Thoughts about SilverFast scanning software?

ValleyofCarbon

I'm New Here
Jan 28, 2020
11
7
I've put in a ticket with SF and asking if they have the ability to let me use the Silver Fast AI studio I bought on my new computer, now that Epson has put out new drivers that will work on OS X Catalina....

I saw that on the Epson site, where you download the new Epson V600 drivers...they mention that since their ICE implementation is broken, they are giving a link to download a free copy of SilverFAst SE.....so, hoping if they can do that, they can also get my fairly recently purchased Silver Fast AI studio to work with the new driver and see if I can get some use out of the $$ I've spent with them.....

If what you say is true, maybe the new driver is better "TWAIN'ed". ;)

cayenne
I elaborated a little on my post...
 

cayenne

EOR R
Mar 28, 2012
2,078
200
The issue that your having with Silverfast is the outdated TWAIN driver... the V600 was, I think was original to 2009 and very dated. If you're using a new or newish mac your probably running into driver issues. Try a TWAIN scan program to find the best match.

I have used VueScan, Silverfast AI, and Silverfast SE plus. On both Mac and Windows 10 64bit. The work flawlessly on both platforms with good drivers. Of the two competing software I prefer Silverfast for more involved work flows. If you're not interested in editing your flow heavily then VueScan is perfectly fine. I currently run the V800 with Silverfast AI and it is superb IMHO.

I develop, scan for less critical projects or image culling, and enlarge for print all at home. 4x5, 120, and 135...

I would avoid BetterScaning carriers as the anti-Newtonian glass is rather a hassle and the returns are minimal over the standard OEM film carriers. In addition the anti-Newtonian glass is treated with acid to produce the surface and will scratch if you look at it sideways. This is a very expensive replacement for such a easily reproducible incident.

With the options you have for at home scanning the very best is wet-mounting. If a critical scan is needed I wet-scan, or if wanting the very best... drum scan outsourced. For 99% of my work wet scans provided the best/most economical scans you can get at home. Check aztek.com .

I've read a couple of your posts and it seems like your going to film for some of your work. I started this way, own tons of Canon gear but nowadays shoot mainly Leica and MF ( Rolleis, Mamiya and Fuji ) analog. Still shoot digital but prefer film. Crazy I know but even crazier I also shoot pinhole cameras too.It's all good for me.

Thank you!!

VERY informative!!!

Ok, I'm playing with VueScan free trial of the pro version. Yeah, if SF would work for me, I'd prefer that, I was starting to learn that workflow and if nothing else I prefer on SF being able to grab the frames with my mouse to adjust them over having to use the VueScan method.....

Alright, I'm seeing what can be on on the new Mac with OS X Catalina....I love my Macs, but so far, looks like the Catalina operating system was pushed out a little prematurely and broke a lot of stuff....grrr.


C
 
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stevelee

FT-QL
Jul 6, 2017
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Davidson, NC
so far, looks like the Catalina operating system was pushed out a little prematurely and broke a lot of stuff....grrr.
If they waited until everything is updated to work under 64 bits, they would never have come out with the upgrade. They have been telling everybody this day was coming for at least two years, I think. Most things that won't run now, never will.
 

cayenne

EOR R
Mar 28, 2012
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Ok quick update.

I talked with the SF folks and they said to just download the SF AI Studio version I had to my new computer, and it should work with the new Epson driver.

I did...and VOILA....it did too!!
:)

I have just set up, batch scanned my first images on the new computer with the old V600, I did a strip of 3 6x6 B&Ws taken by the Hasslelblad over the holidays while trying to learn how to use it.

So far, SF works GREAT now, is responsive AND....so far, isn't crashing every few minutes. The scratch and dust filters are now much more responsive, and the scan times were much faster.

So, I'll change my story back and now like the Silver Fast scanning software.

Of course this is just a start, I"ll be going through a number of rolls of film I've shot, both color and B&W.....and will give this a good workout, but for now, I"m back to thumbs up for SilverFast.

Thank you,

cayenne
 

ValleyofCarbon

I'm New Here
Jan 28, 2020
11
7
Great to hear... While developing your work flow you should keep in mind the actual resolution that can be obtained with the V600. All manufactures make claims of 6400dpi but reality is often far from the claims. What you end up with are extremely bloated files if you scan at higher dpi's than actually capable. I have used filmscanner.info for quite sometime, its a German based website translated into English so there are some grammatical errors but overall I find the information to pretty spot on. For your V600 and optimal scan quality...

"In our testscan done with the USAF test chart with the V600, the vertical lines of the element 5.2. and the horizontal lines of the element 4.5 are barely recognizable. According to our resolution table, an effective resolution of 1560ppi results from that. This is less than a quarter of the resolution of 6400ppi declared by the producer. "


And how do you like the Hassy? I use a 503cw but find it to be a bit finicky and not as robust as a Rolleiflex so I rarely use mine that much these days. They are ridiculously expensive to repair compared to other analog cameras. I wish there was someone out there that could do Hassy repairs as efficiently and cost effective as DAG could. Don just CLA'd a M4 bp and M6 in less than 2 days for a super great price. I've waited up to six months for Rollei and Hassy repairs and spent 10x more.
 
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cayenne

EOR R
Mar 28, 2012
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Great to hear... While developing your work flow you should keep in mind the actual resolution that can be obtained with the V600. All manufactures make claims of 6400dpi but reality is often far from the claims. What you end up with are extremely bloated files if you scan at higher dpi's than actually capable. I have used filmscanner.info for quite sometime, its a German based website translated into English so there are some grammatical errors but overall I find the information to pretty spot on. For your V600 and optimal scan quality...

"In our testscan done with the USAF test chart with the V600, the vertical lines of the element 5.2. and the horizontal lines of the element 4.5 are barely recognizable. According to our resolution table, an effective resolution of 1560ppi results from that. This is less than a quarter of the resolution of 6400ppi declared by the producer. "


And how do you like the Hassy? I use a 503cw but find it to be a bit finicky and not as robust as a Rolleiflex so I rarely use mine that much these days. They are ridiculously expensive to repair compared to other analog cameras. I wish there was someone out there that could do Hassy repairs as efficiently and cost effective as DAG could. Don just CLA'd a M4 bp and M6 in less than 2 days for a super great price. I've waited up to six months for Rollei and Hassy repairs and spent 10x more.

Goodness, THANK YOU for that reply and great information!!

I do still have a LOT to learn about this whole process, but hey, I like to learn new things!!
:)

I did just run into a little glitch on SF...I had changed out the images on the scanner and tried pre-scan, but SF wasn't bringing in the new images...it had 1 of the new ones but still showing 2 of the previous run....

I had to stop and start the app again and this time pre=scan shows the 3 new images. A little buggy still it appears.


ANYWAY...the Hassy...on man, I flat out LOVE it!! I"m still learning a lot on using a hand held light meter, trying to teach myself sunny 16 and variants...and the most difficult of all, with that view finder being backwards, when framing. I'm working on that so much I sometimes forget to also check to make sure my shot is level...hahaha.

OH well, but I'm learning and it IS getting easier and more natural.

I'm sure it is "new toy" bias, but I could swear, some of the images coming off the Hassy on 120 film, just almost seem "magical" to me, in terms of how things look, how they seem to "pop" off the image at you. Perhaps it is the difference in Medium Format DOF and looks, but I must same on some of my shots this early even, I'm just enamored with the images coming out, and it makes me want to shoot more and more!!

I must say too, that the square format is making it a fun new creative challenge too...its very different than the digital aspect ratio....but is fun to work with.

I also scored a Yashicha Mat 124G that was in mint shape at a garage sale for like I think $75....I've loaded a role of Tri-X 400 in it and am wanting to shoot it.

I'm hoping my 'day job' will let me be off this weekend to go shoot, as that weather is supposed to be really nice...sunny and in mid to upper 60's.

Anyway, this is all REALLY fun new ground for me....and I really appreciate yours and everyone else's feedback on all this....

cayenne
 
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ValleyofCarbon

I'm New Here
Jan 28, 2020
11
7
It's the MF look for sure :love: Square is nice but I am drawn to 6x7. Are you deving at home? That's the next step... and its ridiculously easy. I do both color and BW as the cost of sending out these days is stupid compared to a C41 Tetenal kit or a bottle of HC110 that last for ever !!!!
 
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cayenne

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Mar 28, 2012
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It's the MF look for sure :love: Square is nice but I am drawn to 6x7. Are you deving at home? That's the next step... and its ridiculously easy. I do both color and BW as the cost of sending out these days is stupid compared to a C41 Tetenal kit or a bottle of HC110 that last for ever !!!!
Well, that is the next step, home development.

I figured I'd start with B&W...learn how to do that and what equipment to buy, from what I see there are spools you load in the dark with film and put into canisters that then seal and you can then bring into the light to pour chemicals in, etc....?

Anyway, trying to learn what I need to buy and then will start researching to see what and how, etc.

I did, however, buy a good sous vide water heater, in anticipation of using that to keep chemicals at their desired temperatures in a water bath...
:)

If you have any suggestions or links to send a complete film developing noob to, please let me know....!!

Hmm...I might need to start a new thread on that when I get to that point.

I found a place where that develops film for about $7/roll..which isn't too bad and they have 1-2 day turn arounds.

So, that's not bad until I can get the equipment and knowhow on developing my own negatives.

C
 

ValleyofCarbon

I'm New Here
Jan 28, 2020
11
7
BW you can do for about 20 cents a roll... C41 about $2.25.

Go with JOBO tanks... much easier and no rusting of bearings used in other tanks. A little pricier but like tripods... buy quality once and you're set. And you prob don't need water heating unless you're doing more than 6 rolls at a time. I used to have a JOBO CPP3 with a lift... then I made a much simpler developer that runs very well. I made it with less than 100$ of material and after a year sold the CPP. If you're a hands-on/DIY type of guy I can outline the unit for you.

I can def help if you need. Been dev'ing at home for about 15 years. Shoot me an email if you'd like.
 
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Sporgon

5% of gear used 95% of the time
Hi all,

Per my other thread...I'm shooting a little film, and I need to scan it.
Starting off with 120 B&W film with pinhole camera.

I've seen some video and ready a little that using Silverfast might be markedly superior to using the normal scanning software that comes with Epson (I have the V600).....

Does anyone have experience with SF? Is it worth it? Which version/features do you think are the best as that I see on the site that they have different levels and add-ons...

Silverfast Scanner Software

Thanks in advance for any info/suggestons!!

cayenne
Take a look at the Pentax 67, a great MF camera that in this modern digital age doesn't suffer from the lack of a Polaroid back. Not the 67 II which can't be repaired now, but the original 6x7 Mirror Up or the 67. Shoot it with Kodak Portra 160, Ektar, Ilford Pan F Plus, Fuji RDP III and you'll wonder why anyone bothers with digital MF. Of course you need a good optical scanner and this gets expensive. Drum scanning gets the most out of them.

I see you are looking at B&W Delta - personally I'd use the older B&W emulsions as I think they have more B&W character. The newer emulsions are more akin to digital - IMO. Ilford Pan F is very high resolution but tricky, FP4 and HP5 very versatile and user friendly films.

Incidentally I use Silverfast Studio on iMac Catalina and have no issues.

One other thing: don't dismiss 35mm film. With good lenses and technique you can get remarkably good results from films like Kodak Ektar and Ektachrome, Fuji RDP III. Resolution is around the 18 - 20 mp equivalent mark, but colour fidelity more like 30 mp.

Just one other point - if you shoot with positive film remember you'll need an incident light meter.

You also get to use some beautiful old cameras, when these things were like little jewels. I have a long time love affair with Pentax Spotmatics and the 55/1.8 Takumar lens. I have a collection of five at the moment. Because they all look the same my wife thinks I only have one. ;)
 

ValleyofCarbon

I'm New Here
Jan 28, 2020
11
7
Take a look at the Pentax 67, a great MF camera that in this modern digital age doesn't suffer from the lack of a Polaroid back. Not the 67 II which can't be repaired now, but the original 6x7 Mirror Up or the 67. Shoot it with Kodak Portra 160, Ektar, Ilford Pan F Plus, Fuji RDP III and you'll wonder why anyone bothers with digital MF. Of course you need a good optical scanner and this gets expensive. Drum scanning gets the most out of them.

I see you are looking at B&W Delta - personally I'd use the older B&W emulsions as I think they have more B&W character. The newer emulsions are more akin to digital - IMO. Ilford Pan F is very high resolution but tricky, FP4 and HP5 very versatile and user friendly films.

Incidentally I use Silverfast Studio on iMac Catalina and have no issues.

One other thing: don't dismiss 35mm film. With good lenses and technique you can get remarkably good results from films like Kodak Ektar and Ektachrome, Fuji RDP III. Resolution is around the 18 - 20 mp equivalent mark, but colour fidelity more like 30 mp.

Just one other point - if you shoot with positive film remember you'll need an incident light meter.

You also get to use some beautiful old cameras, when these things were like little jewels. I have a long time love affair with Pentax Spotmatics and the 55/1.8 Takumar lens. I have a collection of five at the moment. Because they all look the same my wife thinks I only have one. ;)
The developer you use has more of affect on how "digital" looking BW Delta is. Most of the Ilford developers will make Delta look very digital. I think DDX is probably the best for this if that's what you're after. On the other hand Rodinal will accentuate the grain and give you great accutance. Personally I use HC110 at 1+47 and that gives a nice in between.

FP4 is by far my favorite BW film in both 120 and 135... I love pushing it to N+2 or N+3 and developing in DDX. Something I find quite pleasing about that combo. It scans beautifully and on the enlarger produces spectacular prints.

Pentax 67 is a superb camera, I use mine quite a bit but prefer the Rollei 2.8 for its size, IQ and portability. If I could though... Mamiya RZ67 II blows the doors off both the Pentax and Rollei for IQ and lens selection, it's just a beast to carry. It only come out for serious portraiture of landscapes.
 
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Sporgon

5% of gear used 95% of the time
FP4 is by far my favorite BW film in both 120 and 135... I love pushing it to N+2 or N+3 and developing in DDX. Something I find quite pleasing about that combo. It scans beautifully and on the enlarger produces spectacular prints.
Interesting thought on the Delta, I'll maybe try that. Looks like we both agree that FR4 is the way to go - as long as you don't store it too long...........

A bit more advice for cayenne; don't store the film too long before you use it. I found a few boxes of unused FP4 up in my loft a few weeks ago. The expiry date was January 1993 !! So I stuck a roll in my 1997 EOS 1nHS and went to the beach to see if it would record anything after 27 years of being out of date. Hmmm, well, it's very grainy and lost some latitude and sensitivity, but unbelievably it still worked to a degree ! Attached is one of the shots.
 

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Sporgon

5% of gear used 95% of the time
Also another (tongue in cheek) tip: don't leave it too long before you get the film developed.

At the same time as I found the unused 35mm FP4 I also found three rolls of Kodak Vericolor III, 120, exposed but undeveloped. The film had been sat exposed for about 32 years. I thought I'll get them developed and see if any image is left on the film after all that time. Well believe it or not there is, and here's a sample. This would have been shot on my Pentax 6x7 probably around 1988 when it was quite new.

Amazing to think that the little girl on the pony was probably around 14 years of age then; now she'll be about 46. At least I hope she has made it to that age OK.
 

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ValleyofCarbon

I'm New Here
Jan 28, 2020
11
7
Also another (tongue in cheek) tip: don't leave it too long before you get the film developed.

At the same time as I found the unused 35mm FP4 I also found three rolls of Kodak Vericolor III, 120, exposed but undeveloped. The film had been sat exposed for about 32 years. I thought I'll get them developed and see if any image is left on the film after all that time. Well believe it or not there is, and here's a sample. This would have been shot on my Pentax 6x7 probably around 1988 when it was quite new.

Amazing to think that the little girl on the pony was probably around 14 years of age then; now she'll be about 46. At least I hope she has made it to that age OK.
Nice didn't fair too bad. Over the last few years while out shooting I inevitably run into people that ask about film. A few have ended up sending me rolls that are ancient... pre-WWII for a few and every one has developed. More BW and a few C41. Pretty tough stuff.
 

Sporgon

5% of gear used 95% of the time
Nice didn't fair too bad. Over the last few years while out shooting I inevitably run into people that ask about film. A few have ended up sending me rolls that are ancient... pre-WWII for a few and every one has developed. More BW and a few C41. Pretty tough stuff.
I have a roll of 120 Verichrome exposed but undeveloped. I think this must have been shot by my Grandfather as he used 120 and the film was produced from around 1931 to 1956. Any recommendations on how you'd process it ? It's a B&W negative film (I think).
 

ValleyofCarbon

I'm New Here
Jan 28, 2020
11
7
I have a roll of 120 Verichrome exposed but undeveloped. I think this must have been shot by my Grandfather as he used 120 and the film was produced from around 1931 to 1956. Any recommendations on how you'd process it ? It's a B&W negative film (I think).
I'd use Rodinal in stand and dev at N+3 or HC110 in normal agitation at N+3... both would/should work well. Verichrome is a pretty great film known for it's long shelf life.