Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?

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Raymond Cho Senior Member • Posts: 1,972
Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?

Hi all

I've been scanning medium format with my Epson V700. This time I got a light table and used my Nikon D600 with a 90mm Tamron macro lens.

The camera copying is certainly sharper but it seems the flatbed has more tonality this is with slide film.  Your thoughts? I have also used labs in the past for scanning ie a Hasselblad Imacon scanner. Overall that's the best I have tried from all 3 methods.

Cheers.

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Svein Eriksen Senior Member • Posts: 1,948
Re: Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?

Raymond Cho wrote:

….. The camera copying is certainly sharper but it seems the flatbed has more tonality this is with slide film.    …….

Don't know how relevant it is as I dont have a V700, only an older Epson 4870. V700 is doubtless somewhat better at high contrast Dmax with a DMax of 4 vs 3.8 on 4870. Still that's not that a huge difference and I've always struggled to get good results from 4870 with high contras slides, particularly Kodachrome.

So, I'm a bit surprised that V700 should outperform D600 on tonality. Assume you use RAW-format with D600, but you could always combine with bracketing to extend DR and/or reduce noise with multi exposure.

j3ffw
j3ffw Regular Member • Posts: 155
Re: Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?
2

Raymond Cho wrote:

Hi all

I've been scanning medium format with my Epson V700. This time I got a light table s.

The camera copying is certainly sharper but it seems the flatbed has more tonality this is with slide film.

My question about the lack of tonality with your camera is the quality of the light source as I've had cheap light tables that most likely used a pseudo corrected florescent tube.  I might try lighting the transparency using a strobe through a white diffusion screen and see if your results differ

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sybersitizen Forum Pro • Posts: 15,122
Re: Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?

Raymond Cho wrote:

I've been scanning medium format with my Epson V700. This time I got a light table and used my Nikon D600 with a 90mm Tamron macro lens.

The camera copying is certainly sharper but it seems the flatbed has more tonality this is with slide film. Your thoughts?

I find that to generally be the case ... but you can probably minimize the difference by shooting RAW and working the image in PP.

I have also used labs in the past for scanning ie a Hasselblad Imacon scanner. Overall that's the best I have tried from all 3 methods.

Yeah, an Imacon would be nice to have.

Wayne Larmon Forum Pro • Posts: 10,456
Spectrum and tonal issues

j3ffw wrote:

Raymond Cho wrote:

Hi all

I've been scanning medium format with my Epson V700. This time I got a light table s.

The camera copying is certainly sharper but it seems the flatbed has more tonality this is with slide film.

My question about the lack of tonality with your camera is the quality of the light source as I've had cheap light tables that most likely used a pseudo corrected florescent tube. I might try lighting the transparency using a strobe through a white diffusion screen and see if your results differ

Scanners don't use any kind of miracle blackbody lights. Several years ago I measured the spectrum my Epson V600 and it was a bog-standard low CRI LED.

Epson V600. CRI: 64

I've been told that spectrum flatness isn't as important when scanning any kind of film (slides, negatives, color prints, etc.) because the film color is produced with the broadish spectrum CYM dyes. This is different than real world colors that can be anywhere on the spectrum and and any given color can a broad or a narrow band, so full spectrum lighting is meaningful (you don't want any important colors to be spikes that falls in a gap of your light's spectrum.) More spectrum measurements.

When I was doing camera scanning I always shot RAW, exported from ACR to 16 bit ProPhoto and adjusted colors in Photoshop before exporting the adjusted image to 8 bit sRGB.

Wayne

OP Raymond Cho Senior Member • Posts: 1,972
Re: Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?

j3ffw wrote:

Raymond Cho wrote:

Hi all

I've been scanning medium format with my Epson V700. This time I got a light table s.

The camera copying is certainly sharper but it seems the flatbed has more tonality this is with slide film.

My question about the lack of tonality with your camera is the quality of the light source as I've had cheap light tables that most likely used a pseudo corrected florescent tube. I might try lighting the transparency using a strobe through a white diffusion screen and see if your results differ

Yes I shot in RAW format.  I have a Kaiser $100US light table.  Could it be backlighted is challenging for the dSLR?  
I just did the 1 file RAW, rather than doing HDR etc .. At first I scan / copy all my film to have it inside lightroom.  Then when I want a better copy or scan I redo it ....

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Leswick II Senior Member • Posts: 1,361
Re: Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?

Your CRI's seem ok with this light table.  Do make sure the WB is set properly.  If you want more pixels and clarity....you can do (below) and stitch + crop.

justinwonnacott Contributing Member • Posts: 992
Re: Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?

I have been copying colour negatives on a mabeth illuminator with a 150mm apochromatic  macro, 5ds  raw and processed with vuescan pro. I will never go back to traditional scanning. Faster, good colour controls, choice of film stocks and 48 bit workflow too.

2cents.

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Leswick II Senior Member • Posts: 1,361
Re: Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?

justinwonnacott wrote:

I have been copying colour negatives on a mabeth illuminator with a 150mm apochromatic macro, 5ds raw and processed with vuescan pro. I will never go back to traditional scanning. Faster, good colour controls, choice of film stocks and 48 bit workflow too.

2cents.

What macro are you using ?  Also, can you provide the link for the illuminator.  Thanx

D Cox Forum Pro • Posts: 24,824
Re: Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?

sybersitizen wrote:

Raymond Cho wrote:

I've been scanning medium format with my Epson V700. This time I got a light table and used my Nikon D600 with a 90mm Tamron macro lens.

The camera copying is certainly sharper but it seems the flatbed has more tonality this is with slide film. Your thoughts?

I find that to generally be the case ... but you can probably minimize the difference by shooting RAW and working the image in PP.

Or, for slide film, use the camera's built in HDR option, if it has one. I don't think dynamic range is a problem when copying negative films. It certainly is when the film is Velvia.

I have also used labs in the past for scanning ie a Hasselblad Imacon scanner. Overall that's the best I have tried from all 3 methods.

Yeah, an Imacon would be nice to have.

Bernard Waxman Senior Member • Posts: 1,482
Re: Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?
2

I have used both methods, scanning with an Epson V700 and using a Nikon D2 and D800 with a Nikon 100mm Macro lens.  I always thought the the results were a bit better with the camera than with the scanner.  I always had to make sure that the negatives or transparencies were flat and that with the camera film are kept parallel since there is not much depth of field.  With the camera, I always shoot raw at 14 bits, processing as a 16bit file.  I never notices much difference in tonality but now you have me curious.  I will go back and look at some scans.

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justinwonnacott Contributing Member • Posts: 992
Re: Anyone tried flatbed scanning film and camera copying?

Leswick II wrote:

justinwonnacott wrote:

I have been copying colour negatives on a mabeth illuminator with a 150mm apochromatic macro, 5ds raw and processed with vuescan pro. I will never go back to traditional scanning. Faster, good colour controls, choice of film stocks and 48 bit workflow too.

2cents.

What macro are you using ? Also, can you provide the link for the illuminator. Thanx

A sigma 150mm apo lens f 2.8 .. a heavy monster very sharp and goes 1:1. The illuminator is an old macbeth transparency table, with a beseler negative holder for 4x5 negs that clamps the negs and holds them flat and provides a black mask around the film. Shot on a 5ds in raw.

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