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Author Topic: Hasselblad Scanner vs medium format back  (Read 10405 times)
amsp
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« Reply #20 on: December 17, 2012, 08:35:46 AM »
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Chris, no offense, but what measurebators like yourself don't understand is that people are not choosing to shoot film because of things like resolution or sharpness but rather it's unique aesthetics and the physical crafts aspect of it all. I don't think anyone shooting film today debates the strengths of digital, so there's no point rehashing this old Vs. debate any time film is mentioned. Just enjoy whatever works for you.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #21 on: December 17, 2012, 01:01:25 PM »
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Hi,

The original poster had very specific questions and I would suggest Chris was responding to that.


Best regards
Erik

Chris, no offense, but what measurebators like yourself don't understand is that people are not choosing to shoot film because of things like resolution or sharpness but rather it's unique aesthetics and the physical crafts aspect of it all. I don't think anyone shooting film today debates the strengths of digital, so there's no point rehashing this old Vs. debate any time film is mentioned. Just enjoy whatever works for you.
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amsp
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« Reply #22 on: December 17, 2012, 01:35:53 PM »
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Hi,

The original poster had very specific questions and I would suggest Chris was responding to that.


Best regards
Erik


That may be so, and I merely pointed out that the reasons the OP preferred his medium format film cameras over his DSLR might not be because of resolution or sharpness. I for one am extremely tired of seeing test shots of walls and color charts touted as the reason to choose one thing over another. There's so much more to photography, and I can think of no instance where either resolution or sharpness was the reason for a photograph being compelling. This is from someone who uses film cameras, DSLRs and medium format digital backs mind you.
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EricWHiss
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« Reply #23 on: December 17, 2012, 02:46:01 PM »
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Chris, no offense, but what measurebators like yourself don't understand is that people are not choosing to shoot film because of things like resolution or sharpness but rather it's unique aesthetics and the physical crafts aspect of it all. I don't think anyone shooting film today debates the strengths of digital, so there's no point rehashing this old Vs. debate any time film is mentioned. Just enjoy whatever works for you.

+1

It's funny cause I looked at his sample images and I thought I preferred the look of the film shot.  I have a 80mp back and use it plenty, but I still also shoot film for the 'look'.
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FredBGG
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« Reply #24 on: December 17, 2012, 02:56:51 PM »
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A year ago I did comparison shots with my Contax 645 on Fuji Provia and on a Leaf Aptus-II 7 33 MP (48x36mm, 7.2um pixel width). The film was scanned with roughly 40 MP on a Hasselbald Imacon scanner (54x41.5mm, 8.2um "pixel" width).
Enclosed the result: The 40 MP scan is less detailed and more grainy than the 33 MP digital file.
For me digital is light years ahead of (diapositive) film: It's is sharper, no visible grain at reasonable low ISO sensitivities with MF backs, more headroom in the highlights as well as in underexposed areas.
In the meantime I use a P65+ 60 MP back that resolves a file quality which is IMO totally impossible to get with 645 film.

Digital has worked wonders as far as squeezing resolution and fidelity out of small formats like 24x36 and 645 MF sensors, but they do not match the many aesthetics of film.

Also the negative process is more advanced than slide film due to the collective efforts of feature film stock development an stills negative stocks.

Then their is the issue of black and white. While digital has brought some really nice tools to black and white.. such as shooting color and using the color information in post
to do all sorts of useful things such as selective color filtering the black and white conversion.

Personally I find that even the very best digital is not a replacement for larger formats than 645. IMHO The 6x8 Fuji camera that I use is unmatched by any MF digital SLR
or 35mm SLR for the certain look it produces RIGHT OUT OF THE CAMERA.
Even beaten up processing and small polaroids from the Fuji gx680 produce a special look

Here are a couple of examples of "beaten up stuff" from the GX680





Polaroid:


These three are form a technical IQ measurment standpoint absolute crap, but visually I love them.

Here is the same day as the first two, same exposure, but more technically standard developing.



With that said I would not consider a Fuji GX680 a replacement for MFD or a D800 in many applications.

For MFD download these sample images by Peter Eastway:
http://www.phaseone.com/en/Downloads/Sample-Images/Sample-images.aspx

There is an absolutely devine portrait of a young girl in those files. Simple lighting and natural skin.
I would post it here, but there is a copyright note that would not allow me to do it. Maybe Someone from Phase can post it here

Going back the the guy that opened this thread... He said he was getting better results with MF film than with a 35mm DSLR. Many 35mm DSLRs can achieve higher resolution than
645 film. However what he may be liking more from his MF film work is the aesthetics of film. There is a lot to photography that has little to do with HiFi reproduction of reality.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 11:33:02 AM by FredBGG » Logged
FredBGG
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« Reply #25 on: December 17, 2012, 02:59:58 PM »
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Chris, no offense, but what measurebators like yourself don't understand is that people are not choosing to shoot film because of things like resolution or sharpness but rather it's unique aesthetics and the physical crafts aspect of it all. I don't think anyone shooting film today debates the strengths of digital, so there's no point rehashing this old Vs. debate any time film is mentioned. Just enjoy whatever works for you.

Measurbators Grin that's funny, but I'm sure he meant no offense. We all can't resist a bit of Measurbation Wink

I think that in this discussion both Chris and amsp make very valid points.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 11:13:31 AM by FredBGG » Logged
BSteinhilber
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« Reply #26 on: December 17, 2012, 03:41:46 PM »
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I use both a Phase One Digital backs p45+ and now IQ 160 and the Imacon Flextight 646 Hasselblad Scanner (now Hasselblad X1).

The Scanner is really good. I scan 4x5 inch, 6x7, 6x12 and 35mm. A lot of my work is landscape photography and I love the quality of the scans from the 646. I even printed 140 cm wide prints from a 35mm scan (color negative Kodak Portra 160 NC) and the grain is very fine and the persons who bought these prints didn't believe it was 35mm film.

Maybe drum scans are better than the Hasselblad/Flextight scanner, but I think you can't really see the difference in the final print (only maybe side by side), because the quality of the scans is already excellent. I make a lot of Diasec Prints (behind Acryl glass) and nobody ever asked me what scanner I used.
If you find a good used Hasselblad scanner, especially the 646 or 848 Imacon/Hasselblad Flextight models, go for it. Older models without firewire are difficult to use.

If you print your photographs really big (140 cm wide and wider) you will see how pleasing the film grain could be and you will get this quality with that scanner.
Forget to think about the Nikon 8000 or 9000 or scanner with that technique. If you would like to sell prints, than a scanner like the Flextight is the absolut minimun. The D Max of a Nikon can't compare to a Flextight/Hasselblad scanner.


Now the disadvantages:

- you have to remove the dust from every scan. That will take between 20 min up to one hour depending on the negative and the size. Retouching dust spots on a 4x5 inch scan could take a while. You have to play around with the sharpness output in the Flexscan software, it is much better than Photoshop.

- clients (especially younger art directors) complain about the "noise" in the pictures. I always have to explain to them the character of film grain. They looked at the full resolution scans in 100% on their screens (a 180 MB Scan in 8bit). You will see film grain all over, but that's film.

- digital files from a MFDB looks cleaner and more pleasing to many clients and sharper.


For my landscape work I use now 80% my digital back, for long exposures still 50% film.

If you can afford a digital back, than I would prefer that. Bud I don't know what your personal preferences are.

If you do your work for print (advertising or magazije) than you have to go for a digital back, if your main market is selling prints than you could think about to buy a decent scanner like Hasselblad Flextight.

Hope that helps you a bit.









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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #27 on: December 17, 2012, 03:52:11 PM »
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Hi,

Thanks for good comments. I actually think that there are three camps, those who like digital, those who like film and those who think that whatever result can be achieved by correct processing.

What I think any film buyer should keep in mind is that sooner or later that film needs to be scanned. You either do it yourself, effectively immersing yourself into a digital workflow or you work with a scanning service. The later option can be excellent but quite expensive, normal cost for the 6096 PPI scan I have posted would be around 200, in this case it was regarded a sample at nominal cost. Add to that a turnaround time of over a week for processing.

CCD scanners may not handle the DMAX of Velvia. It is quite probable that they won't be able to handle DMAX of a film like Ektar 100 either. If you check the sensitivity curves for Ektar 100 it will be obvious that the blue sensitive channel has much higher density than the others. The curves are clipped in the plots at around 10 lux-seconds but I presume they go higher (because no shoulder is seen in the plots). So if your scanner does have a limited DMAX like 3.2 it's very well possible that severe color shift may occur in the highlights. This is of course speculation but I tried to look into this issue due to nasty experience, using my Minolta Dimage Scan Multi Pro and Vuescan. In this case I ended up generating a special DNG profile for this setting. The enclosed image shows the image with default profile (top left) and with the generated DNG profile (top right).

Before making the DNG profile I could color balance on any of the gray fields on the color checker and get wildly different results. The flower could turn into pink, red-violet or even pink.

The digital image (bottom) caused no effort at all.

By the way, I have been scanning slide film since 1995, and I was quite happy, until digital arrived. This gallery are scanned slides: http://echophoto.smugmug.com/Travel/Sextener-Dolomiten/



Velvia (or possibly Provia), a scan I'm satisfied with:


Velvia, drum scanned:


Velvia, scanned at home:

Ektar 100, not so happy with this one:


Digital image (same dday/time as the Ektar 100 shot):




Ektar 100, Drum Scan (http://www.highendscans.de):

Ektar 100, scanned home on DSMP

Raw image from Sony Alpha 900



Best regards
Erik

Measurbators Grin that's funny, but I'm sure he meant no offense.

I think that in this discussion both Chris and amsp make very valid points.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 11:20:53 PM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #28 on: December 17, 2012, 11:31:46 PM »
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Hi,

I never had a Flextight, so I cannot comment on that, nor did I scan Portra 160. I normally shot Velvia in my analog times and the recent tests I have made was with Ektar 100.

I would say that it is important that the real density range of your scanner exceeds the density range of your film. I think this may be even more important with Ektar 100 than with Velvia.

The Minolta Dimage Scan Multi Pro I had was said to have a dynamic range of 4.8, but that was just marketing speak (BS), it was more like 3.5, well short of handling Velvia.

I made some reading and Flextight/Hasselblad is probably the way to go, but I guess that you need to make your own tests.

Drum scanners can be found at low prices, nowdays, but you may need to regards long term supports costs and availability.

Best regards
Erik


I use both a Phase One Digital backs p45+ and now IQ 160 and the Imacon Flextight 646 Hasselblad Scanner (now Hasselblad X1).

The Scanner is really good. I scan 4x5 inch, 6x7, 6x12 and 35mm. A lot of my work is landscape photography and I love the quality of the scans from the 646. I even printed 140 cm wide prints from a 35mm scan (color negative Kodak Portra 160 NC) and the grain is very fine and the persons who bought these prints didn't believe it was 35mm film.

Maybe drum scans are better than the Hasselblad/Flextight scanner, but I think you can't really see the difference in the final print (only maybe side by side), because the quality of the scans is already excellent. I make a lot of Diasec Prints (behind Acryl glass) and nobody ever asked me what scanner I used.
If you find a good used Hasselblad scanner, especially the 646 or 848 Imacon/Hasselblad Flextight models, go for it. Older models without firewire are difficult to use.

If you print your photographs really big (140 cm wide and wider) you will see how pleasing the film grain could be and you will get this quality with that scanner.
Forget to think about the Nikon 8000 or 9000 or scanner with that technique. If you would like to sell prints, than a scanner like the Flextight is the absolut minimun. The D Max of a Nikon can't compare to a Flextight/Hasselblad scanner.


Now the disadvantages:

- you have to remove the dust from every scan. That will take between 20 min up to one hour depending on the negative and the size. Retouching dust spots on a 4x5 inch scan could take a while. You have to play around with the sharpness output in the Flexscan software, it is much better than Photoshop.

- clients (especially younger art directors) complain about the "noise" in the pictures. I always have to explain to them the character of film grain. They looked at the full resolution scans in 100% on their screens (a 180 MB Scan in 8bit). You will see film grain all over, but that's film.

- digital files from a MFDB looks cleaner and more pleasing to many clients and sharper.


For my landscape work I use now 80% my digital back, for long exposures still 50% film.

If you can afford a digital back, than I would prefer that. Bud I don't know what your personal preferences are.

If you do your work for print (advertising or magazije) than you have to go for a digital back, if your main market is selling prints than you could think about to buy a decent scanner like Hasselblad Flextight.

Hope that helps you a bit.










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Gel
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« Reply #29 on: December 18, 2012, 08:42:47 AM »
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I prefer the home scans Erik.
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FredBGG
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« Reply #30 on: December 18, 2012, 12:36:37 PM »
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@ Erik

Those scans compared to the digital are interesting to look at.
While IQ is high in both cases there is just something more narrative with the film shots.
Film is always in part an illusion and interpretation of what is in front of it.
Chatting with Quentin Tarantino about film vs digital in hi movies he says that he vastly
prefers film because it does not look like what is infront of the camera. The frame rate, the slight jitter
the flow of grain from frame to frame.

I think that it is also interesting how low quality film still has a charm to it, even disasters like scratches, dust and stains.
The other day a friend of mine shot a ex con on Hollywood blvd. A great shot of the guy that showed his gritty past
and much more. Anyway when he unloaded the roll of film to load another he was bumped by a passer by and the 120 roll fell to the ground and partly un rolled.
There was a light leak onto the shot and some how some text on the backing paper exposed onto the image.
My friend was in "measurbator mode" when he looked at the contacts from the lab and was upset he had lost the shot.
I told him he was out of his mind... it's one of his all time best shots. A great image with two stories.

Compare that to a corrupted RAW file Wink

Another friend of mine built a career on distressed photos after a couple of slides fell out of his top pocket
into the crapper and the toilet cleaning liquid in there.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #31 on: December 18, 2012, 01:18:49 PM »
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Hi Fred,

Thanks for feedback. My idea was mostly to share my limited experience, and also to show the difference between medium level CCD scanner and high end drum scan.

It is very nice to have feedback, it sort of adds a new dimension...

Best regards
Erik

@ Erik

Those scans compared to the digital are interesting to look at.
While IQ is high in both cases there is just something more narrative with the film shots.
Film is always in part an illusion and interpretation of what is in front of it.
Chatting with Quentin Tarantino about film vs digital in hi movies he says that he vastly
prefers film because it does not look like what is infront of the camera. The frame rate, the slight jitter
the flow of grain from frame to frame.

I think that it is also interesting how low quality film still has a charm to it, even disasters like scratches, dust and stains.
The other day a friend of mine shot a ex con on Hollywood blvd. A great shot of the guy that showed his gritty past
and much more. Anyway when he unloaded the roll of film to load another he was bumped by a passer by and the 120 roll fell to the ground and partly un rolled.
There was a light leak onto the shot and some how some text on the backing paper exposed onto the image.
My friend was in "measurbator mode" when he looked at the contacts from the lab and was upset he had lost the shot.
I told him he was out of his mind... it's one of his all time best shots. A great image with two stories.

Compare that to a corrupted RAW file Wink

Another friend of mine built a career on distressed photos after a couple of slides fell out of his top pocket
into the crapper and the toilet cleaning liquid in there.

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Pascalf
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« Reply #32 on: December 18, 2012, 04:17:47 PM »
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This comparison shows why I adore film.


Ektar 100, Drum Scan (http://www.gighendscans.de):

Ektar 100, scanned home on DSMP

Raw image from Sony Alpha 900



Three images: drum scan, 'home' scan, and a digital camera

Details:
- look through the windows: what do you see?
- look at the open door / window on the second floor: what do you see?

To each their own conclusions, though for me, the [drum scanned] film shows the most of what I want to see, or have available to make the image I want to [try] and get.


Pascal
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FredBGG
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« Reply #33 on: December 18, 2012, 05:15:30 PM »
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8x10 V750 scan

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EricWHiss
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« Reply #34 on: December 18, 2012, 05:33:57 PM »
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Pascal +1
Thanks for showing that it isn't always about checking detail sharpness 100% on screen!
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #35 on: December 18, 2012, 06:16:25 PM »
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This comparison shows why I adore film.

Three images: drum scan, 'home' scan, and a digital camera

Details:
- look through the windows: what do you see?
- look at the open door / window on the second floor: what do you see?

To each their own conclusions, though for me, the [drum scanned] film shows the most of what I want to see, or have available to make the image I want to [try] and get.

Hi Pascal,

Do not mistake the digital camera example (as provided by Erik) with what is possible. I have attached two tone mapped versions of the DC example where the shadows were opened a bit (and a lot) more than in Erik's post, and I could have gone much further. And that was based on the JPEG crop that was posted. When necessary, it is relatively simple to do an HDR bracketed exposure of a dense slide film, and capture all there is to capture.

Cheers,
Bart
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 06:28:33 PM by BartvanderWolf » Logged
ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #36 on: December 18, 2012, 08:32:34 PM »
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Hi,

The intention with the posting was to show the difference between drum scans and CCD scans and in some cases a digital image. You could say that the images I posted is my preferred rendition from each. What you don't see is that I have spent hours on the DSMP image and minutes on the digital image. But I'm not good at scanning negative film.

I actually don't feel there is much detail behind the second floor window, you just see the roof which doesn't seem to have structure.

Regarding the reflections in the glass on the front doors, the images are very different. I have noticed that, too. I cannot get the same rendition from digital in that area.


Best regards
Erik

Pascal +1
Thanks for showing that it isn't always about checking detail sharpness 100% on screen!

« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 09:27:26 PM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

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« Reply #37 on: December 18, 2012, 08:41:52 PM »
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Hi,

I don't really want to post the original drum scanned image, as it is a 2GByte tiff.

The DNG image from Sony is here: http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/images/PublishedTests/20110803-DSC01009.dng

The DSMP scan is here: http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/images/PublishedTests/20110904-Ektar100_nynas_2.dng


Best regards
Erik
Hi Pascal,

Do not mistake the digital camera example (as provided by Erik) with what is possible. I have attached two tone mapped versions of the DC example where the shadows were opened a bit (and a lot) more than in Erik's post, and I could have gone much further. And that was based on the JPEG crop that was posted. When necessary, it is relatively simple to do an HDR bracketed exposure of a dense slide film, and capture all there is to capture.

Cheers,
Bart
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 09:05:35 PM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

Pascalf
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« Reply #38 on: December 18, 2012, 09:09:03 PM »
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Hi Pascal,

Do not mistake the digital camera example (as provided by Erik) with what is possible. I have attached two tone mapped versions of the DC example where the shadows were opened a bit (and a lot) more than in Erik's post, and I could have gone much further. And that was based on the JPEG crop that was posted. When necessary, it is relatively simple to do an HDR bracketed exposure of a dense slide film, and capture all there is to capture.

Cheers,
Bart

I don't mean that you cannot get digital to look like film, without some work.

I mean that film can get a look right out of the frame that requires much work out of digital, in terms of density.

I have assembled HDR images and it is not practical with moving subjects.  With film, you get the 'look' that the particular film type gets you.  No long [digital] post processing, thought a chemical processing does precede seeing the film.

And digital post-processing goes both ways: as I mentionned in my original post for this thread:

To each their own conclusions, though for me, the [drum scanned] film shows the most of what I want to see, or have available to make the image I want to [try] and get.


Pascal
- emphasis added

I can get close to the digital results with the film scan, just as I can get film like results with some digital captures.  It just happens to cost less to be able get the film image.  A medium format film camera [in my case, Contax 645] shooting Provia or Velvia gets me superb images that I cannot afford to get with a digital back, digital backs being what they cost.

And in the future, when I scan the film images, I'll get very good quality that stands up to a great deal of post-processing.


Pascal
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« Reply #39 on: December 18, 2012, 09:33:33 PM »
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Hi,

Can you share your experience of scanning? May be helpful for others scanning film. For instance which scanner on software you are using?

My experience is a bit contrary to yours. I can process 100 digital images one afternoon but just getting a single Velvia scan right can take quite long time for me. The castle shot you discuss was Ektar 100 by the way.

In the enclosed picture you see some of the variants I was working on, lots of scans... but this was really my first try at scanning negative film.

The drum scanned image was adjusted by the lab doing the scans.

Best regards
Erik


I don't mean that you cannot get digital to look like film, without some work.

I mean that film can get a look right out of the frame that requires much work out of digital, in terms of density.

I have assembled HDR images and it is not practical with moving subjects.  With film, you get the 'look' that the particular film type gets you.  No long [digital] post processing, thought a chemical processing does precede seeing the film.

And digital post-processing goes both ways: as I mentionned in my original post for this thread:- emphasis added

I can get close to the digital results with the film scan, just as I can get film like results with some digital captures.  It just happens to cost less to be able get the film image.  A medium format film camera [in my case, Contax 645] shooting Provia or Velvia gets me superb images that I cannot afford to get with a digital back, digital backs being what they cost.

And in the future, when I scan the film images, I'll get very good quality that stands up to a great deal of post-processing.


Pascal
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 09:58:32 PM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

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