making a large format digital camera out of a scanner.

Discussion in 'Scanners' started by Art, Jan 4, 2004.

  1. Art

    Art Guest

    Have toying with the idea of making a large format digital camera out of a
    scanner. I focused the light coming though the window on to the surface of
    the scanner (CanoScan LiDE 20) using a 24mm Nikon AF lens. The resulting
    image demonstrated good contrast but focus was a problem due to stability in
    the cardboard mount during the scan. Thinking of taking this further by
    mounting the scanner on the back of a plate camera, if I can borrow one!

    Wondered if anyone else has tried this approach and can give any feedback?
    If it can be made to work a 115 Megapixal image could be obtained (1200 pix
    x 8 x 10). Panoramic shots could be achieved by panning the camera as it


    Art, Jan 4, 2004
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  2. Since nobody has replied yet...

    I've nothing really to add, but love the idea of this. Do let us know if
    you get anywhere. Perhaps I'll give it a try if I ever have the time.
    Willy Eckerslyke, Jan 9, 2004
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  3. Art

    Bruce Murphy Guest

    I must admit surprise that you got enough light. As you are no doubt
    aware, a scanner usually operates at very high light levels obtained
    with the almost-immediately-adjacent cold cathode lamp and this is
    what the sensor is optimised for.

    Also, I'm not sure how much control you're going to have over the rate
    at which the scanning element moves (which is effectively your
    exposure control). For this, contacting the people who make a
    multi-platform free scanner driving product like SANE might well be
    helpful because they would doubtless have information about which
    scanners can be controlled in this manner (and might even be able to
    suggest software approaches)
    I doubt the nasty lens over the scanning element will give this sort
    of resolving power, but it could still be interestingly high.
    Bruce Murphy, Jan 9, 2004
  4. However, a scanner with a transparency adaptor will need to run at much
    lower light levels. My Epson 1680 Pro is quite able to scan fairly dense
    negs suggesting that it's more sensitive than its normal mode would suggest.
    Hmm, never really thought about this. Is scanning "exposure" normally
    done entirely by software or does the scanning rate actually slow down
    for darker subjects? Can't say I've ever noticed.
    Looks like I will need to find time to experiment. Not until next week
    Willy Eckerslyke, Jan 9, 2004
  5. Art

    Bum Guest

    Nice idea. How about using an enlarger lens though, and MDF instead
    of cardboard ?

    Use a laptop , go portable !


    Bum, Jan 9, 2004
  6. Art

    Peter Watt Guest

    Had thought about this.
    You would need a ground glass imaging screen in contact with the scanner
    glass surface.
    They make scanning backs for cameras. see Calumet catalogue.
    Peter Watt, Jan 15, 2004
  7. Art

    Guest Guest

    This was proposed for me to investigate your suggestion as a scene of
    crime record.
    Sadly no funding was available.
    Ive got a 1000mm aerial survey lens that could also be pressed into
    Note the similarity between the scanner and a focal plane shutter.
    There are two sorts of scanner; the uniform bar of white light this is
    an older system and the newer lower cost scanner which employs red green
    and blue LED's to illuminate the latter has very limited dept of field
    and cannot be used for 3d images.
    These are my observations and I would like to read a technical summary
    somewhere , anyone written one.
    Guest, Jan 18, 2004
  8. That would defeat the object somewhat.
    I found the website of a chap who's had some success, but I don't think
    his scanner would me much use for scanning afterwards:
    It links through to this:
    if you have a few hours to kill.
    Of course the digital camera market has moved on somewhat since those
    pages were written...
    Willy Eckerslyke, Jan 20, 2004
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