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Author Topic: Coolscan V and vuescan  (Read 3502 times)
schrodingerscat
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« on: December 02, 2012, 03:39:52 PM »
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Greetings all -

Sorry if this is a bit of flogging the horse, but the more I read on using Vuescan, the more confused I get. either it's PC specific or references old versions. Then there's the terminology... Is RAW RAW?, and is DNG DNG? Do you save as TIFF, or DNG and TIFF? Etc. Than there's the "Output Raw save film" checkbox, that actually means 'save negative as a positive file', thing.

I'm helping a friend set up a Coolscan V(LS-50) that he's had sitting around for awhile. Nikon has stopped supporting this device years ago and want to use it with OS 10.6.8, so that leaves out their software. Silverfast is a bit spendy, so Vuescan seems the best option so far. The initial tests with Vuescan Pro have been decent, so have been researching as to how to set it up for best results to create linear RAW files to post with Lightroom4.

He's not technically inclined, so hoping someone can just recommend what settings to use for scanning mostly Kodachromes and B&W negs. If not, hopefully someone can point me in the right direction to get easy to understand info on using the latest version of Vuescan with recent Macs.

Thanks, any help appreciated.


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dmerger
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« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2012, 04:48:43 PM »
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I donít think it possible to output true RAW.  You can output a linear tiff or a DNG, but the DNG is just a tiff in a DNG wrapper.  So, if you already know how to output 16 bit linear, youíre already most of the way.

This thread may be of help.  http://www.luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?topic=70942.0

I use a different scanner, but my workflow is similar to yours.  Iíve tested VueScan, Silverfast and the scanner software that came with my scanner.  Here's what Iíve found gives the best results.  My method is not the fastest or easiest, especially for large numbers of scans, but I only scan my best photos and Iím only interested in getting the best ďRAWĒ scan my scanner is capable of producing.

I optimize my scanner hardware adjustments (real hardware exposure adjustment, ICE and focus), but never touch the software adjustments (since Iíve found that LR does a much better job).  I set my scanner exposure just like any other digital camera: ETTR.  I then open my 16 bit linear scan in PS where I assign my scanner profile, and then convert to ProPhoto.  My scanner profile also applies a gamma adjustment to the 16 bit linear file so that it looks normal (but usually still too dark, but thatís okay since LR can easily correct it).  If you import a file without an embedded profile into LR, LR will assume that the file is sRGB.  For your B&W negatives you may also need to invert the file.  I also run my file through Neat Image to suppress film grain.  From there on I do almost all my adjustments in LR. 

What works best for me may or may not be best for you.  In any event, the article that you can find in the above link should get you started.
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Dean Erger
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« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2012, 04:50:31 PM »
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Buy Sascha Steinhoff's book on Vuescan. A lot is explained there.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
schrodingerscat
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« Reply #3 on: December 03, 2012, 11:50:57 PM »
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Thanks guys,

Mark - The book is a bit long in the tooth. Is the info pertinent to the latest version of Vuescan?

SC
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2012, 12:43:45 AM »
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Thanks guys,

Mark - The book is a bit long in the tooth. Is the info pertinent to the latest version of Vuescan?

SC

The book was published within the past two years (I'm not near my copy to give you an exact date). Those interested should write the author and ask if the features of concern are covered.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
schrodingerscat
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« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2012, 10:06:51 PM »
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Thanks again Mark. I'll try Mr Hamrick again, but he doesn't seem too keen on getting general questions, as opposed to specifics about Vuescan problems. He did offer a brief reply suggesting the book.

On a side note, wonder if anyone has had experience with Colorperfect. Looks interesting.

http://www.c-f-systems.com/Plug-ins.html

http://benneh.net/blog/

SC

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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2012, 10:42:36 PM »
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Greetings all -

Sorry if this is a bit of flogging the horse, but the more I read on using Vuescan, the more confused I get. either it's PC specific or references old versions. Then there's the terminology... Is RAW RAW?, and is DNG DNG? Do you save as TIFF, or DNG and TIFF? Etc. Than there's the "Output Raw save film" checkbox, that actually means 'save negative as a positive file', thing.

I'm helping a friend set up a Coolscan V(LS-50) that he's had sitting around for awhile. Nikon has stopped supporting this device years ago and want to use it with OS 10.6.8, so that leaves out their software. Silverfast is a bit spendy, so Vuescan seems the best option so far. The initial tests with Vuescan Pro have been decent, so have been researching as to how to set it up for best results to create linear RAW files to post with Lightroom4.

He's not technically inclined, so hoping someone can just recommend what settings to use for scanning mostly Kodachromes and B&W negs. If not, hopefully someone can point me in the right direction to get easy to understand info on using the latest version of Vuescan with recent Macs.

Thanks, any help appreciated.




OK, perhaps time to discuss some of what you raise above a bit more specifically. There is questionable semantics in scanning circles about "RAW". Dean is right - in the sense that we do not get output from scanning software similar to the unprocessed data from a digital camera, (which then gets rendered after we process the raw data in a raw converter). Scans emerge as three channel, rendered, pixel based images. The most that they can claim for being "raw" is that provided they are scanned in linear gamma and until the user starts adjusting them, they are unadjusted scans - unadjusted, not "raw" in the digital camera sense. This is true regardless of whether they wear a DNG jacket or remain as TIFF. It is especially true of negatives that have been converted to positives in the scanning software.

I think you should differentiate between "spendy", as you put it, and "best option", because there are criteria other than cost which enter into the choice of scanner software. There is much more than what Dean says above about the most effective places to perform various kinds of image editing, and I spend a good deal of space in my book on SilverFast 8 explaining all that. More to it than one can deal with in a forum post! That said, I have no problem with Dean's workflow; - only a word of caution that there other ways of approaching this subject, of which his is a workable subset.

For scanning Kodachrome, it is most desirable to have a Kodachrome-specific scanner profile, made from a Kodachrome target. Unfortunately, these have become expensive because they are on the way to extinction. AFAIK, there is no more new stock of Kodachrome film and no labs to process it, so new batches of Kodachrome targets cannot be made. When you buy SilverFast, it comes equipped with pre-made Kodachrome profiles specific to each scanner model the application supports. In the same breath, I'll emphasize - I absolutely won't enter into a SilverFast vs Vuescan slug-fest here or any where else. I own both applications, and my standard advice to newcomers in this field is to demo both and see what suits them best. There is no question that for the Nikon scanners in particular the price difference is large, hence for most people a considerable decision point - amongst others.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #7 on: December 04, 2012, 11:09:12 PM »
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Hi,

Regarding Vuescan vs. SilverFast I would just add that SilverFast does only support a limited set of scanner and OS combinations. For instance, as far as I know, no version of SilverFast supports my version of Mac OS-X (10.6.Cool and my scanner (Minolta Dimage Scan Multi Pro) in combination.

Vuescan seems to keep up with OS-releases but some scanners may need proprietary drivers that may be not supported by newer OS-es.

I think that both Vuescan and SilverFast support some kind of DNG. I don't know the difference between TIFF-s with gamma=1 and linear DNGs.

Best regards
Erik

OK, perhaps time to discuss some of what you raise above a bit more specifically. There is questionable semantics in scanning circles about "RAW". Dean is right - in the sense that we do not get output from scanning software similar to the unprocessed data from a digital camera, (which then gets rendered after we process the raw data in a raw converter). Scans emerge as three channel, rendered, pixel based images. The most that they can claim for being "raw" is that provided they are scanned in linear gamma and until the user starts adjusting them, they are unadjusted scans - unadjusted, not "raw" in the digital camera sense. This is true regardless of whether they wear a DNG jacket or remain as TIFF. It is especially true of negatives that have been converted to positives in the scanning software.

I think you should differentiate between "spendy", as you put it, and "best option", because there are criteria other than cost which enter into the choice of scanner software. There is much more than what Dean says above about the most effective places to perform various kinds of image editing, and I spend a good deal of space in my book on SilverFast 8 explaining all that. More to it than one can deal with in a forum post! That said, I have no problem with Dean's workflow; - only a word of caution that there other ways of approaching this subject, of which his is a workable subset.

For scanning Kodachrome, it is most desirable to have a Kodachrome-specific scanner profile, made from a Kodachrome target. Unfortunately, these have become expensive because they are on the way to extinction. AFAIK, there is no more new stock of Kodachrome film and no labs to process it, so new batches of Kodachrome targets cannot be made. When you buy SilverFast, it comes equipped with pre-made Kodachrome profiles specific to each scanner model the application supports. In the same breath, I'll emphasize - I absolutely won't enter into a SilverFast vs Vuescan slug-fest here or any where else. I own both applications, and my standard advice to newcomers in this field is to demo both and see what suits them best. There is no question that for the Nikon scanners in particular the price difference is large, hence for most people a considerable decision point - amongst others.
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dmerger
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« Reply #8 on: December 04, 2012, 11:23:02 PM »
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I've tried ColorPerfect for color negative film scans.  Since your friend will be scanning mostly Kodachromes and B&W negs, I'm not sure what Color Perfect has to offer that would be better than LR.  LR is pretty hard to beat.
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Dean Erger
schrodingerscat
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« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2012, 02:20:42 PM »
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OK, perhaps time to discuss some of what you raise above a bit more specifically. There is questionable semantics in scanning circles about "RAW". Dean is right - in the sense that we do not get output from scanning software similar to the unprocessed data from a digital camera, (which then gets rendered after we process the raw data in a raw converter). Scans emerge as three channel, rendered, pixel based images. The most that they can claim for being "raw" is that provided they are scanned in linear gamma and until the user starts adjusting them, they are unadjusted scans - unadjusted, not "raw" in the digital camera sense. This is true regardless of whether they wear a DNG jacket or remain as TIFF. It is especially true of negatives that have been converted to positives in the scanning software.

I think you should differentiate between "spendy", as you put it, and "best option", because there are criteria other than cost which enter into the choice of scanner software. There is much more than what Dean says above about the most effective places to perform various kinds of image editing, and I spend a good deal of space in my book on SilverFast 8 explaining all that. More to it than one can deal with in a forum post! That said, I have no problem with Dean's workflow; - only a word of caution that there other ways of approaching this subject, of which his is a workable subset.

For scanning Kodachrome, it is most desirable to have a Kodachrome-specific scanner profile, made from a Kodachrome target. Unfortunately, these have become expensive because they are on the way to extinction. AFAIK, there is no more new stock of Kodachrome film and no labs to process it, so new batches of Kodachrome targets cannot be made. When you buy SilverFast, it comes equipped with pre-made Kodachrome profiles specific to each scanner model the application supports. In the same breath, I'll emphasize - I absolutely won't enter into a SilverFast vs Vuescan slug-fest here or any where else. I own both applications, and my standard advice to newcomers in this field is to demo both and see what suits them best. There is no question that for the Nikon scanners in particular the price difference is large, hence for most people a considerable decision point - amongst others.

Silver fast Studio is $300 vs $80 for VS Pro. Other than the iT8 profile there seems to be little difference in features. And that's an iT8 profile, not an actual slide. While the profile would probably be better than none, it would not have been generated by the user's actual scanner, so variations in manufacture or maintenance would not be factored in the profile.

I understand that scanner RAW is not the same as camera RAW, and as Lightroom recognizes TIFFs, not sure how the whole TIFF vs TIFF/DNG thing shakes out in regards to working in Lightroom. There's a lot of verbiage on all this, some of which is rather dense, if not contradictory. Looks like I'll just have to wade through to glean what's germane. My ability to soak up more of this is getting to the saturation point...

Thanks again for the help.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #10 on: December 05, 2012, 02:49:23 PM »
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Hi,

It's not just about features, it is also about what works. Scanning is quite complex and some software may work better than others.

I would say that if SilverFast works well and Vuescan does work less well SilverFast may be worth every penny. You are the only one to find out what works for you. My experience with SilverFast was bad and with Vuescan a mixed bag. Regarding Vuescan I was alpha tester/experimental rabbit for the Image Scan Multi Pro I have. It was an interesting experience ;-)

The software I am using is Vuescan, and I would say that Ed Hamrick, the guy behind Vuescan, is a great guy in every sense.

Best regards
Erik


Silver fast Studio is $300 vs $80 for VS Pro. Other than the iT8 profile there seems to be little difference in features. And that's an iT8 profile, not an actual slide. While the profile would probably be better than none, it would not have been generated by the user's actual scanner, so variations in manufacture or maintenance would not be factored in the profile.

I understand that scanner RAW is not the same as camera RAW, and as Lightroom recognizes TIFFs, not sure how the whole TIFF vs TIFF/DNG thing shakes out in regards to working in Lightroom. There's a lot of verbiage on all this, some of which is rather dense, if not contradictory. Looks like I'll just have to wade through to glean what's germane. My ability to soak up more of this is getting to the saturation point...

Thanks again for the help.
« Last Edit: December 05, 2012, 02:53:19 PM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

Mark D Segal
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« Reply #11 on: December 05, 2012, 05:29:46 PM »
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Silver fast Studio is $300 vs $80 for VS Pro. Other than the iT8 profile there seems to be little difference in features. And that's an iT8 profile, not an actual slide. While the profile would probably be better than none, it would not have been generated by the user's actual scanner, so variations in manufacture or maintenance would not be factored in the profile.

I understand that scanner RAW is not the same as camera RAW, and as Lightroom recognizes TIFFs, not sure how the whole TIFF vs TIFF/DNG thing shakes out in regards to working in Lightroom. There's a lot of verbiage on all this, some of which is rather dense, if not contradictory. Looks like I'll just have to wade through to glean what's germane. My ability to soak up more of this is getting to the saturation point...

Thanks again for the help.

You are correct that a canned profile will not take account of performance differences between your particular scanner and the scanner of the same model that LSI would have used to create the canned profile. That said, variance between Nikon units of the same model may be relatively limited, so better than nothing.

There will be no difference using either the TIFF or DNG file format for editing scans in Lightroom. Just go ahead and experiment. You can demo both applications and decide for yourself what you prefer to use. You'll learn what works best for you only at the cost of a bit of time. Apart from that there is zero risk!
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
schrodingerscat
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« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2012, 10:53:58 PM »
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Thanks again guys. I'll see what I can get out of VS, and if the purchase price doesn't scare my friend off will give SF a look over. Think it's going to boil down to an ease of use/price/performance decision.

Onward through the fog...
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