View Full Version : Success! Scanning with Fuji X-T1 and Sinar F

13-May-2015, 18:27
I created a negative scanning Frankencamera out of my Sinar F, my Fuji X-T1, and a couple pieces of foamcore.

You can see in the attached photos what it looks like. The foamcore negative holder goes in the front standard of the Sinar (starting with 6x7 to make it easier) and the foamcore adapter goes in the rear standard. The rear adapter is nothing more than a piece of foamcore with a 2.5" hole bored through a couple layers hot glued together to make a reasonably stable holder for the Canon FD 50mm f3.5 macro lens I'm using that's attached to my X-T1 via Fotodiox adapter.

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I'm basically using the standards and the rail as a very accurate shift mechanism.

I install the negative in the holder. Since this is all very experimental and nothing is super tight or cut with much precision, I had to put a piece of tape on it to hold the negative in place. With the negative in place and the camera pointed at another piece of white foamcore stood up on my bench, I turn on the X-T1 and shift the standards into place. I Adjusted the length of the front standard away from the read standard to give me about 6-9 frames to stitch together to create a full 6x7 image.

I use the self-timer to take steady slow shutter shots and simply use the shift and rise on the rear standard to move the camera around the frame, leaving plenty of overlap for Lightroom to use when stitching. I can also tweak the focus using the focus assist magnifier in the live view and the Sinar's fine focus adjustment, which is much more precise than turning the barrel of the macro lens, which is what I used to do when doing this with a tripod.

I shot everything in RAW, then imported into Lightroom. After a quick edit in Iridient Developer to actually create the best quality TIFF I could (which also converts it to a positive), I used Lightroom 6's Photo Merge feature which does a super job at stitching as well as creating a .DNG file with exposure info in the EXIF!

I attached a screen grab that shows the finished frame on the left and a 100% blow-up on the right where you can see the little GE logo in the headlight. This gives me about 60MP equivalent. Image size with the frames I used gives me a 20x30 @ 300dpi. The quality is really, really fantastic. It didn't take that long, either (once I got everything built and put together).


I haven't tried 4x5 film yet because I haven't made a holder for it yet. I'm going to try a more refined approach the second time around.

One thing I like about this approach is that its so easy to shift the camera around to do the panorama capture. Using the camera standards is vastly superior to any other solution I've tried. Home-built rigs can't compete with something that is well-designed to do exactly those movements. I just cheated and used the lens attached to the camera inside the bellows. This gives me the benefit of completely blocking all stray light reflections. I was having major problems with that before when trying to do "DSLR scanning" on a tripod, shooting down over a lightbox (my iPad).

I don't have a drum scanner but the digitizations I can produce from this process are vastly superior to the scans I got from the film processor. To be fair, those were the "lower" resolution scans.

If I put the standards closer together and shoot more frames, I can get an even larger image. That said, I'm not sure what more I could squeeze out of this negative. Maybe just native resolution so I don't have to upsize to print bigger than 20x30.

I'm very, very happy with this process. I'm going to refine it some more but I'm going to see if I can use this to eschew the scanner altogether and end up with better quality than a flatbed can give me (and I already have everything I need...no more expense!).

Peter Langham
15-May-2015, 09:48
Very nice. Simple and elegant. What did you use for a light source?

15-May-2015, 09:54
Very nice. Simple and elegant. What did you use for a light source?

I pointed the camera a a piece of white foam core leaning against the wall of my bench. It was about 2 feet from the camera and diffused the room light (LEDs). Exposure time was about 1/2 to 1 sec.