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Negative or transparency film?

sportback

Well-Known Member
While this is a general question, it relates to scanners - however, if it's in the wrong place, my apologies in advance.

I'm a relative 'newbie' when it comes to scanning, and I seem to remember hearing that better results are possible scanning transparency films than colour negatives. I'm fairly happy with the results from scanning Fuji Pro and Kodak Portra but I feel I could get better results.

What are your experiences scanning colour transparency film please?
 

jotloob

Well-Known Member
Ian

I had a calendar project with images from a junk yard .
I don't want to warm up an old story , but as my CFV failed at that time , I repeated the shooting a week later , using KOAK E100VS film .
I had the slides , I was interested in , scanned by a pro lab , using an IMACON 848 scanner .
Just great . Some say , it is better to scan COLOR negative film . I have no experience here .
But see a result here .

View attachment 1447

Jürgen
 

TJV

Well-Known Member
For the life of me I can't get negative film (usually 400ISO) to scan as well as Provia 400X and other equivalent slide films. It depends on many things, I know, but in general I find negative film scans display way more grain and are softer in fine detail. On the flip side, they offer more latitude to shape tonal values, especially in the shadows and more extreme highlights. I've had Imacon 848 scans done of neg film (disclaimer: I didn't do them myself and to my eyes the could have been sharpened at input stage by the operator,) and the results were only marginally better in terms of grain and sharpness compared to ones I've done myself using a Nikon 9000ED with glass carrier. Tomorrow I will send the same negs I had scanned on the 848 off to get drum scanned to see if the fluid mounting and different technology make shooting neg film better for me. I'd absolutely love to shoot neg film for the latitude as I'm all over the place with my exposures these days!

Can anyone out there post any comparisons between drum and Imacon scans off the same NEGATIVE?

That would be greatly appreciated.
 

sportback

Well-Known Member
This is interesting as these are exactly the problems I'm having. I don't want to sacrifice the latitude of colour neg film (Because my exposures are all over the shop too!!) but I can't seem to get the quality I see in other peoples work.

I've spent ages scanning with different parameters but not really getting anywhere...

Thanks for your reply - I process and scan all my own stuff, and the 50€ to buy an E-6 kit and some film will be worth the effort to test this out.
 

TJV

Well-Known Member
What scanner do you use?
As I said, I've only experience scanning myself with the Nikon 9000ED and glass carrier and the Imacon 848 scans were at the mercy of another operator - as the drum scan will be.
I've seen hundreds of beautifully scanned and printed images in galleries so I know it's possible, I just don't know how to do it myself or get it done at a reasonable price.

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sportback

Well-Known Member
I have an Epson V700 flatbed scanner - for sure, this is not the best, but it seems to provide 'pretty good' results (After tinkering with the parameters) for the price. I simply don't have the funds to get a professional scanner.

Five rolls of Provia and an E-6 kit have been ordered - I'll test and report back as soon as I have some results.

(I live in the depths of the country, and finding a decent lab capable of processing and scanning any kind of film has proven quite difficult. This is why I process and scan my own images. That and the fact that I'm too impatient to wait...:) )

Ian
 

TJV

Well-Known Member
I also have a V700 and actually find the results ok compared to the Nikon, except I can't keep the film as flat. Same problem with grain and smooth tone though. I send everything out of town to get processed these days too, and it is a pain, but the results are worth it for me in terms of consistency. If the drum scan I get done is significantly better in terms of grain etc compared to what I've done myself, I'll just proof scan everything on the V700 and send all final work of for proper scanning. Expensive, but probably worth it because I'd rather be out shooting and then editing than scanning and colour proofing!

Can you please post a 100% crop from a 3200dpi scan from 400ISO neg film so I can compare to my own? I'll try post Nikon, Imacon and drum scans when I've got my scan back for you to compare.

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sportback

Well-Known Member
I don't have any 400ISO film.

The following scans are 100% 3200 dpi TIFF of FUJI Pro 160C

First image - no USM

Second image - USM 250 - Photoshop
 

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sportback

Well-Known Member
Sorry, forgot to include the original! (Now, where's that ear of grass gone???)
 

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TJV

Well-Known Member
Looks pretty similar to what I get in terms of softness, but the 400ISO film seems to suffer from major grain aliasing, which people on the net seem to talk about quite often.

I'll post mine when I've seen the results.

Thanks
 

sportback

Well-Known Member
This is very reassuring for me - I know I'm a difficult bugger at the best of times, but from what I've seen here (and elsewhere) I felt sure I was doing something wrong. I probably still am, but I'm keen to try the transparency film to confirm this!

Thanks for your input
 

sportback

Well-Known Member
Yes - same problems

I'll admit that initially I had a few 'problems' maintaining my temperatures during processing - nothing excessive, but my first films were EKTAR and the results were very similar in terms of visible grain and general quality.
 

vandevantersh

Well-Known Member
Yes - same problems
******
I rarely shoot film now but I did shoot a roll of Ektar to evaluate a lens full frame. I had the local camera store develop and scan. This is ~ 200% crop, no post processing...I am not sure how much grain is acceptable.

Steve
 

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sportback

Well-Known Member
Thank you Steve.

I can only say this goes to prove that professional processing/scanning can give 'correct' results. (To my eye, perfectly acceptable)

I'll do some checking to see what is available to me here in rural France, but I'm keen to try the transparency route, at least to confirm my ideas, as well.
 

vandevantersh

Well-Known Member
I forgot to post the whole "photo" next to the "crop".

Steve
 

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TJV

Well-Known Member
What size is the photo in terms of dpi and set printed size?

I find that when I send my C41 stuff off to a pro lab and just ask for dev and CD they usually just put it through a Frontier or Noritsu machine. If it's a good pro lab, their machine will use their own custom profiles etc so colour and density is far better than other people using the same machines but relying on standard Fuji / Kodak profiles.

In terms of grain, I actually find the Frontier scans are very good, providing the operator knows what they're doing and not second guessing too much my exposures. Resolution is obviously lower than a high end drum scan, and file sizes are smaller, but for the life of me I can't get the same results at home with my V700 or works Nikon 9000. Grain aliasing is a real problem.

Today I sent one problem neg off to get a test drum scan done. I'll let you know the results.
 

sportback

Well-Known Member
I've just heard back from the 'lab' here in France - they want 55€ (77$ US) to develop and scan (Imacon NOT a 'real' drum scan) a single 120 roll film.

I'm not mean, but that seems a little excessive to me...

Anyone know of a decent lab with a drum scanner, here in Europe?
 

jotloob

Well-Known Member
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Ian

That sounds quite reasonable to me .
Most good prolabs charge you around 20 € for one 6x6 scan , negative or transparency , 300ppi and Lstar-RGB-V2.icc profile , scanned with IMACON 848 or Flextight X5 .
Expensive but also very good .

Jürgen
 

sportback

Well-Known Member
Really? Well I'm obviously in the wrong job then - I'll have to buy myself a decent scanner and set up shop...

And are you trying to tell me a 300dpi Imacon scan will be better than 3200/4200 dpi on my Epson?
 
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