While many of the technical hurdles for a new P/N material using an available emulsion have been overcome, the nagging problem of per-sheet price continues to be an obstacle to commercialization. We planned to introduce first a field processable negative material called DN-1, and a field processable direct positive material known as DP-1. If you have been following along you already know these are intended for rapid processing using monobaths and daylight tanks that accept a readyload format film. In the past, a readyload sheet cost about $3 each and today we expect it to be about $4, but with the added utility of insertion into a tank.
The price doubles with a P/N material. Plenty of pros insist this isn't really too much and is much less than one would pay to have a 4x5 negative developed and then contact printed.
Recent discontinuation of Fuji's FP100B material, which is (was) superb, was due to poor sales. That was only $3 a shot or less. Of course Fuji did a terrible job telling the potential market about their packfilms and then getting them into the hands of users in the US and Europe. Technical success does not mean market success and this is a perfect example. By the way, FP100B in the smaller size is still in stock just about everywhere but not moving. So go out and buy it! Want to see what it looks like? Click here.