Unable to focus on grain? Scanning with Fujifilm

I’m using my X Pro 3 with a Canon FD 50 3.5 Macro as my set up and I’m having some issues. I’m using focus peaking and focus check to zoom in, but I’m not seeing the grain coming into focus as I’ve seen described. I see objects in the frame peaking and the sprockets/text but not actual grain or anything that isn’t the main focus of the negative. I’ve changed the color, changed from highs to low, and nothing is seeming to lock it in. As shown in the example below my scans are far inferior in comparison to the scan from my lab.


Is there something obvious I’m missing setting wise as far as my camera? Testing at f5.6-8. Excuse the messy an uneven NLP image I’ve just been tweaking and exporting a lot of different versions to test.

Also I’m using a remote trigger to avoid any camera shake.

Lenses can shift focus when the aperture is changed. To see if your lens does that, try to set focus without changing the aperture after focusing.

Grain is more pronounced in B&W films than in colour film, which makes focusing harder with colour images.

Try to focus in the center and near a corner to find out if a) the lens has some field curvature and b) the negative bulges slightly. If both should be the case, you can shoot the negative from the substrate side (not the emulsion side) and the two effects might be canceled at least partially.

Have you tried just using auto-focus? this is how I’ve always done it.

Hi, I use autofocus on a 60mm Nikkor macro @f8 on a Z7which seems to yield good results. I have had problems holding the negative flat but the Nikon ES2 adaptor seems to work best for me me. The setup needs to be rock solid to avoid movement.

I don’t know if this makes a difference, but your negative is facedown. I always scan face up, not that I look for grain necessarily in my own scans.