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Is Fomopan 100 a good substitute for APX100? • the International Rollei Club
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Is Fomopan 100 a good substitute for APX100?

Discuss all you like about the Rolleiflex TLR and Rolleicord TLR

Is Fomopan 100 a good substitute for APX100?

Postby Eddie Vaughan » Sat May 14, 2011 4:12 pm

I have been trying out different black and white 120 mm films since Agfa APX100 was discontinued. I really liked APX100, which I used to develop in Rodinal at 1:50, and have been for a film that gives similar-looking prints. I have tried Ilford FP4 Plus, and consider it a good film, but have read that Fomopan 100 resembles APX100 more closely than it does. I am wondering if any members have found this to be true.

While this post might not appear to be strictly relevant to the Rolleiflex TLR forum, I only ever shoot 120 black and white with a Rolleiflex TLR and therefore hope that my question is relevant.

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Postby DPurdy » Thu May 26, 2011 3:53 am

I used to be an Agfa 100 user too. Before that I was an Agfa 25 user. Now I have thrown my hat into the Fuji Acros ring. It is a very flexible film in that you can get different looks from it with different exposure and development choices. I use it mostly with either Beutlers or Pyrocat-HD. It is so fine grained that you can use a grainy developer to get a bit of edge and the images are still fine grained. You can get very clear clean watery highlights with the Acros along with good shadow detail... I shoot it at EI 50, the same as I used to shoot Agfa 100. Acros also works very well with Rodinal 1-100 or 1-50.
I am not an Acros salesman, I just seem like one.
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Agfa Sustitute

Postby ossainraggi » Wed Dec 07, 2011 4:15 am

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Is Fomapan 100 a good substitute for APX 100?

Postby Eddie Vaughan » Tue Jun 11, 2013 1:01 pm

I have not yet tried Fomapan 100, but recently shot a few rolls of Fomapan 200 in a Rolleiflex and observed a similar tonal gradation in the resulting prints to the one I used to get from APX 100. I rated the film at 125 ASA and developed it in Rodinal at 1:50 dilution for eight minutes. The prints look different from those I usually get from Acros 100 or FP4 plus, which are the medium format films I regularly use, but although I liked the look of them I am not saying that Fomapan 200 is therefore a better film. Its tight curl makes negative handling and filing difficult (in fact maddeningly so), and reciprocity failure is reportedly more of a problem if you shoot in poor light. In these respects, it is inferior to the old APX 100, but cheap price and nice greys help compensate. Is anybody else using this film regularly in a Rolleiflex? If so, what do you think of it and how do you deal with the curl?
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Postby Too Many Cameras » Tue Jun 18, 2013 3:02 pm

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Postby Eddie Vaughan » Thu Jun 20, 2013 1:36 pm

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Postby Too Many Cameras » Mon Jun 24, 2013 3:38 am

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Postby selmslie » Mon Jun 24, 2013 12:24 pm

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Postby matt335 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 7:48 pm

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Is Fomapan 100 a good substitute for APX 100?

Postby Eddie Vaughan » Fri Sep 27, 2013 6:27 pm

How did you qualify for a gift of a Rolleiflex camera, matt 335? I have not had the same good luck, despite in my opinion being utterly deserving, but I possibly have not mixed with the right people. This might be said of me generally.

Anyway, welcome to the club and to this forum. I have decided to persevere with Fomapan 200 for a while because I really like some of the results I have been getting from it, but still wish the tight curl did not make it so difficult to handle. I have tried reversing and rewinding the developed film onto the spiral, as some users recommend, but this has made no difference. It immediately springs back on release into the same tight curl. I have also tried flattening the negatives under a heavy pile of books, which others recommend, but with the same result. I always end up cursing it. This makes no difference either, except that it makes me feel better. I now believe nothing can be done to flatten the film, but am persevering with it despite that.

I develop this film in Rodinal 1+50 and like the results
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Postby matt335 » Fri Sep 27, 2013 7:45 pm

Hi Eddie
Thanks for the welcome. Yes, indeed I am very lucky to receive the camera as a gift. I love it so much. It changes the way I see things. The lens is quite beautiful in the softness of light yet it's also sharp when it needs to be stopped down. I have shot mainly Tri-x and a friend gave me some RPX100 to try out which is lovely. I will try to load some scans up here until I print some. The camera is fully functional. I was thinking it might need a service at some stage as it stood unused for about 25 years...
more late
kind regards
Matt
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Re: Is Fomopan 100 a good substitute for APX100?

Postby Eddie Vaughan » Tue Dec 03, 2013 5:46 pm

Lotti (Rolleiflex T, Fomapan 200)
Here is a scanned photo of my favourite model, Lotti, shot on Fomapan 200. I have a cheap scanner, but I think the scan shows some of the nice tones that can be got from this film.


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Re: Is Fomopan 100 a good substitute for APX100?

Postby matt335 » Wed Dec 04, 2013 7:08 am

nice work Eddie.

I recently shot some APX100... but on 135 format. I did, however, shoot some RPX100 on the rollei
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Re: Is Fomopan 100 a good substitute for APX100?

Postby Eddie Vaughan » Mon Nov 28, 2016 6:48 pm

I think I can now answer my own question: is Fomapan 100 a good substitute for APX100? My answer is no, it is not. Not in my opinion, anyway. APX100 had been my favourite medium format film until it was discontinued, and I used to develop it in Rodinal 1:50. I have been trying several films in an attempt to find a good substitute, shooting all with the same Rolleiflex d 2.8 camera and developing them in Rodinal 1:50, and have found Fujifilm Acros 100 ( rated at EI 80), Ilford FP4 Plus (EI 100), and HP5 Plus (EI 320) to be almost equally good. There is not much in it, really. Acros 100 gives good blacks and needs hardly any reciprocity adjustment in poor light; FP4 Plus has lovely mid tones; and HP5 Plus is very useful when using filters or when small apertures are needed. The results from each have been distinctly better than those I have so far had from Fomapan 100.

Perhaps Rodinal is not the best developer to use with Fomapan 100. The results have been very contrasty, which could have been the fault of the developer, and also not as sharp as the other films. I will shoot the remaining few rolls, but am unlikely to buy more. I actually liked the tonality and sharpness of Fomapan 200 better, but that was a difficult film to handle because of its tight curl and consistency was also sometimes a problem. I would be interested to know the film(s) that other members prefer to use in their Rolleis.

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Re: Is Fomopan 100 a good substitute for APX100?

Postby matt335 » Tue Nov 29, 2016 10:17 am

Thanks Eddie. I use Fomapan 200 also, rated at 125, and process in D76 stock. Agreed Neopan is a lovely film. I have preferred Tri-x normally. Cost, though, forces me to use Fomapan. Loading 120 roll onto a dev spiral is an artform . I find foma films generally flat. Regards. Matt.
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