[sane-devel] Scanning negatives effectively

Kåre Särs kare.sars at iki.fi
Tue Aug 7 18:52:01 UTC 2012

On Monday 06 August 2012 00:52:59 Simon Lindgren wrote:
> Hi list, scanning newbie here :)
> I'll start by naming my scanner in case it's important: It's a CanoScan
> 8800F, which has a film guide for up to 12 35mm frames.
> I've begun a project of scanning a bunch of negatives (= in the order of
> thousands of photos ;)) and I'd like a way to easily scan the negatives
> into separate files for each frame.
> XSane seems like it should be capable of doing that using its batch
> mode, but I can't figure out how to use that as the preview dialog is
> broken on Fedora 17 (it doesn't render the ui, only the preview area
> itself). I'm not sure if this is a known issue or not.
> Based on what I've read, I should be able to make a batch list and then
> use that repeatedly to avoid selecting images again and again. I don't
> _think_ the offsets of the frames will vary much.
> Any known good approaches for scanning negatives into multiple files? Or
> any general advice on scanning film?

Skanlite has an automatic selections (multiple) feature that works quite well 
if the negatives/positives have frames around each image. Negatives can be a 
bit of a problem as they often come in a row without easily recognizable 
borders between the individual images.

If the images are always on the same position you could skip the preview and 
scan with the same selections over and over. Skanlite can auto-generate the 


> Second question: Is tweaking the colors of the images at scan-time
> important? I expect to have to tweak them a bit, but I'd like to do that
> later and if possible I'd like to avoid spending time adjusting the
> color settings for each scan. Can I do this without losing lots of image
> quality?

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