Friday, March 26, 2010

Scanning Old Film Negatives: High Resolution Images on the Cheap!

    Most of us today have cameras that shoot 8-12MP, which seems like rather large images right? Well earlier this week I picked up a Canon CanoScan 8800F, which scans at 4800dpi at full resolution. At that dpi, a standard 35mm negative comes out at 30.1MP, sorry Nikon D3X, you are not a resolution leader in the 35mm format, but your images are less noisy!

    Most of the shots I have scanned are from standard ISO200 Kodak Gold, or ISO200 Fuji Film, nothing special. Then I scanned one of my parents photos from their Brownie Bulls Eye, which is a medium format camera that was popular in the 1960s and 70s. At 4800dpi, the negative produced an image that came out at a whopping 166MP! That's a 32MB JPEG! No digital camera today can even come close to that kind of resolution! Now I'm not planning on hunting down film for the old camera, which we still have, but that is amazing quality. Oh BTW here is that image, downsized for the net. It needs some work, I just imported the photo to my host without any editing. I'd say it came out rather well for an image from a 30+ year old negative!

Hudson Bay Mountain, Near Smithers British Columbia