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Author Topic: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg  (Read 35946 times)

CastorScan

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3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« on: September 08, 2013, 04:34:09 PM »

I wish to share this link that shows some crops of a 3 Gb drum scan from a very good Kodak Portra 160 8x10" negative.

It shows how much quality and resolution are achievable from a large format color negative. As you can see, it's possible to extract up to 3 Gb of true and crisp detail from a 8x10" shot (crops published at 100% of magnification).

http://www.flickr.com/photos/castorscan/9696267924/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/castorscan/9693023737/sizes/l/in/photostream/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/castorscan/9693037335/sizes/l/in/photostream/
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gerald.d

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2013, 12:37:49 AM »

Impressive.

What are the pixel dimensions of the 3GB file? Would you mind also sharing how much a scan like that set you back?

Kind regards,

Gerald.
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EricWHiss

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2013, 01:15:13 AM »

Wow! That really is impressive!
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KhaledA

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2013, 07:04:16 AM »

Wow, that's really impressive!
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Chris Livsey

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2013, 03:19:03 PM »

It is indeed, and an informative commentary/advert on the Flickr link  ;)

Can I, and do take this as tongue in cheek please, argue against 10 x 8 being here ;D
The discussions against discussing 35mm crop up all the time as the forum is "Medium Format/Film/Digital Backs." So should 10 x 8 be allowed?
I suppose it creeps in as "large sensor" photography  ;D ;D
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Chris Livsey

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Mr. Rib

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2013, 08:19:52 PM »

Does Andreas Gursky use your services for scanning or is that confidential information? :)
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CastorScan

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2013, 01:30:04 AM »

That's confidential.
I can say that the Grieger lab in Dusseldorf (where Thomas Struth, Andreas Gursky, Thomas Demand, Elger Esser, Candida Hofer, etc.. print and mount all their works ) argues that my scans are the best scans they've ever seen and probably the best scans on the international market.
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Petrus

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2013, 03:04:08 AM »

The original on that page was something like 6100x6000 pixels "only". About the same as a D800 frame. Already in that size the grain shows quite clearly, while in a 36 MPix digital camera file it does not. Low contrast also.

Quite frankly I was not impressed at all. And yes, where does that 3 GB come from? 36 MPix as a 16 bit TIFF is only 36x2x3 = 216 MB.
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torger

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2013, 04:11:58 AM »

The original on that page was something like 6100x6000 pixels "only". About the same as a D800 frame. Already in that size the grain shows quite clearly, while in a 36 MPix digital camera file it does not. Low contrast also.

Quite frankly I was not impressed at all. And yes, where does that 3 GB come from? 36 MPix as a 16 bit TIFF is only 36x2x3 = 216 MB.

The "original" is original of a crop, ie not the full frame. 3GB inidicates 3 * 1024 * 1024  * 1024 / (3 * 2) = 536 megapixels, or about 2500 ppi and 25000x20000 pixels original size, but it would be nice if CastorScan posted the full details. If you look at the first link you can see from where the crop of the second link is taken. Taking measurements from that also gives a result of about 25000x20000 pixels original file.

Scanning at a high enough resolution so you get low contrast pixels I think is key to make a huge print look good up close. Medium format digital with it's lack of AA filters and thus jagged closeup look is not great to print over-sized. If film grain is visible up close is not a problem I think, it gives the print a nice photographic look. I'm allergic to pixel structures or digital-looking upsizing effects though.

Related: here's a great side-by-side resolution comparison with IQ180 vs 8x10" scanned at 2000 ppi: http://static.timparkin.co.uk/static/tmp/cameratest-2/800px.html (among other cameras).
« Last Edit: September 10, 2013, 04:24:23 AM by torger »
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Petrus

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2013, 04:23:02 AM »

OK, hasty conclusions by me. Still the look is a bit anemic to my taste.

How much dynamic range can they squeeze from these negatives?
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torger

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #10 on: September 10, 2013, 04:36:11 AM »

In principle you can get huge dynamic range from negative film, Portra 400 has about 19 stops or so, but funky stuff happens to color response when you push the limits so it depends on how you see it. Film makes non-linear compression of highlights which make them strong in dynamic range. Negative film is also "easy" to scan as the negative is quite low contrast (ie those captured stops are put in a much smaller contrast range in the negative, and then you expand it again in post) unlike slide film which is dense and contrasty. You can use HDR techniques when scanning I guess to minimize noise in the scanning, but I don't think that is necessary for color negative in most cases. For slide film it can be though, especially if you need to push in post. If you choose to use slide film you don't do it to make huge contrast adjustments in post though, for that color negative is much better.

The scans I've seen from Castorscan have not been examples of tough lighting conditions though so I don't know what their scanning hardware can do.
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Mr. Rib

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #11 on: September 10, 2013, 02:35:16 PM »

I remember the discussion here when IQ180 vs 8x10 "showdown" article has been posted at LuLa - obviously biased, uninformed and unjust. I have no idea how could anyone think a digital capture from IQ180 could match the quality of a well executed/well scanned 8x10 frame.
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ErikKaffehr

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #12 on: September 10, 2013, 02:43:02 PM »

Hi,

I don't think the article was biased, more like erroneous. It is hard to do a proper test. Tim Parkin and some friends made a similar test with very much different results.

https://www.onlandscape.co.uk/2011/12/big-camera-comparison/

I did some comparisons between film (6x7 Velvia and Ektar 100) and 24 MP DSLR and found the DSLR to be better in almost all aspects, but that result may have originated in my technique, although I tried to be careful.

Best regards
Erik


I remember the discussion here when IQ180 vs 8x10 "showdown" article has been posted at LuLa - obviously biased, uninformed and unjust. I have no idea how could anyone think a digital capture from IQ180 could match the quality of a well executed/well scanned 8x10 frame.

Bernd B.

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #13 on: September 10, 2013, 03:57:59 PM »

I still own a howtek drumscanner which I didn´t use for years. Whilst I always liked the impressive color depth I never liked the amount of grain that showed up on everything from 35mm to 6x7cm. Wet scanning of course, and scanning tricks included like scanning with a larger aperture to make grain less apparent.

I got one b/w scan from 35mm made on a Hasselblad X5 last year and I was impressed by excellent sharpness and very little grain.

Bernd
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jsch

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #14 on: September 10, 2013, 04:22:18 PM »

Hi,

over the last few years I photographed a few projects (portrait and architecture) in 8x10 inch (some 5x7 with a vintage lens) mostly with HP5Plus and carefully scanned with an Epson V750. As a backup I often used a 5D Mark II, with corresponding f-stop (similar dof). I posted this already earlier on this site, but I repeat it for this thread.

Important remark: My intention was the look, the process of image composition and NOT the resolution. Some observations:
  • There is such a big difference in tonality and resolution, that it is not worth to compare the images in these terms. Even if I flat stitch two frames from a TS-E lens together.
  • Like Tim Parkin et al. I analysed the b&w negative. With a better scanner I could resolve the the film grain better, but I think I won't get more detail – perhaps a bit, but not much. In my opinion the V750 resolves around 1800 dpi. I scan at 2000 dpi.
  • If you work in the cityscape with 8x10 you are almost stealthy. Only some enthusiasts stop and are curious. People who walk by smile at me. With digital you attract much more attention and people who walk by look angry.
  • 8x10 images usually look "more true". Why? No idea. People seem to look more natural. With digital they look more staged.
  • BUT sometimes the digital image just is the better image because there is something special I often can't explain with words.

In my opinion whether an image is good depends not on the resolution.

But I would love to have a scanner with the drum scan quality and the ease of use and the size of an Epson V750. And someone who carries my photo cases. And someone who removes the dust from the scans. And what I would like most would be better se(x*) and more money.

Best,
Johannes
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x*: the x is only a placeholder. You can add a letter of your choice other than a "x".
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Mr. Rib

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #15 on: September 10, 2013, 07:03:10 PM »

Erik:
Well, that is of course my own opinion but for me it read that way. To even try making such a test with no LF experience/knowledge whatsoever is not a good idea..

As for the Tim's test- I'm of course familiar with it and it tells a whole different story.
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BernardLanguillier

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #16 on: September 10, 2013, 09:01:52 PM »

Nice image quality, seems pretty close to what a 12 frames (3x4 with 30% overlap) stitch with the D800 delivers.

Cheers,
Bernard
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ErikKaffehr

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2013, 02:02:58 AM »

Hi,

Digital images at low ISO have very little noise. Also, it seems that digital can extract more low contrast detail than film.

The samples here may illustrate this: http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/index.php/photoarticles/59-sony-alpha-900-vs-67-analogue-round-2?start=1

Pentax 67 and Velvia scanned with film scanner and drum scanner compared with 24 MP DSLR. The DSLR picture has some shaking (IS not disabled), unfortunately.

Best regards
Erik


8x10 images usually look "more true". Why? No idea. People seem to look more natural. With digital they look more staged.

BUT sometimes the digital image just is the better image because there is something special I often can't explain with words.


In my opinion whether an image is good depends not on the resolution.

But I would love to have a scanner with the drum scan quality and the ease of use and the size of an Epson V750. And someone who carries my photo cases. And someone who removes the dust from the scans. And what I would like most would be better se(x*) and more money.

Best,
Johannes
___________
x*: the x is only a placeholder. You can add a letter of your choice other than a "x".

Ben Rubinstein

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2013, 09:24:20 AM »

Nice image quality, seems pretty close to what a 12 frames (3x4 with 30% overlap) stitch with the D800 delivers.

Cheers,
Bernard


Really glad I don't have to throw that stitch at my computer, woow! :D

gerald.d

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Re: 3 Gb drum scan samples from 8x10" Portra 160 neg
« Reply #19 on: September 11, 2013, 09:56:22 AM »

Really glad I don't have to throw that stitch at my computer, woow! :D

12 frames from a D800 is nothing. Try a few hundred from an IQ180 if you really want to have some fun :D
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