BERGGER Pancro 400 with CineStill Df96

A picture is worth a thousand words… so this is going to be a very short review!

Thoughts:

Bergger Pancro 400 reminds me a lot of XX by Kodak– it has a very classic long greyscale with just the right amount of grain and amazing highlight control. The quality control is very high, and I love that it’s available in all formats, 35mm through 8×10 sheet film. After extensive testing I have decided to make it my go-to 120 film… yeah it’s that good! In 4×5 the grain is very, very smooth and round. In 120 the grain is there, but very fine and beautiful which I think adds a wonderful depth to the scanned film. As for 35mm? There will be grain, but again it is a classic looking grain, which I love.

So, if you want lifeless, flat, smooth boring film? Bergger Pancro 400 is not for you! This film is classic… and combined with Df96 developer it hits all the right marks.

Tips:

  1. Rate Bergger Pancro 400 at between 100-325…. I find 200/250 to be the sweet spot if you want full shadow detail. This holds true for all the developers I tested this film with.
  2. CineStill Df96 MonoBath developer produces the very BEST negatives I have seen with this film; it is a perfect combination.
  3. Try pulling the film with Df96… shoot it at 200 and pull 1/2 to 1 stop in development. Note: I did not do that in the sample image above but I could have… it’s a nice way to control high contrast scenes.

Viva la Revolution- Steve

PS- in case you missed it here is a link to the review I did on the CineStill Df96 developer.
https://emulsive.org/darkroom/review-cinestill-df96-monobath-developer-by-stephen-schaub

Let The Film Testing Begin

I am heading to the Cotswolds (UK) in just over a week and running one last set of tests over the next few days…. looking at chromogenic B&W films (and converted Portra 400) compared to traditional B&W films processed in Pyro 510 (stand development)… all for the purposes of scanning.

Stay tuned!

PS- and yes that is Fuji Neopan 400CN… very hard to get here in the USA as it is not imported… made by Ilford for Fuji, based on XP2 Super but it is a different film made to Fuji Specs… time will tell.

BERGGER Pancro 400 • 120 Film Mini Review

I have been a fan of BERGGER films off and on now for well over a decade. Since it was released a few years ago, the 4×5 Pancro 400 has been a go-to film for my large format work. So, of course, the announcement back in September 2016 that Pancro 400 would also be released in 120 and 35mm had me REALLY excited.

After some delays the film in these new formats has now been released and I have started testing the 120 version in my Noblex 150UX. As you can see below, I have been testing in 3 different developers: PMK, Rodinal 1+25 and Caffenol (in-house recipe). (The PMK and Rodinal times and temps are directly from BERGGER-supplied information and appear to be spot on.)

 

 

 

Some initial thoughts on this film in 120 format:

1. Rate the film at 320 for PMK and Rodinal.

2. Very nice highlight and contrast control– even under extreme conditions like the test above.

3. Grain is softer than 400TX and not as fine.

4. Can be exposed at EI 100-800 with very good results in the developers tested.

5. Biggest drawback? At this date it is not available in the USA in smaller formats (35mm and 120), I had to order from the EU.

So- is it worth switching from 400TX or HP5+ to this film? It depends. The rendering is a very classic film look, very silver-rich, very different from a lot of other modern films on the market. If that sounds appealing to you, I highly recommend going the extra mile, ordering the film from Europe and doing a side by side and seeing for yourself. For my own part, I am glad now to add the Pancro 400 in my medium format repertoire.

Viva la Revolution-

Stephen

Link to BERGGER Pancro 400 Data Sheet

Bergger BRF 400+ Film Review

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Click on the audio play button to listen to my review of this great classic film!

Bergger BRF 400+ at EI 6400!!!!! A very low light test….. click on the image to see larger.

BRF400+@EI6400
Bergger BRF 400+ at EI 6400!!!

Development as outlined in audio:

1:100 Rodinal at 68-70F 2 Hour Stand Dev

Usable EI from 400-1600

  • Initial agitation for 30 seconds
  • Rest 30 Min
  • Swirl like wine for 10 sec
  • Rest 30 Min
  • Swirl like wine for 10 sec
  • Rest 30 Min
  • Swirl like wine for 10 sec
  • Rest 30 Min
  • Dump and finish process.. Stop/ fix/ clear/ wash/ dry.

1:50 Rodinal at 68-70F 2 Hour Stand Dev

Usable EI from 1000/1600 – 6400+

  • Initial agitation for 30 seconds
  • Rest 30 Min
  • Swirl like wine for 10 sec
  • Rest 30 Min
  • Swirl like wine for 10 sec
  • Rest 30 Min
  • Swirl like wine for 10 sec
  • Rest 30 Min
  • Dump and finish process.. Stop/ fix/ clear/ wash/ dry.

Another great alt developer is Caffenol CL… just google it and follow the directions exactly!!! Usable out to 3200 but the Rodinal version outlined above is better at the higher speeds. And you can see the grain is a bit softer but the tonal range is still crazy great!

Bergger BRF400+ at 1600 Caffenol CL Dev
Bergger BRF400+ at 1600 Caffenol CL Dev

NOTE: I meter my shadows for Zone 4 in most cases… with this film it is VERY important for faster EI’s to meter for the shadows… highlights are not a problem. Here is a video on why meter for Zone 4.

Viva la Revolution- Stephen

My Current Film of Choice

For 35mm and a classic feeling this has become my go to film! More on my processing techniques in a later post.

Viva la Revolution- Stephen

PS- will be in New Orleans starting Sunday for a few days of shooting… Drop me a line if you are in the area.

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