Ferrania P30 — third roll review

So. tl;dr: After three rolls of P30, I have an idea of its strengths, but don’t quite have development locked down, so I don’t really know for sure.

I picked up 5 rolls from the initial Alpha release back in March or April 2017, and another 5 from the second release last fall. I shot a roll in June, a roll in October, gave a roll away in the 2017 EmulsiveSanta thing, and shot another roll just last month. Is that enough to issue a verdict? Honestly, probably not, but it is enough to begin making some claims and judgments, maybe.

I developed the first two rolls in Rodinal, following the published times from the Best Practices file (ver. 1.2) of 1:50 for 8min for exposure at EI 80. Hunting around now, it looks like the community has settled on EI 80 and 1:50 for 14min, which would likely solve all the issues I’ve had (see the Massive Dev Chart and the Best Practices file ver.  2). So note to self: Ferrania P30 is a brand new film and doesn’t have any sort of established history yet, so it’s best to check current recommendations before developing.

Anyway.

My initial results were contrasty, but still pleasant enough.

I particularly like that shot of my darling, adorable wife. Just check the detail in her skirt. SubhanAllah.

I shot the second roll on the way to and in Arkansas last October. The inky blacks and blocked up shadows bothered me more this time, and I didn’t even bother sharing results from most of the roll.

For the third roll, I switched it up some: I shot at EI 50 and developed in Rodinal 1:50 for 9 minutes, with some increased agitation, too. And I got somewhat better results, but the shadows are still a bit too blocked up for my liking…

Now that I see the new recommendations, I guess my developing times are still off. EI 80 for 14 minutes… what would that be for EI50? maybe 12 minutes? Who knows.

Anyway, I still really like this film, and see some good possibilities for it. I’m sitting on 6 rolls, and could probably turn them into something… I actually have an idea or two already.

One thing concerns me… Roll #3 had some strange markings on one side of the film, a regular series of punctures. I thought maybe it was set up for sound, like it was movie film stock, but I don’t really know.

Also, many of the frames from this roll had a strange band of fog on one edge, the bottom of the frame, corresponding to the top of the camera. I don’t think it’s back door seals,, since it doesn’t extend into the rebate or the spaces between frames.

You can see this band of fog (or whatever it is) in most of the shots from the 3rd roll. Given the placement, I’d guess it’s something with the FG, so I’ll reserve judgement, and stick with my initial judgement on Ferrrania’s P30: a solid 4.5 stars. Even wildly underdeveloped (I guess?) it’s still a beautiful film.

Ferrania are making as much as they can as fast as they can, but they’re busy on getting the factory up to full production (and making the chrome film I kickstartered all those years ago), so watch their shop and jump on some when you have a chance. Just be sure to follow current suggested timings!

 

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