Agfa APX 400 is a punchy fast monochrome that gives photos a crisp style perfectly suited to Lomography. Shoot it in bright or overcast light, in your LC-A+ or 360 Spinner — this contrasty friend doesn’t disappoint. This is classic black and white at its best!
Agfa’s lovely APX 400 was one of the first black and white films I picked up when I re-discovered analogue. Monochrome was a huge reason that I became fascinated with film in the first place — the loss of color makes everything simpler and at the same time raises the bar for effective composition.
Since that time, I’ve shot a variety of black and white, and I always come back to these shots taken with APX. I think it’s the relatively high contrast with deep blacks, true whites, and fairly stepped tones in between that really draws me to this film. It has a photo-journalistic quality that just seems honest.
I’ve shot a variety of other monochromes since those first rolls of APX 400, including several different speeds. While they each have their charm, I think the closest comparison is Kodak’s Tri-X 400. Both films have a huge tonal range and similar grain, but the Agfa is preferable to me for a crispness to the photos that I have a hard time characterizing.
And of course, it can be beautiful when the light is beautiful.
I don’t develop my own film, so I can’t provide much information there, but I do scan my own negatives, and APX keeps a moderate curl to it that is manageable but a little more challenging than the flattest color negative films.
In summary, don’t hesitate to grab a roll or ten of this stalwart companion — it’s a classic that really lives up to the word!