Digitizing my 5x7 negatives

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by steveh, Nov 12, 2015.

  1. Well, the darkroom is going to have to go, and I've been investigating a means to digitize my negatives without spending a lot of money on equipment. So, pictured here is my solution. An old lightbox, my 5x7 Canham view camera, a Panasonic Lumix camera with 14-42 lens. I removed the back and replaced it with a board with 5x7 hole cut out on which to mount the negative. The first couple of images have turned out pretty good, processed in Lightroom. Hope this helps somebody.
    00daDx-559223984.jpg
     
  2. Here's my first try:
    00daDz-559224084.jpg
     
  3. Since you didn't mention it I'm going to for the benefit of others: RAW is probably a good idea, extra bits are even nicer when processing negatives.
    I'm also wondering if you have any flatness of field issues.
     
  4. Do keep an eye out for used Epson V-700, V-750, V-800, or V-850 scanners. You will get more resolution out of your negatives that way. Sometimes they are under $150 on eBay.
     
  5. +1 to John's comment. Buy a flatbed Epson scanner, digitize all your negatives, then sell the scanner. Probably will cost you only $50 total and will give much better results.
     
  6. For an example of my scanning of a 5x7 negative, see http://www.photo.net/digital-darkroom-forum/00NA2J
     
  7. Thanks for the replies above. Yes, RAW files are better. So far I'm pretty happy with the results. I'm now using a 45 mm macro lens. I get about a 20 megabyte file which seems plenty for me. I've made a couple of 11x14 test prints and they seem sharp and detailed enough. Maybe as I get a bit more sophisticated I'll feel the need for a scanner, but so far, so good (I have a scanner for smaller negatives). Lightroom doesn't have a specific process for negatives, but I've found a good workaround without having to go to photoshop.
     
  8. The Epson flatbed scanners although rated for 6400PPI can only resolve (poor optics?) about 2000-2400 real PPI of information. Still that gives you about 150 to 190 real megapixels. You can make a decent size inkjet print off of that.
     
  9. Great Idea!
     

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