If you are of a certain age, you might remember when Ilford films had colour coded lids! They still use the same colours for the film branding, Orange – Pan F, Blue – FP4, Green – HP5, Red – XP2. I’m not sure if the 3200 ever had a purple lid, I only used my first roll recently, with mixed results. I intend to try another before too long, as I think I used it incorrectly. I read in their data sheet that it is actually 1000 asa and pushed to 3200. So I exposed mine at 1600, and didn’t get results I liked. Next time, I’ll go for the 3200 and see what I get. You can read the 3200 post here.
But this post is about pushing HP5. I decided after the 3200, I’d try and push a roll of HP5 to 800. It’s not a fair trial as it’s out of date film, but why not! I was given 3 rolls of HP5 Plus, with an expiry date of July 2008, old enough to have the “green lid of my youth”. I set off to the same museum, local to me, and I have a year pass! The lighting and subjects could be very similar.
I have to say I’m impressed. Yes, there is a bit more grain than not pushing, that would be expected. I did process the roll in DDX, 10 mins at 20° 1+4. It’s certainly useable. There was more base fog, the scanner seemed to cut right through that! The biggest nightmare was that having been curled up in it’s tight living quarters for 17 years or so, it didn’t want to lie flat. Getting it in the holder was a pain!
I used the same camera and lens, but prefer these results to the 3200. Although as I’ve said, I’m going to reserve judgement on that until I’ve tried another roll. I wrote another post about HP5 here, and a “link page” of my Ilford tests here.