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  #1  
Old 02-12-2007, 09:42 PM
hdekwaasteniet hdekwaasteniet is offline
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Default How to scan???

Hello fellow photographers,

I have a few questions about scanning. Taking pictures the old fashioned way, I found myself sometimes frustrated that I see my razor sharp pictures on my laptop as the Tower Bridge on a misty morning. Can anyone give me some tip to improve this. Like;

- is a higher DPI always better (also when a photo can be max 800x800 & 200kb)? My standard HP scanner is max 600DPI (is that ok?)
- is it better to scan a standard 15x10 cm picture or works an enlargement better?
- is it better to change the size to a smaller one , or first select a part a pic so it doesn't need to be reduced so much?

Your tips are very much welcomed. It would improve my results on TE.
If you have tips about my scanned pictures, please let me know!

Thank you so much! Herman/Amsterdam
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  #2  
Old 02-13-2007, 09:12 PM
AdrianW AdrianW is offline
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Default Re: How to scan???

Best to scan the original film and work from there.

Failing that, if you must scan prints, scan at 400dpi - no point in scanning higher, as I can't think of any commercial labs that print higher than 400dpi.

If you can, correct any brightness/colour shift issues during scanning, and use 16bit/channel (48bit) if available.

If you have an enlargement, then obviously there should be more detail in it - so scan that in preference - but for TE sized images you should be able to do well enough with a standard sized print.

Best workflow is to scan the print for as much detail as you can, colour/brightness correct, apply any other changes, then resize to TE proportions and finally sharpen. Some folk also apply sharpening immediately after the scanning stage, but you may find you magnify noise if you're not careful.
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  #3  
Old 02-14-2007, 01:45 PM
hdekwaasteniet hdekwaasteniet is offline
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Default Re: How to scan???

Hi Adrian,
Thanks so much for your response, I'll spend an evening this week in trying to master the art.

Herman
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  #4  
Old 02-14-2007, 02:27 PM
fracturedframe fracturedframe is offline
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Default Re: How to scan???

Hi Herman,
There are a number of different ways to scan your images. All involve different equipment, costs, and some are more suitable for certain types of film than others.

Flatbed scanner - this is what you and most people have at home. Most flatbed scanners are crap as they give you a soft image, and aren't usually too good on colour matching either. On the other hand they're the cheapest way of scanning at home, and they take far less time than a dedicated film scanner. I would recommend Epson's range of Perfection scanners if you really want to keep scanning with a flatbed. Also if you're scanning for web (Trekearth, Flickr, etc), you can sharpen images in photoshop. Once you've resized, use the Smart Sharpen or Unsharp Mask in the Filters > Sharpen menu.

Dedicated film scanner - These are what you would probably consider if you were firmly set on never stopping using film. A good film scanner, like Nikon's Coolscan V, will cost you around 700 Euros. This sort of scanner will give you professional or close to professional results. Unfortunately they take ages to scan each image (15 minutes or longer if you're doing multi pass @ 4000dpi), and will only do 35mm film (higher models do larger film, but the cost is astronomical). Also note, many flatbed scanners now caome with attachments to scan film. These DO NOT constitute a real film scanner, and will most often give your poor results.

Dlab scan - These days when you get your films processed, most shops use a Dlab or Digital Lab (like Fuji's Frontier series) to print. What happens is once your film has been developed, the uncut strip gets run through a scanner which digitizes each frame. Then the digital image is exposed onto the photographic paper. Because your film is already being scanned as part of the developing process, most labs only charge a small fee to have those images put on cd. It is worth noting that if you scan slide film on a Dlab, it will often give you very disappointing colour.

Drum or Imacon scan - If you need an image digitized with the best colour replication, sharpness and resolution, then this is the way to go. This method of scanning is usually only performed by a trained scanner operator at a print pre-press bureau or professional photo lab. The cost per image is generally upwards of 8 Euros each, and the turn around time is quite slow. Both these things make it impractical for frequent use. Worth noting is that both prints and films can be scanned via this method.

I think you should try the Dlab scans. Cheap, fast and sharp!
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  #5  
Old 02-17-2007, 12:19 PM
hdekwaasteniet hdekwaasteniet is offline
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Default Re: How to scan???

Thank you for your reply, i'll defenitely try the DLAB. At this point I get increasingly frustrated because of the transition of a no too bad picture into something worse...

Herman
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  #6  
Old 02-20-2007, 05:01 PM
kmdunlap kmdunlap is offline
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Default Re: How to scan???

Herman,

You should find out from the place that you have your film developed what resolution and size they are scanning your film at. I made the mistake in the beginning of assuming the resolution would be good enough from the DLAB scans to enhance my image and use them digitally, but that was incorrect. So double check that the highest scan they have available is high enough quality for your purposes. There are some places online that will scan your film for you at high res, but they can be expensive.

I have used film scanners and had good success with them, but even second hand they tend to be expensive. Some flat bed scanners can scan film as well, but the quality isn't as high as you will get with a film scanner.

-Kristi
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  #7  
Old 02-20-2007, 05:34 PM
Dpbours Dpbours is offline
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Default Re: How to scan???

Hoi Herman!

I agree with the comment on the Dlab scanning. Has to be said, if you want your pictures to be scanned by a digital lab, be informed about the resolution you'll be getting!! I mean, when a digital lab is going to print your negatives, they will not scan them at a resolution much higher than the print-out you're requesting...

I myself would go for a film scanner. I did. I mean, if you choose to shoot film, why then scan the print-out? You should then also go for a scanner that handles the film...

A scanner for film I use myself and can highly recommend is the Minolta Elite II scanner:
http://www.imaging-resource.com/SCAN/DSEII/DSEIIA.HTM

I don't know if there are newer scanners - especially faster - these days, but this scanner has it all for me. Just a small sum-up:
- 2820 DPI (> 10 Megapix);
- 8- and 16-bit scanning modes;
- Slides and negatives;
- Batch scanning;
- Firewire connection!;
- Autofocus!
- Image Correction Enhancement - slow, but very good!
(Digital ICE works by observing how infrared light is transmitted through the film's emulsion, using the resulting scan information to create a "defect channel" showing where the dust and scratches are. The infrared light passes right through the layers of most color print or slide film, but is blocked by dust or scratches. )
- Digital ROC" - "Recovery of Color," and it does an surprisingly job of extracting the original color information from badly faded color negative film.
- Digital GEM stands for "Grain Equalization and Management," and is a technology to remove the effects of film grain, without affecting image sharpness.

Yes, this is in no way comparable to a flatbed scanner with an add-on for film. It has been specifically designed for film!

I see they also have an Minolta Dimage Scan Elite II 5400 dpi now. I wouldn't need the extra DPI, but it's faster than the one I have. Also 16 bits. http://www.imaging-resource.com/SCAN/KM5400II/KM5400IIA.HTM

If you have to choose between a 2820 DPI 16 bits scanner and a 12-bits or 14-bits scanner of higher DPI, go for the 16-bits one!!

My God. Just looked online and these things keep their value!!! Found some second hand between 400 - 700 USD. Good that I never sold mine ;-). Scanned all my old film, but I'll never know where I'd need it in the future... (Op marktplaats.nl vond ik er ook een paar. Niet voor de F2900 gaan, dat is een oud beestje. Wel hoge resolutie maar 12-bits en niet 16-bits...).

Well, hope it helps!!

Dennis
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  #8  
Old 02-24-2007, 07:47 PM
hdekwaasteniet hdekwaasteniet is offline
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Default Re: How to scan???

Hi Dennis,

Thanks for your great reply. Looks I've got my complete scanning dictionary in one reply! It's a lot of money but it might be worth it, regarding the 5.000-6.000 pictures I have on film. Good luck with your job - it sounds great. Did you do any special studies for that?

Cheers, Herman
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  #9  
Old 02-24-2007, 07:50 PM
hdekwaasteniet hdekwaasteniet is offline
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Default Re: How to scan???

Thanks for your tip Kristi. All my answers combined give me a good clue what to do - maybe just buy a digital camera :-)

Cheers, Herman
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  #10  
Old 02-25-2007, 04:07 AM
Dpbours Dpbours is offline
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Default Re: How to scan???

Hi Herman,

You'll have something to do on those wet and cold winter evenings in the Netherlands. And up to April, spring is also quite rainy ;-).

Thanks! I studied International Technological Development Studies at the Eindhoven Univerity of Technology. But most you learn in the field and with courses on logistics, security etc.

Good luck w scanning! Dennis
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