Intrepid Compact Enlarger comes to help new generation of film photographers

Intrepid Compact Enlarger
(Image credit: Digital Camera World)

The Kickstarter-funded Intrepid Compact Enlarger has now gone on general sale - offering a highly-versatile and affordable way of printing your own negatives. Whilst film photography has a new new cult following, traditional equipment for processing your rolls of film is not so easy to find - and can often be expensive. Intrepid Camera - who are behind the Intrepid 4x5 large-format camera - has produced their own modern twist on the enlarger to meet the needs who want to experience the joy of printing under a red safelight. The enlarger can be seen at The Photography Show, which runs at the National Exhibition Centre, UK, until 21 September.

The Intrepid Compact Enlarger keeps things simple by not being supplied with either a baseboard or stand or a lens. You instead use your tripod (or copy stand) to support the enlarger head, and source your own screw-fit M39 lens to attach to the supplied lens board. 

But what you do get is an ultra-modern LED light source with an electronic timer control panel. This allows you to print color negatives - and to print onto standard or variable-contrast black-and-white paper. The combination allows you to adjust contrast, color balance and exposure length at the click of a button and without the need for separate filters. There is even a safelight setting - so you can use the enlarger when developing your prints (so no need to buy a separate safelight).

The Intrepid Compact Enlarger - this is what you get. It is small enough to fit in a shoebox (but you need to supply the lens and a tripod) (Image credit: Digital Camera World)

The timer unit gives you control over color filtration and exposure length (Image credit: Digital Camera World)

An additional mode allows you to use the enlarger head for scanning - allowing you to copy negatives and slides onto a digital camera without the need for a film scanner.

The enlarger not only prints 35mm negatives - but can also handle medium-format roll film up to a size of 6x9cm. Negative carriers are suppled for 135, 6x6, 6x4.5, 6x7, and 6x9 formats - and you produce prints up to 11x14in.

The Intrepid Compact Enlarger was originally sold through Kickstarter, but can now be bought direct from Intrepid for £280 (approximately $383).

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Chris George

Chris George has worked on Digital Camera World since its launch in 2017. He has been writing about photography, mobile phones, video making and technology for over 30 years – and has edited numerous magazines including PhotoPlus, N-Photo, Digital Camera, Video Camera, and Professional Photography. 

His first serious camera was the iconic Olympus OM10, with which he won the title of Young Photographer of the Year - long before the advent of autofocus and memory cards. Today he uses a Nikon D800, a Fujifilm X-T1, a Sony A7, and his iPhone 11 Pro.

He has written about technology for countless publications and websites including The Sunday Times Magazine, The Daily Telegraph, Dorling Kindersley, What Cellphone, T3 and Techradar.