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Thread: scanning slides

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    scanning slides

    HELP!

    I have heap (and I mean a heap) of family slides from my SIL that I am going to scan and put on a disc for her. My scanner is a Epson V500.

    My question is....what dpi should I scan them at?? 800, 1200, less???? These are not for blowing up to a 10 x 8, but I still want a good decent amount of detail....minus the HUGE MB that I will get if I go really high.

    Any other useful information when scanning these would be sooo appreciated....new scanner and new to scanning!

    Thanks in advance.
    Monika
    Equipment: Canon 60D, Nikon FE, Nikkor 50mm 1.8 lens, Fancier FT-662A tripod, 18-55mm kit lens, 55-250mm kit lens, 30mm 1.4 Sigma lens, LR4, PS Elements
    Check out my Flickr photos ... http://www.flickr.com/photos/missmonny/
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    Ausphotography Regular junqbox's Avatar
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    You could have a fiddle and see what works best for you, but personally I would scan them at a size I could print at least 8x12, save to a portable drive dedicated for storage of them

    my 20c

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    Scanning a lot of stuff is boring work. Do them all at a res that doesn't take too long. For the very few that you want a really good print from, go back and do them again at optimal settings.

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    A 35mm slide is 36mm x 24mm, or approx 1.5" x 1". Multiply the inches by DPI figure for a guide. I'd say you'd need about 2000-2400 dpi.
    For slides, you can keep down the image size by using a 24-bit colour depth. (For negatives I'd use 36 or 48.)

    You have to practise a bit on slides of different overall densities, and do similar slides in a batch. The settings will change.

    The V500 should be like the V700 and scan each slide in the holder as a different file.

    Slide/neg scanning is not a light task. If you've got heaps then it's not lighter.
    Good luck.
    Am.

    PS: 4-got to mention: For the PP, more luck.
    Last edited by ameerat42; 09-05-2012 at 3:46pm.
    CC, Image editing OK.

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    Thanks. I didn't think I would need to go as high as 2400. As for doing them in different batches of similar slides....well, that prob isn't possible as all are put in a certain chronological order ... so a crappy slide will be next to a good one. Well, I guess she can't be too picky, can she. Not like she is paying for me to do this....I offered!

    Some will need a bit of PP, so, Am I will need all the luck I can get!!

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    Member rodw's Avatar
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    I would look at the maximum size print you was to make. Let's say 10x12. You will need to print at 200-300 dpi. I would recommend 300 but you can probably get away with 200

    So at 200 dpi on the long edge (12") you need 2400 pixels.
    At 300 dpi on the long edge you need 3600 pixels.
    36mm is 1.417" so divide the number of pixels by this number to get pixels per inch.

    So with a bit of rounding you will end up with a range from 1700-2500 dpi, so pick a native resolution that the scanner supports within this range as that will be a fast scanner setting.

    You have a good quality scanner (dmax 3.4). Now if you want to save some time, you might like to check out Silverfast which supports your scanner
    http://www.silverfast.com/

    I had this software years ago and from memory there were specific scanner profiles for specific positive and negative film emulsions and it has settings to eliminate dust spots, sharpening etc. if they still have a demo give it a try!
    RodW
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    Aha! Thanks Rod. I get it now. Unfort you needed to break it down for me for me to understand!!

    what about just scanning and putting on a disc? Do I still need to scan at such a high range? I will def use what you have suggested for the few I intend to print, but most are just to show on a 'slide' night (on the tv!).

    I will check out silverfast too.

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    Member rodw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ms Monny View Post
    what about just scanning and putting on a disc? Do I still need to scan at such a high range?
    I would. The size will not be that huge if you convert to max quality JPEGS. I just checked the size of soe photos I had processed from film and the CD came back with scans 3087x2048 and they were about 3.8-5 mb each. The quality must be set higher than my D40 which are 3008x2000 pixels and they are 3-4 mb in size.

    If the scans are optimised and cleaned up saving as JPEG would be fine as you wil not need to process them again.

    I forgot to mention that Silverfast lets you calibrate the scanner to produce an ICC profile for it if you buy an ITF8 target. If your scans enter a calibrated workflow this will be a real advantage. That was the attraction for me when I bought it.

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    I just tested a photo that I scanned without Silverfast from the other day, and today with Silverfast and the difference is enormous! The colour is richer and the image smoother! I need to learn all the other functions rather than just pressing auto, but for now, I am happy. I don't really understand the ITF8 bit or the ICC profile bit, but I will read all the manuals etc.


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    Member rodw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ms Monny View Post
    I just tested a photo that I scanned without Silverfast from the other day, and today with Silverfast and the difference is enormous! The colour is richer and the image smoother! I need to learn all the other functions rather than just pressing auto, but for now, I am happy. I don't really understand the ITF8 bit or the ICC profile bit, but I will read all the manuals etc.

    Calibrating the scanner is just like calibrating your monitor.

    You calibrate your monitor so what you have on the computer is accuratley displayed and looks like it will when finally printed.

    Calibrating your scanner is exactly the same as it teaches your scanner to see accurately so that the colours on whatever you scanned actually gets on to your HDD drive. So in theory, if you scan an image on a calibrated scanner and hold the image beside a calibrated monitor, they should look the same.

    You can edit your scan in post but it is a bit seat of the pants, in a calibrated workflow more gets done for you.

    Downside the scanner target is fairly expensive. A good one should come with a difference file that covers off on colour deviations from what was printed in the lab to what actually ended up on the target. ie. sort of calibrating the target before you calibrate your scanner.

    So now once you get that all done, you just need to calibrate your printer.... so the software on your PC can alter the data sent to the device to account for its individual colour footprint.

    .. and then look at the final result under special colour corrected lights.... it never ends .... but the final print should look like the one you started with in a perfect world.

    Every step hits some engineering limit or law of physics (maybe the printer can't position the ink nozzle as accurate as required or the pigments we manufacture are not pure enough and have some contamination so it may never be perfect, but it should be close!

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    There is a few out there that think taking a photo of negatives/slides/photos is better than scanning.

    Do a search and you will find lots of info about it. i have heard "experts" say that the results are much better using your DSLR and a scanner.

    of course with slides and negatives you will need a lightbox, but that could be a un project if youa re that way inclined.
    Last edited by znelbok; 10-05-2012 at 12:18pm.
    Mick

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    I've got no experience with that process.

    Pre digital cameras, transparencies were scanned on a drum scanner. The tranny was removed from the case, covered in oil and wrapped around a drum with a laser inside that scanned the image. Typically drum scanners cost around $30k for an entry level one.

    The resolution of a scanner is measured in D-max. Typically a flat bed scanner has a D-max of 3.0 and drum scanners around 3.6-3.8. I can't really remember what it meant but think of it like the dynamic range of a camera and the sharpness of the scanner.

    A dynamic range of 3.4 for this particular scanner is pretty darn good and I bet it will be a lot less work to scan a bunch of slides with a scanner with an automated workflow that accounts for the film emulsion than individually adjusting photos in Lightroom or something to do the tweaks, dust removal etc that gets done for you on the fly!

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    Drifter, Racer and Picture Taker
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    The quickest and easiest way to digitise slides is get a slide copier attachment for your SLR.
    This is a holder that connects onto your camera a certain distance away from the lens so that the slide fills the entire image sensor of your camera.
    They usually have a frosted glass on the rear of the slide holder, and just pop in the slide, hold it up to daylight, focus, and take a snap.

    After you've done a few of them, you can easily do 100 slides an hour.

    You can even make one up for yourself.

    Here's an example of what is available http://www.srb-griturn.com/slide-copier-1575-p.asp

    Good luck!
    All my photos are taken with recycled pixels.
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    Wisdom, is knowing not to serve it in a fruit salad.

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    Well, I can understand about getting a good workflow happening....most, if not all of the slides need dust removal etc. Just getting use to the whole set up at the moment....whew, this may take me a while.

    Benny, that sounds intriguing!! I might just check it out! Thanks for the info. I have heard of people taking pics of other pictures and slides, but I thought I needed a macro lens?? Better read up and see.

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    That does look really good....plus it is only just over $100. Hmmm, might keep that in mind!

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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Don't scan them !!!!!!!

    Mongo has a very good dedicated slide copier and has not used it for years BECAUSE he photographs them straight into his digital SLR using and old slide copier attachment for his camera. It is HEAPS faster (about 1 slide every 10 seconds), more accurate, more control (including RAW if you want it) and ultimately MORE time for Mongo to spend doing other things from the time and frustration saved !!!!

    Why do people still copy slides using a scanner ?????
    Last edited by mongo; 11-05-2012 at 7:44am.
    Nikon and Pentax user



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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    CHMP!! (Second bite of the cherry.)

    Quote Originally Posted by mongo View Post
    ...Don't scan them !!!!!!!
    Why do people still copy slides using a scanner ?????...
    As the late Sir E Hillary might have offered as an answer, "Because it's there."

    I suspect that Ms Monny's scanner, as is mine, is still there, and so...

    But mind you, I wouldn't mind a slide copier for those odd moments where setting up the scanner takes ages for little actual use...
    Am.

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    Mongo - some details on your slide copier please.

    I too am looking at doing a heap of negatives so have an interest in this option over scanning them.

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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by znelbok View Post
    Mongo - some details on your slide copier please.

    I too am looking at doing a heap of negatives so have an interest in this option over scanning them.
    it is just the old slide copiers used to photograph slides using a film camera but substitute digital SLR instead. The best way is for mongo to post a photo of set-up later today.

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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Images 1 to 3 are of a better quality Nikon slide copier used back in the film days when they copied slides onto film. Mongo is not suggesting you get anything like this one unless you find one cheap. Mongo now uses it to copy slides straight onto digital media using an digital SLR instead of a film camera - nothing could be simpler.


    image 4 is of a much more obtainable and inexpensive after market unit (this one is made by Pangor but there are many other types)


    Always clean your slides and remove any dust you can before copying them. It is false economy to think the fancy scanners can remove all this stuff - they cannot and it takes for ever for them to try and they can not do as good a job as you can.


    when starting off , take a few test images to get a good light reading/balance or setting up your flash. Set you white balance to suit. Use a reasonable depth of field setting , say, f8 or f11 (although, it does not seem to be strictly needed as the slide is a flat field object (these are Mongo’s words). Your ISO can be as low as your camera will go because even if long exposures are required (and usually they are never required), there will be NO movement as the unit moves as a whole (if it does at all). Set the focus (and this is not usually required for subsequent slides after setting up the focus for first slide - but just check especially if you have slide mounts with different thicknesses).


    Once these things are done (and they really take very little time indeed), you can copy a slide in as much time as it takes you slot it in, press the shutter button, remove the slide and slot in another.


    the images themselves will hopefully answer most of your questions but open to questions if you have any.


    cheers
    Mongo
    scan-1.jpg

    scan-2.jpg

    slide-3.jpg

    sides-4.jpg

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