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Thread: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Kit?

  1. #51

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    Re: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Ki

    Quote Originally Posted by sperdynamite View Post
    I thought it might be easier to show and not tell. Apologies for the noisy iPhone pic. This is my set up for scanning sheet film. The window behind has a blind that comes down to mask all light by the way.

    You can see my simple cut out mask for 4x5, my lens has a hood on it of course, and you can see the distances my ANR platform is from the Kaiser panel. This distance is important as it blurs any surface issues on the panel itself. Those kaisers scratch so easy, and they show up if you just lay your original on the light.

    No need IMO to sandwich your film. Sheet film does not really curl all that much, and very curly sheets (rare) can simple be weighted or taped at the edges. I hardly ever have to do this, and viewing my extreme edges at 100% of a 155mp file still shows good sharpness. Because dust is always possible I like to reduce possible surfaces.

    If you don't care about scanning edges, my vote would be to just use negative carriers from enlargers. Just make sure to make a platform for them that holds them a few inches above the light. This is a super easy solution that will definitely work. Enlarger carriers are everywhere on the bay, and it should be easy to make some feet for one to hold it up a good distance. I scan my 120 film using Bessler carriers. Negative Supply is making a 120 carrier though, and when that comes out I will use it.

    My ANR platform was a custom make for me from a friend.
    Sperdynamite,

    Thanks so much for this!

    Just two quick questions about the film holder, if I may, just so I get everything right:

    1.) Is there a particular recommended distance between the ANR platform from the Kaiser panel, or could it be any relatively small distance?

    2.) Would it be easiest/cheaper if I just bought these two holders (made for the Epson V850) that have ANR glass, and put DIY legs on them with rubber feet (so as to not scratch the Kaiser panel?)
    (The 4x5 holder costs $26 and the 120 MF holder costs $39)
    Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #52

    Re: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Ki

    Quote Originally Posted by manfrominternet View Post
    Sperdynamite,

    Thanks so much for this!

    Just two quick questions about the film holder, if I may, just so I get everything right:

    1.) Is there a particular recommended distance between the ANR platform from the Kaiser panel, or could it be any relatively small distance?

    2.) Would it be easiest/cheaper if I just bought these two holders (made for the Epson V850) that have ANR glass, and put DIY legs on them with rubber feet (so as to not scratch the Kaiser panel?)
    (The 4x5 holder costs $26 and the 120 MF holder costs $39)
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	4x5 Holder w:ANR Glass.jpg 
Views:	5 
Size:	36.8 KB 
ID:	197227 Click image for larger version. 

Name:	120 MF Holder w:ANR Glass.jpg 
Views:	5 
Size:	37.1 KB 
ID:	197228
    1. Not that I know of, just whatever works to blur any surface scratches on the panel.

    2. I use the Negative Supply Mark I for 35mm, Bessler carriers for 120, and a custom made 10x12 anti newton glass platform for sheet film. Beyond that it's all about seeing what works for you. I will say I think the Epson holders are a bad idea because they don't have even feet to hold themselves up, and even in the best of times they are not great with film flatness. Enlarger carriers just work.

    Good luck with it all man! I scanned about 8 rolls of 35mm chrome film today with the Negative Supply holder. I'm faster with the camera scanner than I am with the Frontier SP3000.

  3. #53

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    Re: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Ki

    Taking a step back before plunging. (I confess i haven't read all of the 50+ posts in this thread, so this might be a duplicate)
    From your OP, you have "a large number of 4x5 Fuji Provia ..." "as well as a large number of..." and you are contemplating 8'x6' prints; on the other hand, if you "sink basically all of what little money I have" into scanning, how will you pay for a zillion giant prints? So I respectfully submit:
    1. Quick scans of the Ektar shots, for the next step
    2. Which shots definitely deserve to be printed; how many?
    3. Make test scans of the same shot with the three scanning methods, and print at intended size.
    4. Show the three prints to a few friends with a good eye, without telling them which is which
    5. Count your keeper shots and the dollars in your account; make a decision (does the last 10% improvement in quality deserve +100% expense?)
    Last edited by Bernard_L; 7-Nov-2019 at 11:45.

  4. #54

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    Re: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Ki

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernard_L View Post
    Taking a step back before plunging
    +1

  5. #55

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    Re: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Ki

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernard_L View Post
    Taking a step back before plunging. (I confess i haven't read all of the 50+ posts in this thread, so this might be a duplicate)
    From your OP, you have "a large number of 4x5 Fuji Provia ..." "as well as a large number of..." and you are contemplating 8'x6' prints; on the other hand, if you "sink basically all of what little money I have" into scanning, how will you pay for a zillion giant prints? So I respectfully submit:
    1. Quick scans of the Ektar shots, for the next step
    2. Which shots definitely deserve to be printed; how many?
    3. Make test scans of the with each of the same shot with the three scanning methods, and print at intended size.
    4. Show the three prints to a few friends with a good eye, without telling them which is which
    5. Count your keeper shots and the dollars in your account; make a decision (does the last 10% improvement in quality deserve +100% expense?)
    I agree. I'm not going to make huge prints anytime soon; that's just a final goal. At this point, I simply want to scan my negatives digitally with my Sony a7R III, a Sigma ART 70mm/2.8 Macro lens, and a copy stand. I can worry about drum scanning/enormous prints later.

    Because I, indeed, have little money, I'm asking very specific questions (hopefully not annoying) just so that I can purchase the right things and not have to worry about wasting money because I bought the wrong item. I'm very new to this way of "scanning." I saw a few videos on YouTube on how to do this and there are a plethora of techniques for the film holder setup alone!

    I've amended what is in my bhphoto shopping cart, specifically the copy stand. The original copy stand that I intended to get was the Smith-Victor 36" (91.5 centimeters) Pro-Duty Copy Stand ($256.10). I later saw a YouTube video of a photographer successfully using a Kaiser Repro Kid Copy Stand Kit ($156.00) for his medium format negatives, but I worry that, at 23" (58.5 centimeters) in height, it is too short to fit a 4x5 negative in the frame of my Sony a7R III with the Sigma ART 70mm/2.8 Macro lens attached in one shot, even all the way up at 23", the full height of the Kaiser Repro Kid Copy Stand.

    That said, do you guys think the 23" tall Kaiser Repro copy stand is tall enough to fit a 4x5 negative in one shot, or do I need the taller (and much more expensive) Smith-Victor 36" copy stand (if I'm using the Sigma ART 70mm Macro lens)?

    Without further ado, here's now whats in my B&H shopping cart:

    1.) Sigma 70mm f/2.8 DG Macro Art Lens (for Sony E-Mount) -- $469.00
    2.) Kaiser Slimlite Plano 5000K Battery/AC Lightbox (8 x 11") -- $88.88
    3.) Kaiser Repro Kid 23" Copy Stand Kit -- $156.00
    ... (Again, I don't know if I should get this Kaiser 23" copy stand or the Smith-Victor 36" Pro-Duty Copy Stand, which I originally had in my shopping cart.)
    4.) Beseler Anti-Newton Glass for the 45M, 45V and 810 Series Enlargers -- $83.95

    Here's a text illustration of what I'm thinking this will look like:

    CAMERA
    |
    |
    |
    |
    |
    |
    BLACK MASK (made from cheap art board)
    NEGATIVE (taped onto the ANR glass that its sitting on, if necessary)
    ANTI-NEWTON RING GLASS
    2" TALL DO-IT-YOURSELF LEGS/BOX (encasing the lightbox and holding up the ANR glass)
    BOTTOM OF COPY STAND_____________________________________________

    Let me know if this setup looks right or if you have any suggestions, improvements, warnings, etc...

  6. #56

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    Re: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Ki

    Bernard is talking wisdom here.

    It may look like a waste of money to perform some tests before committing to a certain method , but then it may turn into a bigger waste if the results achieved with best-guess-selected method do not meet the expectations.
    I would seriously look into choosing a "typical' 4x5 sheet from your collection as a sample and make it scanned using a variety of equipment and methods, such as X1, Epson, DSLR, a good drum, etc. Maybe each advocate of their equipment and technics will be willing to make a test "scan" for you (even if for a fee).

    Short of that and if money are the main optimization criteria and you would like to gamble why not to get an Epson and call it a day?
    Reasons: You will unlikely beat it with DSLR setup on 4x5s.
    Unless you are planning on working hard on your frustration with dust, endless alignments of camera position relative to film for each frame or portion of it, contrast reduction due to flare and surrounding light, stitching, post-scan negative conversion (prepare to add Negative Lab Pro or ColorPerfect, together with Adobe subscription to the cart), and other not so obvious issues associated with DSLR "scanning"

  7. #57

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    Re: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Ki

    Quote Originally Posted by SergeyT View Post
    Bernard is talking wisdom here.

    It may look like a waste of money to perform some tests before committing to a certain method , but then it may turn into a bigger waste if the results achieved with best-guess-selected method do not meet the expectations.
    I would seriously look into choosing a "typical' 4x5 sheet from your collection as a sample and make it scanned using a variety of equipment and methods, such as X1, Epson, DSLR, a good drum, etc. Maybe each advocate of their equipment and technics will be willing to make a test "scan" for you (even if for a fee).

    Short of that and if money are the main optimization criteria and you would like to gamble why not to get an Epson and call it a day?

    All very valid points. I've been thinking about getting the Epson V850 and the betterscanning.com variable height mount and just scanning that way, and, like you said, call it a day. It'll save me a lot of time, at least I hope it does. Pere

    Reasons: You will unlikely beat it with DSLR setup on 4x5s.
    Unless you are planning on working hard on your frustration with dust, endless alignments of camera position relative to film for each frame or portion of it, contrast reduction due to flare and surrounding light, stitching, post-scan negative conversion (prepare to add Negative Lab Pro or ColorPerfect, together with Adobe subscription to the cart), and other not so obvious issues associated with DSLR "scanning"
    Sergey,

    I agree with you. I was really hoping someone would encourage me to seriously consider the Epson V850 with the "betterscanning.com variable height wet mount kit" and, like you said, call it a day. I thought that would be, by far, the easiest route.

    However, the problem I realized is that the wet mount process with the Epson V850 will take just as long, if not longer. (I've seen some YouTube videos on the wet mounting process.)

    Also, I have a Sony a7R III, but I have no lens for it. So this "digitized scanning" appeals to me for two basic reasons: 1.) I'll finally have a lens to put on my Sony a7R III and be able to actually use it (I haven't used my Sony a7R III since March, when I sold the only lens I had), and 2.) The Sony a7R III/Sigma ART 70mm/2.8 Macro combination is apparently a powerful combination when is comes to "digitized" scanning. Yes, of course, it'll take time to actually get it right and develop a work flow, but I think I can do it. Won't be drum scan quality, but it'll hopefully be good. I actually just got a chance to try out the Sony a7R III/Sigma ART 70mm/2.8 Macro at my local camera store today, and it was pretty amazing.

    I'm still doing my research, and I may very well end up getting the Epson V850 if I get some more evidence that that's the way to go. I have approximately $1,150 to burn on scanning or scanning equipment. It's not a lot, I know, and I'm very far from my dream of large prints rivaling the works of Struth/Gursky and the rest of the Dusseldorf Becher gang. In the end, I guess I want what we all want: the best bang for your buck. I'm still just weighing my options.

    So far, Sperdynamite has convinced me that my Sony a7R III/Sigma ART 70mm/2.8 Macro is a very good option.

    I'm planning to make a move this Sunday. Either I'll get a used Epson V850 for $800, or I'll get the Sigma ART 70mm Macro/Kaiser Copy Stand/Kaiser Lightbox/Accessories/CNMY Film Inversion plugin for Affinity Photo for $850. (I use Capture One and Affinity Photo as my Lightroom/Photoshop replacement, for better or worse.)

    I will also rent the Imacon X1 Flextight scanner for $30 (for one hour), just to see the difference with the results.

    By the way, here's a YouTube video that I found extremely helpful: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHz5...m&index=5&t=0s

    I hope this video helps anyone here who wants to try this method of scanning.

  8. #58

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    Re: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Ki

    Do I even need ANR glass? What if I kept my negative elevated from the lightbox and mask it like this guy does? (Starts at 1 minute into this video): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHz5...m&index=5&t=0s

    (Yes, this is the same video I included in my previous post.)

  9. #59

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    Re: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Ki

    Quote Originally Posted by manfrominternet View Post
    So far, Sperdynamite has convinced me that my Sony a7R III/Sigma ART 70mm/2.8 Macro is a very good option.
    Speardynamite scans a 8x10" with a single DSLR shot, so a medium able to record (say) 700 effective MPix is scanned into a file that has many repeated pixels but only around 25 to 30 effective MPix. If you want that then you should follow his advice. At the end with the Sigma ART you may also make nice macro shots of insects, flowers, etc.

  10. #60

    Re: Should I Drum Scan, X1 Flextight Scan, or use the Epson V850 w/Aztek Wet Mount Ki

    Quote Originally Posted by Pere Casals View Post
    Speardynamite scans a 8x10" with a single DSLR shot, so a medium able to record (say) 700 effective MPix is scanned into a file that has many repeated pixels but only around 25 to 30 effective MPix. If you want that then you should follow his advice. At the end with the Sigma ART you may also make nice macro shots of insects, flowers, etc.
    I like that he still doesn't understand how pixel shift works so he just continues to be wrong, but with wonderful aplomb.

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