I have some very thin, underdeveloped negatives.

I was hoping to be able to recover them with VueScan, but what I get out of VueScan is extremely grainy. I realise there are limits to what can be done and perhaps these negatives are beyond recovery, but perhaps there are some settings that would help.

I'm using a Nikon Coolscan film scanner.

  • The problem with thin negatives is the same when scanning or printing in the darkroom. You can not print/process information that is not on the negative. IF anything can be done digitally then a photo editing software will give more tools to work with then scanning software. I will let those with digital editing knowledge speak to that and how to best scan from a thin negative.
    – Alaska Man
    Mar 20 at 18:12

Does it have to be done in Vuescan? If you have any postprocessing software that works with layers, you can address the problem by duplicating the base layer and using the blending options. Usually Multiply or Overlay will give the best results, but you can try other options. And don't forget that you can do this multiple times, if necessary. I've had good results with this method.

  • Good question! It doesn't all have to be in VueScan, but I need VueScan to try to get something off the negatives in the first place, and I want it to do recover as much as possible. My problem is that when faced with very abnormal source material, VueScan seems to try to make it as normal as possible, sometimes with bizarre results - that's what I would like to have better control over. Mar 26 at 23:39
  • @DanieleProcida Have you tried "scanning" with a digital camera? You can get a twelve or fourteen bit RAW file as a starting point for applying your own decision tree. Apr 26 at 0:31

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