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Author Topic: Optical Brighters, News from Hahnemuehle  (Read 2758 times)
paulbk
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« on: June 07, 2006, 04:03:03 PM »
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This from Digital Outback Photo

PDF Press Release: The Truth About Optical Brighteners in Hahnemuhle Paper

Worth a read.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2006, 04:06:07 PM by paulbk » Logged

paul b. kramarchyk
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jule
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« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2006, 05:07:04 PM »
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This from Digital Outback Photo

PDF Press Release: The Truth About Optical Brighteners in Hahnemuhle Paper

Worth a read.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67642\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Thanks Paul,
Julie
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digitaldog
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« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2006, 05:22:56 PM »
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LOTs of papers have OB's. Whenever I measure papers to build an ICC profile, my software reports this and compensates for it in the profile. So other than an issue with measuring a paper and having to compensate for OB's for building a profile, I'm not sure what the issue is (what's the harm?)
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Andrew Rodney
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dlashier
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« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2006, 10:45:17 PM »
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Marketing hype, as is probably the quote from Arches product manager Jeffrey Neuman: "In the archival paper world, OBAs are a no-no,"

But Wilhelm doesn't speak too favorably of OBAs in his whitepaper on yellowing (scroll down to page 5, left column).

I just don't like the look of OBA'd paper, particularly how they change in different light, plus I frame most stuff under UV glass anyway.

- DL
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jdyke
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« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2006, 11:10:21 AM »
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OBA's are used in quite a lot of papers (including many traditional darkroom papers), often it is just the quantity of OBA's that differs.  

That said many new fine art papers claim to have no OBA's

I tend to go for papers that claim not to have OBA's much like yourself but in the case of some of the newer papers such as Crane Silver Rag and Fine Art Pearl, I dont' think that these are not OBA free.

I have a friend in the paper business who tells me that even when OBA's are not used there are plenty of other chemicals used in the coating process which 'could'  have impact long term.  They just don't know for sure!!

Much like OBA's this process has not been tested long term (Wilhelm tests may be the best we have (and recognised by the industry) but it is also accepted that they are acelerated tests and can in no way simulate actual time)

I think perhaps as photographers we have become just that bit too hung up on print permance.  

After all how many people have prints on their walls that are over 30 years old let alone 50 or 100!

Providing I like the paper and I am not being told that the print will fade in a few years then I am happy to try them.


Pleas not this is my opinion and I know that people may have thier own expectations on what they exepct from paper.

Cheers
JD
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thompsonkirk
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« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2006, 01:45:34 PM »
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Indeed it may be "marketing hype" about the level of OBAs in the Fine Art Pearl that Hahnemuhle is releasing.  I don't think the OBs in Photo Rag are a threat, & I prefer that amount of optical brightening to Epson's Ultrasmooth; but my guess is that Hahnemuhle is anticipating concerns not only about the brightened version of HPR, but also the new FAP paper, which is reportedly more heavily brightened than Silver Rag & Innova Fiba.  

Some optical brightening looks OK to me & is IMO worth what Hahnemuhle argues will be a return to the paper-base color.  I make work-prints on EEM (heavy OB), final prints on HPR (moderate OB), & prints that I can call 'archival' on USFA (no OB).   (I used to use Moab Natural until I encountered too many problems with flaking & ink crystallization.)  But I regard the no-OB USFA prints as less satisfying to look at than those on HPR, because of the yellowness of the paper base.  If you show USFA prints in a group show amidst other papers - especially in 'reveal' mats - the paper base has a pretty unattractive tone.  

We knew that the EEM paper base would yellow in time - I believe Wilhelm said 30 to 40 years, but it seems to occur more promptly!  IMO, USFA simply looks like EEM that has faded badly.  That's basically what the Hahnemuhle press release is saying.

In this context, I'll continue to consider HPR, with moderate OBs, my best paper for final prints, unless the person who wants the print brings up the 'archival' issue.  But I doubt the real question that Hahnemuhle is addressing concerns the the level of optical brightening in HPR.  

Previews of Fine Art Pearl mention that it has noticeably more OBs than Silver Rag or Innova Fiba Glossy, & in this respect looks like EEM.   IMO we'll just have to wait to see how much brightening they're defending until we can compare the new/forthcoming papers.

One more little note:  Some time ago I got out old air-dried Portriga Rapid 111 & Kodak Polycontrast F prints from the 70s & 80s to compare to some inkjet paper bases, & was surprised to find that the USFA paper base is the best match to 'classic' Portriga!  I know Brovira of that vintage looked brightened, but I wonder, after reading the Hahnemuhle claim that gelatin-silver paperes were typically brightened:  Was Portriga ever brightened?   And does it now match USFA because the OBs have faded away?
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