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[filmscanners] Re: Lab scans

There are a lot of interesting ways to upsample files, as has been
discussed on occasion.  GF, in fact, is one.  However, if I were you, I
would ask them to show you a print made from this 1024 x 1536 scan at
the full 8 x 12 size, and see if you find it acceptable.

Most drug store enlargements can be measured at about 200 dpi.  Custom
prints done on higher end machines or with good manual enlarger lenses
might get 250-300 dpi equivalent. To make at 8 x 12" print from their
file, the dpi is 128. Although continuous tone images like true wet
chemical photographs, allow for a bit more fudge factor in terms of how
our eye responds, most continuous tone printers (like dye subs) still
require 200-300 dpi input for a reasonable result, and some ask for even
400 dpi.

I have, just experimentally pushed the limits of my Epson inkjets and
used input files of as little as upsampled 150 dpi, and indeed they
still maintain a photographic quality, but I wouldn't call them
"quality photos", if you get my drift.

In the end, the reason they can get away with it is because they
probably don't produce many 8 x 12 enlargements for their customers
relative to smaller sizes, and that most clients ae not that demanding,
or they simply don't know what to expect from a scanned image.  Of
course, if they put a optical photo enlargement of the same 35mm frame
next to their print from the scan, most people would notice something
was "off", I'd imagine.

As to an 18 meg scan not opening on your computer, well, I guess that
depends on the amount of memory in your system. I'd expect most people
who own home computers have at least 64 megs in them, but some probably
do have less, and even a 64 meg system might not be able to handle an 18
meg file for manipulating once the OS and program were running, and a
copy was running in the background. Photoshop suggests something like
4-6 times the file size for working safely, and that's without a lot of
history or layers running.

Also, a lot of people will use these images in electronic mail, and they
will have to be even further reduced for that purpose.

So, from a consumer point of view, I see where the lab is going with
this.  For the general public it is a reasonable compromise.  However,
they should offer a higher res or multiple res versions if you will pay
more (such as Kodak PhotoCD offers), IMHO.


Julie Cooke wrote:

> My Nikon Coolscan is being repaired. Meanwhile I've had a roll of 35mm
> scanned by a new lab I'm trying. When I enquired about the resolution of the
> scans, I was told good enough for a 12x8 inch print. When I got the scans
> back however they are 1024x1536 at 72dpi. So therefore I can only get 3.4x5
> inch print at 300dpi.
> I spoke to my lab, who say that it's possible to get a 12x8 print from their
> scan, scanned at base 4 using their 200,000 Noritsu printer. I can't see
> how this is possible. They say that they don't like to scan larger as I
> wouldn't be able to open their massive 18MB scans on my computer!
> Now I have a client that wants images retouched and printed. One option
> would be to retouch the scan and get it printed by the lab, as an
> experiment. However as the lab are a 30 min drive I don't want to waste my
> time!
> Thanks,
> Julie

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