Tri-X Stress Test

Using the same camera, the same lens, the same lighting and the same subject matter — just how far can you push Tri-X 400 in Rodinal?

Tri-X looks pretty good pushed up to around 3200 or 6400, but the negative density starts to get thin above that. I probably need to work on my developing process for 12800 and 25600, either using weaker developer for longer, or agitating more, or adjusting the development time.

Another thing that the longer times in the tank had in common was what looks like "bromide drag" or "surge marks". Despite this being a stand or semi-stand development process, I think early agitation (while the developer is still "active") is important. Next I'll be trying experiments with a completely full development tank and 180º inversions (rather than 360º ones) at 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32 minutes.

However, when Tri-X 400 is pushed six stops — given 1/64th the amount of light it needs — it's incredible there is a recognisable image at all!

With big thanks to MissKCat for her invaluable help in this experiment.

I've published all the recipes used to, and they link to the photographs in the full Flickr set.