Latitude for Days - D9 DynamicChrome vs. E6 Dynamic-Range

Posted by Brian Wright on

D9 “DynamicChrome” Warm-Tone Dynamic 1st Developer renders approximately 9+ stops of usable dynamic-range while maintaining rich warm-tones and vibrant color-contrast with preserved highlight and shadow detail (optimized for scanning) for a more cinematic look. Mixed stock solution can be measured out at 1/2 the tank capacity and diluted 1+1 with water to make a working solution for normal warm-tone development. Dilute 1+2 or 1+3 with water for further preserved highlight detail and a more neutral-tone daylight color balance.

But is extending the dynamic range of slides really possible? Of course! That's why we are so excited. When a piece of emulsion is struck by light, trace amounts of silver harden. It would take an insane amount of overexposure to reach the maximum density of the emulsion. But in order to make the hardened silver visible it needs to be amplified with a developer. If you develop it past the Dmax of the film you will lose detail. The key is to slow down development in the highlights while developing the shadows enough to be visible. While it is difficult to increase the shadow detail that is exposed below the base fog of the film, without eliminating it's beautiful inky blacks, we have harnessed the highlight latitude of slide film beyond imagination.

We bracketed exposures by 2 stops under to show how many stops of additional dynamic-range are retained in the highlights. Snip tests were made and processed in each D9 dilution at 104ºf and the remaining 2 Cs6 baths at ~85-100ºf in a Patterson tank. The remaining film was sent to The Darkroom photo lab and processed with the 6-bath E-6 process. The Darkroom specializes in professional film developing and scanning. Their Sitte Tischer TruTrak dip & dunk processor maintains high professional standards with constant process control standards. All frames were scanned on the Skier Sunray Box with a Canon 5D mk2 with all the same settings and corrections.

E-6 Dynamic-Range vs. D9 DynamicChrome

Kodak Ektachrome E100 with an Olympus Zuiko 50mm at f/8 bracketed 2 stops.

D9 DynamicChrome Dilutions Comparison

Kodak Ektachrome E100 with an Olympus Zuiko 50mm at f/8 bracketed 2 stops.

Warm-Tone Development: 1+1 Dilution ~ 9 min. @104°f (40°C) 
Extended Highlight Latitude: 1+2 Dilution ~ 10.5 min.
Pull -1 (overexposed film): 1+3 Dilution ~ 12 min.
Push processing is not recommended with DynamicChrome

As you can see, DynamicChrome extends the dynamic-range in the highlights +2 stops with a warm-tone effect, or +4-6 stops with a neutral-tone daylight balanced effect. Below are some further tests comparing DynamicChrome to DaylightChrome.

Top: E100 Underexposed -1 Stop.  Bottom: E100 Overexposed +1 Stop.

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