Scanning Negatives and Slides

Scanning film produces superior results that can be achieved from scanning a print of the same image. There are several advantages to scanning negatives and slides:

  • Film (a negative or slide) is the original image, whereas a print is a second-generation copy.

  • Film provides a greater dynamic range (contrast) than is provided by prints.

  • When the photograph is printed, some tonal range and color information are lost or modified. The original information can't be recovered from a print. However, the original film will still contain the information and yield more detail in a film scan.

This doesn't mean that you shouldn't scan color photograph prints—just that scanning film produces noticeably better output than is possible ...

Get Inside Photoshop® CS now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.