Compare R09 to Adox Rodinal

February 23, 2016

I’ve been using Rodinal since the ’90s when it was made and sold by Agfa. In recent years I’ve been using the Adox version, first labelled as Adonal and now as Rodinal. Adox state, and I believe them, that their product is made in the same factory and to the same specifications as the 1990s Agfa product. In early 2016 there is no Adox Rodinal available in Australia. The main importer is offering R09 and claim it is the same as Rodinal. If you do a search, or look at some of the film photography forums, you will get all sorts of conflicting information. These topics tend to go way off track with various experts weighing in with irrelevant facts about the pre WW2 version etc. Today I decided to do a simple test to compare Adox Rodinal to R09 (strangely, R09 doesn’t have a prominent manufacturer name, although on the side of the bottle in small print it says it is made by Compard).

r09 to Rodinal comparison Adox CHS ii email

I exposed one sheet of 4×5 film then cut it in half and processed one piece in the Adox dev and the other in R09. Both parts were processed at the same time, with exact same water temperature. I agitated one tank with my left hand and the other with my right. The dilution was 1+50 and the dev time was 9.5 minutes at 20 degrees C with Adox CHS II film. Looking at the negs and at this scan I think it is clear that the devs are identical. I chose a scene that was symmetrical and also had a good range of tones from dark to light for an accurate comparison. In this example the ledt side was Adox Rodinal and the right side is R09.

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3 Responses to “Compare R09 to Adox Rodinal”

  1. Graham North Says:

    This is great – thank you for the side by side comparison. I must say that my old eyes (on a reasonably good Mac screen) seem to see the left side (particularly roof tiles) as marginally lighter shade. Of course this could probably be attributed to slightly different agitation or scanning, just enough to make an almost imperceptible difference..?
    In Canada, the only version which is readily available (at least 2 places in Vancouver) is sold as Blazinal, which apparently is Compard R09 product.
    https://kinasevych.ca/2015/01/17/current-rodinal-like-film-developers/
    Cheers,
    Graham/


  2. Thanks for this very useful test ! I was just trying to decide if I should order the R09 stuff or not 🙂

    • whystoptime Says:

      I understand that feeling of uncertainty and that’s why I did the test. These days I happily use R09 or the Adox products, confident they are all the same stuff.


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