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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 14 Dec 2017 (Thursday) 09:13
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Medium format scanning

 
Hokie ­ Jim
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Dec 14, 2017 09:13 |  #1

Is there a consensus for how good of a scanner is "good enough" to scan 6x7? I have an old Epson Perfection 4990, but I've read that I really need to step up to a newer model flatbed if I want to even approach something like a Nikon Coolscan (unfortunately, a CS is out of my budget).

What have you guys used for 6x7 for results good enough to make the larger format worth it? Thanks!


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Sideshot
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Dec 14, 2017 09:25 |  #2

It really depends on what you are going to do with the scans ? 4'x5' wall print or a 8.5"x11" paper print ?

Scanner technology has come a long way in the past 10years a $100. scanner is fairly nice these days and will do most things a person needs.




  
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Hokie ­ Jim
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Post edited 7 months ago by Hokie Jim.
     
Dec 14, 2017 09:32 |  #3

Sideshot wrote in post #18517691 (external link)
It really depends on what you are going to do with the scans ? 4'x5' wall print or a 8.5"x11" paper print

Most likely, no larger than 11"x14".


The machine does not isolate man from the great problems of nature but plunges him more deeply into them. - Antoine de Saint Exupéry
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Sideshot
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Post edited 7 months ago by Sideshot.
     
Dec 14, 2017 09:49 |  #4

Hokie Jim wrote in post #18517696 (external link)
Most likely, no larger than 11"x14".

I would say your average $100. scanner would do that fairly well. Unless you want some superX flawless pixel quality, but then again your scan will only be as good as your original image you are working with.

At 11"x14" I would just buy a decent $100. scanner and keep the receipt and see if it holds up to what you need in resolution. You can spend all day studying resolution and math but at the end of the day most of that is a lot of market hype and varies brand to brand.

About 10years ago I used to do a lot of scanning I had a $300. scanner. A $100. scanner today is so much faster, nicer and all around better.




  
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Left ­ Handed ­ Brisket
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Dec 14, 2017 09:54 |  #5

Have you tried to scan anything with what you have?

If no, then why not? :D


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TooManyShots
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Post edited 7 months ago by TooManyShots. (2 edits in all)
     
Dec 14, 2017 09:55 |  #6
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The issue is that a long way does not apply to medium format scanning...at least on the consumer level. Other than the Epson, 4990, the V700 or V800 is your next upgrade. They are good enough for medium format. If you need better scanning quality, you need to go for the more expensive options, but very few options.. Nikon Coolscan or the Plustek model. That's about it. Next step up would be the drum scanner from Hasselblad.....

For the same reason, I switched to DSLR scan my medium format negatives...when I was still shooting in medium format. However, the process of DSLR scanning is too involved for me. I needed to construct a DIY light box mounted on a light stand. Then, I have to tape down my 6x6 strip on a piece of cardboard with the middle part cut out. Mount my DSLR with a 105 sigma macro lens on a tripod. Aligning everything. I could take one exposure for a 5000 pixel resolution "scan." Or two exposures to stitch them up for a higher resolution.

I would then open up my raw editor to correct any color shifting due to the incorrect light color temperature of my light (this involving matching all the RGB channels to match and overlapping one another for the correct black and white white balance). Afterward, I would load the tiff files to VueScan and to invert it and to apply various BW film profiles. Then, load the inverted tiff file to CC for the final edit of the scan.

I wish I had a better way to simplify the DSLR scan workflow. I may have been still shooting in medium format. Right now, is all 35mm for me.


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Archibald
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Dec 14, 2017 09:59 |  #7

I use the Epson V700 for scanning 120-format negatives. My originals are mostly negs from the 1970s and 1980s and have faded. The results are pretty good, though. Most of the scans have bright colors and little grain and look great. But that is not to say that my scan results are true to the originals. That's because the scanner software does stuff (like auto-setting white points for the three colors) and usually I have to do adjustment of curves, especially the red curve, to compensate for the fading. I have given up trying to do faithful archiving of negs and slides and instead just try to make the scans into nice photos.

Older negs are quite a bit more difficult to deal with than newer negs.

Not sure any of this is relevant to what you are doing. But depending on your originals, you might end up with scans where the colors have been altered and there might be no way to tell if they look like they did originally. Also I'm pretty sure the results will depend a lot on the skills of the photographer.

In short, I don't think the choice of scanner is as important as the scanning software and post-processing software, and of course your eyes and abilities.


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kf095
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Dec 14, 2017 10:09 |  #8

IMO, the only beauty of clunky and bulky 120 film format is in how good scans from it comes from 100$ flatbed scanner. :)
I have Epson V500 and it does its job very well by its native software. 11x14 prints in not a problem. Nor 8.5x11 prints from 135 format scans. :)


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TooManyShots
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Dec 14, 2017 10:14 |  #9
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kf095 wrote in post #18517717 (external link)
IMO, the only beauty of clunky and bulky 120 film format is in how good scans from it comes from 100$ flatbed scanner. :)
I have Epson V500 and it does its job very well by its native software. 11x14 prints in not a problem. Nor 8.5x11 prints from 135 format scans. :)

Yeah..the larger the negatives, the lesser the enlarger. And more details can be retained even on a cheap flatbed scanner.


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Hokie ­ Jim
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Dec 14, 2017 11:57 |  #10

Left Handed Brisket wrote in post #18517708 (external link)
Have you tried to scan anything with what you have?

If no, then why not? :D

Well, I don't have any MF gear yet  :p I'm just wondering before I spend the money on something, if the results would be acceptable enough to even try.


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gjl711
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Dec 14, 2017 12:14 |  #11

Light table and your 6D will do a fantastic job. I gave up on flatbed scanners. They are slow and though the quality was decent, my 5DII did just as well or better and was quick.


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AZGeorge
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Dec 14, 2017 17:06 |  #12

kf095 wrote in post #18517717 (external link)
IMO, the only beauty of clunky and bulky 120 film format is in how good scans from it comes from 100$ flatbed scanner. :)
I have Epson V500 and it does its job very well by its native software. 11x14 prints in not a problem. Nor 8.5x11 prints from 135 format scans. :)

Aside from the cruel cruel words that made this former Rolleiflex lover almost tear up and cry on the keyboard, I quite agree. Just as 120 made getting life easier for getting good prints in the darkroom, all that extra room really helps with scanning. I'd be inclined to give the 4990 a try before replacing it.


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Left ­ Handed ­ Brisket
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Dec 14, 2017 21:30 |  #13

Hokie Jim wrote in post #18517804 (external link)
Well, I don't have any MF gear yet  :p I'm just wondering before I spend the money on something, if the results would be acceptable enough to even try.

Sweet. Shoot chrome film. You'll be happy as a pig in coleslaw.


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Angmo
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Dec 15, 2017 12:07 |  #14

I’ve shot Rolleiflex for years. Still have them and a bunch of lenses. At the time I got the Coolscan 9000ed. Love it.

I do feel much less expensive scanners are rapidly doing a better job than when I bought the Coolscan monster.

...got a driver hack that lets the coolscan run on Sys 7 since Nikon no longer supports it.


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Luckless
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Dec 15, 2017 14:37 |  #15

I have a V600 which I am mostly happy with for my film scanning needs. It was purchased as a compromise as at the time I figured it would be 'years' before I got around to upgrading to wanting to scan large format negatives... (I was wrong.) It also works very well for scanning documents and prints.

One thing I would strongly suggest for a flatbed scanner like the V600 with negatives: Buy the spare film holder. It won't be a huge time saver, but it will still be a time saver as you can prep the next strip of film to scan while waiting for the current scan to finish. When the current scan finishes, you can then just pop out one frame, give everything a go over with an air blower, and drop the next holder in for preview/alignment before swapping the first film out of its holder.


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Medium format scanning
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