Issue scanning B&W film?

First time trying to convert Black & White film, and I’m wondering if I did something wrong.

I scanned my film using Epson Scan following the Method 2 laid out here.

Then I followed the guide recommendations, which is to set TONE: Linear - Gamma, and then I mostly messed around with the Black Clip and the Contrast. Still, no matter how much I play around with the settings, I can’t seem to get rid of this weird crushed black and almost pixelated digital-washy looking image for some of my shots.

Did anyone else experience results like these? I usually have no problems with color film, and I’m wondering if EpsonScan needs to be configured differently for B&W scanning first.

(Bergger Pancro 400 shot on a Yashica T3, scanned with Epson v600)


One thing to check is to make sure any kind of “dust removal” is turned OFF when scanning Black and White, as the dust removal can cause issues like this.

Beyond that, if the negative is extremely thin (i.e. underexposed during original capture) it could cause some posterization to occur as it tries to “stretch” out the data to make an image with full dynamic range. You could try lowering the contrast (or using the “lab fade” and “lab glow” settings to hide the posterization while still keeping some mid-tone contrast).

Hope that helps!

My first thought was underexposure as well, especially given the subject matter. While less contrasty negs tend to scan better in general, scanners, especially flatbeds with their low dmax, struggle with thin negatives.