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Ilford Pan F 50 120: Greys, Not Grain

After a positive 35mm experience, I tried out Ilford Pan F 50 120 in my Lubitel to see if it matches up!

So my first introduction to low ISO film happened when I impulse-purchased some Ilford Pan F+ 50 35mm from Lomography. I tried it out on a 37 degree day, and then the rainy day after in my Olympus OM-1:

What struck me most was the near-invisible grain meaning the photos were glass-sharp, even at low shutter speeds. This crop is the actual scanned-image size, 100% zoom:

So when I saw I could get it in 120mm, I thought it to be the perfect match for my new Lubitel 166+. I was using my iPhone LightMeter app to check the shutter speed & aperture.

So I loaded up my TLR friend Sasha with Ilford Pan F+ 50 120mm, and went for a walk around Circular Quay:

And around to the Museum of Contemporary Art:

Later, my wife and I did the Bondi-To-Coogee Cliff walk. I brought along my Lubitel, but only took 1 light reading (f9, 125), at the start of the walk (I was worried that I would drop my phone off a cliff if I was fumbling too much with it). While bright, it was a windy, hazy day, with rough seas, and salt spray. I had to stop & clear off my glasses & lenses several times.

When I got the photos back, I noticed they weren’t as razor-sharp as those from my OM-1. I attribute that to the hazy day, the larger film format, and the different lens.

Also, I noticed the 120mm was far more likely to have grey tones, rather than the stark black-and-white contrast of the 35mm.

Here’s the actual scanned-image size, 100% zoom:

The grain is still tiny, but it’s far more noticeable than the 35mm version.

So would I buy again? Absolutely. While the 35mm gave more consistent results, I’m eager to experiment more with the 120mm, to see how the film will react.

written by lokified


  1. herbert-4


    Wonderful article!! Try Adox CMS20. I'll be trying some pretty soon, if I can get it developed.

    over 1 year ago · report as spam
  2. neanderthalis


    Drinking fountain images is awesome.

    over 1 year ago · report as spam
  3. lokified


    @herbert-4 I had some of that! I shot it in my Belair pushed to 50, but I don't think my lab knew quite what to do with it, so it ended up a little... odd.

    over 1 year ago · report as spam
  4. lokified


    @neanderthalis Thanks! It was just a "throw-it-in" moment on the way back to work. People at the street corner were looking at me funny. :)

    over 1 year ago · report as spam
  5. herbert-4


    In LA there is a place, www.freestylephoto.biz who stocks and develops Adox with the right chemistry, but I think it costs extra. I haven't tried yet, just seen some fantastic examples there.

    over 1 year ago · report as spam

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This is the original article written in: English. It is also available in: 中文(简体版), Italiano & Deutsch.