht_1280wt_1139

- Which drums do I need in order to develop 12 negatives at a time?

thanks in advance, everyone :)

georg s
10-Jun-2010, 15:19
I've developed a lot of C-41 (mainly 35mm and sometimes 120) with a CPE-2 and never had a problem. For handling the large drums needed for 12 4x5-sheets (Jobo Multitank 5 - #2551 with magnetic coupling for use without lift and #2553 with cog) a lift might be a good idea - I've never used one but it's recommended by Jobo.
The larger CPA-2 and CPP-2 are able to handle the Expert-drums and they use a more sophisticated temperature-control-system.
Hope this helps and please excuse my crude english, georg.

Robert Ley
10-Jun-2010, 17:00
I would recommend the CPA-2 at a minimum as it will handle the expert drums. C-41 is very temperature and time dependent and the CPA will keep your temps close enough for good results and the Jobo agitation will guarantee good results. Actually color I find easier than B&W as there is only one time and one temperature for all C-41. The Jobo can also be used very successfully for B&W. I would recommend Fuji-Hunt chemistry as that is what I use and it works well. Depending on how much the processor costs, you should be able to amortize the cost very quickly against the high price of lab processing.

Gudmundur Ingolfsson
10-Jun-2010, 17:08
see this thread:
www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?t=58317 -

11-Jun-2010, 03:43
Thanks, all of you!

Great thread, Gudmundur. I've read it previously but couldn't find it while searching yesterday. Do I understand you correctly, that you recommend HSL over home processing at any time - or just regarding 8x10? I shoot 4x5.

Anyone who can recommend a good place in Scandinavia or germany/netherlands to buy color chemistry?

thanks again...

georg s
11-Jun-2010, 03:55
Here's a place in germany offering 3 different C-41 kits (Fuji, Tetenal and Rollei): macodirect.de , located in Hamburg.
nordfoto.de (in Norderstedt - close to Hamburg) is offering a wide range of color-chemistry too.
I've had good experiences with both companies.

Gudmundur Ingolfsson
11-Jun-2010, 04:01
When the processing time is only 3:15 min the trouble is not the chemistry but the physical fact that it is difficult to soak the whole sheet within a split second. I have myself processed 4x5" sheets in an automatic JOBO and found a way somewhat reduce the risk of uneven development by using a presoak of water but you still loose a sheet or two, now and then especially, if there is a critical sky in the picture. But if you are going on long and expensive trip and exposing a lot of sheets the risk of processing yourself is too high. HSL is a very good lab and they give you a rabate if you send them more than 25 sheets.

11-Jun-2010, 07:39
Thanks for tips, Georg, and for your opinion and PM, Gudmundur. I've just requested a price at HSL for 3-400 negatives. By critical sky you mean keeping detail in the extreme highlights of an overcast sky (as with Becker, for instance)?

Stephen Willard
12-Jun-2010, 22:11
I have been developing C41 film for years using first a JOBO CPP2 processor and now a JOBO ATL processor. I would say that the CPP2 is needed because it gives you the temperature accuracy that you need. The JOBO 3000 drums are the best drums for developing LF film.

It is very important the drums are leveled by shimming one end of the processor. It not sufficient to just level the processor. When leveling the drums it is very important that the drum cover is installed so that there is no wobble as the drum rotates, otherwise you will not be able to properly level the drums. Once the cover is properly installed then you can trace a line around the cover on the drum using Sharpie pen so that the cover can be quick sealed in the future without introducing any wobble. The level must rest directly on the surface walls and not on the the cover rim or the rear rim. If the drum is leveled then your development will be very uniformed, otherwise you will get uneven development that will show up in the skies.

13-Jun-2010, 02:03
... seems that a good lab is the answer :)