What format to shoot for digital negatives

Discussion in 'APUG.ORG's "Gray" Area Subforum -NOW HYBRIDPHOTO.C' started by Donsta, Jul 29, 2005.

  1. Donsta

    Donsta Member

    Messages:
    145
    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Is there any good reason to be shooting larger than 4X5 is my end product is to be digital negatives for a variety of different alternative processes (i.e will I ever be data limited by the content of the film to make digital negatives up to 12x20)? I'm assuming good scans of course (drum or Imacon)....
     
  2. jjstafford

    jjstafford Inactive

    Messages:
    735
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Location:
    Minnesota Tr
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    You are always limited by the content of the negative and size.

    I cannot cover it adequately here. I strongly suggest you get the book, "Making Digital Negatives for Contact Printing" by Dan Burkholder. It will answer all your questions. In my experience, people reading on how to do it right go right back to Analog - fast.
     
  3. Donsta

    Donsta Member

    Messages:
    145
    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I've read Burkholder and Nelson in detail and spent some time making digital negatives. My experience has been that 4X5 is more than adequate - a cheap 2000DPI drum scan from a 4x5 negative has much more than I've ever needed for a digital negative. That said, I much prefer in camera negatives and consequently have a range of cameras from 4X5 to 12x20....
     
  4. jd callow

    jd callow Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,005
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2003
    Location:
    Milan
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The only person I know doing this, whose work I've seen uses MF for 8x10 negs made from a LightJet film burner. He does contact liths...

    Knowing the image size requirements for inkjet printers I am hard pressed to believe that you would need anything larger than 4x5 (or even MF),
     
  5. Joe Lipka

    Joe Lipka Member

    Messages:
    809
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2002
    Location:
    Cary, North
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    Most of my digital negatives so far started out life as 4x5 negatives. If your final image size is no bigger than 8X10 or so, you can get away with a flat bed scan of the sheet film negative. Why spend the money on a drum scan if the fine details get lost in the paper surface?

    You can make digital negatives at 300 dpi for alt processes. You can figure out the math from there.

    This thread should be moved to the digital negative forum.
     
  6. jjstafford

    jjstafford Inactive

    Messages:
    735
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Location:
    Minnesota Tr
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I think the process he is speaking of is to make digital negatives for conventional contact printing. In any case, one uses a process camera to make something like a half-tone (something like a bitmap image with stochastic resampling in one case) from the original print - however that is made is another story. Enlarging is done to the output film strictly for contacting later.
     
  7. jd callow

    jd callow Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,005
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2003
    Location:
    Milan
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I know what he is talking about.
     
  8. jd callow

    jd callow Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,005
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2003
    Location:
    Milan
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Done, Thanks Joe
     
  9. sanking

    sanking Restricted Access

    Messages:
    4,813
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2003
    Location:
    Greenville,
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    It really all depends on how many magnifications will be given to the original negative, the type of scan you are capable of making (which includes both hardware and individual skill if doing this yourself), how your digital negative will be printed, and the resolution of the printing process.

    If the objective is to make a print from an enlarged digital negative that is *virtually* equal in image quality to one made from an in-camera negative my own experience suggests that about 3X is the most you can go if scanning with a flat-bed scanner and printing your digital negatives on an inkjet printer such as the Epson 2200 or 2400. If scanning with a higher level scanner and printing on continuous tone material with a laser jet or LED printer you can probably go 4X, maybe up to 6X with 35mm or medium format negatives exposed with the camera on a tripod.

    Sandy