BlackScale Lab for 120

Has anyone tried the Black Box 120 from Black Scale Lab? It’s like the Valoi but for medium format film.

Not me, but for comparison I came across this which has information on a prototype of a Valoi ‘easy120’ system, which they themselves warn may never see the light of day:

I’d never heard of the Black Scale Lab version, it seems to be well thought out, I like the way that they point out that it could be easily used for stitching where the long side of your sensor goes across the width of the film. Are they making those film holders themselves or are they from somewhere else? I only ask because it looks like it has a scanner calibration aperture at one end.

Cheers!
Just yesterday I saw that Valoi was working on a 120 version of the Easy35. The thing that I would possibly like is the fact that the BlackBox has a film holder as I have quite the back catalog of negatives that are already cut into strips. I backed the initial Negative Supply Kickstarter and later got the 120-version as well. But like the Valoi 360 it really is made for uncut film. Ideally I would like something where I could switch between a roll advancer for uncut film and something that uses a film holder for cut strips of film. This goes for both 35mm and 120 film.

Another thing that I can live without is the fiddling around with camera/film alignment that comes with every set up where things are not physically connected.

For reference I also asked this question in the Fred Miranda forum, you can find that thread here.

Interesting that someone seems to confirm that they are flatbed scanner holders, I wonder which manufacturer, quite costly to buy them in I’d imagine. There is always quite rightly a lot of debate about how well those holders hold medium format film flat. Is the camera and lens just resting on top of the bottom assembly so dependant upon gravity? I think it is, pity it can’t be used horizontally like the easy35 though then that might introduce more film flatness issues. Are all cameras sufficiently balanced around the lens mount?

Just thoughts that run through my mind, quite possibly groundless concerns.

1 Like

Incidentally, moving away from the ‘all in one’ solution for a second, for cut frames the holders for Imacon/Hasselblad scanners are good and someone in China seems to have a good reputation for making them and selling them through US ebay. However, they are simply a flexible steel sheet with a magnetic overlay but are of course precision made to fit the scanner. For camera scanning they don’t need to be flexible so I would have thought that a similar principle could be used and you might find someone that could cut some suitable thin steel sheet, the magnetic overlay is used for signs so is pretty easy to get hold of.

Will you be stitching your 6x6? If so then it is still pretty easy to contrive a method using the standard copy stand setup so that the holder can be slid smoothly the few centimetres necessary over your light source.

I would not typically be stitching, but there might be the odd occasion where I might want to do that. Thinking of film holders, I just remembered that I have one from Betterscanning.com laying around somewhere. I think it is this one. I fully agree that the horizontal use is really appealing with the Easy 35.

Apparently the BlackBox solution is using the Canon QM3 film holder which I guess is not keeping the film totally flat. I had the Nikon Coolscan 8000 back in the day, but preferred the film carrier that used ANR glass (even though that came wit it’s own issues).

Interesting, that Canon QM3 holder is in fact really cheap to buy, I hadn’t seen it before. Betterscanning were good of course but ideally you just want a single frame. The Durst Sirioneg holder for the M605 enlarger is great with their anti-newton glass below and the metal mask above but pretty expensive these days. Umax made nice flatbed holders as well.