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Thread: Anybody use RH Designs timers?

  1. #11

    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Blue Ridge, VA

    Re: Anybody use RH Designs timers?

    If my darkroom were to catch fire and I could only save one thing, it would be my Stopclock Pro. I use both f/stop printing and split grade printing so it suits my printing style perfectly.

  2. #12

    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Mississauga, Ontario

    Re: Anybody use RH Designs timers?

    I have StopClock Pro and a separate Zone Master, if you buy both in one piece (as Analyser) then there is no second channel. The clock works great. Zone Master is not as useful for me as I have expected (likely my lack of time to master it) but it is very convenient as a handy densitimeter. I looked also at Darkroom Automation, likely it does the same good work however personally I prefer more buttons on RH Designs unit than going through menus.

  3. #13

    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    New Orleans, LA

    Re: Anybody use RH Designs timers?

    Thank you all again for your helpful input! I'm glad I asked this question this morning and after all this positive feedback I'm thinking about getting an order in with RHD next week.

    Peter - I've been printing for several years now and do quite a bit of reading to help me along - for lack of an available mentor and some experienced feedback, which would really be nice sometimes. I can usually manage to eke out a decent print from a good negative, but it usually takes me quite a bit of work and paper to do so. I've (sorta) tried to use some of the methods outlined in Way Beyond Monochrome and Paul Butzi's name is mentioned several times in that worthy tome. Does he have something published, or somewhere else where you're getting information about his methods?

    I more or less subscribe to the "expose for highlight, adjust contrast grade for blacks" idea, but I still seem to do a lot of shooting in the dark and it seems most of the time when I finally get a good print it's the result of simple trial and error 'till it looks right, rather than really knowing where I'm going (with contrast grades) with any level of confidence. I'd be willing to bet that half the time I could get a perfectly acceptable, full range print on grade 2 when I usually end up with 4 1/2 or some other extreme. I've been speculating that the meter in the Analyzer Pro (along with the built-in F-stop timer) would give me some direction in this department based on actual measured values from the negative and that's what has me looking so hard at that tool. The old, 1st version Zonemaster I have now is all but useless for being so complicated.

    So, taking the long way around to ask this one question, does the Stopclock Pro alone provide enough information about which contrast grade is best, or optimum, for a given negative, or is it necessary to use the metering functions of the Analyzer to really get the picture? (pardon the pun) If this question doesn't make sense I won't keep dragging this out, just trying to decide which would be the better route between the two RHD tools.

    Thanks again for your help with this little dilemma - -

  4. #14
    Cor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Leiden, The Netherlands

    Re: Anybody use RH Designs timers?

    Hi Cletus,

    I can only echo the praise on teh StopClock, I do have a ZoneMaster (I or II, I do not remember..) but I did find it a less useful device in my hands, the first reason is you have to calibrate each paper/developer combination. That's ok if you use only one type of paper, but if you have a few different ones it's a pain. The second problem I ran into (which might only be me) is that you have to define your highlights and shadows on th projected negative on the baseboard, and I found that not so easy.

    I now only use The StopClock, and is your negatives are consistent you get a nice print quite quick. I almost always make a test strip with a test strip device as described by Ralph Lambrechts. so you expose the same piece of the negative with increasing (in my case 1/4 stop) steps. If you choose that area with care you include an important highlight (main "target"for exposure time) and an important shadow part: after processing the test strip you can than judge both parameters at once: correct exposure for your highlight and if the chosen grade is adequate for a detailed shadow part.

    This should be a good starting point for a fine print,

    good luck,


  5. #15
    Peter De Smidt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Fond du Lac, WI, USA

    Re: Anybody use RH Designs timers?

    May tomorrow be a better day.

  6. #16
    mamanton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Saint-Petersburg, Russia

    Re: Anybody use RH Designs timers?

    StopClock Pro one of the best thing in my Darkroom!
    I use it with 2 Dursts: 805 and 138 ))
    Tests are very easy thing, split-printing is comfortable, dry-down very usefull.
    F-stops - it's another world in the printing

  7. #17

    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Raleigh, NC, USA

    Re: Anybody use RH Designs timers?

    I started out an took a chance on their products and bought the the RHDesigns Analyzer 500 for my Ilford 500 head. After using it for a month or so I very quickly ordered the Stopclock Pro and also their ZoneMaster to go with it for my D2 and LPL enlarger. It changed completely the whole potential of my darkroom adventures.

    The RHDesigns products ARE that good.
    To find the answers - question them!

  8. #18

    Join Date
    May 1999

    Re: Anybody use RH Designs timers?

    I used to print using f stops so there is nothing new with the Stopclock I bought a few weeks ago... that I also recommend it. It is very well built, nice and easy to use.
    Richard from RH designs is a kind and friendly person, and he responds emails quiet promptly. Don`t hesitate buying one.

  9. #19

    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Peterborough, NH

    Re: Anybody use RH Designs timers?

    +?. It's great! I love it and wouldn't be without it, but I also wouldn't be without my metronome.

  10. #20

    Re: Anybody use RH Designs timers?


    Richard is retiring this year and the RH Design line is now being manufactured and distributed by Second Hand Darkroom Supplies which is great news. The not so great news is that prices have all gone up, as much as 50% in the case of the Stopclock and Analyzer lineup....I just paid $500 with shipping for my second Stopclock as I move the Vario to my cold light head powered mural enlarger.

    That being said, yes, RH Designs stuff is pretty much the best out there. I now own the StopClock Vario, Stopclock Pro, Zonemaster-2, ProcessMaster-2 and Paper Flasher....I think I am set...;-)

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