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[filmscanners] Re: Nikon Super Coolscan 4000ED and sharpness/focus



Gary writes:

> I've got the Nikon Super Coolscan 4000ED.
> When I'm scanning a slide I'm finding that
> it's somewhat out of focus (or better stated,
> not sharp), and I have to sharpen it up in
> Photoshop.

Mounted or unmounted slides?  When you look at the slide obliquely, is it
quite flat, or is the film surface bending or curving in any way?  The newer
Nikon scanners have a limited depth of field that is very sensitive to any
deviation from complete flatness in film.

I have a glass holder on order for my Nikon scanner for this reason.  In the
meantime, I have to try to get strip film as flat as possible in the holder,
as even minor deviations show as a slight lack of sharpness in the affected
areas of the film image.

Do you have an example of the "soft" scans online to look at?  It's very
rare to get a scan so sharp that adjacent pixels contrast sharply, but it is
possible to come very close with good film held flat.

See http://www.smallevents.com/sample.jpg for an unmodified extract from a
full scan on a Nikon 8000ED.  Is your scan more or less sharp?  (Note that
this scan was off Fujichrome Velvia.)

Also, have you scanned these _same_ slides on other scanners (to make sure
that it's not just the slides)?  Handheld stuff may have enough motion blur
in it to negate the high resolution of even a 2700-dpi scanner.

> Also, I'm finding that when I scan in a 35mm
> color negative, the resulting scan is VERY grainy.

What type of film are you scanning?  Fast films may have grain that is easy
to see at 4000 dpi (e.g., T-Max P3200, ISO 800 color negative films, or
Tri-X).



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