Scans of negs - Walmart better than mine?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by carusoswi, Jul 28, 2007.

  1. carusoswi

    carusoswi TPF Noob!

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    I have an Epson Perfection 2400 Photo flat bed scanner with an adapter for scanning 35 mm slides or negatives. I have always been pleased with my results. Recently, I was shooting away from home using my Minolta Maxxum 9000 and needed the pics right away, so, I had the local Walmart 1-hr do both negatives and scans to a CD.

    I tweaked the CD images to use thinking that, when I got back home, I'd scan the negs to get "true quality."

    To my surprise (and my eyes), after scanning only several images (I had the Epson software set to scan at a DPI setting that exceeds the scanners 2400 x 4800), the quality on the Walmart CD seems better than what I achieved with my scanner. I keep saying to myself, can this be?

    I also noticed that a quick test with Photoshop shows that its presets (for 'auto adjust levels' accepts the scanned images without altering them. On most of the Walmart images, auto adjust levels makes obvious adjustments that, most of the time, improve the image to my eyes.

    Can someone explain to me what might be going on? These results are contrary to my expectations. By the way, as I look at both sets of images, each set could stand as acceptable on its own - the home-scanned images aren't unacceptable at all, but, the store-scanned images definitely have more punch.

    Thoughts appreciated. Thanks!


    Caruso
     
  2. gizmo2071

    gizmo2071 TPF Noob!

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    I don't know what you were expecting to be honest.
    Walmart will have a huge professional scanner, maybe a drum scanner or something similar and you'll be hard pushed to get better quality printers from a flat bed scanner at home. Maybe some of the dedicated neg scanners would push to match it.
     
  3. deanimator

    deanimator TPF Noob!

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    You should compare data...your file vs Walmart´s
    Look at image size, pixels, dpi, MBs, etc...try to find out if there is any fundamental difference. Post your results here...it might help someone to identify what you can do to improve your scans.

    Apart from that, you could ask them...they may be happy to tell you what they use and how it is set up...well, it won´t hurt to ask anyway.
     
  4. carusoswi

    carusoswi TPF Noob!

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    I expect what I have normally experienced. In answer the the post that follows, the kmart files are all about 800 to 980 kb in size. The files I scanned are all in the 18 to 30 mb range.

    After making this post, I scanned the rest of my roll, and, for the most part, my results are better than the Kmart scans. There were just a couple of photos that, for some reason, seemed to have more contrast that suited them than what I got from the negs. The rest are clearly better when scanned at high resolution from my scanner.

    I would not expect that files less than 1mb would generally fare well in comparison to negs scanned at much higher resolution.

    The good thing about having the disc from Wallmart is that I have ready made files that are suitable for web use. OTOH, I can and do regularly get better results when I do my own scanning.

    Thanks for the responses.

    Caruso
     

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