Having been and ILFORD user since learning to shoot with it in high school, I thought it high time I gave some Kodak stock a look (I have been shooting film again for about two years – a VERY long gap since my high school days). My only gripe with the ILFORD HP5 PLUS I’ve shot with has been some muddiness in the mid-tones, so I was keen to see how T-MAX 400 handled that.

The limitations of my job usually only allow me to shoot around the area where I work, and right when the sun is overhead, in my lunch break – I’ve been photographically mining this territory for nearly four years, and I feel I’ve become pretty good at squeezing out any of the left-of-centre subject matter.

When my Canon A-1 stopped working last year, a friend gave me his old workhorse Canon EOS1n – a beast of a 35mm camera, which I love. I put on the super-basic Canon 50mm EF f/1.8 II “Plastic Fantastic”, and headed out for the afternoon.

As this was not a work day, I was able to take my time and observe the T-MAX in a variety of lighting conditions from overhead sunlight to night-time. I processed in (probably too old) ILFORD ILFOSOL 3 at 1:9 for 6 minutes and fixed in ILFORD RapidFix for another 6 minutes. Probably due to my lack of processing rigor, the images were under-developed – I needed to push the contrast and brighten a little after scanning.

I’m pretty happy with the results, and the muddiness is no more or less evident than with the ILFORD HP5 PLUS I am used to using. The grain is quite pleasing, particularly in the night shot.

All-in-all, I am pleased to be able to add another 400 to my shooting arsenal.

~ Chris

Submit your 5 Frames... today

Get your own 5 Frames featured by submitting your article using this form or by sending an email via the contact link at the top of the page.

Share your knowledge, story or project

The transfer of knowledge across the film photography community is the heart of EMULSIVE. You can add your support by contributing your thoughts, work, experiences and ideas to inspire the hundreds of thousands of people who read these pages each month. Check out the submission guide here.

If you like what you're reading you can also help this passion project by heading over to the EMULSIVE Patreon page and contributing as little as a dollar a month. There's also print and apparel over at Society 6, currently showcasing over two dozen t-shirt designs and over a dozen unique photographs available for purchase.

About the author

Avatar photo

Chris Dixon

I am a hobbyist photographer, full-time graphic designer, drummer, husband and father (not necessarily in that order).


Leave a comment


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.