Kodak BW400CN Processed in Caffenol C

The testing continues… BW400CN (C-41) by Kodak processed in my tweaked Caffenol C… the testing for this film is almost done… usable EI is around EI 50 – 400 / 800 all with the same processing time! Grain has a nice defined presence but not overpowering. A big advantage to this material beyond the flexability of the EI as mentioned above is the fact that is has fantastic reciprocity characteristics (no compensation required till 120 seconds) and it is very easy to scan on almost any scanner.

Below is a sample image shot with my Leica MP with a 28mm lens – the EI for this shot is 200. The dark barn board above the doors was placed at Zone 3… the light snow outside which has full detail is Zone 16!! This is a straight scan with minor adjustments in PS for contrast / levels… more soon.

Here is an example just for comparision of the same test shot on Kodak Tmax 400 processed in PMK using the technique outline here… instant coffee is looking pretty dam good!

Note: both shots were done using only natural light.

14 Responses

  1. Matthew

    This is really cool, thank you for sharing. Your site was recommended by google’s reader, and I was stunned to find out about the Cafenol. What times are you using for the BW400CN in it? And you also said you had tweaked yours?

  2. Ron


    Wow, that 400CN shot has even more detail in the highlights than the Tmax shot! There’s more grain, but it really works and grain is a small price to pay for that much latitude. I also really like that vintage record player. What a cool place!


  3. grebvelk

    Hi Fig, I’ve lots of this film which I don’t like in C-41. So I will try Caffenol. But how do you brew Caffenol C? I know the C-C-M, C-C-H, and C-C-L recipes. But just C???

  4. Chris Moss

    I shot my first roll of XP2 today – I have stuck to traditional silver films all these years, but I was curious about the possibility of reduced grain. I used 1:100 Rodinal semi-stand, not having any instant coffee in the house. Wow! Very smooth indeed and easy to scan. Example is at http://tinyurl.com/parrwnc

    I’m trying Diafine with the next roll. ISO200 again.

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