It’s no secret that the Intrepid enlarger has been on its way to Kickstarter – Intrepid have given their fair share of teasers. But now it’s finally live!
Some years ago Intrepid released their first enlarger kit that coupled with their 4×5 cameras, they’ve been working hard for the last year to bring a new one to the table. The new enlarger that has dropped on Kickstarter today is a standalone kit with new technology and some very smart features. Boasting to be the smallest enlarger ever made it’s capable of enlarging 35mm and 120 upto 6×9 but it’s size doesn’t impact on quality. There are still every bit as many features as you would expect with a traditional enlarger – it just doesn’t rely on outdated technology.
The Intrepid Enlarger can be used on a copy stand or tripod and is aimed at photographers who might not have previously felt that darkroom printing is accessible to them, be that in terms of available space, ease of use or cost. It’s small size is owed to LEDs that can control contrast, colour balance and exposure at the click of a button and without the need for separate filters.
The three ways you can use the new Intrepid enlarger:
Mode 1/Black & white printing: Unlike traditional enlargers, all the contrast filters are built into
the LED light source so you can quickly adjust them with a single dial without the need for
separate filters. It works just like a traditional enlarger in terms of focusing, setting the time and
exposing your paper.
Mode 2/Colour printing: In Colour printing mode you use the Cyan, Magenta and Yellow dials to
alter the colour balance of your print. The light source has been specially calibrated in order to
make colour printing as simple and accurate as possible.
Mode 3/Scanning: the third way of using the Enlarger is as a light source to make scans of your
colour or black & white negatives using a digital camera/smart phone. The light source is held
magnetically to the enlarger body so can simply pop off when you want to scan.
Intrepid hasn’t missed a trick here, the film holders can be placed onto the light source in preparation for film digitisation too! With the recent prevalence and popularity of camera scanning, it is certainly a good option to have if you’re wanting to digitise your film alongside printing it. Which to me just presents itself as an all-in-one solution. It may not be as versatile as other film holders on the market but given the original purpose as an enlarger, but it’s a perfect added extra for digitising your 35mm and 120 (up to 6×9) film.
Intrepid have really doubled down on their ingenuity with this enlarger – there’s even a built-in safelight in the control unit that made me audibly say ‘ooh’ when I first saw it. I can tell they have thought it all through very carefully. It’s incorporating modern technology into the concept of an enlarger, making it easier to operate and hopefully opening the doors for many younger photographers to try printing for the first time.
You can check the Kickstarter page with lots more info on here
(At the time of writing, 15 minutes after launch, it’s already beaten the £20k goal by £10k!!)