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Scanner vs Camera/macro lens

Discussion in 'Everything Film' started by Zou, Jul 3, 2021.

  1. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    If I had Photoshop instead of Lightroom 5.7, the colour balance would be less of an issue, but I have to say the camera is producing far better results. Maybe not a lot in it at the compression/resolution for the forum but at 100% it's significantly different. Plus this is without a proper copy stand so not necessarily perfectly aligned.

    20210523-2021-05-23-0008.jpg


    20210703-DSC03524.jpg
     
  2. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    You can adjust colours using HSL in LR5.7 (presuming that 5.7 is very similar to my version [6.1]).

    Or doesn't that get the result you're after?
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2021
  3. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Yes, but not quite enough. Had to warm it up using split toning tool!

    Have since read that it's best not to use the WB dropper on tif files, so I'll try an alternative next time. Here the WB was at its absolute lowest and still far too blue (remember this is inverted with the tone curve so most adjustment sliders reversed).
     
  4. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    Have you tried Gimp? It has colour balance adjustment (and it's free ;)).
     
  5. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Not used it since changing the computer a few years back. Main issue is still having to use the software (which is still 8bit, isn't it?) plus a raw converter plugin, then having to fiddle further. Lightroom is a lot more intuitive to use and has simple tools, rather than the "I want to sharpen so I need to make a ... layer, do x y and z to it, and blend using the ... mode" thought process. That's another reason why I don't have Photoshop. ;)

    There are paid plugins for dealing with negative inversion in Lr but they tend to be for newer versions.
     
  6. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    I’ve had mixed results with inverting colour negs. The “proper” way to do it is to subtract the orange mask, which needs layers, but I was photographing 110 negatives and a main feature of the camera seemed to be a failure to mask the edges of each frame so there was no unexposed film base to sample the mask colour from. So I treated it as a tint and tried to colour correct. Very hit and miss with the backwards sliders in Lightroom. I found my flatbed scanner OK for 35 mm negatives, but it was bought for the job.
     
  7. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Ooooh, just seen Darktable now has a "negadoctor" module for exactly what I want to do with files. Will definitely be checking it out!
     
  8. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    How about Rawtherapee or Darktable? They both have negative converters, with a range of adjustments.
    Never tried them myself, but I've read good things about them.
     
  9. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    Well, that was neat timing! :D
     
    Zou likes this.
  10. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    When I said I haven't tried them, I was referring to the negative modules.

    I've used both Rawtherapee and Darktable, and they're both excellent pieces of software, IMO. Not perhaps, as 'glossy' as LR, but plenty of substance.
     
    Zou likes this.
  11. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    I don’t think it is the fact that it is a tiff that is the problem, more that everything is reversed. You’d expect the white balance to produce grey either way around but it probably only “works” if you’ve got a target that should be exactly (127, 127, 127) i.e doesn’t care if it is reversed or not.

    To get rid of a blue tint you have to adjust the individual colour tone curves and it takes a lot of trial and error, especially with them reversed.

    I’ve got some horrible casts still on the first pics I worked with. I think I should have got so far in inverting them, then exported them and reprocessed with all the colours going the expected way. The saving grace is that these were family album pics from the 1970s where the prints had gone so a) anything is better than nothing and b) people don’t get photographically critical about pics of their 40 year ago selves and their long dead relatives smiling at the instamatic.
     
  12. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

  13. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Here's the image via darktable (apparently all lower case) - exported as 16bit tif then opened in Lr for the same tweaking as earlier including sharpening etc. I feel like the extra steps maybe don't catch the same detail, or perhaps the profile corrections for the camera (noise etc.) are not being applied but it's pretty decent. Apologies for not being bothered to remove the dust. ;)

    20210703-DSC03524-2.jpg
     
  14. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Going to try some b/w next.
     
  15. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Not bad - colour is in between the other two and more neutral (less blue, less green). Trying to decide whether to risk trying to put darktable on my mac. The install page doesn't say that it runs on OSx 10.15.7 , only that it runs on versions later than 10.7 but lots of software doesn't run on the last two releases. (10.13, 10.14) and I don't want to screw it up.
     
  16. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    In terms of workflow, having done a few images it is starting to get easier, but it is still a long way from Lightroom's intuitivity - the first time I used a Lr trial it just made sense, and I didn't need to run through tutorials. I can get a negative inversion I like really quickly, but it's what comes next that's tricky. I'd like to learn how to process in the app and not have to export to Lr. YouTube here I come...
     
    peterba likes this.
  17. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    I agree, darktable's UI is less intuitive than LR - but its capabilites are greater, IMO. I've found that once you get into your stride with darktable, it's very good.

    If you're heading to Youtube for tutorials, I'd suggest Bruce Williams' series of tutorials, or those by Aurélien Pierre (he's the author of darktable, so he knows a thing or two about it. ;)).
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2021
    Zou likes this.
  18. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Quick mono comparison - not identical but happy with both.

    Lr first, then darktable. Lr seems to handle sharpening better and definitely compression.

    20210704-2021-07-04-0001.jpg


    2021-07-04-0001_01.jpg

    Edit to add: exported full size tif from darktable into Lr, quick contrast/sharpen.

    20210704-2021-07-04-0001-2.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2021
    peterba likes this.
  19. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Now, the same negative, photographed with my macro lens on a slide viewer, and imported into Lr. Did a bit more work on it (but still not removed the dust, ha!) which was pretty easy to do.

    20210704-DSC03565.jpg
     
  20. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    To my eyes, there's not much in it, although at 100% the photo seemed to have more detail than the scan. I should perhaps find a better image to compare, with fine detail that I know is in focus. One other (not insignificant) advantage is the file size, at just over 16MB for the photo, compared to 80+MB for the scan. Storage isn't really the issue, but the smaller files are less needy on processing power, and seem to capture just as much detail...
     

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