Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Troubleshooting and irritation

Over the last week or so I have been working to scanning a lot of my 35mm
negatives. My goal is to have them electronically archived AND at a good
resolution to minimize size but still give high quality prints. This
however seems to be where I've hit a stumbling block. Every test print I
have made has suffered from "banding" in areas of shadow or darker toned
areas. This has lead me to throw out a lot of scans and use up quite a bit
of ink and paper as I try to get the print quality fixed.

I have scanned and printed from my main workstation running Windows XP and
also from a (borrowed) Macbook Air and dispite there being some subtle
differences, the banding is still there. To this end I have looked more
closely at the scanning settings. But it doesn't seem to matter if I scan
at 300dpi or 1200dpi, or if I leave the image scaling at 100% or push it to
1000%. All that changes is the file size.

Up to this point I had not looked excessively at the printer as it doesn't
appear to have banding when I print a digital photo from my D-SLR.

As a finally step before I ran out of patience and emptied my ink tanks I
decided to try a different printer. At work I have access to a large format
printer from a different I loaded some scanned negatives
on a thumbdrive and printed a couple out. And guess what? NO BANDING!! So
after all this, it really is something not right with my photo printer that
is causing the banding. Still can't figure out why a digital photo printed
okay and had no quality issues when I examined it. Guess I will need to try
and do a thorough print head clean and test print again to see if things

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