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Negative or reversal film?


hector_jorge
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Until now I took my pictures with my R6-2 Leica using color negative film. Then I sent the film to the laboratory ordering prints and a CD with the negatives to see them on my Mac. Now that I own an Epson flat bed negative scanner my question is if it could be better to use reversal film than the negative one to have better quality pictures. Prints from negatives are cheaper than slide prints, but if I can make digital copies of the reversal pictures, the prints of that digital - reversal copies will have exactly the same price than the negative prints because both are made from the same digital master. Am I right? Any advise will be appreciated.

Hector.

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Until now I took my pictures with my R6-2 Leica using color negative film. Then I sent the film to the laboratory ordering prints and a CD with the negatives to see them on my Mac. Now that I own an Epson flat bed negative scanner my question is if it could be better to use reversal film than the negative one to have better quality pictures. Prints from negatives are cheaper than slide prints, but if I can make digital copies of the reversal pictures, the prints of that digital - reversal copies will have exactly the same price than the negative prints because both are made from the same digital master. Am I right? Any advise will be appreciated.

Hector.

Hola >Hector...no soy un experto asi que dejare que ellos te respondan...da gusto encontrar gente que habla español :)...he visto en paginas de venta de productos usados. mucho material de leica en venta por aquellos lugares, tienes alguna experiencia comprando con ellos??

Saludos..

Bob.

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If I understand correctly, what you are asking is:

 

Should it cost the same for a print to be made from a scan of a transparency as it does for a print from a negative scan?

 

Assuming the obvious i.e. print sizes are the same, same printer is used, same ink, same paper - then yes the prices should be the same. Essentially the scans from both neg and tranny are simply digital files now and as long as they have been scanned and prepared for printing correctly there is no difference.

 

However something to bear in mind is that flatbed film scanners are not renowned for giving top quality results. For the best quality you would require a dedicated scanner like a Nikon Coolscan, or if you had more cash at your disposal a Hasselblad/Imacon Flextight. Of course you are limited by format as you can only blow 35mm up so far before the grain becomes obtrusive, but you will get the most detail, depth and feeling out of the original with a decent scanner.

 

Something else to bear in mind is that traditionally transparency has lent itself to scanning in a way negative has not, i.e. it tends to have finer grain and therefore greater resolution (although you need the lenses to be good to make the most of it - not a problem with your Leica R lens!), and profiles and colour management for tranny in scanners have tended to produce more faithful results. Having said that, check the claims made about Kodak's recent Ektar ISO 100 emulsion.

 

Lately I returned from a trip where I shot both Ektar and transparency (Velvia and Astia) and will be interested in the results of the scans.

 

I'm slightly off topic now :D so I'll finish by reiterating that you shouldn't pay any more for a print from a digital file created by scanning a transparency!

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Yes the prints of your digital masters will cost the same, regardless if the source was negative film or slide. However, I doubt you can make a good quality scan of a (35mm?) slide with a non-dedicated scanner. By this I mean that a flat bed scanner, even with an adapter, will not give you sufficient quality to make medium sized prints. For my scans I use a Coolscan 5000 and no way I come even close with my 120 film scanned on a flat bed.

Good luck,

Jean

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Hola Bob: Te contesto en español como tu mail. No puedo recomendarte ningùn lugar en especial. En Buenos Aires conozco algunos negocios, concretamente 3 o 4 en el centro, y otro en el barrio de San Telmo, aunque no sè si este ùltimo està abierto, pero no me animarìa a recomendarlos si piensas comprar por correspondencia. Hay un representante oficial Leica, pero no importa practicamente nada, y el resto solo revenden usados.De todos modos, si puedo serte ùtil, no dudes en consultarme.

Saludos,

Hector.

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Yes the prints of your digital masters will cost the same, regardless if the source was negative film or slide. However, I doubt you can make a good quality scan of a (35mm?) slide with a non-dedicated scanner. By this I mean that a flat bed scanner, even with an adapter, will not give you sufficient quality to make medium sized prints. For my scans I use a Coolscan 5000 and no way I come even close with my 120 film scanned on a flat bed.

Good luck,

Jean

 

My scanner is an Epson Perfection V 500. As I bought it recently, I didn`t make any picture from a slide yet. Do you think that it is a low quality scanner for make medium size (13x18cm.) prints?

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Many thanks for your answer. About my letter, the main question is: if the original film (reversal or negative) will be copied in a CD, wich of both kind of films will be the best election for color pictures ?(of course, in similar picture taking situations).

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In my opinion, the best colour is always obtained from a slide, as you have no base film colour (pink) to get through. You also get much finer grain (if any).

 

Once you have a digital image scanned, either from a slide or a negative, it's a digital image. How it got into the computer, and from what source, is irrelevant.

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My scanner is an Epson Perfection V 500. As I bought it recently, I didn`t make any picture from a slide yet. Do you think that it is a low quality scanner for make medium size (13x18cm.) prints?

Hi Hector,

I think for 13x18 you will be alright. I suffer from delusion and see everything in 50x70 :-)

Jean

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Many thanks for your answer. About my letter, the main question is: if the original film (reversal or negative) will be copied in a CD, wich of both kind of films will be the best election for color pictures ?(of course, in similar picture taking situations).

 

Dear Hector,

 

As mentioned in my previous response you should get better results from scanning transparencies. The colour from a transparency scanned to digital file should be much more faithful and vibrant than that of neg. I used to do a huge amount of scanning using a second generation Flextight scanner which had excellent scanning profiles for different emulsions, however there was always more fiddling necessary when scanning neg in order to get a satisfactory image.

 

You're probably best with tranny as what you see is what you get!

 

Hope that helps,

 

Al

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