Zeiss MF vs Zeiss 35mm (and scanning question too)

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by david_simonds, Aug 4, 2003.

  1. Friends, I am considering the purchase of a Hasselblad, as I
    indicated in my earlier post. I presently shoot with a Contax G2 with
    the Zeiss primes. I scan with a Canon FS 4000 and print with an Epson
    2200. I like the idea of a considerably larger negative, but wonder
    whether the quality of the final product vs my Contax, alone, would
    merit jumping into a new system. I understand that the Epson 2450 or
    more recent model will scan transparencies (I usually shoot Provia
    F). How would the quality of a Blad image scanned on a flat bed
    compare with a 35mm Zeiss image out of my FS4000, and printed to the
    same dimensions. I would hope to be able to print better quality
    larger images with the 6x6 format than the 35mm. This is my primary
    interest in going to MF. Assuming the image is well done, what is the
    practical size limit for printing a MF slide. Would it be that much
    bigger than a 35mm Zeiss image? Gads, should I go to 4x5? So many
    choises. So little restraint. Many thanks.
  2. David,
    the 35mm result would whoop the Blad if you only scan the medium format with a flatbed, to gain the huge benifit of the Blad neg you would need to scan in a comparable scanner to that of the 35mm, otherwise you are wasting your time. If you cannot justify the expense of your own m/f scanner then get a lab with a drum scanner or an Imacon flextight to do the job for you, then and only then will you see why you just paid out so much for a Hasselblad.
  3. Gary, what does it cost to have transparencies scanned by a pro shop. Are they then put on disc for me to do PS 7 management and printing? Thanks for your kind reply.
  4. David,
    I live in the UK and my lab just outside London charge me £18 to scan a 6x6 or 6x7 to a 30MB file and £30-£40 for around a 100MB. These are very high quality scans but you can pay a lot more for scans of up to 300MB but these may not be necessary for your print sizes, a good lab would advise.
  5. Sorry David, I missed out the second question, yes they come on a disk, but all the colour management and photoshop work is done by the lab as I really don't want to spend that much time on my PC and even if I did, I don't have the expertise in photoshop to do the transparencies justice. I have a very good relationship with my lab and have been working with them for 18 years, other labs may offer less, or charge more.
  6. <<How would the quality of a Blad image scanned on a flat bed compare with a 35mm Zeiss image out of my FS4000, and printed to the same dimensions.>>

    I actually *have* a Canoscan 4000US and an Epson 2450, and Hasselblad and Leica which is no worse optically than Contax G2 ;>) The Hassy shots scanned on the 2450 beat the Leica shots scanned on the 4000 with lots of room to spare. I also have a Polaroid 45, which is only a 2000dpi scanner but with a greater dynamic range than the Epson, and the shadow detail is a bit better.
  7. I have heard that some minilabs equipped with fuji frontiers can scan 6x6 too if they have an adapter (I don't know the english word, sorry). Otherwise the price of high definition scans in pro labs is so high that IMHO it is more advantageous to buy a print directly (unless you have to do extensive photoshop work, of course).
  8. Jay,
    My lab actually 'have' an Imacon flextight scanner as well as an Epson 2450 and they have scanned many of my Leica and Hasselblad transparencies for prints as large as 30x40 for exhibitions. I don't know what you are doing with your 2450 because it is nowhere near as good as the Flextight results where i'm from.
  9. Come on Gary, at least do the math, if you scan 35 at 4000 dpi and say 6x45 at 2000
    dpi, since the 6x45 is three times the size of the 35 you are still getting a third more
    data from the 6x45. Never mind that it is doubtfull that you are getting clean data
    from all 4000 pixels on the 35. I would rather be 'downsampling' from medium
    format. As for the epson scanners they do a remarkable job considing what they cost.
    Now if you happen to be shooting 6x9 cm format the results will completely bury the
    35mm image. Oh and btw, the epson will also scan up to 4x9 inches in transparency
    mode. For me the epson with medium format is a good solution, and if I happen to
    get one really superb shot I can always take it to a lab and have it scanned on a high
    end machine.
  10. Gary - what's the name of the lab?

  11. Gentlemen, thank you all. Are there any dedicated slide/neg scanners for medium format and are they sufficiently superior to the Epson to justify the cost. And how big can you print a well shot MF slide and maintain quality?
  12. The problem with the Epson isn't the amount of detail, but it's the dynamic range. If you're shooting trannie film, the Contax and Canoscan will almost certainly produce better overall results than any MF and Epson. I've learnt this the hard way; I bought a Canon D2400UF, which is an excellent machine in many ways (almost identical to the Epson) but simply not up to this job. I ended up buying a Minolta Scan Multi Pro, at which point MF trounces 35mm.
    Never mind, the D2400 does great print scans and copes well enough with 5x4.
  13. This issue have been discussed over and over again in the forums, so I would advice you to search the archives. There is a good thread dated Sept 14 2002 "Epson 2450 for medium format scans". It seems to me, after reading this kind of threads for some years, that the vast majority of them with first hand experience, agree on that larger film area beats higher resolution scanners. I scan 6x6 Hasselblad slides (CF 100,Provia F100) with Epson 2450 and print them with Epson 1290. I got very good results at 29x29 cm.
  14. My Hassy 6x6 scans using an Epson 2450 produce FAR better 13x19" prints than any
    4000ppi scan of 35mm that I've done ever has. They are not as good as using a
    dedicated film scanner like an LS8000, for sure, but they're still much better than
    35mm work at this print size.

    I wish I could make 19x19" or even larger prints...


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