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Re: filmscanners: Semi OT: 16-bits [was Which Buggy Software?]



I've read Professional Photoshop 5 cover-to-cover, and just bought
Professional Photoshop 6 since I also bought PS6, and I use his methods
though I think he does go overboard respecting color management's
shortcomings - he has a new chapter in "6" concerning it that I am eager to
read.

Meanwhile, I am attaching his public challenge, as posted on his Color
Theory group http://groups.yahoo.com/group/colortheory , which asserts that
no photographic image can be corrected better in 16-bit color than it can in
8-bit color.

Maris

----- Original Message -----
From: "rafeb" <rafeb@channel1.com>
To: <filmscanners@halftone.co.uk>
Sent: Saturday, July 14, 2001 6:14 AM
Subject: Re: filmscanners: Which Buggy Software?


| At , Maris wrote:
|
| >>You're in Dan Margulis's camp, then?  He maintains (and I have no
opinion
| >>one way or the other) that 16-bit color are not necessary.
|
|
| I was not aware that Dan Margulis said that, but
| it doesn't surprise me, and in fact I'm pleased
| to have such prestigious "backup."
|
| And as it turns out, I am a big Dan Margulis
| fan... hence my rotten attitude about ICC
| color management, etc.  I think, once you
| start working in the "Margulis" mode, you're
| probably spoiled forever from using these fancy
| profiling and monitor-calibration tools.
|
| I really think anyone seriously involved in
| "digital darkroom" owes it to themselves to at
| least hear out Dan, or read some of his stuff.
| (He's the author of the "Professional Photoshop"
| books.)
|
| Ask yourself -- how did the pros manage to get
| nice looking colors before the ICC came along
| to "fix" everything?
|
|
| rafe b.
|
|
|
Jeff writes,

>>Also, stay away from Lab unless you're archiving in 16 bit color
space....I would suggest scanning into Adobe RGB in 16 bit color for
maximum quality and tone/color corrections and then...>>

Well, since you visit only occasionally, let me restate a challenge that is
no doubt nauseatingly familiar to other list members.

For a long time now the conventional wisdom has been that one should work
in 16-bit or some other form of high-bit color. No doubt this is
theoretically true, and I used to believe that is was true as a practical
matter. However, some years ago I acquired a large number of 16-bit images
from various vendors and beat them up with a series of ridiculously complex
moves. I then compared them to the same images, converted to 8-bit prior to
applying the same moves. The resulting files were different, mind you, but
damn if I could find even the slightest reason to prefer one to the other,
no matter how extreme the correction, no matter how exigent the output
conditions.

Since this isn't the result I expected, I have for several years asked here
and elsewhere for those who advocate these methods if they might not be
able to provide me, say, two or three sample original high-bit images, with
a record of what moves were applied to them, so that I could verify that
there is a quality gain, however slight, in applying them to a 16-bit image
as opposed to an 8-bit one.

Since I have been making this request, what I have received is a large
number of histograms purporting to prove that 16-bit is better, a large
number of assurances that "16-bit has worked better for me", and a large
number of excuses for why the images in which it has worked better are
either unavailable or under NDA. As time has gone on I have grown to
suspect that perhaps the reason no one can supply such images is that there
are no such images to supply. 

Can you help me out? If you or anyone else can supply such example images
and they really demonstrate the merit of working in 16-bit, I'll be glad to
let this list know and if the differences are significant I'll print them
in my column at a size large enough for people to see. If you or anyone
else has such images, just let me know and I'll give you shipping
instructions.

Two provisos: the files have to be photographs, not computer-generated art.
Also, if the changes you propose to make are truly bizarre, I reserve the
right to make the comparison by converting the files from 16-bit to 8-bit
and then back to 16-bit before applying them.

Dan Margulis 

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