spencer
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Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Sun Mar 09, 2008 8:28 pm

I can't claim to be in the masterclass yet, mainly due to the fact that I have only just started to upload scans. But for you guys that do it on a regular basis would it be at all possible to share any tips you may have?
I've recently become an avid user of Neat Image and used wisely it's producing some amazing effects on my scans (from prints). I am about to upload a couple after this post but my main concern is that I may be missing out on an important part of the scanning/editing process, that I wouldn't necessarily do with a digital image.
So, here's my (new) workflow, which as of today seems to be pretty good. If you can improve on it then PLEASE let me know as I have a *cough* few *cough* prints that I'd like to share on here.
Firstly I'll scan the image at either 1200dpi or even 2400dpi on the Lexmark scanner coupled to the PC upstairs. (I now work off a laptop). Having done that I'll bring the scanned image over to the laptop where I'll open it in Neat Image and apply the relevant amount of noise reduction, then open it in CS2. Once there I'll do a general edit as I would with my digital images. Somewhere in the edit though I'll have a further look at trying to reduce any remaining noise (seldom any to complain about actually) and after that I'll resize in increments from approx. 7000 all the way down to 1024. Smart sharpen to suit.
The main worry is that I'm missing something out, as like I stated I've only just started doing this. Some of my "earlier" scans online here appear overly grainy and this is due to the fact that I didn't use Neat Image back then.
Any of you guys care to share then your methods so I may be able to improve or hone my scanning skills?
TIA
Spencer.
EOS1D4, 7D, 30D, 100-400/4.5-5.6 L IS USM, 70-200/2.8 L IS2 USM, 17-40 f4 L USM, 24-105 f4 L IS USM, 85 f1.8 USM
 
leadingedge
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 11:17 am

I have only one Scanned print here but the main point is to use large prints only, an average 6x4 print will not generally be large enough to get a good result. I used to find that 7X 5.5 Iinches should be treated as a minimum standard.

I hope neat image has improved, It is three years since I last used it but I would not introduce it to the workflow until you have made all you adjustments in Photoshop before sharpenning . If you have to apply neat image to anything but the background of the photograph you are likely to end up with a plasticised subject with the sharpness of a marshmallow. so be very careful how you use it.

If you still have the negatives I would suggest that you consider using either a dedicated Slide/Negative scanner or get some large prints made prior to scanning, alternatively have the negatives professionally scanned at a decent Lab, (not Boots or your local photo shop). Plenty of Professional Labs provide this service.

Good luck.
 
spencer
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 11:28 am

Cheers Chris. I can't tell you if NI has improved unfortunately. I've been using it as the first thing I do, prior to PS/CS2. But you reckon it's better off if I leave it until last, ie. in the editing process in PS/CS2? I'll give it a try in that case. Thanks for the tip.
Spencer.
EOS1D4, 7D, 30D, 100-400/4.5-5.6 L IS USM, 70-200/2.8 L IS2 USM, 17-40 f4 L USM, 24-105 f4 L IS USM, 85 f1.8 USM
 
ZakHH
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 2:33 pm

I maybe wrong on this one, but I find scanned prints more sensitive to noise reduction filters than pictures from my digital camera. Meaning it is easier to lose details when applying noise reduction to a print than to a digital photo.

I have not tried Neat Image, so I cannot comment on that one. I tried Noise Ninja once, and was not impressed with the result. Most of the noise you get rid off will return later upon sharpening.

Usually, I would use Photoshop's own noise reduction filter. I know that many people don't like it, but with the right settings, I would usually get the results I am looking for.

I would usually go with:
Strength - depends on the picture, usually lower values with scanned prints
Preserve Details - ~25%
Reduce Color Noise - ~40%
Sharpen Details - 0% (I would do that later using USM)
Remove JPEG artifacts - unchecked

(I use a German version of CS2, so sorry if English terms are not fully correct)

For grainy skies, you can apply noise reduction only to the blue color channel.

Dirt / dust spots, I would clone out manually with the healing brush. Of course, it is also very important to carefully clean both the print and the scanner before scanning.

As for downsizing, I am no friend of incremental downsizing. I would usually downsize to the final size in only 1 step. But that's just personal preference.

My workflow with scanning is usually:
- clean print and scanner
- scan with max. dpi and color depth (48 bit) into a PSD file
- level / crop
- clean from dirt, dust and noise
- save the result as PSD (helpful if you would like to repeat one of the following steps with different settings later on, as cleaning is usually what will consume most of the time)
- adjust color / exposure / saturation / contrast
- downsize (1 step)
- sharpen (sometimes I would apply some USM even before the downsizing - depends on the print)
- convert to 8 bit & save as JPEG

Cheers
Stefan
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wietse
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 5:28 pm

Dont use Neatimage as standard. Only when you find out that your image is too grany in the end, apply some as a first step.

Always avoid using it, it really messes up the pictures to a point where I would prefer a grainy image to the neatimaged version.
Wietse de Graaf
 
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KaiGywer
Crew
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 6:55 pm



Quoting LeadingEdge (Reply 1):
sharpness of a marshmallow. so be very careful how you use it.

 rotfl 

Nice description  Smile
“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, an
 
dendrobatid
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 8:28 pm

I totally agree with Wietse and never use NI as a matter of course but nonetheless, I do have to use it on some very old images where the grain has reticulated (clumped through washing the negatives in too cold water)
My way is to scan and edit a full sized image by getting the levels, colour, brightness, contrast etc correct but with no sharpening. I then save the edited image and I add parted to the file name, just to help me.
I then open that image in NI and do an auto filter. This will leave a default filtration of 60% in the luminance channel and 100% in the chrominance channel. That default setting is ALWAYS too high. I only ever deal wih the luminance channel and turn that down to about 20% and apply it. By clicking on the resulting image you can see the effect on the grain and there should be only a very slight reduction visible. My philosophy is to soften the grain rather than trying to remove it. I then save the image and it gains the word filtered at the end. I then have the image to do further photoshop work with.
I re-size, one go, not in stages and sharpen. However, I will always use the magic wand to deselect areas (such as the sky) before sharpening as I can see no point softening the grain and then sharpening it so I never sharpen more than I need to, the subject.
Neat Image does not have to ruin an image and it can frequently have remarkable results. Overdone though it is diabolical
Mick Bajcar
 
spencer
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 9:02 pm

Thanks a lot for that guys, in particular Mick. Mick, your method is basically the same as mine, and although I'm relatively new to this I feel it's a pretty good method. I HAVE been over doing it with NI, probably because like most things new I can't get enough of it. Big grin Wieste, I see your point however, on using NI at the end. I had a nice shot of a SVA L15, scanned and subsequently accepted here on Airliners.net. After a while though I realised it can and should be better (especially after using NI !)
So, I hit it once with NI and the following image is the end result:


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Spencer Wilmot



To me that is pretty good, however I have a couple in the queue now that I consider are even better (sharpness and grain wise) yet I can see the use of NI has destroyed the surrounding area of the photograph. One of those images can be seen in the link below:

http://www.airliners.net/addphotos/big/ready/DAS10Fsjw.jpg

Would the above example be acceptable, considering the a/c is edited to an ok-ish standard, yet the grass is completely lost in the NI edit?
TIA
Spencer.
EOS1D4, 7D, 30D, 100-400/4.5-5.6 L IS USM, 70-200/2.8 L IS2 USM, 17-40 f4 L USM, 24-105 f4 L IS USM, 85 f1.8 USM
 
ZakHH
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Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2005 11:32 pm

RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 9:18 pm



Quoting Spencer (Reply 7):
Would the above example be acceptable, considering the a/c is edited to an ok-ish standard, yet the grass is completely lost in the NI edit?

Since that is not something we see here every day, I would guess it may be okay.

But I think you can further reduce the grain on the sky, without losing too much quality with the picture. I gave it a very quick go, here's the result:

Big version: Width: 1024 Height: 694 File size: 250kb


If you would like, I could give it a try before you run it through NI. Though I would perfectly understand if you would prefer to not send these pictures around.

Anyway, great work! Keep them coming!

Cheers
Stefan
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spencer
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 9:29 pm

Stefan, thanks for that little edit, it was certainly a clearer sky! I didn't even see a problem with "my" sky but I guess that just goes to show what other people's eyes are drawn to! What about the grassy area toward the bottom of the image though - a problem or not? (It doesn't look right but the a/c does, this is the problem I'm concerned about).
Cheers
Spencer.
EOS1D4, 7D, 30D, 100-400/4.5-5.6 L IS USM, 70-200/2.8 L IS2 USM, 17-40 f4 L USM, 24-105 f4 L IS USM, 85 f1.8 USM
 
ZakHH
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Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2005 11:32 pm

RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 9:37 pm



Quoting Spencer (Reply 9):
What about the grassy area toward the bottom of the image though - a problem or not? (It doesn't look right but the a/c does, this is the problem I'm concerned about)

As far as I am concerned, it is not ruining the picture. The focus is on the aircraft (which indeed looks perfect), so I would probably not pay any attention to the grass anyway.

If it's possible to "preserve" the grass, then it would probably not hurt. But if that would mean that the aircraft would look less perfect, then I would opt for losing the grass instead.
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dendrobatid
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 9:54 pm

Spencer
I am not happy with the DAS edit as it has that plastic effect that excessive NI can cause. It is marginally acceptable but I am sure that it could be better
Can you send me an unedited scan and I will see what I can do
Mick
 
Granite
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 10:35 pm

Hi all

I don't use Neat Image but prefer Noise Ninja. Used carefully it works pretty good.


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Gary Watt



Regards

Gary
 
Granite
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RE: Masterclass: Scanning Prints.

Tue Mar 11, 2008 10:41 pm

Spencer

The DAS DC10 and the Saudi TriStar both have colour casts that can easily be removed in PS.

I just had a play around and it looks much better.

I will need to get my scanner set up again on my older PC as it does not seem to like Vista  

Regards

Gary

[Edited 2008-03-11 15:42:17]

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