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Batch scanning slides with SilverFast Ai


In this tutorial we show you how to Batch scan a collection of slides and the preparations needed. Although the sample video shows you how to scan a series of mounted slides, the same principal can be easily applied to film strips or large format film.

In the video I recommended that you load all your mounted slides in the Horizontal orientation, this is so you can create a template that can be used for all your future batch scanning. When creating the template make sure you leave some extra room at the sides of each slide, this allows for any slight slack that holder may have when placed on the flatbed surface. The best way to achieve this is to zoom in on the selected slide and then adjust the borders. Use your image editing application to perform the final crop.

Don't rely on the overall preview for accurate cropping, magnify the image and then crop

With batch scanning save the scans to file rather than open the entire batch in Photoshop, this is a more efficient method of working, .especially if you are scanning all the frames at full resolution. Save the scanned files using TIFF file format, this will keep all the image information in tact. JPEG format compresses images, therefore you will be losing image quality right from the start. You can select which file format you want from within the Batch scan menu.

You can save the entire Frame Set or individual frame settings - a handy feature for batch scanning

When batch scanning with SilverFast you can make individual image adjustments and these settings will be only applied to the selected images rather than the whole collection. Likewise you can also apply selective UnSharpMask or other filters to individual frames. This feature gives you ultimate control on the quality of your scans. Type in a unique name for each frame or let the Batch process name the slides for you. I always give a generic name to a collection and then let SilverFast get on with it, especially if I have a large collection to work through.

If your like me, then you will probably have boxes upon boxes of slides and many folders full of negatives. It would take me months if not years to archive my entire collection. Selectively work through your pictures and just scan in your best work as a starting point. For negatives I scan the frames in at a low resolution and then view the thumbnails before making a final selection for the higher resolution scans.

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March 15, 2008

© Vincent Oliver 2008
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