Recommended Silverfast settings for using with Negative Lab Pro?

Hi guys,

While I don’t have “official” recommendations on Silverfast conversions just yet, I wanted to start the conversation here and share a bit about what users have shared.

Here’s generally what I’ve seen users doing with good result:

(and here are a few examples of conversions from a user who was using these settings below)


Settings for Scanning in Silverfast

  1. Set Silverfast to scan in “positive” mode (so that it doesn’t invert your negative)
  2. Scan as “48-bit HDR” (depending on your version, this may be done different ways… at least in SF 8.8, I believe you need to go to preferences and check “HDR raw” )
  3. Scanning to DNG - the preference is to scan to DNG, but for it to work optimally, I will need to create a RAW camera profile to use in Lightroom, so this method isn’t fully supported yet. I’ll include some experimental profiles below. You can email me or PM a link to your DNGs, and I will build a profile for your scanner.
  4. Scanning to TIFF - it is also possible to scan to TIFF, but be aware that this will scan to gamma 1.0, and for it to work optimally in Lightroom, you will need to convert to gamma 2.2 (which you can do in Lightroom using the “Tiff Scan Prep” utility included with Negative Lab Pro.

How to Convert in Negative Lab Pro

  1. Import your Silverfast scans into Lightroom
  2. If your scanned as a DNG, you will need to make sure you have added the custom profile (see info below). If you created a TIFF, you will need to go to “File > Plug-in Extras > Tiff Scan Prep” and convert from linear gamma (1.0) to gamma 2.2.
  3. If you’ve left borders in your scan, crop them out (or use “border buffer” during conversion to account for border)
  4. In most cases, you should NOT use Lightroom’s white balance tool prior to conversion
  5. Open Negative Lab Pro. If working on a DNG, for now set source to “Vuescan RAW DNG”. If working with Tif file, set source to “TIF Scan”. Set other settings as you wish, and convert
  6. For this type of scan, I would recommend trying the “linear + gamma” tone profile first, and adjusting brightness and contrast first.

DNG Profiles for Silverfast DNGs

I’m currently still experimenting with DNG profiles for Silverfast. You can help by sending me 48-bit HDR DNG files from Silverfast made with your scanner!

Currently available:

  • Epson V700, v750, v800 and v850

You can download the latest DNG profiles here.

To install:

  1. Add the profile to your lightroom camera profile folder (on Mac, this is usually at “~/Library/Application Support/Adobe/CameraRaw/CameraProfiles”. On Windows, it’s typically at “C:\ProgramData\Adobe\CameraRaw\CameraProfiles”, but this may vary a little bit)
  2. Restart Lightroom
  3. If you’ve previously converted the DNG (prior to adding the profiles), you’ll need to unconvert, and then reconvert.

Like I said, still a work in progress!

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Hello all. I have been testing NLP with RAW scans from Silverfast and have been finding differences between scanning to DNG and scanning to TIFF.

This are my settings in Silverfast:

Both files scanned exactly the same. Only thing changes is TIFF or DNG.

When imported into Lightroom (latest version) I notice a considerable difference in density between the two scans:

Left is the DNG, right is the TIFF. After basic conversion with NLP, I get this:

From the DNG

From the TIFF

I think Lightroom is interpreting these two files differently. Any ideas?.

Exactly how I scan with SF 8.8. Positive - 48bit HDR Raw - HDR is checked and gamma 2.2 in preferences, scan to dng. Scanning to tif does not seem to encode gamma 2.2, which means one would have to do that in LR, at least it doesn’t work for me, I have tried this. I can send you samples of both Nate, as I am not expert in these things and might be talking nonsense here :).

For the conversion, I have been using Vuescan and it seems to work just fine, but I will try tif scan to see if there is a much of a difference.

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I feel scanning to tif from SF does not encode the gamma 2.2 into the scan, but if you scan to dng, it does. I have tried both and get similar results that you got.

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I have been scanning to TIFF for years and using Silverfast HDR to convert to positives to work on. Don’t remember what lead me to choose TIFFs. Will have to research a little to see if I should change my workflow. Is there a way to assign gamma 2.2 to the TIFFs in Lightroom?. Thanks for all your help @Carmen.

Also noticed that after the conversion, the DNG gets the NLP 2.0 Profile but the TIFF does not.

There is a plugin in LR that you can use to convert TIFs to gamma 2.2, I think it’s called Tifprep. It’s just one extra step is why I don’t use it. DNG works best for me.

Yes, I noticed this too.

@Carmen Thank you so much for your help. Much appreciated. I can’t find Tif Prep Utility. I see in the instructions that it would be included but I don’t see it in my installer. I will certainly move to DNG in the future but have many, many TIFFs that I would love to convert if possible.

I think my TIFFs are coming in at a linear gamma setting because my scanner has no profile assigned to it. I profiled it ages ago but my targets are now way outdated and would need new ones to re-target. Wondering if there is a generic one out there?.

Interesting.

Ok, yes, there is definitely a difference between how Lightroom is interpreting the DNG and Tiff… after looking into this a bit further, it appears that the ‘gamma’ setting shouldn’t actually effect the output… it will still be output at gamma 1.0 even if you change that setting… but with the DNG, even though the underlying data is gamma 1.0, Lightroom is adding it’s own gamma encoding to it…

It looks like it does, but it doesn’t actually (see the little “profile missing” sign underneath the profile). If you changed the profile back to “embedded” or “color” it shouldn’t change the image.

If you an email me some dngs, I can dig around a bit and see if it is possible to add any kind of profile… I seem to recall though from past attempts that it may not be possible to do in the same way that I’m able to do with Vuescan…

I notice that there are some other changes happening in the film type, exposure and curves… If I understand Silverfast’s HDR setting, I don’t believe that this would effect the output file, but may be worth testing just to make sure!

In Lightroom, select the image (or images) you want to convert. Then go to “file > plugin-extras” and the “Tiff Prep Utility” should be there right underneath “Negative Lab Pro”

Hmm… need to investigate this a bit more…

Absolutely right. Changed to color and nothing changed. Will PM you a link to download a DNG and a TIFF of the same scan.

Will try to profile my scanner to see if this has any effect.

I have profiled my scanner now. Not sure if properly. Are getting interesting information. I am seeing a difference between scanning as a negative and scanning as positive. Nothing conclusive yet. Need to investigate further. The only means I have to profile my scanner is through VueScan. Not very familiar with it. Need to make sure I am doing things right.

@nate, NLP is doing a great job with conversions once correcting gamma to 2.2 with tif prep utility. TIFF is definitely saving to 1.0 linear gamma from Silverfast if no profile is selected in preferences in Silverfast. My only problem is that the utility is creating a new file with the gamma corrected. It would be a very tedious process to convert all my digital negs now. All good stuff to be learning.

Hi!

Well, what do you know! I was able to find a way to get a custom RAW profile working for your Epson V700/V750…

It actually seems to work quite well…

I need to change a few things in the profile so it works in the normal setup, and I’ll PM you a link to that profile to try out for yourself.

If others want me to see if I can make a Silverfast DNG Profile for their setup, send me a few 48bit DNGs and I’ll take a look…

-Nate

I’m

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This is awesome Nate! I will send you a couple from the Plustek Opticfilm 120 scanner.

What great news!!. I’ve been struggling trying to find a solution but was getting nowhere. Anxious to try the profile. Thank you so much. I can send you any type of file you’d like from Silverfast if you like.

Just updated recommendations, as well as including download to latest DNG profiles for SilverFast.

Nate, just sent you two files from the Plustek Opticfilm 120 scanner. Cheers!

Hi Carmen,

I’ve build the profiles for the Plustek OpticFilm 120 and added to the download link. At least on the files you sent, it seems to make a big difference in terms of getting good colors right off the bat…

Example:

Try it out and let me know what you think!

(Be sure to unconvert and reconvert after successfully installing the profiles… also, probably helpful to reset any previous settings you used in Negative Lab Pro on the unprofiled version… with the new profile, there should be much less blue/cyan cast to remove).

-Nate

Oh thank you so much!!! It looks great! I will do as you instruct, can’t wait to try it out tonight. Thanks Nate, you really are so kind to us all, honestly and sincerely mean this. I have never got so much support EVER for any software, hardware, plugins etc. Cheers!

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