Scanning glass mount slides

Discussion in '35mm Cameras' started by ITMA, Sep 12, 2004.

  1. ITMA

    ITMA Guest

    Presumably a film scanner cannot cope with a glass mounted slide, especially
    the 'anti-newton' types which of course give a noticeable blurring when
    projected so would no doubt completely throw a scanner ...? Any
    ITMA, Sep 12, 2004
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  2. ITMA

    Gordon Moat Guest

    I have done a little bit of experimenting with Gepe glass mounts, and drum
    scanning oil. The combination are then used in a film scanner. There is no
    patterning problem, the colours are easier to accurately capture, and the
    dynamic range seems to improve slightly. The only problem is this is a slow
    process. Without the drum scanning oil, I think the only reason to use a glass
    mount would be if the original transparency has curled badly.


    Gordon Moat
    A G Studio
    <> Updated!
    Gordon Moat, Sep 12, 2004
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  3. ITMA

    Tony Guest

    Take tehm out of the glass mount while scanning. Unless they have stuck, of
    Tony, Sep 13, 2004
  4. ITMA

    Ed Blagden Guest

    I'm thinking about getting a 35mm film scanner to deal with my
    slides... approaching the digital age at a cautious pace!

    One newbie question, which I have never seen the answer to: does the
    autofocus feature on film scanners deal with moderately warped /
    curled slides?


    Ed Blagden, Sep 13, 2004
  5. ITMA

    Mark Roberts Guest

    It gets one part of the curled slide in focus.
    On the better scanners you can choose the focus point and decide
    between having the center or the edge in focus. It is possible to do
    separate scans using various focus points and combine the results in
    Photoshop, but it's a considerable amount of work.
    Mark Roberts, Sep 13, 2004
  6. ITMA

    Gordon Moat Guest

    No, and the autofocus is not always the best choice for certain slides. Some scanners have a
    fixed DoF that covers a certain width of film, and might actually do okay with a slightly
    curved piece of film. It is better to find a scanner that lets you manually adjust the focus.
    Some films will give much better results by adjusting the focus slightly before, or slightly
    after, the point that the autofocus suggests.

    As a newcomer to this technology, you should also know that the default settings are not
    always the best choice. There is also an issue of the scan preview window not always giving an
    accurate looking (colour) preview, though better software often is very close. There is
    VueScan, which is fairly low cost, and works with many more common scanners, and at the high
    end is SilverFast. SilverFast is actually more capable, though much more expensive. Also,
    SilverFast will not work with all scanners.

    At the professional level, the idea is to get an extremely accurate scan, and not have any
    need for adjustments in PhotoShop (or whatever editor you use). Some film scanners have a good
    enough range of adjustments to allow that, but many do not, thus requiring adjustments to the
    scanned file. You might be surprised that some lower cost scanners are very good, though
    sometimes let down by the included software. Anyway, best of luck with your search.


    Gordon Moat
    A G Studio
    <> Updated!
    Gordon Moat, Sep 14, 2004
  7. ITMA

    Ed Blagden Guest

    Thanks for the advice, Gordon.

    Presumably going for a scanner with a higher DOF is a good idea... any
    ideas about where to research such arcania?
    Ed Blagden, Sep 14, 2004
  8. ITMA

    MrScience9 Guest

    Remove the slide from the glass mount and remount it a non glass plastic mount.
    That works for me.
    MrScience9, Sep 14, 2004
  9. ITMA

    Alan Browne Guest

    or in the negative carrier for the scanner.
    Alan Browne, Sep 14, 2004
  10. ITMA

    Gordon Moat Guest

    Unfortunately, there is very little information about this. There are a few individuals who
    publish some limited test information on some scanners, though I don't have a handy list
    available. Largely the scanner resolution numbers indicate the movement of a stepper motor, and
    might not indicate a true possible resolution. With flat bad scanners, that is mostly true, except
    for high end scanners like Creo or Fuji Lanovia. With drum scanners, the resolution is completely
    different from other types of scanners, and there is an extra variable with an aperture setting on
    the scanner, though largely even drum scanners of more than ten years ago can capture down to 6 µ
    (micron) film area. To understand that better, most film grains are actually less than 3 µ
    (micron) across. Newer drum scanners introduced in the last year can capture down to 3 µ size

    I was guessing your interest was more along the lines of film scanners. Nearly all are CCD
    trilinear array scanners. Of the 2500 to 2900 resolution film scanners, almost all those are
    indicated a true possible capture resolution. With the 4000 to 5400 resolution scanners, many
    actually do not capture that full resolution, and some barely do better than the 2500 to 2900
    scanners. Of course, there are other issues, like need for calibration, light sources failing at
    some point, speed of scanning, speed of communication (SCSI and FireWire generally quick, while
    nearly all USB are painfully slow), film holders and film loading, ability to avoid dust, or
    software issues. The basic idea is that you are not often giving up much going with what might
    seem like a lower resolution scanner. Look more at colour issues (when possible), or at the film

    Many people are quite happy with Nikon film scanners, and they seem to be quite popular. I am one
    of the few that have not been happy with those, mostly due to breakdowns in high usage
    environments. The capture ability is quite good, but reliability could be better. The Minolta
    scanners are less known to me, though the few I have experience with seem fairly good. The newest
    5400 is one I have not yet seen in action, though with the previous 4000 resolution models, they
    were not capturing a true 4000 resolution. Most of the Microtek scanners are the same as the older
    Polaroid film scanners, generally good, though the colour range could be better. The Canon film
    scanners work quite well once off the default settings, though are somewhat let down by their
    included software, which does not give a very accurate preview.

    I have also used some Sony and Kodak film scanners. I use to consider the Kodak scanners as quite
    good, though now I realize that they are really only good in a high volume environment. The colour
    range is not as good as it would seem from the specifications. I find colour issues to be much
    more troublesome than resolution, though all manufacturers list dynamic range information that is
    nearly useless to actually compare different scanners, nor to give a true idea of capability.

    A really great independent source of research is the FLAAR organization. They only test units for
    one year before giving an opinion. Some manufacturers do not want to submit a scanner to a one
    year test, so the few they have reports about might be not the latest in scanners (especially true
    with flat scanners). However, they are definitely the first place to check into more information:

    <> Main page, which allows selection of other report areas. Some of the older
    gear they mention is still quite good. Since they are slow about reporting, there are some newer
    scanners that they have no written reports about.

    <> Norman Koren has some great information about
    several scanners. He also has several articles discussing colour issues, and scanner settings.
    While I do not find myself in total agreement with him, there is lots of very useful information
    on his site.


    Okay, really long link to type out, hopefully you can just click on it. This site has some great
    comparisons about different scanner types, and some really well considered information. Definitely
    worth the reading, if you are interested in the technology behind scanners. Kai Hamann is
    probably one of the most knowledgeable people I have ever read about for scanning technology.

    Norman Koren also has many links to other sites, which can help you research and compare many
    different scanners. You can spend quite a bit of time on his site, and using the links provided.

    Since I don't really know what you want to accomplish with your film scanning, it is tough for me
    to recommend any one scanner. I do recommend that whatever you choose, try to find a scanner
    supported by SilverFast software). While you might never feel the need to buy SilverFast AI, it is
    nice to have that option in the future.


    Gordon Moat
    A G Studio
    <> Updated!
    Gordon Moat, Sep 14, 2004
  11. ITMA

    ITMA Guest

    "Drum scanning oil" sounds messy to me! Doesn't it get everywhere and
    attract dust, or is it not actually an oil at all?

    The reason for 'using' a glass mount would not be so much a deliberate
    intention but more a question of if I were to mount a number of slides for
    safe keeping and distortion free projecting, and then also at a later date
    wish to scan them, would I have to remove the glass
    ITMA, Sep 14, 2004
  12. ITMA

    Gordon Moat Guest

    Not exactly. The idea is only to use one drop, which would restrict it to the
    transparency surface only. It is actually good for the film. It will even
    fill in scratched film, so you could consider it a type of dust and scratch
    removal. Obviously, since it takes more time, this is not a good choice for
    all scanned film. The big advantage of this method is best exploited for
    large reprints.
    If it is anti-Newton glass, like in the better Gepe mounts, then you should
    have no need to worry about future scanning. The only consideration should be
    the additional cost over normal mounts.


    Gordon Moat
    A G Studio
    <> Updated!
    Gordon Moat, Sep 15, 2004
  13. ITMA

    Ed Blagden Guest

    [big snip]

    Just a note of sincere thanks for taking the trouble to do such a
    detailed, comprehensive and helpful post. Much appreciated.

    I'll now go and do some reading!


    Ed Blagden, Sep 16, 2004
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