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Thread: Seeking scanning solution for 8x10 negatives

  1. #1

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    Seeking scanning solution for 8x10 negatives

    Hello,
    I am looking for a solution in working with my 8x10 negatives. Will the Epson V850 give me a good result retaining good resolution etc?
    Thanks, Steve

  2. #2

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    Re: Nude

    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty View Post
    Hello,
    I am looking for a solution in working with my 8x10 negatives. Will the Epson V850 give me a good result retaining good resolution etc?
    Thanks, Steve
    The larger the negative the better the V850 performs. For 8x10 the V850 uses the "low res" lens that is the one that covers this format, and it will deliver around 320MPix effective.

  3. #3

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    Re: Nude

    Quote Originally Posted by Pere Casals View Post
    The larger the negative the better the V850 performs. For 8x10 the V850 uses the "low res" lens that is the one that covers this format, and it will deliver around 320MPix effective.
    Thanks, I am guessing that the file size from an 8x10 negative must be quite large? Does the output from say an Epson printer still have that large/contact print feel to it? I have thinking of moving into this printer for a while..

  4. #4
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    Re: Nude

    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty View Post
    Does the output from say an Epson printer still have that large/contact print feel to it? I have thinking of moving into this printer for a while..
    No, the output from an Epson printer even at its highest resolution (720 ppi / 2880x1440 dpi) doesn't look or feel like a contact print - I've done many tests of this. With careful processing of the file it can credibly mimic a modest enlargement from the negative, though there will still be differences between the look-and-feel of ink on paper and that of a silver image on silver-gelatin paper. You'll have to try it for yourself to decide whether you find the two kinds of print comparably satisfying as a final product for your work.

  5. #5

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    Re: Nude

    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty View Post
    Thanks, I am guessing that the file size from an 8x10 negative must be quite large? Does the output from say an Epson printer still have that large/contact print feel to it? I have thinking of moving into this printer for a while..
    Adding to what Oren said, I make 8x10 contact prints and they are sharp even when inspected with a 8x loupe, no digital printer beat that, but inkjet prints are also nice and sharp. To me (this is IMHO) a sound darkroom silver print sports unique beauty and an inkjet print cannot be compared, single problem is that a sound darkroom print (I try to learn that) is much more difficult to craft and often better results are obtained from hybrid or fully digital process.

    A pure optical process sports beauty and authenticity, but it requires an skilled photographer in command.

    In the hybrid workflow you have to be careful to not ruin sharpness in the size transformations, you may have resolving power in excess but at the same time the print may lack sharpness because of the pixel level accutance has not been well managed.

  6. #6

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    Re: Seeking scanning solution for 8x10 negatives

    Scanning isn't easy, and making a good quality inkjet print isn't easy. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise! As with any technical activity, there's a steep learning curve, lots of different ways to do things, and a high prospect of mediocre results until you figure out how things work so that you can get the results you want.

    I liked the black and white silver gelatin prints I used to make. I like the black and white inkjet prints I now make. I've printed the same negative both ways and have concluded that "better" is not a useful concept. The silver gelatin version is not better than the inkjet version in any meaningful way. It's just different in some important ways (and vice versa). Only you can decide which technology will satisfy you.

    One last thought for the OP: Don't jump on scanning and inkjet printing because you think they'll be easier and more straightforward than optical printing. They're not.

  7. #7
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    Re: Seeking scanning solution for 8x10 negatives

    Very wise words from rdeloe - that post would be worthwhile reading for anyone who is starting to think about scanning + inkjet as an alternative to darkroom printing.

  8. #8

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    Re: Seeking scanning solution for 8x10 negatives

    Quote Originally Posted by rdeloe View Post
    One last thought for the OP: Don't jump on scanning and inkjet printing because you think they'll be easier and more straightforward than optical printing. They're not.
    I don't agree. Hybrid processing is way, way easier than darkroom printing, with Photoshop you bend the tonal curve like you want, you have layers, you dodge and burn like you want.. etc, etc, etc...

    Adjusting the print in the darkroom can be very challenging, with every mistake you waste paper and time, and we may require advanced techniques like CRM, SCIM, etc to obtain what you do with two clicks in Photoshop.

  9. #9
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    Re: Seeking scanning solution for 8x10 negatives

    Darkroom printing is also vastly cheaper and I believe safer for our environment.

    Far less total garbage from inception to production.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oren Grad View Post
    Very wise words from rdeloe - that post would be worthwhile reading for anyone who is starting to think about scanning + inkjet as an alternative to darkroom printing.
    sin eater

  10. #10

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    Re: Seeking scanning solution for 8x10 negatives

    I have been a large format photographer for over 75 years. I have tried the various processes for making digital negatives and found them to being poor imitations of a silver gelatin negative and its resulting contact print.
    Making good contact prints is not difficult if one takes the time and thought to learn to make proper negatives for the process being used to make the final print. At 90 I still prefer and use large format cameras, although I did finally give in to my old muscles and changed from 7x17 to 5x12.

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