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Cleaning negs before scanning and ICE



whats the best way to clean a neg pre-scan,and much value would you pt on ICE? i have the opportunity to pick a cheap Dimage Scan II,which doesnt come with ICE


I find that newer negs are usually very clean. If I keep my older negs in plastic folders, they usually don't need that much cleaning. I clean up the ones that need it with compressed air. It that doesn't work, I use a special liquid with a soft cloth - you can get this from camera stores. I could be mistaken, but as far as I know the ICE only works for color images. If you do mainly Bl and Wt, it may not be applicable anyway. I bought a Minolta neg scanner and it works great for my purposes.


Well-Known Member
I could be mistaken, but as far as I know the ICE only > works for color images. If you do mainly Bl and Wt, it may not be> applicable anyway.

Quite right ICE shouldnt be used for normal B&W negs , but you can of course use if for C-41 process films . One of the reasons I use Kodak Portra B&W400 , it scans beautifully and ICE means not having to mess about spotting........ Steve
Some scanners need ICE more than others. I see ICE as something that addresses a flaw in the scanner design, not necessarily as a wonderful feature.

A scanner with a diffuse light source (like the Poloaroid SprintScan models, which I am a big fan of) tends to scan the image within the film and not the surface of the film itself. While dust is still a problem, scratches and other defects in the film don't cause a lot of grief. As long as I blow off my film with canned air before scanning, I have very little that I need to worry about.

The Nikon scanners and other models with harsh light sources tend to see every scuff, irregularity and tiny scratch in the film surface, which is why these models must include ICE just to make them practical to use.

Keep in mind that using ICE will degrade your image slightly and makes the scanning process longer, but the tradeoff is probably worth it, depending on what the surface of your film looks like. I prefer to manually remove the occasional dust spot than to use ICE.

- Paul


thanks for the advice

I only use my G1 for b&w,so i dont need ICE! However,does that rule apply for b&w c41? (excuse the ignorance!)

excellent,that will keep the cost down

is there a significant difference between a 16 and 12 bit a/d? Bearing in mind,i'm not a pro,i'm a happy amateur who will take prints at max 7x5,and i also will post pics on the web,thats it

will buying a 16 bit a/d be worth the additional £100?