Re: Some digital questions brought on my Mark Nelson's book.

From: Mark Tomlinson ^lt;>
Date: 09/27/04-04:29:40 AM Z
Message-id: <>

Hi Roy

I actually made a mistake in my previous post. I used a Canon 4000 not a
Minolta (I sold it a couple of years ago now). I hear the new Minolta
(5600?) is very good.

I should explain that I am fairly new to alt processes and I am going to
start creating digital negatives probably on my epson 1290. I have only
used the van dyck process on 5x4 inch negatives so far as an experiment
(and not with good results, but the negatives were not exposed/processed
with van dycks in mind). This is why I joined this forum - to learn more
about it.

Basically I got pretty good scans with a dedicated film scanner at 35mm,
then I moved 'up' to a Nikon digital SLR to try and cut out the time it
took to develop and scan. I think now that this was a mistake. The DSLR
is OK for certain subjects (eg portraits) , but not others which don't
take well to being 'rezzed up' to larger print sizes (I aim to print up
to 13x19 inches on the epson printer). The old 35mm film camera was
more versatile in this respect and the scans perfectly acceptable from
the Canon 4000.

I then moved back into film and went for medium format with an epson
flatbed scanner (model 3200) and film holder. It holds medium format and
5x4 inch negatives as well as 35mm. The 6x6 scans on this scanner are
probably just about equal to the 35mm scans on the Canon 4000 and I
wasn't too happy about that. I thought they would be better. I then
moved up to 5x4 and now I am in heaven. The 3200 is great with this size

Basically you have to be careful with flatbeds, they produce softer
negatives than dedicated film scanners. I read an article by George de
Wolfe that said you can print at 300 pixels per inch with a dedicated
film scanner, but you need at least 480 with a flatbed scan. My
experiments would agree with this. So to scan 35mm on the epson 3200
does not allow great enlargements and I have tried it and wouldn't use
it for this purpose. Other people may find it acceptable. I don't know.

I am therefore planning to scan 5x4 on the 3200 scanner and enlarge the
negatives on Pictorico film using Dan Burkholder's or some other method
(I am interested in the precision digital negatives book also, but
haven't seen it yet).

If you only have 35mm negatives then I would advise you to try and get a
dedicated film scanner or you may be disappointed. There is also a newer
epson flatbed (4870?) which has higher resolution, but I have no idea
whether this might be a good compromise.

If you want to get a digital camera then the newer ones with more than 6
megapixels might be OK. It depends on your subject matter and what
enlargement size you want, I suppose. I am sticking with large format. I
am even thinking of going up to 10x8 and just forgetting about the
scanning altogether, but I guess that makes me a dinosaur ;-).

Hope this helps,

roy beecher wrote:

>>I used the Minolta
>>4000 scanner for 35mm before I bought a digital camera.
>I am having to rethink my film photography for a while as I am awaiting a hip replacement operation and cannot easily access my darkroom and enlarger. Digital capture and subsequent production of an enlarged negative would seem to be the answer during the wait and subsequent period of enforced restricted activity. Without wishing to turn this into a camera forum could you give me some idea of the direction in which you went and whether it has proved satisfactory for your continuing work in the field of alt.processes. I would have no idea in which way to turn !
Received on Mon Sep 27 04:28:35 2004

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