Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2002/01/21

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Subject: [Leica] XP-2: True grit?
From: "Peter A. Klein" <>
Date: Mon, 21 Jan 2002 10:18:37 -0800

Is XP-2 inherently more grainy than Portra 400 B&W?  I just got a roll of 
XP-2 back from my neighborhood Walgreen's pharmacy's Kodak minilab.  It was 
*very* grainy--more like 3200 film.  I checked the film with a 30x pocket 
microscope, and it is indeed very grainy on the negative--it's not just 
grain aliasing on the scanner.  I'll post a couple of examples in the next 
few days--there were some good shots, even if they look like Navajo sand 

A roll of Portra 400 B&W processed at the same place by the same technician 
a couple of months ago was beautiful, and not grainy at all.  Both films 
were exposed at ISO 400, and the negs don't look underexposed to me.

Can some failure in the C41 processing cause such grain--exhausted 
solutions, bad temperature control, etc.?  I won't be using that minilab 
again if they can't be consistent.  Convenience is nice, but not if it 
ruins the pictures.  I've been collecting bottles, and will get on the 
Tri-X and Xtol 1:3 bandwagon very soon.

- --Peter Klein
Seattle, WA

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