5 Frames… With Adox CMS 20 II (EI 6 / 35mm format / Canon EOS 3) – by Rudiger Hartung

Written by and published on
Filed under ,

ADOX CMS 20 II is a microfilm. No other film is sharper, no other film is more fine-grained, no other film resolves more lines per mm (up to 800 l/mm). If used in pictorial photography the film achieves 20 ASA of usable speed in ADOTECH developer…thus reads the product brief from ADOX.

I have tried this combination myself quite often but to me, it seems somehow “touchy”… A little too much agitation and the density steepens. So, I looked for another developer and found it: POTA, Phenidone Extended Range Developer.


POTA suits this film very well and allows for more than 20 stops of contrast to get tamed on film – ready to print. Highlights are balanced in a very smooth way that gives you a more pencil drawing like appearance, which I really like a lot but it limits the sensitivity of CMS 20 II to ISO 6. So a combination of a tripod and object which move little – unless you just want to have blurred objects.

A negative to me is not simply the result of film and camera, but light (contrast), exposure, and development as well. Nevertheless, I only possess only one analog camera: a Canon EOS 3 and adapt different lenses to it. In this case, a Soligor 19-35mm f/3.5-4.5 lens with a Yashica/Contax (C/Y) mount.

POTA development needs an extensive pre-wash of the film to get rid of the AHC layer (Google for further details). this means that even with 35mm film I can create enlargements of more than 20x – so rather in the feet range, than the inch. These are enlargements without grain and with high edge sharpness.

From negatives taken in the direction of the sun without sacrificing details in the shadows. I like the extremes that challenge me and the film. In this combination, neither contrast of the scene nor resolution of 35mm film is the limit. The limit is only the lenses of my camera and my enlarger.

The pictures were shot last winter in Duesseldorf and Wiesbaden, Germany.

~ Ruediger


Want to submit your own 5 Frames...?

Go right ahead, submissions are open! Get your 5 frames featured on by submitting your 350+ word article by either using this Google form or by sending an email via the contact link at the top of the page.

This series is produced in conjunction with Hamish Gill's excellent 35mmc.com. Head on over to read the other half of these stories there.

Share your knowledge, story or project

At the heart of EMULSIVE is the concept of helping promote the transfer of knowledge across the film photography community. You can support this goal 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 personal passion project by heading on over to the EMULSIVE Patreon page and giving 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.


Previous

Developing color negative film at room temperature: the best option that nobody uses?

My year on film in 115 photos: A 2019 retrospective or, my not-a-365-project

Next

3 thoughts on “5 Frames… With Adox CMS 20 II (EI 6 / 35mm format / Canon EOS 3) – by Rudiger Hartung”

  1. Wow, those negatives are absolutely something, Ruediger! I still have to try the Adox 20, but you sure made me want to! Thanks for this

    Reply

Join the discussion