Re: Seeking 8x10 scanner advice

From: Judy Seigel ^lt;[email protected]>
Date: 09/27/04-12:09:05 PM Z
Message-id: <>

On Mon, 27 Sep 2004, Jack Fulton wrote:
> I have done a fair amount of scanning w/my personal Epson 3200 of 35mm
> negatives of 1600 ISO color (Fuji) and compared those to the Imacon, Nikon
> and Hell (fr Israel) units. The latter is a drum scan and is state-of-the-art
> perfect. Next was Imacon but in dense negatives or slides exhibit streaking.
> Nikon suffices for most blow-ups to 24 x 36.

I hesitate to join this discussion because clearly it's in the hands of
heavyweights-- not to mention the ULF (ultra large format to us wimps)
crowd ... But from the point of view of one still struggling with the
no-longer-so new digital camera, I can't forbear mentioning that I cannot
imagine going back to analog even if they gave me state of the art film
and processing free ! (Really !).

Of course it would be preferable if they had consulted me before designing
such a klutz of a camera (which I have trussed with color-coded tape to
keep the dials sans positive locks from moving when they're not supposed
to, etc.) but even so -- I mention two points: Being able to see the
picture immediately is amazing, in fact addictive -- perhaps for
photographing "nature," which isn't going anywhere, it's not much of an
issue, but to see expression and background events in a moving street
scene, it saves many complete failures, or at best hundreds of hours of
retouching - which of course would be much easier anyway plugged right
into Photoshop.

Which brings me to the part about the scanning. My experience with
Post-Factory sort of prepared me for this -- an e-mailed attachment of a
shot from a dinky amateur camera still reprinted (at least with my
commercial b&w offset repro) better than a fine print scanned in and put
through the same process .... something about digital speaking to digital,
I'm told.

I dare say that with high-end equipment (drum scan or top desktop scanner
PLUS top scanning software and top *knowhow*) you can do as well or maybe
better, but the digital camera loads directly onto the computer with no
scanning (when the camera software isn't crashing my Netscape in an
unexpected conflict, and/or wiping out the contents of other folders !)
and, more important, I find I like the quality of the prints ... so far at
least... better than film. There's an interesting flattening effect
(despite the added depth of field.... I can't explain it, I simply notice
it) that I find very graphic and/or, you should pardon the expression,
decorative. I like it better.

There are still hassles -- for one, the camera is lighter (I actually
chose the lightest 5 mp possible so I wouldn't mind carrying it every
day), so more difficult to hold steady in low light, I find. (One partial
solution is keeping it set at f 2.5 -- the depth of field is probably at
least f 5.6 analog -- & shutter speeds are faster.)

Of course I gather a LOT of folks use analog AND digital cameras -- their
minds are clearly more agile than mine... But one fellow told me the other
day that you can now attach a digital camera ... a regular 5mp he swore
... to a ULF. That's not the $20,000 digital back of old, but, I gather,
a digital camera that photographs through the large format lens...!?


Received on Mon Sep 27 12:09:23 2004

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