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Thread: Making a scanner with a DSLR

  1. #11
    8x10, 5x7, 4x5, et al Leigh's Avatar
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    Re: Making a New Modern Drum Scanner

    I could contribute significant sweat equity in the form of design work, both mechanical and electronic. I certainly have the credentials for same.

    I can also do the prototype, since I have a full machine shop and an electronic development lab.

    This is actually quite easy and simple. Only the film and its support drum move. Everything else is in a fixed position.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

  2. #12

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    Re: Making a New Modern Drum Scanner

    Essentially macro gigapans, probably with different stitching algorithm. The hardware is out there already.

  3. #13

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    Re: Making a New Modern Drum Scanner

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Anderson View Post
    Yeah I'd throw a bunch of cheap sensors and a bunch of cheap computing power at the problem. I'd make everything static, just greatly overlap each sensor's image field and have the computer correct for lens inaccuracies, film curvature and average out the noise.

    ...Mike
    I was thinking about this at the point of capture- a replacement for film. But the only way to overlap each sensor's image field is to put a lens on each sensor. Can any kind of lens focus on the image being put out by the Large Format lens in front of it?
    Diagram to make things clearer:
    SM--L

    S=array of sensors
    M=array of micro lens for each sensor
    L=LF lens

    Is there any such micro lens(M) that could focus the image from the LF lens(L)?

  4. #14

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    Re: Making a New Modern Drum Scanner

    For LF scanners don't have to be much better than a really good flatbed or an average PMT scanner to please the majority. It's with the smaller formats (135, 645, 2-1/4) where the 3 to 6 micron apertures of the fine-art-purposed PMTs really shine. I see an Aztekbusiness-model opportunity for others who might adapt and repurpose some of the other makes of hardware that are often practically being given away now. But it would be hari Kari to start from scratch with all the idled prepress gear flooding the warehouses.

  5. #15

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    Re: Making a New Modern Drum Scanner

    OK I am only going to show more ignorance here, but aren't the flatbed scanners we've already got doing this same thing? Doesn't a Creo move it's sensor all over the place in the X and Y axises? So it is simply a matter of using a larger chip from a professional digital camera and an overall tighter, more precise and tuned mechanism?

    So the scanner improvements would be kind of like the difference that chip size makes in quality, such as in going from a $100 point and shoot to the latest medium format digital back?

  6. #16
    Mike Anderson's Avatar
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    Re: Making a New Modern Drum Scanner

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Petronio View Post
    OK I am only going to show more ignorance here, but aren't the flatbed scanners we've already got doing this same thing? Doesn't a Creo move it's sensor all over the place in the X and Y axises? So it is simply a matter of using a larger chip from a professional digital camera and an overall tighter, more precise and tuned mechanism?

    So the scanner improvements would be kind of like the difference that chip size makes in quality, such as in going from a $100 point and shoot to the latest medium format digital back?
    Is there much difference in quality between a teeny cheap sensor and a big expensive sensor if they're both working at their preferred ISO?

    (I'm ignorant too here.)

    ...Mike

  7. #17

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    Re: Making a New Modern Drum Scanner

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Anderson View Post
    Is there much difference in quality between a teeny cheap sensor and a big expensive sensor if they're both working at their preferred ISO?

    (I'm ignorant too here.)

    ...Mike
    Really, just make more, smaller passes and make it slower and cheaper.

  8. #18

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    Re: Making a New Modern Drum Scanner

    This is sort of what I had in mind.

  9. #19

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    Re: Making a New Modern Drum Scanner

    Wow that is cool thanks

    But still, in absolute terms, a good drum scanner will capture a longer tonal range with less noise, even though something like the GIGAmacro could possibly beat it on resolution. Or?

  10. #20

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    Re: Making a New Modern Drum Scanner

    I think Frank is on to something and not just on something.

    Why are there no mid-range film scanners? Film scanners jump from the Epson v700/750, a high end consumer grade scanner, that goes for around $700 up to something like the Flextight scanners that sell for upwards of $10,000. There is nothing in between. Why not?

    Surely, someone could build a scanner similar to the v700 with some upgrades to all the critical pieces. A better sensor, better optics, precision machined gears, high precision stepping motors, and a really good film holder. I think such a scanner could come in at a price point around $2,000 to $3,000. I know the market would be limited but I still think there is some money to be made there.
    Never is always wrong; always is never right.

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