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Darth Musturd

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Well, we all know that film carries more detail than digital. So, there reaches a point where you have to ask is there even much of a point to scanning in large format film. That's what really separates large format from other formats is the detail it's able to carry, so why not just shoot the same picture in 35 mm and scan it in? However, with the new advancements in camera technology, soon we're due to have a 600 mp phone camera. I reckon we'll have scanners that can fully process large format (at least 8x10) soon right? Anyways, any of y'all know of any good current scanners that can scan large format well at all?
 

Donald Qualls

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I have an Epson Perfection V850 -- it'll scan up to 8x10 negatives at up to 4800 ppi, which gives up to 1.8 gigapixels (in 16 bits per channel color, if you like, or 16 bit grayscale). A drum scanner can beat this by at least an order of magnitude.

Having enough RAM and processor power to edit such an image file is left as an exercise...
 

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Drum scanners have been available for decades now, can scan very high resolution, pretty much any format. One thing that is often ignored in the discussion of resolution of large format images is that unless you are working with an expensive, modern lens, the lens does not have the resolving power of current medium-format digital lenses and sensors.
 
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Darth Musturd

Darth Musturd

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I have an Epson Perfection V850 -- it'll scan up to 8x10 negatives at up to 4800 ppi, which gives up to 1.8 gigapixels (in 16 bits per channel color, if you like, or 16 bit grayscale). A drum scanner can beat this by at least an order of magnitude.

Having enough RAM and processor power to edit such an image file is left as an exercise...

My goodness! And only a thousand dollars? I've gotta get into large format after this!
 

Donald Qualls

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My goodness! And only a thousand dollars? I've gotta get into large format after this!

I'd suggest dipping your feet with 4x5. You can get a 4x5 camera with a lens for not much over $200 (sometimes less), film holders are more available and less expensive than for 8x10, and film costs much less than a quarter as much (i.e. lower cost per square inch). Everything is lighter than 8x10 of comparable vintage and tech level. Equipment to process the film is more available and less expensive, too. If you find you like it a lot, then by all means drop thousands of dollars into 8x10, if you have it -- but a Speed Graphic, one lens, and some film holders will set you back less than a medium format SLR, and a wood field camera will be more versatile and only a little more money.
 

MattKing

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Moved to the Scanners and Scanning sub-forum - because that is what its about!
FWIW, there are also a number of older generation flatbed scanners that will scan 8x10 negatives.
And by the way, 8x10 probably doesn't qualify as Ultra Large Format 😄 - at least not in these parts!
 

Alan9940

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FWIW, there are also a number of older generation flatbed scanners that will scan 8x10 negatives.

I use a very old Epson Expression 1680 Pro to scan my 8x10 film that I bought new around 2001. It's certainly not the sharpish tool in the shed, but with careful editing and the use of recent AI sharpening algorithms one can pull a pretty nice print from it. It's only a max 1600ppi resolution, but at 300ppi print resolution that's a little over 5x enlargement; 40x50" is significantly larger than anything I'll ever print.
 
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Darth Musturd

Darth Musturd

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Moved to the Scanners and Scanning sub-forum - because that is what its about!
FWIW, there are also a number of older generation flatbed scanners that will scan 8x10 negatives.
And by the way, 8x10 probably doesn't qualify as Ultra Large Format 😄 - at least not in these parts!

Thanks!
And, again, please pardon my ignorance. I've never done anything with film and I'm pretty new to the site.
 
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The big advantage of LF is the cameras usually allow movements that allow the focusing plane to be shifted. With traditional cameras, that cannot be done generally. Of course, you get a larger film size as well which I find easier to scan for better results than scanning 35mm or 120 medium format film.
 

BCM

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I have an Epson Perfection V850 -- it'll scan up to 8x10 negatives at up to 4800 ppi, which gives up to 1.8 gigapixels (in 16 bits per channel color, if you like, or 16 bit grayscale). A drum scanner can beat this by at least an order of magnitude.

Having enough RAM and processor power to edit such an image file is left as an exercise...

The V850 only fits 8x10 on the bed which, I believe is limited to 1200 ppi. The add-on glass carriers aren't big enough. I had to get a Scitex scanner to do the 8x10. Are you sampling up?
 

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8x10=more surface area to gather dust. Clean well before scanning--both the film and the scanner. Once you start examining the scan on the computer, you will see how much dust you have inevitably missed.
 

Andrew O'Neill

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Darth, welcome to Photrio! I have been using an Epson 750V (replaced by the 850) for about ten years. I have been quite satisifed with it. I scan formats from 35mm up to 8x10. I have even scanned my 14x17 negatives (in sections). The scanner does a good job. I mainly scan smaller formats so that I can make enlarged digital negatives for Alt processes.
 

grat

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Having enough RAM and processor power to edit such an image file is left as an exercise...

Indeed. I have a 6/12 core Ryzen box with 32gb of memory and blazingly fast SSD-- and it struggles with a 1 gig TIFF.

The V850 only fits 8x10 on the bed which, I believe is limited to 1200 ppi. The add-on glass carriers aren't big enough. I had to get a Scitex scanner to do the 8x10. Are you sampling up?

The V7xx/8xx scanners have two lenses, one of which resolves 4800 PPI at the bed, and another that resolves 6400PPI at approximately 3mm height (coincidentally, the default height for the film holders). Maximum scanning area with the holders is 5.9" x 9.74", and maximum scanning area on the bed itself is 8.5" x 11.7" (From Epson's site).

Few people will claim with a straight face that the Epson scanners can actually produce that maximum resolution, but my personal experience is that 3200 PPI is not unreasonable for the transparency holders. I haven't experimented with 8x10, so can't offer any insight.
 

Donald Qualls

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The V850 only fits 8x10 on the bed which, I believe is limited to 1200 ppi. The add-on glass carriers aren't big enough. I had to get a Scitex scanner to do the 8x10. Are you sampling up?

I haven't attempted 8x10 scanning on mine -- 4x5 is the largest film I handle at this time.

The V7xx/8xx scanners have two lenses, one of which resolves 4800 PPI at the bed, and another that resolves 6400PPI at approximately 3mm height (coincidentally, the default height for the film holders). Maximum scanning area with the holders is 5.9" x 9.74", and maximum scanning area on the bed itself is 8.5" x 11.7" (From Epson's site).

Few people will claim with a straight face that the Epson scanners can actually produce that maximum resolution, but my personal experience is that 3200 PPI is not unreasonable for the transparency holders. I haven't experimented with 8x10, so can't offer any insight.

My original calculations in this thread were based on 4800 ppi (Vuescan won't offer 6400 on my V850, at least as of last time I used it, and there's no Epson scan software for Linux). Maybe I need to put the feet back on my glassless carriers (originally for an older model, modified to fit a still older Epson flatbed, but should still work on the V850) and see if it'll focus at 3 mm and then offer higher resolution?
 
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Indeed. I have a 6/12 core Ryzen box with 32gb of memory and blazingly fast SSD-- and it struggles with a 1 gig TIFF.



The V7xx/8xx scanners have two lenses, one of which resolves 4800 PPI at the bed, and another that resolves 6400PPI at approximately 3mm height (coincidentally, the default height for the film holders). Maximum scanning area with the holders is 5.9" x 9.74", and maximum scanning area on the bed itself is 8.5" x 11.7" (From Epson's site).

Few people will claim with a straight face that the Epson scanners can actually produce that maximum resolution, but my personal experience is that 3200 PPI is not unreasonable for the transparency holders. I haven't experimented with 8x10, so can't offer any insight.

I scan at 2400 standardly with my V850. That's 600MB tiff file to scan a 4x5 chrome at 2400 and 48 bit color. About 175MB for 2400 16 bit BW negative. Your editing program might not be able to handle scans of more pixels. In any case, I don't see more info higher than at 2400.

The V850 film holders (two each for each format) have adjustment feet. This allows you to set the best focus height for each holder. I tested mine and there is a difference that I could see. After the test, I marked the best position with a white marker pen because these sliders have a habit of slipping on their own.

Here's a test I did with the V850 at 2400 vs a Howtek drum scanner. The results compare favorably.
 

brbo

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My original calculations in this thread were based on 4800 ppi (Vuescan won't offer 6400 on my V850, at least as of last time I used it, and there's no Epson scan software for Linux). Maybe I need to put the feet back on my glassless carriers (originally for an older model, modified to fit a still older Epson flatbed, but should still work on the V850) and see if it'll focus at 3 mm and then offer higher resolution?

If you choose 'Mode = Transparency' in the 'Input' tab you should be able to scan at 6400dpi. In that mode the high resolution lens will be used which is prefocused to about 3mm above glass bed.
 

Donald Qualls

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If you choose 'Mode = Transparency' in the 'Input' tab you should be able to scan at 6400dpi. In that mode the high resolution lens will be used which is prefocused to about 3mm above glass bed.

I've only ever used Transparency mode -- it's the only way to get the lid light operating. None the less, Vuescan 64 for Linux, as of the last time I used it, did not offer resolution above 4800. Have you tried this software in Linux?

Don't really need that level of resolution for medium format or larger (files very quickly get bigger than I want to store, never mind can edit), but it'd be handy for 35 mm, half frame, and almost indispensible for 110/16 mm or Minox...
 

brbo

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I've only ever used Transparency mode -- it's the only way to get the lid light operating. None the less, Vuescan 64 for Linux, as of the last time I used it, did not offer resolution above 4800. Have you tried this software in Linux?

No. I don't even have V8XX, I used to have V700. Maybe Vuescan checks the selected area and if wider than 149mm it doesn't display the 6400dpi option? 149mm is the widest area that the super high resolution can cover.
 

Donald Qualls

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Maybe Vuescan checks the selected area and if wider than 149mm it doesn't display the 6400dpi option?

No, because it still only offers 4800 with 35 mm film (the ANR glass carrier has two strips side by side, but less than 149 mm wide). I have no doubt Epson Scan offers 6400 where physically possible, but either a SANE driver (which doesn't exist, as far as I've been able to tell, for the Epson V series) or Vuescan are the only options to use this scanner with Linux.
 

grat

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I scan at 2400 standardly with my V850. That's 600MB tiff file to scan a 4x5 chrome at 2400 and 48 bit color. About 175MB for 2400 16 bit BW negative. Your editing program might not be able to handle scans of more pixels. In any case, I don't see more info higher than at 2400.

The file in question was over a gigabyte. My editing program handled it, but it was very slow. It was also stitched from several smaller images. I will say that Affinity was originally 32 bit, and may or may not have been updated "properly" for 64 bit. It can do multi-threaded, so perhaps I should retry the editing, and maybe even upgrade to Affinity 2.x.

My original calculations in this thread were based on 4800 ppi (Vuescan won't offer 6400 on my V850, at least as of last time I used it, and there's no Epson scan software for Linux). Maybe I need to put the feet back on my glassless carriers (originally for an older model, modified to fit a still older Epson flatbed, but should still work on the V850) and see if it'll focus at 3 mm and then offer higher resolution?

All I can say is I'm using silverfast, and either of the holders (700 series glassless or 800 series with ANR) will allow 6400. I've got a scan of a 35mm frame to prove it could be done, but I really have difficulty telling any difference between 3200 and 6400-- probably because the film negative is only good for around 3500.
 

momus

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Note: There may not be a lot of VISIBLE difference between a very good scan and a drum scan, at least for most practical purposes. You have to wonder if the difference would even be seen on a large print? What we see on a monitor isn't much help either, because that just throws yet another variable into the equation. My computer monitor is not other people's monitor.

This is probably why 8x10 shooters prefer to make contact prints. If one does that, it's done directly from the negative, w/o any other steps in between. Every step outside of that introduces issues that are not present on the negative. My experience is that scanning also does something to the film grain on the scan. Usually it makes things more grainy. On, on a wet print, a lot of that will disappear. I doubt it would disappear on an inkjet print, since the dither of the printer introduces it's own stuff.
 
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Note: There may not be a lot of VISIBLE difference between a very good scan and a drum scan, at least for most practical purposes. You have to wonder if the difference would even be seen on a large print? What we see on a monitor isn't much help either, because that just throws yet another variable into the equation. My computer monitor is not other people's monitor.

This is probably why 8x10 shooters prefer to make contact prints. If one does that, it's done directly from the negative, w/o any other steps in between. Every step outside of that introduces issues that are not present on the negative. My experience is that scanning also does something to the film grain on the scan. Usually it makes things more grainy. On, on a wet print, a lot of that will disappear. I doubt it would disappear on an inkjet print, since the dither of the printer introduces it's own stuff.

Tmax 100 is pretty much grain free on the scans at 2400 on the monitor probably because of the T grain film. Tmax 400 is slightly noticeable. Check the slies out in these two to see the difference. Click on the images to enlarge them.
Tmax 100:

Tmax 400:
 

brbo

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No, because it still only offers 4800 with 35 mm film (the ANR glass carrier has two strips side by side, but less than 149 mm wide). I have no doubt Epson Scan offers 6400 where physically possible, but either a SANE driver (which doesn't exist, as far as I've been able to tell, for the Epson V series) or Vuescan are the only options to use this scanner with Linux.

In itself, I wouldn't worry about 4800dpi being the highest selectable scanning resolution. I would test the widest area you can scan in 'Transparency' mode, though. If you can get more than 150mm width covered in 'Transparency' mode, that would mean that Vuescan is only able to use the lower resolution lens in Linux. That means slightly lower optical resolution and not optimal focus for scanning film in holders.
 

grat

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Just checked, and Vuescan can indeed do 6400 PPI if "Transparency" mode is selected. If "Transparency 8x10" is selected, then you only get 4800 PPI as your max resolution.
 
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