• Facebook

    500 K / likes

  • Twitter

    1 M / followers

R3 Monobath Developer Lets You Process Your Film with One Chemical Bath

35 Comments

r3monobath

In March 2014, we reported that inventor Bob Crowley and his startup New55 were working on producing a new line of 4×5 instant film. That Kickstarter campaign turned out to be a smashing success. As the company continues to work on its instant film aspirations, its has released a new product that many photographers may find useful.

It’s a new monobath developer called R3 that lets you develop, stop, and fix black-and-white photographic film with a single bath.

It’s the “the most convenient black and white developer we know,” writes New55. “It can be used in the field, in the darkroom, in your bathroom, or in a dark-bag to conveniently develop your black & white negative film in a single pass.”

r3monobath2

Instead of immersing your film in three different baths and agitating the tanks, R3 works without any agitation and will develop your film in just 6 minutes of soaking. You then rinse it off for 5 minutes, dry it, and you’re done.

New55 has confirmed that the developer works with New55 Atomic-X, Ilford Pan F, HP5 Plus, Kodak TMax, Tri-X, Efke 25, and Shanghai 100 so far, but it should work with any standard black-and-white film on the market, even “old exposed black and white film that has been sitting for years.”

Here are a couple of sample photos from film that was developed using R3 (more sample shots can be found on the New55 blog):

sample1

sample2

Ted Forbes over at The Art of Photography just published a video review of this monobath developer. It’s an informative look at what it is and how it’s used:

New55 does have some objections to certain statements and conclusions mentioned in the video. Crowley left comments on Forbes’ blog, saying that the developer isn’t designed specifically for Tri-X film and that it can be pushed and pulled quite easily.

“[W]e and many others used R3 on nearly every black and white film we could find over the past 5 years of teaching people about R3,” Crowley writes. “Also you can easily pull and push monobaths, with temperature […] Just go to 90F for 1.5 stops increase.”

If you’re based in the continental US, you can purchase a 950 ml (32 ounce) plastic container of R3 from the New55 online store for $20.

35 Comments