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RE: filmscanners: Negatives vs. slides in new scanners

Alessandro wrote:
> After reading a long thread on photo.net, which finally stated
> that, due to Dmax values, low-end scanners work best with
> negatives and hi-end with slides, I made my own little test
> with my LS-30 by shooting the same (a bit contrasty) scene
> with Kodak Supra 100 and Fuji Provia F 100, and can confirm
> that the scan from the negative is FAR better

With a contrasty scene there will always be more detail in a neg
than a slide.  There is always (AFAIK) more exposure latitude in
neg film than slide film.

However, I am surprised that you consider Supra 100 "far better"
than Provia 100F.  My conclusion is exactly the reverse using
the same scanner for *well exposed* images.  Basing your
conclusion on a high contrast image isn't IMO reasonable,
but it depends on what you're expecting to achieve.

> Back to the question: is the (theoretical) 4.0 Dmax enough to
> have scans from slides at least as good as those from negatives?

I'd be interested to hear the responses from others with more
expensive scanners but as far as I can make out, the answer
is no - simply because the information isn't on the film.
If you have high contrast situations where you want to catch
the highlight and shadow detail, you're better off with negs.
But if you have fairly even exposure situations, the best
thing I've tried on my LS30 is Provia 100F.

On wednesday I went for a scuba dive, and quite deliberately
chose Fuji 400 negative film because I wanted to capture as
wide a range of light as possible.  I knew the exposures
would probably be inaccurate.  But if I'd been photographing
a model in open shade out of the water, I'd have used Provia. :)


PS Try Vuescan and multiple passes with the LS30 and slide film.  It should
reduce noise and bring out a bit more shadow detail.  Also with Vuescan
you can get 10 bits per channel while Nikonscan only gives you 8.

Rob Geraghty harper@wordweb.com


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