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Thread: Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

  1. #1
    Alan McDonald alanmcd's Avatar
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    Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

    Can anyone shed some light on some scanner queries? I am scanning 4x5" B&W negatives in the supplied holder.
    My objective is to come up with a workflow to produce scans capable of 20x30" prints, and I would like, in the first instance, to provide my own scan - a drum scan by the service might be the final result if I'm happy with my own work.

    1: The height adjustment on the holder appears to do absolutely squat to the final image quality. In fact, the documentation doesn't even talk about these little height adjusters at all. Correct?

    2: I've been testing Epson Scan Vs Silverfast SE which comes with my Perfection V800
    Epson Scan uses ICE as per hardware name. I think Silverfast uses the same hardware feature but calls it iSRD. It’s an additional infrared scan which maps dust and scratch marks then processing the original scan to remove the mapped marks. Correct?

    3: (Observation) Epson Scan is faster than Silverfast - not sure why. The processing of iSRD in Silverfast takes forever.

    4: Scanning at 3200 ppi on Epson Scan gives me black blobs/squares in lots of places where it appears to be below some kind of a threshold. 4800 delivers an acceptable image. Is this by design?
    Silverfast 3200 does not give me the black blobs - not sure why Epson Scan has this threshold issue. Or is it a setting I need to discover?

    5: The 4800 Silverfast scan creates a 1Gb TIF file for 4x5 area.
    With Silverfast you can set Ilford HP5Plus 400 ISO - not sure what this would make the scan do - Epson Scan doesn’t offer such a selection. But Silverfast then defaults to CCR (Color Cast Removal) Why? for B&W?

    6: Lightroom imports this file OK but you have to be patient during develop processes, but I am working with a printing service/lab and they are asking for an 8bit 254dpi file output which is only 95Mb in size. I'm seeing what it finally produces. The first guy I spoke to said he needed a 200Mb file but upon further reading of their spec, this is only created for 16bit. 8bit produces 95Mb. So I'm sending the 95Mb file to see what it produces.

    7: I suppose I'd like to get scanner output which is close to the final output required. 1Gb files in Lightroom produce a real lag when you are doing spot removal and that sort of thing. If there’s no benefit in acquiring this file size in the first place, then there’s a good reason to avoid it. But my gut is telling me that you need all this information in the file to produce the final downsized output at its best. Is this a common observation?

    8: When I export from Lightroom to Flickr, the largest size (Original) is 11414 x 14518 which implies 38x48" at 300dpi, but this is a JPG... Is this any different to TIF in terms of printability?

    9: The service says it can print 20x30 from 5Mb JPGs - is this possible?
    Here's the example I'm working with:
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/metadi...7664271821431/

    Obviously I'm just the same as all permanently confused people WRT resolutions for printing and screen output.
    But some pointers from an expert here would be greatly appreciated.
    In the first instance I'd like to see a 20x30 to see how my post processing is going. Even if I get a drum scan done, I probably want to post process myself a little.

    Using the Silverfast help file is one thing, but every Youtube video I watch, the experts(?) always recommend not using any settings in the scanner software, instead recommending you use Photoshop etc for any adjustments.
    It would be nice to read an authoritative masterclass on this subject.

    regards
    Alan

  2. #2

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    Re: Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

    I don't use the devices supplied. I take a mechanics 6" steel ruler (1/2" wide in 1/100" and mm). Turn in upside down and raise the 6"-end 6mm off the platen using a 6mm stack of PostIts. One mm is equal to 1 inch on the ruler.

    Make the scans you want to test. Note where the image is sharpest, or rather the range of sharpness. Mine was at about 0.5 to 1.5 mm; this takes some experience and time to see definitively. I use a 1/32" or 0.03" (0.9mm) polycarbonate sheet to raise the negative off the platen with my solvent of choice for a wet mount. Using solvent at the three interface locations you have access to. The underside of the platen is still a air-glass interface, but nothing can be done between it and the 'mirror(s) & lens' component. I don't know if the underside of platen has any sort of [coating] treatment. The top gets indiscriminate cleaning, so I have assumed it does not ay sort of coating.

    This works for me.

    Tim
    510-594-8277

  3. #3

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    Re: Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

    The holders with my V700 came adjusted to the correct height, but the adjustment is there for if your scanner isn't in the normal range. Sounds like this isn't an issue for you.

    ICE doesn't work on B&W film (at least stuff that isn't C41) and the blobs you are seeing from Epson Scan are most likely a result of this. Silverfast may be falling back on software dust removal when hardware (IR channel-based) ICE fails. I dust my scans manually, since all software dust/noise reduction makes the image less sharp or has false positives.

    Silverfast is doing things like "Color Cast Removal" because you're scanning your film as a color negative. Try scanning as 16-bit greyscale - filesize will be smaller than a 16-bit color image and tonal information will be more detailed than with an 8-bit color image.

    JPEG is losslessly compressed and, especially with B&W, prone to posterization and blocky image artifacts. Use a printing service that will accept TIFFs.

    Finally, I avoid letting the scanning software make adjustments for me simply because it's so inconsistent. I always scan my negatives in Silverfast as 48-bit (color) or 16-bit (greyscale) positives with zeroed out adjustments and do everything else in Photoshop and Lightroom.

  4. #4
    Alan McDonald alanmcd's Avatar
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    Re: Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

    Wow - all that sophisticated hardware an we still need to resort to posit notes as shims? I don't get it.

  5. #5
    Alan McDonald alanmcd's Avatar
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    Re: Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

    The ICE setting still seems to function with Epson Scan. It's the iSRD which falls over with SilverFast. See my other posts of example scans. They don't show the blobs that I'm talking about but is this effect as a result of trying to use with with B&W? If so, why doesn't silverfast just prevent the use of iSRD when you've selected B&W?

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    Re: Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

    Quote Originally Posted by alanmcd View Post
    Wow - all that sophisticated hardware an we still need to resort to posit notes as shims? I don't get it.
    The scanner has electronic control over focus. Vuescan allows you to overside (adjust) this. I'm not sure why Epson Scan does not. I have no regard for Silverfast so I am not surprised.

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    Re: Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

    Quote Originally Posted by mrred View Post
    The scanner has electronic control over focus. Vuescan allows you to overside (adjust) this.
    Really?! My V750 has no electronic focus control. I didn't think the V800/850 was that different.

  8. #8
    Alan McDonald alanmcd's Avatar
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    Re: Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

    No wonder the height adjusters make no difference

  9. #9
    Alan McDonald alanmcd's Avatar
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    Re: Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

    The V800 manual is totally silent on electronic focus control. Where did you get that information from?

  10. #10
    mrred's Avatar
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    Re: Epson V800 - Epson Scan Vs Silverfast

    Quote Originally Posted by mijosc View Post
    Really?! My V750 has no electronic focus control. I didn't think the V800/850 was that different.
    It does. You will see it with Vuescan pro in pro mode.

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