Scanned images going soft when downsized for web

28 Aug 2005 5:30AM
Call me a dinosaur, but I am still shooting on film! I am scanning images to get digital files either myself on an Epson 3170 or commercially. My problem is that when I reduce the TIFF image files down to 500 pixels wide to post on EPZ etc, they get unsharp, soft and mushy. Using USM doesn't help much. Any suggestions?


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u08mcb 15 5.8k
28 Aug 2005 5:42AM
Here's my workflow that results in acceptably sharp images for the web.

Scan at maximum resolution, resize to 1000 pixels (500 in your case), make any necessary levels adjustments, apply USM at around 70, 1, 10, save for web.
philwig 15 817 1
28 Aug 2005 8:18AM
Are you sure that (a) your images are sharp; and (b) your scanner is correctly adjusted. You should be able to see the grain in the film once you've scanned it if the scanner's half decent.

Smart sharpen is better than USM, but still you should be able to get reasonable quality even with that.
28 Aug 2005 9:46AM
The transperancies are pretty sharp, I've inspected them with a 5x loupe. The scans look pretty mushy to me and I can't see any grain. I thought it was the Epson 3170 not focusing properly, but the commercial scans look pretty much the same. Maybe I should try a different scanner? I'm using Photoshop Elements 2, I dont think it has a SmartSharpen function does it?
pentaxpete 14 671 1 United Kingdom
28 Aug 2005 10:51AM
I was given an Epsom 1650 flatbed scanner with a film-strip and 2x2 slide adapter and I use it for scanning negs of local press jobs and for ePHOTOzine uploads and I have given up trying to scan at anything over about 360 as it took about 30 mins 'finding the scanned information' to put into PhotoShop,and when you set the size to 500 pixels in 'Scan for Web' as in the instructions in the epz technique the resolution doesn't matter anyway ! The computer recognises only pixels NOT resolution. Scans done for the press sent at 300 have been used OK in the paper.

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