Ilford Pan 100 Review + Ilford Film Comparison (B&W Film)

35mm Ilford Pan 100 Review + Ilford Film Comparison (B&W Film)

Ilford Pan 100 review (35mm black and white film) plus Ilford film comparison: Ilford Pan 100 vs Delta 100, vs Ilford Pan F 50, vs FP4 125, vs Kentmere 100 AND vs Fomapan 100, vs Kodak TMax 100..

Tamron 45mm Portrait

35mm Ilford Pan 100 black and white film – Availability

After shooting mostly black and white film for coming up to about 10 years now I only recently discovered Ilford Pan 100 film. It seems that 35mm Pan 100 film is less popular in the UK and I actually bought my fresh film stock from Germany. I was excited at my discovery of Ilford Pan 100 as one of my most regarded film stocks is Ilford Delta 100. (It is probably worth noting I enjoy using other film brands too. Kodak T-Max 400 always impresses me (especially 35mm) as does Fomapan 100 Classic (120 and 4×5 formats mostly)). (Links below)

Ilford Pan 100 film – Application (The blurb!)

“Ilford Pan 100 is a medium speed black and white film which offers outstanding tonal rendition, together with fine grain and high sharpness. It is suitable for most general purpose indoor and outdoor photography applications where good lighting exists, it is particularly suited to portraiture.”

Ilford Pan 100 Film Portrait

Ilford Pan 100 Developing

For Ilford Pan 100 developing I currently favour either just Kodak Xtol developer or my homemade film developer soup which consists of Xtol and Rodinal developers. Of all the black and white film stocks I have shot I would say Pan 100 film is quite forgiving and quite easy to develop without losing detail. I have not yet tried developing Ilford Pan 100 film with other developers but I need to start experimenting I think (for all film stocks!).

Ilford Pan 100 Portraits

Nikon F5 B&W Fashion
Tokina 100mm Macro
Tamron 45mm f1.8 Portrait
Nikon F5 + Tokina 100mm!
Tamron 45mm Nikon F5
Ilford Pan 100 Portrait
Leica M4-P Film Portrait
Ilford Pan 100 Portrait
Ilford Pan 100 Film
Ilford Pan 100 Portrait

Ilford Pan 100 Flickr Photos (Non-Portraits)

Ilford Pan 100 film photo
Collapsible Leica 50mm
Leica Elmar 50mm f2.8

100 Speed Black and white film comparison

Please don’t shoot me down for this completely non-scientific black and white film comparison! I thought some visuals from other film stocks I use might be nice to compare to my Ilford Pan 100 photos. Most of the films featured are a similar film speed to Pan 100 so could be potential alternatives when looking to buy a new film to test out. The film developing was roughly similar for all photos shared (and the film scanning too – Epson V800 flatbed scanner) but that is probably where the similarities end! The photos below include different subjects on different days in different locations and under different lighting conditions.

..It might just inspire you to try a new B&W film!

You might see similar film characteristics across a group of photos that might inspire you to try a particular B&W film stock. I bought and tried most of the black and white film I’ve used based on film photos shared by others on Flickr. Flickr taught me so much about photography in my earlier years and I still use it today to review photos from a particular film stock, camera or lens ahead of a potential camera gear purchase.

Ilford film comparison + Warning!

Warning! You might want to find a comfy chair and grab a cuppa before you proceed. As usual I got a little carried away and this post is now 4x longer than planned. Lots of photos coming up below! I’ve included 35mm and 120 film scans for a bit of an Ilford film comparison + a few other film brands.

Ilford Pan 100 vs Delta 100

Ilford Pan 100 vs Delta 100 comparison! Ilford Delta 100 was perhaps my favouite black and white film for quiet a while so it was likely that I would like Ilford Pan 100 film too. To my eyes Ilford Delta 100 film still has the edge in terms of sharpness and detail captured (and offers 120 format that I enjoy using) vs Pan 100 film but they are close enough for me to buy the cheaper 35mm Ilford Pan 100 film if I can find it.

Delta 100 sample photos

35mm Ilford Delta 100 film
35mm Ilford Delta 100 Portrait
35mm Ilford Delta 100 Portrait
Leica M6 Portrait (Noctilux)
Tamron 45mm Portrait
Tamron 45mm + Nikon F5
120 Ilford Delta 100 photos
Hasselblad H3D-31 Film
Fuji GF670 Camera 6x6
Supermodel

Ilford Pan 100 vs Pan F 50

Ilford Pan 100 vs Pan F 50 – both are Pan films manufactured by Ilford but different enough from my experience to use both. Ilford Pan F 50 is a high contrast film and it can be easy to clip the highlight detail if you are not careful with your developing. Pan F 50 film has slightly finer grain and a smoother look to my eyes. If you get Pan F 50 right it can capture some stunning detail. Pan 100 film is only available in 35mm format where as I enjoy shooting 120 Ilford Pan F 50 too.

Pan F 50 sample photos

Ilford Pan F 50 35mm Portraits
Leica M3 + Ilford Pan F 50
Leica M3 Film Camera
Leica M6 + Ilford Pan F 50
35mm Ilford Pan F 50 Film
Leica M6 Fashion
Olympus Pen-F Fashion
Leica M3 + Ilford Pan F 50
Ilford Pan F 50 Portrait
Ilford Pan F 50 120 Portraits
Hasselblad H3D-31 Film
Hasselblad + Ilford Pan F 50
GA645 Portrait
Hasselblad vs Zenit

Ilford Pan 100 vs Kentmere 100

Ilford Pan 100 vs Kentmere 100 – they could be said to be a close match as Kentmere 100 film is manufactured by Ilford films. From personal experience and shooting a 10 pack of 35mm Kentmere 100 film I would say Kentmere 100 is maybe slightly softer with a slightly more classic grain / less modern look and with less contrast.


Kentmere 100 sample photos

35mm Kentmere 100
Kentmere Film Portrait
35mm Kentmere 100 Film
Olympus 35RC Camera
Kentmere 100 Film Portrait
Leica M3 + Kentmere 100 Film
Brooklyn Bridge New York Panoramic
Kentmere 100 Film

Ilford Pan 100 vs Fomapan 100

Ilford Pan 100 vs Fomapan 100 – they may appear similar on paper but I would say they are quite different. Pan 100 offers increased sharpness and detail to my eyes with perhaps a more modern look. Fomapan Classic as the name suggests offers a more classic grain structure and look. That said, Fomapan 100 Classic is still a bit of a favourite of mine mainly because of the low cost!

Fomapan 100 sample photos

35mm Fomapan 100 Classic
Nikon F5 Portrait
Fomapan 100 bulk roll
Leica B&W Portrait
Bulk Roll Fomapan 100
Leica M4P + Flash
35mm Fomapan 100 Portrait
Tokina 100mm Portrait (Film)
120 Fomapan 100 photos
Zeiss Sonnar Portrait
Mamiya RZ 645 Back
Hasselblad 80mm f2.8 C lens
Hasselblad SWC /M
Mamiya 6 150mm G
Fujifilm GA645 Portrait
Mamiya RZ67 645 film back
Vintage Film Love!
Intrepid 4x5 Portrait
Hasselblad SWC Fashion
Mamiya 7 65mm Portrait


Ilford Pan 100 vs TMax 100

Ilford Pan 100 vs Tmax 100 – these are quite a close match to my eyes. Both capture great image quality and good detail. In my earlier years of shooting film I shot a huge amount of Kodak TMax 100 film. I love the fine grain and high contrast (+ TMax black blacks). The TMax 100 blacks are darker than Pan 100 blacks in my experience. I stopped using TMax 100 film after several rolls failed to develop (at all) for no seeming good reason. (More than likely user error but until now i’ve still avoid this ‘risk’).

Kodak TMax 100 sample photos

35mm Kodak TMax 100 Portraits
Kodak TMax 100 B&W
Modern Vintage
Leica M2 Portrait
Dusty Film Scan
Summer Love
35mm Kodak T-Max 100 in Rodinal
Kodak T-Max 100@200
Film is NOT Dead - Model Photogaphy
Leica M2 Black and White Portrait
120 Kodak TMax 100 photos
Moskva-5
Wedding Film Photography
Mamiya 645 Super + T-Max 100
Fuji GA645
Mamiya RZ67 Pro II

Ilford Pan 100 vs FP4

Ilford Pan 100 vs FP4 Plus – again both Ilford films but Ilford FP4+ is quite well known for the classic grain structure (which can be too much for me at times)(i’m a sucker for fine grain and detail!). I much prefer Ilford FP4 125 120 film to the 35mm format for this reason (less apparent film grain). I have shot 35mm FP4 in the Leica film cameras in the past but now tend to just use FP4 for the Hasselblad(s), Mamiya(s) and so on.

Ilford FP4 125 sample photos

Ilford FP4 35mm Portraits
Leica Noctilux Film Portrait
Ilford FP4+ in Rodinal 1:100
Studio Shoot - Film
Leica Noctilux + Ilford FP4+ film
Leica M3 + 35mm Ilford FP4 plus
Ilford FP4 120 Portraits
Hasselblad H3D Film Back
Hasselblad 100mm Portrait
Mamiya RZ67 Pro II
Mamiya 6 Portrait
120 Ilford FP4 Plus
Mamiya 645 Super Portrait
120 Ilford FP4 Portrait
Hasselblad Studio Session
Fuji GA645 Model Photography
London Model Shoot

Favourite black and white film?

If you managed to get this far which was your favourite black and white film from the results above (and from personal experience)? I’d love to hear in the comments below. I forgot to include the now discontinued Fuji Acros 100 film which is also a strong performer for 100 speed film and the less popular Rollei Retro 80s film.

B&W film reviews

Are there other 100 speed black and white films you think I should try out? If so let me know and I will try to get some to review. (If you want to read more of my film reviews check out the “FILM” section of the blog and scroll down below the various film camera links).

Ilford Pan 100 Review Summary

To round up this Ilford Pan 100 review I would say I will continue to shoot 35mm Ilford Pan 100 black and white film because for me it offers a good balance of detail, sharpness, contrast, fine(ish) grain at a reasonable price. Some films are “better” for my taste but they usually cost more! (Current favourite is Kodak TMax 400 film).(*I will do a film review on that too when I get time and link it)

Black and white film posts (a sample of!)

You may also like… What Gear I Use for Portraits!

  • See full details of my portrait photography lighting kit – HERE
  • See full details of my portrait photography equipment kit – HERE
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Ilford Pan F Review (Why I love Ilford Pan F 50!)

Ilford Pan F Review (Why I love Ilford Pan F 50!)

Ilford Pan F 50 review covering 35mm film and 120 film – Example Pan F 50 photos and thoughts from using this film with Leica & Hasselblad cameras.

  • Part 1: Ilford Pan F 50 35mm
  • Part 2: Ilford Pan F 50 120
  • Part 3: Ilford Pan F Developing

Leica M3 + Ilford Pan F 50

Part 1: Ilford Pan F 50 35mm Film

Ilford Pan F 50 35mm film in Zurich, Switzerland

1.1 35mm Ilford Pan F 50

Ilford Pan F 50 film is super fine grain, slow speed, black and white film produced by Ilford.  I bought a roll of 35mm Pan F 50 to take on my trip to Zurich for a model photography workshop.  It was my first time using this film and I was interested to see the results.  I often use ISO 100 speed black and white film such as Kodak T-Max 100 or Fuji Acros 100.  I had not shot with slow speed film before but I was in luck as we had bright sunny weather for the shoot.

1.2 Ilford Pan F 35mm + Voigtlander Bessa R3A!

I shot the Pan F 50 film in my 35mm Voigtlander Bessa R3A rangefinder camera on the first day of the workshop.  (My Leica M3 was loaded with Kodak Portra 160 and my Leica M2 was loaded with 35mm CienStill 50D film).  The first model we worked with was Joy, kindly supplied by Option Model Agency.  The second model was a local dancer, Julia.

1.3 35mm Ilford Pan F 50 Portraits

Here are some sample images shooting Ilford Pan F 50 at box speed in my Bessa R3A camera and developed in a soup of 1:3 diluted Xtol solution + 1:400 Rodinal.  I realise other developers may give sharper and finer grain results but I wanted to use the developers I know best at this stage.  Most photos were taken with a Voigtlander Nokton 35mm f1.4 lens.

Model – Joy

Ilford Pan F 50 Portrait

Bessa R3A + Ilford Pan F 50

Bessa + Ilford Pan F 50

Ilford Pan F 50 Model Shoot

35mm Ilford Pan F 50 Fashion

Model – Julia

Voigtlander Bessa R3A

35mm Film Sharpness

Ilford Pan F 50 Fashion

Ilford Pan F 50 in Xtol + Rodinal

35mm Ilford Pan F 50

1.4 35mm Ilford Pan F 50 – Conclusion

I was really impressed with the amount of detail captured with the 35mm Pan F 50 film.  The resolution was something closer to what is achieved with 120 medium format films.  My next test will be to shoot 120 Ilford Pan F 50 film in my Fuji GF670 stopped down for my sharpest possible negatives.

1.5 Would I buy 35mm Pan F 50 film again?

Ilford Pan F 50 film is certainly not an everyday film as it requires 3x more light than say the popular Kodak Tri-X 400 film.  I believe Pan F 50 is more suited to my 35mm film photography than my medium format cameras as 35mm lens are often much faster with the likes of the Leica M mount Leica Noctilux 50mm f1.0, Voigtlander Nokton 35mm f1.2 ASPH and Leica Summilux ASPH 50mm f1.4. I am also interested to try this film with my latest purchase, a 35mm Nikon F4 SLR with perhaps the Nikkor 50mm f1.2 Ai-s lens.  Most of my medium format camera lenses start at f2.8 (x2 slower than f1.4) or smaller with the exception of my Mamiya Sekor 80mm f1.9 C for the Mamiya 645 Super camera.

1.6 Price of Ilford Pan F vs Fuji Acros vs Kodak T-Max

I plan to shoot Pan F 50  when I can during the brighter summer months of the UK and for some strobist work.  Price wise Ilford Pan F 50 can be found cheaper than Fuji Acros 100 and a similar price to say Kodak T-Max.  I invested in a 10 pack of 35mm Ilford Pan F 50 film to get a slightly cheaper price and to keep me going over the summer months.

35mm Ilford Pan F 50 Film – Available on Amazon – Check for latest prices! (UK) / (US)

35mm Ilford Pan F 50 :)

Part 2: Ilford Pan F 50 120 Film

Ilford Pan F 50 120 film in a Hasselblad 501C 6×6 film camera! Sample photos.

2.1 Hasselblad 501C + Ilford Pan F 120 Film

Working with males models in Hamburg using the Hasselblad 501C and Ilford Pan F 120 film in the bright conditions.  I love how much detail the film and camera captures!

Hasselblad + Ilford Pan F 50

120 Ilford Pan F 50 Portrait

Hasselblad Portrait

Hasselblad Fashion

2.2 Ilford Pan F Flickr Photos (Hasselblad 501C)

Shot in the UK with a local model, Georgie

Hasselblad Double Exposure Fashion

120 Ilford Pan F 50

Hasselblad 501C

Part 3: Ilford Pan F 50 Developing

Most or all of the above photos were Ilford Pan F 50 developing in Kodak Xtol or Xtol+Rodinal soup.  I have not tried Ilford Pan F + Rodinal but I can’t see why it would not be a good option.  (I used to develop all my black and white film with Rodinal but I discovered Ilford Pan F film a few years after that time).

Ilford Pan F 50 Review (+ TMax 400!)

A still regard Ilford Pan F 50 as one of the best films for capture fine detail on black and white film.  If you need something similar to work in lower light conditions I would highly recommend Kodak T-Max 400 film.  Super fine grain and amazing tones (and more robust than Pan F 50 film).

Related Links

Other Black and White Films

You may also like… What Gear I Use for Portraits!
  • See full details of my portrait photography lighting kit – HERE
  • See full details of my portrait photography equipment kit – HERE