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Ilford XP2 Super 400 35mm : The Almost True Black and White Film

Ilford XP2 Super 400 is a black and white film that your local lab can process easily and more cheaply because it is developed using C41 chemistry, but did you know that it can also be developed using true black and white developers and will still yield wonderful results?! Read on to find out!

Photo by walasiteodito

This isn’t something new, I have already read in a few forums in the internet about this black and white C41 film that is being processed in a true black and white developer such as Rodinal using the stand development method. They say it yields contrasty results, some say that it gives more exposure latitude, so I was made curious. Having just a few rolls of it, I decided to try the intriguing result.

Just like what I have read, people uses stand development method for this film. Stand development is simply using a very diluted developer solution, and having a longer development time, usually 1 hour. In my case I used PaRodinal, It is basically a home-made Rodinal with Paracetamol as additive. I used the 1+100 dilution (5ml Parodinal, 500ml water), and developed the film for one hour. For an excruciating 60 minutes, I was afraid that nothing would come out in my film. When I poured out the chemicals, the juice was light purplish in color. Then I washed, fixed and checked the negative.

The result, a purplish, contrasty negative. I was in awe checking out the details and contrast the film produced, it was even better than the one processed by my lab. I had it scanned by my local laboratory, and was surprised that it produced quite pleasing frames. Check them out!

If ever you have time, and access in processing your own films, I suggest you try it too, we Lomographers love cross processing anyway. And maybe someday, it will also be considered as a true black and white film!

Photo by walasiteodito

written by walasiteodito

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This is the original article written in: English. It is also available in: Deutsch & Spanish.