Like a sprinkle of cinnamon on a hot apple pie slice

I’ve never been a great fan of the Hp5+.

I mean, I’ve had some decent results with it but I always feel that it’s too cold. It lacks the depth and the spirit of the Delta 400 or Trix.

Kodak Trix 400 is like a sprinkle of cinnamon on a hot apple pie slice. It’s smooth, warm. It has depth.

Ilford HP5+ is like a lemon slush on a cold afternoon.

(I’m no photographer as you all know and I don’t know how to express myself using technical terms however, I use the films, I develop them, I scan them and I print them in the darkroom, and these are the therms I know to share my thoughts.)

On the other hand I absolutely love using HP5+ pushed to 1600 or 3200 or 6400! That’s when those blacks really start to show up. Well it all depends, of course, of what we want from our pictures.

I’m just saying that the HP5+ is not my favorite 400 ISO film, to use at 400, and despite being very good when pushed it is not, still, my favorite film to push.

Trix is still my favorite film and choosing from the two Ilford offers I like the Delta 400 more than the HP5+.

Please do take all of the above stated with a huge grain of salt!

Here are the samples.

Hasselblad 500CM
Ilford HP5+, Tmax Dev, 1+4, 7 min









Hasselblad 500CM
Ilford HP5+ @1600, Tmax Dev, 1+4, 11 min









  1. Davide Rizzo said:

    I agree…HP5+ does not have the same “character” that Tri-X seems to show unless, as you correctly pointed out, you start pushing it. The tonalities I get when I push 1 or 2 stops are great, while I feel my Tri-X shots (which by the way I like a lot) seems to be nice when I overexpose a bit or I push 1/2 stop.

    But again, it’s a matter of personal taste…

    • Thank you for taking the time Davide.

      And, despite it all, yes, the bottom line is, it’s always a matter of personal taste.

      PS: i do like the Delta 400 but not for pushing 🙂

  2. Hey!
    Great pics! For me the HP5+ is my standard black and white film, as you already sayed it´s a perfect film to push. On the road it´s great to have that many possibilities with just one sort of film.
    Greets Peter

    • Thank you Peter for commenting.

      Film really is an organic thing!

  3. Hello Cooking Film,

    I much prefer HP5+ over Delta, Tmax or Tri-X but I would not develop it in Tmax. I really like HP5+ in dilute HC-110 or Prescysol or dilute Perceptol at EI160. Nevertheless, your results are SUPERB. I particularly love the first pic, the tonality is wonderful. I love your photos especially those from your Hasselblad and particularly with the 120mm lens. Never doubt the quality of your photos, they are VERY GOOD. Keep it up boy!

    • Thank you so much for the kind words. Thank you.

      Indeed I have never used HC-110 or Prescysol. It’s almost impossible to find Prescysol in Portugal and the HC-110 is so expensive that I always end up buying new but in the budget developers like the Rollei line.

      I’m very curious about the HC-110, I’ve seen beautiful results and it will be my next developer. 🙂

      Thank you again for taking the time to comment.

      Thank you

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