Light Sources

For black and white film only: You will only care about even and strong light, everything else we say about light 'quality' and CRI and color is unimportant if you only scan BW.

Color

Scanning color is a bit more complex, and different light sources have different build-ups of wavelengths. Essentially a bad light source can have a big ‘gap’ in a colour, so that, for example, the blue in your image is rendered very dull, if as blue at all, and not some other color.

You will see a lot of talk about 'CRI' - this stands for Color Rendering Index, and is an attempt at making a scale that represents the accuracy of a light. Click here to read more about color rendering. CRI above 90 is good, anything below is unsuited for color scanning.

General Points

  • You want a bright light to give your scan a short shutter speed to minimize vibrations
     

  • For color scanning you want a CRI above 90
     

  • Your light has to evenly light up the film area
     

  • The light needs to sit flat on the table

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