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Author Topic: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )  (Read 917 times)

1erCru

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4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« on: February 02, 2017, 03:36:00 PM »

I've been scanning 6x7 medium format negatives and get pleasing results with 11 by 14. I recently purchased a Sinar P and will be scanning 4x5 negatives. I've read that flatness can make " very good " scans of large format negatives, not drum scanner but much closer to a drum scan than it's medium format baby brother.

So my question is about the holder. Is the better scanning holder worth it for 4x5? compared to Epsons included holder? Are any of you scanning 4x5 in non traditional ways or by using other types of holders that aren't readily discussed?
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Dave Gurtcheff

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Re: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2017, 12:48:46 PM »

I have an Epson V700 flat bed scanner. I also have a Nikon Coolscan 8000 that I use to scan medium format B&W and Color negatives. I got lazy recently and wanted to scan a medium format negative, but did not want to fire up the Nikon, as I only wanted an 8"x10" print. I used the flat bed, and used no film holder at all. I laid the negative on the platen scanned it and made a very very nice print. As I remember, you select "8x10 transparency". No issues with film flatness, and I had no Newton Rings issues. Give it a try.
Dave in NJ
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Eric Myrvaagnes

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Re: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2017, 02:02:43 PM »

I have an old Epson 4990 scanner that I used several years ago to scan many negatives of various sizes, using the included holders.
It gave me excellent results on 2 1/4, 4x5, and 8x10 negatives, allowing me to make prints at least up to 13x19", which is the biggest I print. With 35mm negatives or slides it was much less than adequate.

I recently upgraded to a V800, and I am finding the holders much improved, and I even get decent scans of 35mm slides. So 4x5 will be a walk in the park for prints up tp 11x14".
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hogloff

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Re: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2017, 07:25:54 PM »

I have an old Epson 4990 scanner that I used several years ago to scan many negatives of various sizes, using the included holders.
It gave me excellent results on 2 1/4, 4x5, and 8x10 negatives, allowing me to make prints at least up to 13x19", which is the biggest I print. With 35mm negatives or slides it was much less than adequate.

I recently upgraded to a V800, and I am finding the holders much improved, and I even get decent scans of 35mm slides. So 4x5 will be a walk in the park for prints up tp 11x14".

It's not whether the scanner can deliver on 4x5 negatives...it's whether the holders can hold the negative perfectly flat while being scanned. I've upgraded my V700 with the better scanning holders and found a much improved scan from edge to edge.
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Eric Myrvaagnes

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Re: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2017, 09:36:00 PM »

The holders tha came with my 4990 were pretty marginal, but the ones with the V800 are much better. Also, I suspect the V800 (and V850) does a much better job of locating the plane of focus. A perfectly flat negative won't scan very well if it isn't precisely in the plane of focus. I seriously considered buying better holders for my 4990, but didn't. With the V800 I fell I don't need to.

I know nothing about the V700, but I expect it is better than my old 4990. With the V850 I would try the Epson holders before spending the money on the Betterlight ones. If you aren't getting sharp scans, then go for the Betterlights. That would be my suggestion.
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-Eric Myrvaagnes    (A sampler of my new book is on my website.)
http://myrvaagnes.com  Visit my photo website. New images each season. Also visit my new website: http://ericneedsakidney.org

donbga

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Re: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2017, 10:38:22 PM »

I've been scanning 6x7 medium format negatives and get pleasing results with 11 by 14. I recently purchased a Sinar P and will be scanning 4x5 negatives. I've read that flatness can make " very good " scans of large format negatives, not drum scanner but much closer to a drum scan than it's medium format baby brother.

So my question is about the holder. Is the better scanning holder worth it for 4x5? compared to Epsons included holder? Are any of you scanning 4x5 in non traditional ways or by using other types of holders that aren't readily discussed?

I'm using the Betterscanning adjustable height holders and for me they provide better results than the standard Epson holders on my Epson 4990. Unfortunately I've been spoiled by a friend who does drum scans for me and we have run tests on the 4990, 700/750 and 800 series Epson scanners with an optimized height adjustment and the drum scans blow them away. Even when printing a 4x5 neg enlarged to an 8x10 sized ink jet print (using QTR) small objects resolve as tiny blobs when scanned with the Epson scanner.

The moral is optimize your scans as much as possible when using Epson scanners. So yes the Better Scanning holders are worth the trouble and expense.

My 2 cents,

Don Bryant

 

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jmlphotography

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Re: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2017, 11:38:41 AM »

As Dave said, just lay them on the platen, though I actually tape them down.  Doesn't hurt to try.
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hogloff

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Re: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2017, 12:30:30 PM »

As Dave said, just lay them on the platen, though I actually tape them down.  Doesn't hurt to try.

You do need to adjust the focus right? It's normally set to have the negative above the platen.

I believe if you choose to scan directly off the platen, then the lower resolution lens will be used giving you less than an ideal scan. If you scan using a film holder, the higher resolution lens is used which is focused above the platen, right where the film holder is holding your film. If you were getting less sharp images using the film holder, then you either have the wrong option selected for the scanning technique to use or you need to do some height adjustments to the film holder which are built into the holders.

Scanning directly off the platen should produce less sharpness than scanning a properly adjusted film holder.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2017, 01:20:55 PM by hogloff »
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jmlphotography

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Re: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2017, 07:05:02 PM »

I haven't had a problem with focus, but try it and see how it works for you.  Here is one of my references that led me to doing this (can't find the other):

http://www.kennethleegallery.com/html/scanning/index.php

Worth reading the whole article but the relevant part for this discussion is:

Film Holders: Flatness, Focus and Newton's Rings

 Epson film holders do a good job of keeping the film flat. Because the film sits above the glass, they also prevent Newton's Rings: concentric lines caused by interference. However, Epson film holders crop the image and being shiny, they cast reflections onto the edges of the image. To avoid these problems we can use a holder from BetterScanning.

With either Epson or BetterScanning holders, the scanner automatically sets focus to a few millimeters above the glass, but BetterScanning holders are adjustable so you can find best focus. For a personal sample of how the BetterScanning holder improves focus over Epson's holders, see my before and after images here. For Better Scanning's comparison samples, click here.

Another option is to tape the film directly on the glass, emulsion-side down and use the Epson "Film Area Guide". Depending on the film, Newton's rings may not appear. When we use the Film Area Guide the scanner focuses at the level of the glass.

Therefore if Newton's Rings are not a problem, we can get very good scans by taping the film directly to the scanner glass. I use blue painter's tape for this purpose: because the film is placed emulsion-side-down, the tape never damages the film emulsion.
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BartvanderWolf

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Re: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2017, 07:29:23 PM »

You do need to adjust the focus right? It's normally set to have the negative above the platen.

Correct.

Quote
I believe if you choose to scan directly off the platen, then the lower resolution lens will be used giving you less than an ideal scan.

AFAIK, both focus a given distance above the platen, they just offer a different (narrower/wider) field of view.

Quote
Scanning directly off the platen should produce less sharpness than scanning a properly adjusted film holder.

Yes, that's the state of affairs.

Cheers,
Bart
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1erCru

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Re: 4x5 and Epson V850 ( betterscanning holder worth it ? )
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2017, 06:20:24 PM »

Yep. I'm getting good to very good results with medium format 6x7 negatives and the Epson holder included with the v850 at sizes around 9x12 to 11x14.

Considering a 4x5 negative is over 3 times the size of a 6x7 120 film strip I assume the resulting image
Quality would be much greater , sufficient for excellent 16x20 prints.

I've read that flatbed scan quality increases dramatically with a larger negative based upon how the scans scale in quality from 35mm up to 8x10. I guess I'm just going to see for myself. I ended up switching to large format as I shoot sculptures that I construct and the results weren't quite where I wanted them to be with the Mamiya ( it was pretty close , just needed a bit more resolving power )

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