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Super XX film

Wally Hess , Jun 16, 2003; 10:16 a.m.

Can anyone describe the characteristics of super XX film ? I know it has been long discontinued, but J&C carries their J&C classic 200 which they describe as having a "look similar to Super XX" film. What does that mean ?



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Mark Sampson , Jun 16, 2003; 11:21 a.m.

1) Very long 'straight line' in its characteristic curve. That meant long density range negs can be made that hold highlight seperation, very useful for alt-process people who need contrasty negatives. 2) Characteristic curves the same for red, green, and blue. This was critical for those making color-separation negatives, especially dye-transfer printers. (S-XX was discontinued at about the same time Kodak dropped the dye-transfer process, circa 1991). 3) Very grainy, as befitting a 'high-speed' film invented in the 1940's.

Alec Jones , Jun 16, 2003; 12:23 p.m.

I believe that Classic 200 is repackaged FomaPan 200 which I've used for some time. I love it. Kodak won't let Foma import THAT film, so it looks like J&C found a way around it. They are to be commended for giving us another choice of reasonably priced film.

tim atherton , Jun 16, 2003; 12:26 p.m.

"Kodak won't let Foma import THAT film, so it looks like J&C found a way around it"

please expound...?

Huib Smeets , Jun 16, 2003; 12:42 p.m.

Not Foma but Forte

tim atherton , Jun 16, 2003; 12:59 p.m.

Kodak "won't let" people import foma? Forte? what...

Mark Sampson , Jun 16, 2003; 01:57 p.m.

I believe it goes like this. Forte, not Foma, lost a trademark-infringement suit to Kodak a couple of years ago. Something about Forte using a yellow box or a trademarked product name. It had nothing to do with the *contents* of said box. Foma, whoever they are, may be using J&C as a way into the US market without using lots of resources- but that's only a guess- and I have no idea if their film is like Super-XX or not.

clay harmon , Jun 16, 2003; 02:15 p.m.

This bit of misinformation about the supposed equivalence of BPF200, or Fortepan200 or J&C 200 keeps getting repeated over and over again and is in my opinion about as true as most urban legends. I have tested (using the BTZS approach) both BPF200 and Fortepan200, and I believe them to be the same film. At the very least, they behave identically when processed identically. They are most decidedly not like the old SuperXX, which was capable of delivering a very wide range of contrast (gamma), by some accounts from N-4 to N+3. In non-staining developers, both Fortepan200 and BPF200 reach gamma infinity relatively soon (at Gamma ~ 0.75), and would make poor alt-process films in conventional developers because of their inherently low (and limited) contrast. However, they can be processed in staining developers such as ABC pyro, rollo pyro, or pyrocatHD, and perform quite well for alt-process work due the actinic (UV) blocking characteristics of the stain. While they are definitely NOT the old SuperXX, it is gratifying to have these films available, since it appears that the great Yellow Father is not terribly interested in ultra-large format film manufacturing, if their minimum order size is any indication.

David Goldfarb , Jun 16, 2003; 02:17 p.m.

The Foma/Kodak issue, as I understand it, was about Fomapan T200, which has nothing to do with Fortepan 200 and is only produced in 35mm and 120. I believe the legal problem had to do with the "T" or perhaps that T200 is actually a T-grain emulsion, but I've used it and it looks nothing like any T-grain film made by Kodak or like Super-XX, which is not to say that it isn't an interesting film.

Claims are often made about various films being a replacement for Super-XX, but I doubt anything being made today really has that kind of density range.

Alec Jones , Jun 16, 2003; 03:33 p.m.

Well, I've done some more research, so I must withdraw my conclusions regarding the origin of the J&C Classic film. Put another way, as some politicans say, "my prior statement is now inoperative".

I have previously bought FomaPan T 200 directly from FotoImpex Berlin[before they partnered with J&C]. J&C was offering all FomaPan films but the T200. FotoImpex told me the problem with Kodak was the reason I couldn't find it anywhere over here. I naturally put 2 & 2 together and apparently got 6!

FotoImpex still lists FomaPan T200 - however, it must be leftover stock, because Foma Bohemia Ltd. no longer lists FomaPan T 200 as an available product - only the Foma Creativ 200 that was once available alongside their T200.

I'm disappointed because I liked the T200 product because it had lots of silver in it. Haven't tried Creativ.

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