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Article: Scanning Film. Workflow from scanning to editing to printing

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Hey guys,

 

I wrote a new article!

 

In this article I will go over my workflow for photos taken on film rather than digital. I will be using software suite Nikon Scan 4, and will go over the settings I use for scanning with the Nikon Super Coolscan 4000 ED. This article will be most of interest to anyone using Nikon Scan 3 or 4 with any of the Nikon Coolscan film scanners. Some features and options will vary per scanner but most will be the same. It will also be interesting for people who use other scanners and software but will need to take this information as is and ‘translate’ it into their own software suites functions and options.

 

Please read the article here: Scanning film with Nikon Super Coolscan 4000 - Jip van Kuijk

 

I would love to receive comments and feedback here on the forum or in the comment section on my website.

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Nice article Jip.

 

Btw, you can add a partition with Snow Leopard and install Nikon Scan on that. The 4000 uses FW400 so unless you have such a port on the Mac Pro it can easily be added with an adapter card. Or if you have Thunderbolt on the Mac Pro you can get a FW400-FW800 cable and connect that to a FW800-Thunderbolt adapter.

 

I run my 9000 on a Mac Pro 3,1, occasionally from an SL partition and Nikon Scan though mostly with Vuescan from the main Mavericks install because I prefer Vuescan. I use ColorPerfect to "develop" the scans which I find offers very good control. This requires linear scans, but that's possible to achieve with Nikon Scan too.

 

br

Philip

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If I keep the workflow I have now but do the gain increase would that work? Or does it need a change of workflow?

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Interesting article to scan "color" film Jip

. Thanks for sharing.

I work for film in TIFF and DNG for digital

For me film does not need LR correction or other photo software,

for example with Kodak Portra, if the development is correct.

Unlike the digital that needs correction.

Best

Henry

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If I keep the workflow I have now but do the gain increase would that work? Or does it need a change of workflow?

 

Working with ColorPerfect requires a slight modification to the workflow. ColorPerfect requires linear scans (as detailed in the linked page for Nikon Scan). This saves the file as a TIFF which you open in Photoshop. You then set the colour space depending on what you want and launch ColorPerfect, which is in the Filter menu.

 

Depending on whether the image is a colour negative or a transparency you select the ColorNeg or ColorPos mode.

 

There are a myriad of things one can do, but I find that for colour negative it is enough to move the Black slider a bit to manage the highlights and then use the Autocolor slider to find the colour balance I want. I rarely if ever touch the White slider to adjust the shadow areas (it is confusing that the sliders are named the opposite of what they do).

 

For transparencies it's even easier because one only needs to adjust the Black slider since the colour (at least from my scanner) usually comes out exactly like the transparency looks. I say usually because for certain lighting situations (like indoors under certain lights) the colour may be off. However, I have not found an image which couldn't be corrected using the Autocolor slider to give an image with good colour.

 

Then OK out and save. With a linear scan, and provided you didn't make any adjustments in the scanning software (thus giving you a very flat scan), using ColorPerfect will give you an image file that is colour corrected and has the maximum amount of information. This

becomes my "original" which I can then tweakto my liking in Photoshop.

 

I've tried scanning in various other formats, including DNG (in Vuescan) and opening up in ACR but I prefer to leave all the editing to Photoshop and only "develop" the image in ColorPerfect.

 

Hope this helps. If you wonder about something just write back.

 

br

Philip

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Btw, you can add a partition with Snow Leopard and install Nikon Scan on that. The 4000 uses FW400 so unless you have such a port on the Mac Pro it can easily be added with an adapter card. Or if you have Thunderbolt on the Mac Pro you can get a FW400-FW800 cable and connect that to a FW800-Thunderbolt adapter.

 

Philip

 

I did try that when I was without my Flextight last fall and had to fall back on the LS9000ED and 5400. I made a Snow Leopard VM in Parallels, but found a problem in that SL cannot recognise Thunderbolt ports as they weren't invented when 10.6 was current! Nikon Scan and the old KM DiMage apps ran fine, but couldn't see the scanners. The 5400 II is OK as it used USB to connect. My solution was to spend a couple of days really getting to know Vuescan!

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Good point Chris, that makes sense of course. Thanks for clarifying that (here's a moment I wish I could edit my previous post).

 

Out of curiosity, do you have the latest ("trashcan") Mac Pro or a Thunderbolt adapter in an older Mac Pro? Also, did you try this or this update?

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I'm using a MBA, rather than anything grand. I didn't know about the SL Thunderbolt software updates (I guess I was an early adopter of Lion et al, so I never was offered them). I'll give it a whirl.

 

Chris

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Well that was frustrating! I had to upgrade my Snow Leopard VM to 10.6.8 as those updates required it. Then the message says 'Not supported on your system' when I tried again. I even upgraded Parallels from v9 to v10, but it still doesn't work - "Not supported on your system' again. I guess I'm sticking with Vuescan when I want to use those scanners!

 

Chris

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Well that was frustrating! I had to upgrade my Snow Leopard VM to 10.6.8 as those updates required it. Then the message says 'Not supported on your system' when I tried again. I even upgraded Parallels from v9 to v10, but it still doesn't work - "Not supported on your system' again. I guess I'm sticking with Vuescan when I want to use those scanners!

 

Chris

 

Hi Chris,

 

Have you tried creating a volume (even on an external drive) and running Snow Leopard and Nikon Scan natively from there? As I understand it, that should allow the OS to see the Thunderbolt ports with those updates installed.

 

Btw, and on another topic, have you ever compared the X1, the 5400 and the 9000? I am sure there are quite a few who would like to see such a comparison

I've personally searched far and wide on the Net for this but come up empty-handed.

 

br

Philip

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No I haven't done that, and I don't think the current MBA will boot with an OS as old as 10.6.

 

Yes, I've compared the scanners. I tend to use the 5400 if I want quick 35mm scans as it is definitely the fastest of the three, but I can never get the colours just right with it, so mostly for B&W. The Nikon is slow and noisy, but gives results nearly as good as the Flextight. Both the 5400 and the 9000 use Vuescan these days and that adds another layer of awkwardness. When my 848 needed servicing last fall I had to use the Nikon for a couple of months and it drove me nuts. When Hasselblad failed to fix the problem with the 848 and it had to go back again I broke down and got an X1. Now I have the 848 back as well (in working order) and I'll get round to selling it one of these days. Both Flextights are faster than the Nikon, and very easy to use. You really have to look closely to see the differences in quality, and the main reason for using the Flextights is their ease of use and speed. Now I'm doing 4x5 as well, the Flextight can handle that too (though even my humble old Epson 4870 does a respectable job on negatives that big!)

 

There are comparisons os scans done by the 9000 and an X5 (slightly softer than the X1/848 because of the condenser in it, but faster still) here.

 

Chris

Edited by chrism

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