Ilford's FP4 is the younger brother of HP5, coming in at a lower ISO rating of 125.
‘For high quality black and white photography, ILFORD FP4 PLUS is unrivalled. Its very fine grain, outstanding sharpness and high acutance make it the film of choice whenever a job demands great enlargement or the subject contains a wealth of fine detail. Nominally rated at ISO 125/22, ILFORD FP4 PLUS has become the benchmark against which other medium speed films are judged. With enormous latitude for exposure error above and below its ISO 125, ILFORD FP4 PLUS is very suitable for most photographic subjects under a variety of lighting conditions.’
Because the film has such a wide exposure latitude, you can shoot this film in a lot of different lighting conditions. But to maintain detail, I personally wouldn’t recommend pushing this film any more than 800iso, as it has the potential to lose some of that fine detail.
It is a perfect BW choice for when you are shooting subjects on a bright day, or a subject which has lots of fine detail requiring big enlargements.
This film is also a traditional BW film, so must be developed in a darkroom or at a specialist lab. Using the darkroom of course means, you can really play around with how you want your negs and/or prints to come out. That is the beauty of ‘true’ BW film. A lot of contrast can be achieved when adjusting the magenta on the enlarger, combine that with the fine grain, and you’ll have one ballsy print to show off! On that note though, this film isn’t as contrasty as the older brother, and has a lot more range in it’s greys than the blacks/whites.
Like the HP5, it also comes in 120 and large format sheet film. Whether it’s your Canon A1, Mamiya 645 or a Graphlex, you have every chance to really make some killer shots with this film.
The film can be bought here for $9 per roll and a 3 pack for $26.50! A bargain price!