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Thread: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

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    Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Hey all

    Welp! My Hasselblad H2 has finally arrived.

    I was going to get a P21+ for it but, my budget at the moment won't allow for it.

    Is there an affordable film scanner (sub $1K) that will give me equivalent image results? I know that drum scans are best but they are so expensive.

    Please and thank you!

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Quote Originally Posted by Dolce Moda View Post

    Is there an affordable film scanner (sub $1K) that will give me equivalent image results (to a P21+)?
    Congratulations on getting the H2!

    I'm sure these would not be equivalent results, but for about $700 the Epson V750 Pro flat bed scanner works well for me (the V700 also very good and $150 cheaper). I use the V750 Pro to scan medium format and 4x5 film (color and BW). Works pretty good. Let me know if you'd like to see some examples.

    Check out the reviews here:
    http://www.photo-i.co.uk/Reviews/int...750/page_1.htm

    Or you could spend about $2,000 and get the Nikon 9000 film scanner. There are probably other flat bed scanners under $1,000 that would also work very well for you.

    Gary Benson
    Eagle River, Alaska

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    I scan with Nikon 9000. It produces over 50 mega pixels image from a 6x4.5 slide at 4000 dpi, the size of file varies from 120Mb to over 350Mb depending on the number of multi passes, I use 16 passes for archival purposes. Then I resize to 20-22 mega pixels in post processing, which is a very good image.

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    First look for a used dedicated film scanner ... people buy them like work-out bikes or stair-steppers ... all the best intentions in the world ... then hardly use them : -) Or like you, buy them as an interum while saving for a digital back.

    Otherwise, for the price new, you can't go wrong with a Epson V750 Pro for the time being. The good thing is that the flat bed has life after you add a digital back ... you can scan flat materials and other larger reflective pieces. Even though I have a Hasselblad/Imacon 949 dedicated film scanner, I also still have and use a V750 Pro.

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    I agree with Marc here (fotografz). Unfortunately though, film scanners will not give you comparable results to MFDB. I am a total film lover, but I did my own comparison of 22mp to 645 film using an Imacon, and the digital won hands down for resolution. Film still looks great though, so don't get me wrong! It is just given equal sensor area, digital will have greater apparent sharpness and resolution...all the more so with an inexpensive scanner. It looks like this:
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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Which film did you use?
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    fuji acros developed in Xtol 1:1.
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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Do you know how it compares to Efke/Adox 25? I have just picked up some of this, and it is meant to be incredibly fine-grained, and scan very well when developed with XTol, something which most B&W film doesn't.
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    yes, I have used Efke 25 -- it might have finer grain (probably not), but it is a mushier film...believe me, I take the side of film any possible time I can, but there was no way I could talk myself out of that one. Same lens, same camera, same camera position, no resizing, same point of focus, same lighting. The only thing I did was take the digital back off and put on the film one. I am sure some of the noise is from the scanner, but not much. If you are not at 100% detail, both images are extremely sharp and have great tonality. It's just that digital with no AA filter captures more detail in this case. I can think of no other explanation. Maybe 6x7 would compare better.
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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Hi Stuart,

    It is amazing how good these MFDBs have become. We can see the clear difference at these 100% crops (thanks!). What I always wonder is how much of this shows up in actual prints etc. I'm sure it depends on the size of the prints. Have you printed any of your comparison test images?

    Personally, I don't print any larger than 13x19 and so for my purposes, I don't need to scan my 6x6cm, 6x7cm or 4x5in negs at more than 2400dpi.

    Gary
    Last edited by bensonga; 9th January 2009 at 11:28.

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Wow. That is a pretty clear difference. However, I think some of it has to do with the grain density of the film.
    I will look at the Epson 750. Film scanners are still selling for over $1000 on Ebay

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Here's a bit of information that I found out recently that took me by surprise. If you're willing to pay labs to scan your negs (haven't used chrome yet) you will find scans from a simple old Noritsu machine (even older ones) will simply look better than even the best scans from an Imacon.
    The only negative about this is the files top out around 30MB's.
    I pay a negotiated fee of $25 (120/220) to have my C41 based color negative or B&W developed and scanned.

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Richardson View Post
    I agree with Marc here (fotografz). Unfortunately though, film scanners will not give you comparable results to MFDB. I am a total film lover, but I did my own comparison of 22mp to 645 film using an Imacon, and the digital won hands down for resolution. Film still looks great though, so don't get me wrong! It is just given equal sensor area, digital will have greater apparent sharpness and resolution...all the more so with an inexpensive scanner.]
    Great example, but there is a small item missing, for some of us: that the film can be shot at 6x6 for reasonable cost, whereas a full sensor size (even for 645) is at the top of the cost range.

    Somehow reducing the film size to match the sensor size seems like a bit of a compromise, altho one would be hard pressed to suggest any other logic that made any sense either.

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Quote Originally Posted by evgeny View Post
    I scan with Nikon 9000. It produces over 50 mega pixels image from a 6x4.5 slide at 4000 dpi, the size of file varies from 120Mb to over 350Mb depending on the number of multi passes, I use 16 passes for archival purposes.
    I have an older Nikon 8000. The quality from the machine is good, but only if set to the highest quality settings. This can be *really* painful. A 6x7 scan can take 30-40 mins per image.

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Geoff -- of course, I was not suggesting that anyone go out and by a medium format digital back. It's just that the first poster was hoping for "equivalent image results", which is unfortunately not really possible given similar image area. By the way, that result was from a 48x36mm digital back, so it is slightly smaller than the full frame 645 film. That particular back was bought used for 10,000 dollars, which while very expensive, is actually at the bottom of the medium format digital price range.

    Anyway, I very much advocate shooting film, and what that test does NOT show you is the different look that film and digital can achieve, particularly in black and white. And of course, 6x7, 6x9, 4x5 and larger are going to compare much much better.

    Gary -- I have not made any prints of this test yet...it was just something I did for my own amusement. I doubt this would be that visible before a 16x20, even then it would be minor. My maximum print size in the darkroom is 20x24, and I do like printing that large if I get the chance. For digital, my own printer goes to 17x22 (or the paper does anyway...), but I have printed 30x30 on occasion and really liked it. I wish I had easier access to a wide format printer.
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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Richardson View Post
    I agree with Marc here (fotografz). Unfortunately though, film scanners will not give you comparable results to MFDB. I am a total film lover, but I did my own comparison of 22mp to 645 film using an Imacon, and the digital won hands down for resolution. Film still looks great though, so don't get me wrong! It is just given equal sensor area, digital will have greater apparent sharpness and resolution...all the more so with an inexpensive scanner. It looks like this:
    Stuart, I completely agree that scanned film will not give you results like MFDB ... but in the opposite direction regarding your conclusion : -)

    First off I could process your scan so it looked just as good as the digital version ... it just requires a different post approach ... but that's not the point I really want to make ... however, I'm not going to bury the point in this thread ... instead take a peek at my new thread and see what you think ... if nothing else, it should ignite a firestorm of protest

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    "fotografz" - I'm intrigued by your comment
    "First off I could process your scan so it looked just as good as the digital version ... it just requires a different post approach ..."

    I wonder if you would expand on this. My own scanning ability is pretty awful and I'm wondering if there's something I'm missing. Thanks in anticipation

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Quote Originally Posted by ReeRay View Post
    "fotografz" - I'm intrigued by your comment
    I wonder if you would expand on this. My own scanning ability is pretty awful and I'm wondering if there's something I'm missing. Thanks in anticipation
    Well, just look at the comparison sample included ... the scanned film side lacks snap which is simply a contrast issue ... perhaps in an attempt to avoid any grain ... but film resolution is composed of grain.

    The trick is to scan for maximum tonal spread and detail, then in post processing balance the effects of grain against real world viewing media (print or screen size and and distance it's viewed at.) People avoid grain, when grain is what makes up the look of film. Too many folks judge film shots with screen blow-ups rather than what it looks like in a print.

    In the sample, I simply altered the Gamma and Contrast of the film shot allowing for some grain, but not enough to worry about in a normal print.

    (Also keep i mind that the film side is actually a bigger enlargement than the digital side.)


    Now, which one looks better? Pretty close IMO.

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Simply amazing - It looks so close! Thank you for that explanation.

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Fotografz

    That's amazing!


    What about color film? I am I better of to shoot chromes ... or is color negative still ok for scanning.

    I like Kodak Portra films

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    Re: Film Scanning equivalent to MFDB

    Quote Originally Posted by Dolce Moda View Post
    Fotografz

    That's amazing!


    What about color film? I am I better of to shoot chromes ... or is color negative still ok for scanning.

    I like Kodak Portra films
    I scan Portra all the time ... use it for weddings where I need the latitude.

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