View Full Version : W665 (Windisch) developer? Your experience and advice?

24-Sep-2010, 23:23
Has anyone heard of or have experience with the W665 (Windisch) developer? I am looking for a developer that should give me the finest possible grain... Any alternatives?

Keith Tapscott.
25-Sep-2010, 02:12
I am looking for a developer that should give me the finest possible grain... Any alternatives?Ilford Perceptol which also maintains good sharpness. Many of those old super fine-grain developer formulas can produce mushy grain.
Sharp grain is best if you want the sharpest looking prints.

25-Sep-2010, 03:28
RobertV of Fotohuis in the Netherlands uses W665 and also sells it, it's definitely supposed to give much finer grain. He's posted example images on APUG over the last couple of years.

Hans Windisch formulated it to get the best possible results from pre-WWII 35mm emulsions. In "Die Neu Foto Schule" 1938, Windisch claims it gives grain as fine as Dr Sease's No 3, which was published by Dupont. The speed loss isn't as severe as the 2 stops of Sease 3, Windisch suggests a reduction of 3 DIN which is a stop..

Windisch says of Sease 3 "The developer gives the finest grain conceivable".

It would be an interesting developer to test, how much improvement there would be over say Perceptol is impossible to guess.


25-Sep-2010, 06:13
Who sells sease 3? And has anyone tried it?

25-Sep-2010, 06:32
Sease 3 isn't made, you have to make it up yourself.

Modern films have a very much higher inherent fine grain structure compared to pre-WWII emulsions, as a consequence using exotic super fine grain developers has far less benefit than you might assume. I've tried many super fine grain developers but their disadvantages out weighed their benefits in my experience.`

Keith's suggestion of Perceptol is by gfar the best commercial choice, alternately try W665 which Fotohuis sell.


Jay DeFehr
25-Sep-2010, 08:44
One problem with superfine grain developers is that they can create dichroic fog with some films. I've been working on my own superfine grain developer, and I'm familiar with most of the classic formulas, but not W65. My developer is not quite ready for publication, but I'm very encouraged by my results, and hope to finish initial testing and finalize my formula within the next few months. This class of developer is much more complicated to formulate and test than one shot developers are, and testing takes much longer, because seasoning and replenishment have to be tested with several films and over a much longer period of time. I began working with this basic formula a few years ago, and was very happy with it, but put it aside with photography in general for a while. Since resuming its use, I've found some opportunities for improvement, and I'm exploiting them now.

I think superfine grain developers have a place in modern use, provided they are formulated to work with modern films. Giving up a stop or two of film speed is not acceptable to me, nor is mushy grain. Interestingly, those who see my prints made from negatives developed in my SFG developer most often remark on their sharpness, not their fine grain. I suppose one is less likely to remark on something they don't see than something they do. TMY-2 developed in my developer is as close to the holy grail as I can imagine. I get full film speed, excellent sharpness, beautiful gradation, and grain at least as fine as TMX developed in stock Xtol. These negs scan and print like a dream.

Grain was never really a problem for me, since I rarely make prints larger than 8x10, whatever the negative format, and none of my developers exaggerate grain. Superfine grain developers were a curiosity for me, and I was intrigued by the legend and secrecy surrounding some of them, like Harvey's 777. When I began experimenting, what hooked me was not the fine grain alone, but the complete IQ package. The balance of characteristics suits me to a tee. I prefer a soft working, but energetic developer, that produces brilliant, full scaled negatives, without empty shadows or harsh highlights. The complete absence of grain, and high image fidelity give my enlargements a contact print quality. To be sure, TMY-2 is a huge contributing factor, but if I had to shoot it at EI 200, or 100 to get these results, it would be a wasted effort, since I could just use Acros or TMX instead. But, as I've said, it's more than just the fine grain, and I've developed Acros, and Orwo NP15 in this developer with excellent results, even thought these films need no help with their grain.

jan labij
27-Sep-2010, 02:48
you can also try Ansco 130, a paper developer formula. Photo formulary sells it as one of their formulas, called photographic formula 130. I think.

Keith Tapscott.
27-Sep-2010, 12:03
you can also try Ansco 130, a paper developer formula. Photo formulary sells it as one of their formulas, called photographic formula 130. I think.The OP wants to obtain the finest grain from his films. Unfortunately, paper developers do not yield fine grain negatives.

27-Sep-2010, 13:48
You could try Kodak D-25; easy to prepare:
For 1000ml
7.5 g metol
100g sulfite anhydrous
15g bisulfite (or 45ml of a a 33% solution)

Jay DeFehr
27-Sep-2010, 15:49
D-25 is almost guaranteed to produce dichroic fog with modern films, in my experience.

Philippe Grunchec
28-Sep-2010, 01:37
CG512 is supposed to give a very fine but well defined grain.

Marek Warunkiewicz
28-Sep-2010, 03:14
Anyone have the formula for Sease #3?



28-Sep-2010, 03:35
Sease 3

Sodium Sulphite (anhyd) 90g
para Phenylene Diamine (free base) 10g
Glycin 6g
Water to 1 litre

However DuPont recommended a variation.

ND 3

Sodium Sulphite (anhyd) 90g
para Phenylene Diamine (free base) 10g
Glycin 2g
Water to 1 litre

Needs a 1-2 stops extra exposure, dev times approx 15-30 mins at 20C