First test of the D850 digitizer
Old 01-13-2018   #1
Huss
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First test of the D850 digitizer

Tonight was the first time I scanned film with my D850, and was eager to check out the 'automatic' digitizer function.

To get to the digitizer mode, push on LV, push on 'i', scroll down to select the digitizer mode, then you get to choose between colour or monochrome.
I was using Ilford B&W film so MC it is.

I was scanning 35mm film and my usual mode of lighting is using an on camera flash to activate a slave unit. This was super easy with my old D750, just use the pop up flash to trigger my SB500.
No pop up on the 850, so I used the SB500 to trigger a SB 700. Still good, no? NOOOOOOO!!!! For some reason Nikon has decided to disable the ability to use flash if you use the film digitzer mode! Son of a sandy strip of land that happens to be right next to the ocean.
This means that, for me, the digitizer mode would only work if I use my copy stand and a light pad, the technique I use to when I scan 120 film. It would still be ok for that, as long as the jpeg only output is ok...

So I ended up scanning in raw, the way I always do/did, and that way I could also use my flash lighting. I'm hoping Nikon addresses this in a firmware update. As it is, I've lost a lot of convenience with the D750 in exchange for more resolution. Hmm.

D850 used in regular film scanning mode (RAW, converted in LR):

Leica M4-2 + 7Artisans 50 1.1 + Ilford Pan F 50
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Old 01-14-2018   #2
ian_watts
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Interesting. By "regular film scanning mode", do you mean that you simply took a RAW photo of the film using the digitiser hardware in conjunction with your flash? This technique is presumably open to anyone with the digitiser kit and another Nikon DSLR and suitable Macro lens?
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Old 01-14-2018   #3
View Range
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It would be great if this mode were added to the D810 in a firmware update.
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Old 01-14-2018   #4
Chriscrawfordphoto
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Huss, can you show us some 100% crops so we can see the resolution of the 'scan'?
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Old 01-14-2018   #5
ColSebastianMoran
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Phooey. I want to see the color and tonality produced by the 850 digitizer.

In all my experience with camera scans, with a good macro lens, resolution is no problem, color and tonality is much tougher. That was the case in the few samples we're seen pre-release from the 850 digitizer.
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Old 01-14-2018   #6
splitimageview
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Yes, the color conversion is the real test.
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Old 01-14-2018   #7
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A friend had one of those cars new early 60`s. Lovely.

He also had a Frank Lloyde Wright home, Hasselblad, and a darkroom. The darkroom had one of those Kodak color processors with heated rotating drum, print on the outside, and print rotated thru a trough of chems which we had to change in total darkness to get to the next step.

Now we have a camera that digitizes the film. The monitor and software that color balanced the file cost $75,000 and we now do it with home computer.

The car had a nice 4 speed and today it would be hard to get one. A buddy got a Honda one 8 years ago and he had to pay for the car in total before the dealer would order it.

Are you sure the camera was in commander mode so it signaled the 700?? It is just a light that should work.
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Old 01-14-2018   #8
Huss
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Taken from my post on FM as they had the same questions!:

To be clear, I can 'scan' the images using my flash set up with no issue when in RAW (or jpeg or TIFF etc) just like I did w my D750.
It is when I select the film digitizer mode that the camera locks out flash use. When I do that, a little flash symbol with that round circle/diagonal line appears on the top lcd panel. aka the 'ghostbusters I aint afraid of no flash' symbol.
The film digitizer mode works, you just can't use it with a flash. I'd have to use it with a light pad as source of illumination.
Perhaps I'm missing something really obvious here and someone can chime in.

I am using the SB500 in commander mode, that's the only way I can figure out how to trigger the SB700. I have not read the owner's manual of the 700...

This was my first fresh roll, I have not got to any colour film yet as that would be the real test of the digitizer's software as others have mentioned. This post is to illuminate my findings on attempted flash use with the digitizer mode turned on.
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Old 01-14-2018   #9
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Can you connect with a flash/pc chord and use manual flash? I have a chord that allows remote flash & TTL exposure. Expensive but works with my 900 on a flash bracket. Aftermarket copies also available.
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Old 01-14-2018   #10
Huss
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronald M View Post
Can you connect with a flash/pc chord and use manual flash? I have a chord that allows remote flash & TTL exposure. Expensive but works with my 900 on a flash bracket. Aftermarket copies also available.
The digitizer mode disables the flash. It disables the commander mode. So I cannot activate the slave flash (SB700) that needs the commander mode.
If I used a flash cord, the SB700 will still be disabled.

I gotta be honest here, just the fact that the digitizer mode only saves as a jpeg is a buzz kill. All this nonsense thrown on top of that disabling the ability to use flash adds to that. Until this is fixed in a firmware update, I'll just do what I did before, and roll my own in RAW.
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Old 01-14-2018   #11
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Digitizer set to MC/monochrome:




Top plate settings in digitizer mode, showing flash disabled and Fine Jpeg set by the digitizer:



p.s. ignore the low battery warning. That just came on after a night of use.
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Old 01-14-2018   #12
f16sunshine
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Hmm.. disapointment sucks.
How is Nikon about addressing user requests via Firmware updates?
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