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Input/Output/Workflow Scanning, printing, color management, and discussing best practices for control and repeatability

How to scan slides

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  #11  
Old 01-29-2006, 11:20 AM
Bob2006 Bob2006 is offline
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Using your Rebel with a slide attachment might suffice for a time, but a dedicated slide/negative scanner is a better long term solution for scanning hundreds of slides. I've just completed scanning well over a thousand old 35mm slides using a dedicated scanner and archiiving them on DVD discs. To get away from learning the scanner software, acquire the shareware app, VueScan. It automates everything for you.

For slides use a soft camels hair brush to brush the dust off each slide before scanning. You can then use a photediting app to finish cleaning up the remaining dust and defects. I use the makeover tool in PSP X which works extremely well for removing dust spots, much better than the clone tool. Some scanners use infrared to detect dust and help remove them from the scanned image but these require additional scanning and computation time and are more expensive

I am presently in the midst of scanning hundreds of rolls of 35mm b&w, and color negatives using the same scanner. Works well. Of course one of the problems with 35mm negative is color balance. Vuescan usually takes care of this well. If you buy a dedicated 35mm scanner, make sure that Vuescan will accomodate that model.

Check Wayne Fulton's Scan Tips site for some advice.

Bob
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  #12  
Old 01-29-2006, 01:22 PM
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mistermonday mistermonday is offline
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Scanning Slides

Imann, since others are posting so many suggestions good suggestions I thought I would add a couple based on experiences, particularly if you do use a dedicated slide scanner.
1. Often there are fine dust particles on old slides and negatives. Often when you go to scan them, static charges make them cling even more tenaciously to the film. Moreover, while at 2400 or 4000 DPI, the scanners give you a fantastic image file, they also scan all of the dustspots as well. If you have a lot of small ones, you may spend considerable time with the clone brush afterward. So one thing you may want to consider is using a small air AC operated compressor like the kind used to fill up tires or for use in home workshops. Your local home depot can supply a standard $3 nozzle with a fine tip and a trigger. At 80-100 PSI it blasts the dust away like no brush can.
2. Every scanner manufacturer provides its own drive software with the hardware. The software provides you with the opportunity to adjust color, brightness, contrast, sharpness, and some other features prior to passing the scanned image file to you computer. My recommendation is turn all of those settings off. 3rd party software should not be necessary. Take the highest quality scan in the highest resolution that your scanner can produce, then make all of those adjustments in Photoshop or other image editing program. You should howver use the scanner's Crop window so that you can import the image area with only a small border which you can crop more precisely on your computer.
3. More expensive scanners (~$500) come with sophisticated s/w algorithms which can remove dust, scratches, and pinholes in the film. So like Nikon Coolscan (feature is called Digital ICE) do a fantastic job. They basically scan the filmm twice and where they detect surface anomalies they clone over the spots with good pixel data from adjacent areas. While they take twice as long to scan (1 min vs 30 secs per 35mm frame) they can save you an incredible amount of time trying cloning. I have hundreds of 35mm negative which due to degradation have significant amounts of pinholes in the emulsion. The extra investment paid for itself very quickly.
Good luck with your scanning project in however manner the choose to approach it.
Regards, Murray
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  #13  
Old 01-29-2006, 05:06 PM
imann08 imann08 is offline
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Mistermonday: Thanks for all the information. Alot of what you have said has also been said by things I have read so that just strengthens it. I will have to give it some thought. This is simply a task I offerred out of the kindness of my heart so it doesn't have to be done at all if I don't want to. It just seemed like a good idea. I didn't think that it would involve buying a new scanner specifically for slides. I do want to get into this though so I'm sure that I will eventually have too. Very cool of you and everyone else to help me out though.

The one thing that is mentioned by more than one is that I would have to clone the dust away. Couldn't blurring or using the healing tools be a more effetive means to accomplish this? Cloning just sounds a bit too brutal for something as small as dust. I haven't tried it out myself so this is just a thought.
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  #14  
Old 01-29-2006, 07:18 PM
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mistermonday mistermonday is offline
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Imann, sorry I tend to use the term "cloning" loosely when referreing to eliminating dust spots and imperfections. You can use the Clone Stamp tool, the Healing Brush tools, or blurring but it depends on the image you are repairing and the size of the imperfection. Sometimes one will work better than the others. If you have a very sharp, very detailed area, blurring a spot in the middle of it will tend to be very noticeable and you would likely be better off with the Clone tool. The healing brush is sometimes the best solution but it sometimes has problems when the imperfection has a very different lightness level than the surrounding area as it will attempt to change the color but preserve the luminosity of the defect area. As you experiment with it, you will get the feel for which tool works best under what circumstances.
Regards, Murray
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  #15  
Old 01-29-2006, 11:45 PM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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there are also software programs and plugins that remove dust, scratches and noise. Neat Image is one and Polaroid's Dust and Scratch remover. these are automated detection routines designed to detect and remove unwanted 'noise' in an image.

craig
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  #16  
Old 02-15-2006, 07:45 PM
billcotter billcotter is offline
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I do a lot of restoration of old slides and negatives from various World's Fairs, and a lot of people ask me about what is involved in getting their own photos to look good again. I just put together a short page trying to encourage them to restore their photos and not toss them. The address is

http://www.worldsfairphotos.com/restoration

I'll briefly echo what others have said - a scanner with Digital ICE is the key to starting the job. It will save you a TON of time, especially if you have a large number of slides. ICE actually works with an infraed beam that scans the negative for extra thickness (dirt) or thinness (scratch). You have to see the results to believe it. Some scanners and some software also allow for multiple passes to better interpolate the results. I find that a 35mm slide takes about 3 min on my Nikon Coolscan with ICE on, but the extra time is well worth the time I would have to spend manually fixing some of this stuff.

Regards

Bill
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  #17  
Old 02-15-2006, 09:34 PM
dkcoats dkcoats is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mistermonday
...one thing you may want to consider is using a small air AC operated compressor like the kind used to fill up tires or for use in home workshops.
A caution here: automotive/industrial/construction-type compressors are a bad choice for photo applications. When you're pumping up your tires or driving nails, a little oil or water along with the air isn't a big deal. When you're cleaning film, it is.

dc
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  #18  
Old 02-16-2006, 10:55 AM
alain754 alain754 is offline
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what if Kodachrome

Quote:
Originally Posted by billcotter
a scanner with Digital ICE is the key to starting the job. It will save you a TON of time, especially if you have a large number of slides. ICE actually works with an infraed beam that scans the negative for extra thickness (dirt) or thinness (scratch).
If your slides are Kodachrome, I'm not sure Digital ICE work well ... anyone knows something about this ?
Alain
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  #19  
Old 02-19-2006, 10:50 AM
imann08 imann08 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billcotter
I do a lot of restoration of old slides and negatives from various World's Fairs, and a lot of people ask me about what is involved in getting their own photos to look good again. I just put together a short page trying to encourage them to restore their photos and not toss them. The address is

http://www.worldsfairphotos.com/restoration

I'll briefly echo what others have said - a scanner with Digital ICE is the key to starting the job. It will save you a TON of time, especially if you have a large number of slides. ICE actually works with an infraed beam that scans the negative for extra thickness (dirt) or thinness (scratch). You have to see the results to believe it. Some scanners and some software also allow for multiple passes to better interpolate the results. I find that a 35mm slide takes about 3 min on my Nikon Coolscan with ICE on, but the extra time is well worth the time I would have to spend manually fixing some of this stuff.
Thanks a lot Bill. Being able to see Digital ICE in action through your link is very helpful for me. I have really debated whether or not I want to spend the money to work on these slides since they are my possession. If it was a job, then it wouldn't have been that hard to decide. After seeing your link, it really tells me that I should do it.

For everyone else to consider, can Alain754's question be answered? To add to that, if there is a problem, what is its significance and what is an alternative or addition to Digital ICE if the problem is significant?
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  #20  
Old 03-27-2006, 04:41 AM
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pure pure is offline
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could i add a question here please:

i got slide scans from the lab. accidentally they scanned it in iso-cmyk. but i prefer working in adobe RGB colorspace, as its smaller files and bigger colorspace. they want to sell the images as stock material, mostly on their website, so they would have to convert it later also, i guess.

may i oversea something here, or any disadvantage in converting all 100 scans from cmyk to RGB before retouching them?

thanks
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