scanner "discovery?"

Discussion in 'Scanners' started by Ken Weitzel, Aug 25, 2005.

  1. Ken Weitzel

    Ken Weitzel Guest


    Accidentally stumbled upon something that may be of
    interest to those of you scanning film and slides for
    archival purposes. Then again, I may simply be
    "re-inventing the wheel". You decide for yourselves :)

    Here's what's happened. Eyes are getting older, getting
    harder to see dust on the flatbed glass. See it in the
    morning, when the sun glares on it, but then the sun is
    also glaring on the monitor. Evenings can see the monitor
    perfectly, but can't see the dust well.

    So - the light bulb went off; I decided to scan an
    empty slide slot. Pull up the gain, and I should see
    how much and where the dust was so I could clean at least
    the one slot in the template perfectly.

    Was jaw dropping astonished to find that the top (nearest
    the hinge on Epson) 35mm slot was incredibly noisy (noise,
    not dust) at the top, tapering off towards the bottom.

    Tried the second slot (in epson's template) and it was
    much much quieter. Night and day difference, apples and
    oranges. Third one was acceptable, but not quite as clean
    as the second. And the fourth was the same as the first,
    amazingly noisy, but tapering to worst at the bottom.

    Clearly this means that the "sweet spot" at least on mine
    is the second slot. Why I have no idea, but promise it's

    Having said all that, scanning the identical transparency
    in both slots one and two, with the gain at normal, I can
    see no apparent difference. But - neat image sure can!!!

    I invite comment, and suggest that others experiment
    themselves with their own machines before beginning any
    big projects.

    If I'm preaching to the choir, I apologize.

    Take care.

    Ken Weitzel, Aug 25, 2005
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  2. Ken Weitzel

    eastside Guest

    Very observant of you. Are you sure you don't recall having read about this
    technique previously? Because "sweet spot" is exactly the same term commonly
    used in scanning that describes relatively noise-free areas of the scanning
    platten. The usual technique is to scan a clean piece of white paper and
    then enhance the contrast of the scan. Everyone who owns a consumer level
    scanner should do this to find the best areas to place scanning material.
    Even film scanners (at least every one that I've owned) display the same
    fault. Some professional flatbed scanners employ stitch scanning along the
    x-y axes to achieve uniform resolution and quality independent of the
    placement of the source material on the platten.
    eastside, Aug 25, 2005
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