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Old Jun 2, 2006, 7:56 PM   #1
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I am a newbie who just picked up a Nikon Coolscan V ED film scanner and and unsure the best way to save my scanned files.

On the Nikon Scan menu it gives a choice of saving by pixels or by output size. I understand the relationship between the two and that I can have the same quality either way based on resolution, but what do most people do? Is it practical to have 3000 or 4000 dpi files that have an actual size of a 35mm negative or do most go ahead and enlarge the file to a output size 4x6 or 8x10, etc.

Also, is there a big difference between high quality JPEG vs Tiff?


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Old Jun 2, 2006, 8:43 PM   #2
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I just leave it 1:1 and scan at the highest optical resolution. That would be 4000 PPI for your Nikon. That scanner will get improved detail up to its maximum resolution and I see no reason to scan at lower resolutions and have to rescan later if I need higher resolution.

The document size assigned to the file is immaterial until you assign a print size. You get the largest file it is capable of without interpolating by just leaving it at 1:1 and selecting 4000 PPI. You should end up with a document size around 1.417 x 0.945 inches and a file around 5668 X 3780 pixels. Only the pixels are significant.

If you specifically wanted to scan just for a batch of 4 X 6 prints you could set 4 X 6 as your output size and 300 PPI. No printer is really capable of using more than 300 PPI nor is a photofinisher. You would save time doing that. Even an 8 X 10 set for 300 PPI would run faster than full resolution.

But you have to be careful to not mess with both resolution and output size to the point you are interpolating.

You really can't see the difference between a best quality JPG and a TIFF. Someone last year on another discussion said his camera's JPG output was so good he could do twenty quality 12 saves from Photoshop and not pick up artifacts. I thought he might be just hitting the save twenty times, which is really only one compression. So I downloaded an image from his camera and did twenty real quality 12 saves – closing the image after each save and opening the saved image from the hard drive. I couldn't see any difference after the 20th save. A best quality JPG is better than most people think it is.

Edit: I might add that I still scan as TIFF or PNG out of habit. But I scan only for specific items and don't have a large number to back up. I'm planning a scan of my old film and slide collection and will probably use best quality JPG though.

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Old Jun 3, 2006, 3:12 PM   #3
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Here is an article that you may find of interest. It has some examples of what happens (or doesn't happen) resaving JPEG Images:

JPEG Images: Counting Your Losses

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Old Jun 5, 2006, 11:05 AM   #4
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Thanks for the advice!

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Old Jun 26, 2006, 5:26 PM   #5
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I use the nikon LS4000 and max out the res. I always scan in rgb (even B&W negs) to get the 14bit accuracy. But can anyone tell me what the drop down selection for 'film type' actually does? what's the difference in the way it scans the film?
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Old Jul 19, 2006, 11:50 PM   #6
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After you get your setup going, tell us about the quality of scans from your Nikon Coolscan V ED. I'm thinking of buying one.

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