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Thread: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

  1. #91

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    Re: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

    [QUOTE=rugenius;329684] Here's another example to position my original point which several people have argued against:
    VERY large enlargements
    [I][COLOR="DarkRed"]david vatovec, Mar 13, 2003; 06:15 a.m.


    How does this prove your point? So some wedding photographer wanted to make a 55" print from a 6x7" chrome in 2003? There's nothing that says he actually made the print, and that the print was any good. The very fact that he wants to make such a large print from so small a film size says to me that image quality is not his biggest concern in this instance. That's a 20x enlargement. As this thread is all about the use of consumer level flatbed scanners being able or not able to make large exhibition type prints, was this guys scans even done on a consumer flatbed scanner?

  2. #92
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    Re: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

    The point is simple.

    Exhibition or high quality is not a definitive term.
    What's the real intent?
    If I go to his exhibition am I going to examine the digital print with a 10X Loupe
    Why not conventionally enlarge to print if the resolution is so darned important.

    Maybe, just maybe the originator of this thread required the absolute finest resolution allowed by printing and image sensor technology.
    Not sure at this point...
    1200 dpi is not a requirement for exhibition of photographic medium or artwork.
    Neither is 600 dpi... the standard for press is 300 dpi.
    So,... anyway... using actual 2400 to 3200 dpi resolution in a scan can provide 32" to 40" enlargement from a 4 x 5 at 300 dpi. Anyone viewing the material will have a hard time discerning the differences even at a slightly lower resolution unless they get up so close assuming they have reading glasses on.
    The point is that from a graphics and production point of view the limitations from a viewing distance do not require much beyond 300 dpi.
    I'm certainly not saying to go out and purchase a flatbed for all you photo-kitchen needs.
    I am saying that unless the requirement for details beyond 300 dpi are an issue,... a flatbed consumer scanner can provide meaningful and practical enlargement beyond 3 to 4X.
    We can argue about this all day...
    But people need to hear both sides of the argument to determine for them selves what the need really is considering more than just printing at 1200 dpi for the heck of it. In most cases 300 dpi, and perhaps less, will do just fine.
    If you build it, they will come...

  3. #93
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    Re: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

    The challenge of D-max is not restricted to large format so I'll discount that comment.

    Think about what you said... If it were true to the hilt that such demanding resolution were core to every large format photographer you would get out your enlarger and resurrect Ansel from a grave.
    I support your opinion FOR YOUR WORK. My wife does press production work for everyone including 35 mm Joe Handyphoto to 8 x 10 inch Suzie Bestshot... Exhibition work to your favorite book... Most all of them do reprographic at less resolution than you indicate necessary.
    So your point is well taken and I won't dispute it as it is generalized for your concept of large format reproduction.
    The guy that started the thread asked specifically about making some allowable amount of compromise which was not defined well enough and that is partly why we are continuing the debate.
    FYI
    One of my favorite photos came from an old Mars camera that I abused to take a 6 x7 cm sheet exposure of a magnolia flower. My wife enlarged it tremendously and the grain is exemplary. It is an incredible shot. Proof that desired effect does not = resolution.
    If you build it, they will come...

  4. #94
    Kirk Gittings's Avatar
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    Re: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

    This is a large format forum, so why shoot large format, and then accept less using a cheap scanner that cannot give us the best dmax (for velvia), the best resolution, best pixels. Isn't that why we shoot large format, to go for the best?
    Exactly......for some reason with the advent of these sub $1000 scanners a small segment of this forum decided to just chuck the high quality standards that drove most of us to LF in favor of "good enough". I personally went and bought and tested most of these scanners when I switched to digital printing and soon realized they were simply not good enough, because I wanted (and can closely achieve with professional scans) that "demanding resolution.....[that is] core to every large format photographer".
    Thanks,
    Kirk

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  5. #95

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    Re: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk Gittings View Post
    Exactly......for some reason with the advent of these sub $1000 scanners a small segment of this forum decided to just chuck the high quality standards that drove most of us to LF in favor of "good enough". I personally went and bought and tested most of these scanners when I switched to digital printing and soon realized they were simply not good enough, because I wanted (and can closely achieve with professional scans) that "demanding resolution.....[that is] core to every large format photographer".

    I agree completely with Kirk in principle, however as a working photographer (also) that still shoots 4x5 transparencies of products for some clients, I feel that "some" flatbed scanners can be used to advantage for professional results within the requirements of the final output, if you are working from well controlled transparencies (studio lighting) and the scanned image output size is moderate.

    I own what appears to be a rarity..a "medium price" flatbed scanner, priced at about 5x the price of the popular Epson scanners, but yet not in the "professional price range". It is a Microtek Artixscan 2500f, which cost me new about $2500. Now not available in the USA. I have been well pleased with its results when scanning properly exposed negatives and transparencies.

    Would I get better "exhibition quality" scans for very large digital prints from a drum scan? Oh absolutely. But.....I don't often need that level of quality...and if I really want to I can go into my fully equipped darkroom and make a "real" print if I so desire of any of my 8x10 or smaller negatives.

    Often the reason for using 4x5 for product or architectural photography is to use camera movements to control distortion and to "place" the depth of field to cover the whole scene. The resultant image will often not be reproduced at extreme sizes, yet the benefits of using a completely adjustable "tilt" and "shift" camera are obvious.

    Back in the 1980's and early 1990's I used to do catalog photography on 8x10 transparencies. One transparency per page. Full-page still life images. As you can see, today these 8x10 transparencies could be scanned at just above 300 ppi (a very low scanning resolution) for an 8.5 x 11 final output size.

  6. #96
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    Smile Re: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

    Van,

    Printing Resolution Guidelines For Printing Grayscale or Color Images:For commercial offset printing (including publishing in books and magazines) Image ppi between 1.5 and 2.0 (minimum and maximum) multiplied times the lpi specification for the screen process. Assuming 150 lpi, then most editors will routinely ask for 300 ppi, scaled to final size (300 ppi is 150 lpi x 2.0).
    For Printing Line Art Mode Images:
    For commercial offset printing (including publishing in books or magazines) 800 to 1200 ppi commercially for line art
    Concerning PPI vs DPI:
    A 1200 dpi printer uses 1200 dots of ink in every inch to make up the colours. If you were printing a 300 PPI image, then every pixel would be made up of 16 smaller ink dots (1200 DPI x 1200 DPI / 300 PPI x 300 PPI). A lower DPI would have fewer ink dots making up each pixel, which would make the colour look worse. A higher DPI would have more ink dots for each pixel and should give more accurate colour (especially under close examination).


    More examples: If you were to have your work published in a 9 x 10 bound book by Rizzoli, University of New Mexico Press, Etc,.. the output resolution is consistent... it doesn't matter if you had your 4 x 5 scanned at 800 dpi, 1600 dpi, or 2400 dpi.
    Many of the photographers that participate in this web forum have books; photographic portfolios, at rougly 300 to 350 ppi.
    It's nonsense to imply any reputable large format photographer has no business documenting his/hers work in a 9 x 10 book because it's a contradiction of best use of resolution and the true intent of large format film media.
    Just because we wasted some of the available content by stuffing it into a 2X enlarged photo at 350 ppi is not a crime, it's an industry standard.

    In the same way you can apply that to exhibition type standards.
    It is perfectly reasonable to have photographs scanned as best as possible and displayed at 350 ppi regardless of film format used for a vast majority of printed material.
    The caveat being that some photographers desire the absolute pinnacle reprographic such that the viewer requires a magnifying lens to determine the finite resolution of the print.
    And that's okay but it doesn't mean they are the only people that know how to utilize large format film.
    Furthermore, I'll agree with you that the image may appear better the larger the source format and the better the scan method.
    In the same way, as the thread originator querried... he wanted to use a flatbed scanner to display work at a final print output of 24" x 36" from 4 x 5.
    The equates to 6X enlargement... and in a perfect world could be obtained from a quality flatbed scan to achieve 300 to 350 ppi.
    Would it look better from a drum scan, probably so... but that's not what he wanted to do. Maybe the work would have been viewed from a distance instead of less than 12 inches... as I mentioned I'm not sure at this point.
    If you build it, they will come...

  7. #97
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    Re: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

    Rugenius,

    Your continued insistence that you know what exhibition quality is raises the obvious question of your actual experience in that area. How many exhibits have you had?

    I ask this because I think you are talking theory not actual experience. Your University of New Mexico Press example is a perfect example. In fact, I have done a number of projects with them starting some 20 years ago and have another book in the pipeline now. I would never consider using anything but drum scans for even a quality small book. It has nothing to do with resolution but is about capturing and holding fine highlight detail and deep shadow detail, which a drum scan can do far better than a consumer flatbed scan and additionally UNM Press only gets professional drum scans for their books. What does that tell you?
    Thanks,
    Kirk

    "When did photography become a desk job?" Kirk Gittings 2009

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  8. #98
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    Re: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

    Kirk,

    You are a very appreciated photographer and mentor,... sincerely.

    My sensical approach tells me that no matter how much you scan, in as far as resolution, the end result is what you reproduce digitally or by conventional light optics and film media.
    Unfortunately vice versa...
    If in fact the issue is is a digital reproduction.
    Drum scans obviously have an edge in most ALL respects.
    But be careful about argument.
    As a scientist and engineer for imaging optics (all charged particle and visible light) I know that it takes quite an eye to discern the difference between 350 ppi and beyond for most any photographic reproduction at a typical viewing distance.
    And, the fact that your work with UNMP was published at probably 350 ppi is a testament to what I am conveying.
    I respect your work, it is excellent,... and I trust that in your experience with utilizing the professional tools you can acknowledge the specification of your work from the production aspect... so we can determine the reality of what we are arguing about.
    I am an optics expert and you are a teacher/ professional photographer expert...
    It is senseless to argue that your drum scan yields more of a resolution advantage for 4 x 5 enlarged by 2X when in fact it is the other attributes that make the drum scan a better reproduction at this scale. IE optical density, and various aberrations due the the optics of the scanner.
    I hope, in all sensibility, that your efforts to imply that 8000 dpi vs 4000 dpi vs 2000 dpi yield a gradation of quality for a 1X or 2X reproduction are but conjecture and interpretation at best.
    Drum scan resolution typically decreases at film size anyway from recent instrumentation.
    Again, I admire your work... but the effort to convince me, or anyone else that drum is required for resolution at the press level is not correct.

    I agree to disagree...

    Bill
    If you build it, they will come...

  9. #99
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    Thumbs up Re: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

    Thanks Van,

    It's disappointing to see the negative comments concerning expertise. I wished we had better rapport.

    So,... your comment in response to my comment,... "8000/4000/20000 DPI"
    I meant exactly what I said... DPI
    It was reference to the optical resolution of various scanners in DPI.
    I do believe the specifications are as such from the manufacturer.
    Example: Imacon Flex 848, Nikon CS9000, ...

    Like I mentioned, sure, drum is a BK Method.
    But as my wife has often commented when she does layout for a book, she gets huge files that would have looked the same had they imaged at slightly lower resolution to accommodate the bind size contents. In fact, not just about resolution but loss of gradation, color, etc,... as the output device is cramming the sum of anything greater than output resolution into a single line/pixel/dot.

    Back onto the forum track...
    Can someone tell me anything about the 2040 dpi IMACON scans of 4" x 5" film and any experienced limitations of 6x enlargement?
    That is the correc t limitation of this scanner correct?
    If you build it, they will come...

  10. #100
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    Re: Noob question... scanner for 4 x 5...

    Agreed,...

    Everything here at my current work is in LPI.
    We use line pairs for most all of the focal spot resolution test on these X-ray sources.
    Else an edge on a lead sphere for larger spot tubes.
    Getting closer to sub-micron every day...
    If you build it, they will come...

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