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  1. #51
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rudeofus View Post
    Stone, when it comes to scanning, the difference between reversal film and negative film is their contrast: slide film high and negative film low. As a result, the negative scan must be contrast expanded, which amplifies scanner noise a great deal. What you see there has nothing to do with film grain and everything to do with a lousy scanner (let me guess: Epson V700/750?).

    This being an analog forum and all, I still think that color negative film would have a MUCH better reputation here if there was an affordable film scanner that wasn't noisy as heck.
    The V700/750 is not lousy. It's a middle of the road scanner, neither great, nor lousy. With a wet mounting kit it is surprisingly good, however.

    Color negative film can be amazingly great from something like an Imacon or a Heidelberg. So can slide film. I often find that my V700 doesn't have near the dynamic range to come up with clean blacks no matter what I do. The same film scanned on a Flextight looks much better.

    Anyway, whatever method the OP is using to get their final presentation they should pick the film that suits their work flow and supports their output best. I don't know enough about the three current Portra emulsions to tell much of a difference between them. I do know I have used all three and they are all remarkably good films.
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

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  2. #52

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    My E6 doesn't do that either but my E6 doesn't capture the dynamic range my C41 does either..... I'm good with a little grain in the shadows, if the C41 is exposed well it's not a problem for me. When it gets less exposure than it should in the shadows you start seeing the bad stuff.

    Here is one of my Portra 400 shots with lots of shadow but exposed to my liking with acceptable grain.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    And one that I inadvertently underexposed by setting my exposure on the grass near the train, mistake in this case.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Should have opened up a stop or two in the shot above. Portra 400 can handle overexposure in the highlights just fine and it helps minimize the issue you are seeing. Not advisable with E6 though as i'm sure you're well aware.

    An E6 sample that shows what you are talking about, nice blacks without noise but the compromise is blown highlights in high contrast scenes.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Personal taste....... I'm good with TriX at ISO3200 stand developed, I think the grain looks wonderful. I can accept Portra at ISO 1600 if needed but try to avoid. Portra exposed correctly looks fine to me though, even in the shadows. E6 and C41 are just different. Either you like the way one looks or you don't.


    Quote Originally Posted by StoneNYC View Post
    The shadows have "grain" it stands out more than E6 blacks because of intermittent colored grains in the blackness (apparently this is a scanner problem described above?) still, my E6 doesn't do that.

  3. #53
    Rudeofus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Bertilsson View Post
    The V700/750 is not lousy. It's a middle of the road scanner, neither great, nor lousy. With a wet mounting kit it is surprisingly good, however.
    I have the V700 myself and know quite well what it does - and what it doesn't. Wet mounting can help with all kinds of things, but AFAIK not with sensor noise. The V700 is probably one of the best flat bed scanners for film out there, but still woefully inadequate for negatives.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Bertilsson View Post
    Color negative film can be amazingly great from something like an Imacon or a Heidelberg. So can slide film. I often find that my V700 doesn't have near the dynamic range to come up with clean blacks no matter what I do. The same film scanned on a Flextight looks much better.
    You don't need dynamic range for scanning negative film, because the density range is minuscule (check data sheets). What would help the V700 is a sensor that produced very low noise in that narrow dynamic range.


    As a result I use my V700 mostly for previewing, which points me at negs with potential for optical RA4 enlargements.
    Trying to be the best of whatever I am, even if what I am is no good.

  4. #54
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rudeofus View Post
    I have the V700 myself and know quite well what it does - and what it doesn't. Wet mounting can help with all kinds of things, but AFAIK not with sensor noise. The V700 is probably one of the best flat bed scanners for film out there, but still woefully inadequate for negatives.

    You don't need dynamic range for scanning negative film, because the density range is minuscule (check data sheets). What would help the V700 is a sensor that produced very low noise in that narrow dynamic range.

    As a result I use my V700 mostly for previewing, which points me at negs with potential for optical RA4 enlargements.
    Yes, the V700 is not a complete product at all. With that said I have scanned 6x6 120 negatives for printing digitally to 72x72". Ideal? No. Works? Yes. The print looks pretty good, actually.

    I was referring to dynamic range with slide film, if you read my post again.

    Agree with what you say. RA4 enlargements will always produce better results from C41 neg film than any flatbed scanner will even come close to.
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

  5. #55

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    The problem with cheap scanners and color neg film is the sampling size in relation to the curve shape. The smaller the film format, the better
    the scan you need, otherwise color reproduction (and not just detail or range) is likely to significantly suffer. Plus the scanner has to read thru the orange mask and properly interpolate the actual image, which most amateur scanners were never engineered to do well. Wrong forum for going into the details. But many problems blamed on the film are really scanning issues. Even graduating from 35mm to medium format will significantly help, but is no substitute for a real drum scan. I'm glad I print color negs directly, using an enlarger, but sometimes do use scans
    in lieu of a proof sheet, just to preview work.

  6. #56

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    Quote Originally Posted by StoneNYC View Post
    From a SCAN done at 2400dpi I can see grain. It's a discoloration that bothers me, almost like the effect of "dead pixels" in a long exposure image taken on a digital camera (just using that as the description as I can't describe it better than that).

    It was mentioned Portra400 was designed for scanning, so I'm using the method the film was designed for.

    All I can say is that it looks ugly 1:1

    I took a 4x5 sheet using Portra400 against Provia100f in 4x5

    Yes Provia is a slower emulsion and probably finer grained, but there was no noticeable grain or odd pixel issues in the Provia and a lot with Portra400.
    With a proper hires scan, 160 & 400 are very similar. 400 seems to interact with lower res scanners quite poorly thoug. On my screen cezanne i can hardly tell the difference in grain

  7. #57

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    I use Portra 400, I have also Epson V700, scans look nice to me (I am no pro, this is just my hobby). OT: I had problem to get nice colors from scan, but this was solved by buying ColorPerfect plugin (found a video on youtube where guy describes his scanning process using this).

    I have prints 24x24 (61x61 cm) and 24x27,6 (61x70cm) and they look nice to me. If the photo is properly exposed, grain is visible from closer look, but it is not disturbing, I like that grain. From normal viewing distance grain is visible a little, most people will probably not notice if they are not interested more in photography. Bigger the print, longer the viewing distance and smaller chance to notice grain.

    To OP maybe try to look also at Kodak Ektar100 (but I think it has more saturated reds and greens)

  8. #58

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    Quote Originally Posted by pdmk View Post
    I use Portra 400, I have also Epson V700, scans look nice to me (I am no pro, this is just my hobby). OT: I had problem to get nice colors from scan, but this was solved by buying ColorPerfect plugin (found a video on youtube where guy describes his scanning process using this).

    I have prints 24x24 (61x61 cm) and 24x27,6 (61x70cm) and they look nice to me. If the photo is properly exposed, grain is visible from closer look, but it is not disturbing, I like that grain. From normal viewing distance grain is visible a little, most people will probably not notice if they are not interested more in photography. Bigger the print, longer the viewing distance and smaller chance to notice grain.
    Here's a 5300dpi scan of a Portra 400 neg downsampled to 4000dpi. This was done on the Screen Cezanne Elite. The original ended up 11,000px by 11,000px. That's a pretty sharp 36" square print with very little sign of noise.

    http://static.timparkin.co.uk/static...at-4000dpi.jpg

    Tim

  9. #59
    Jaf-Photo's Avatar
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    I wouldn't blame the scanner.

    It's possible to produce perfectly good images from film with a V700 or less. At least for hobbyist use.

    The rub is finding a workflow that delivers what you want. The rule of thumb is that you have to do a little post-processing with slide film, more with b&w and a lot with colour negatives.

    After about six months I ended up with a workflow which is very similar to this one:

    http://youtu.be/_pfQ61WTbug

    The difference is that I don't use color perfect but set colour balance manually by sight. I just wish that I had seen the video before I started to figure out film scanning.

  10. #60
    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shootar401 View Post
    Thanks for all the suggestions. Looks like I'll open the box of 160 first, shot a few rolls and see how everything goes. I'll save the 400 for outdoors in the morning or evening. I 'll have to order a roll of the 800 still. I've heard it looked worse than the 400 pushed a stop. Guess I have some testing to do.
    What are you shooting outdoors that you need 400?

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