Fluid Scanning Technology
"I have converted entirely to the ScanScience way and
abandoned my makeshift oil methods.
I never make dry film scans anymore, it throws away too
much quality....Everyone out there who is serious about
getting the best possible scans needs to be doing wet
scanning and ScanScience makes it affordable on almost
any scanner. "  


  • See also PHOTO TECHNIQUES Nov/Dec 2007
    Key to the ScanScience Fluid Scanning
    Magic:   In Optical Microscopy, thanks to
    Fluid Immersion, resolution and
    magnification are both increased to the limit.  
    Fluid Immersion does the same in scanning
    for the same reason and has always been
    the procedure used with drum scanners
    costing up to $100K.

    Fluid Scanning benefits to photography go
    beyond resolution: The extended dynamic
    range, increased contrast and color
    saturation makes images come alive.
    The thousands spent on your finest lenses
    are only as good as the scan. The finest
    quality scans are fluid scans.
    ScanScience brings these same cutting edge
    techniques to all scanners.  
  • This highly acclaimed eBook Total Scanning is a
    comprehensive treatise on scanning aimed at the
    intermediate to advanced user, the photography artist
    and teacher. It covers the cutting-edge techniques of
    fluid scanning and provides guidelines on optimizing
    scans for printing.
  • The "Smart Scan" tables computes scan resolution
    needed at a viewing distance according to print size.
    You no longer have to scan at 300 ppi for all print sizes
    then scale the image down in Photoshop: Scan for the
    print and get full fluid-scan-quality un-degraded by
    image resizing.   How large a quality print can I make
    from my scan? What file size do I need for a scan?
    Should I scan in 16 or 8 bit?  Total Scanning provides
    the answers.
  • This new electronic book has great advantage over
    print books as it is alive with numerous internal and
    external hot-links to help you navigate, explore and
    research many topics further. It is a valuable teaching
    aid and reference, and it is richly illustrated
  • This book is included  with Pro Kits for Film Scanners
    and can be purchased for $15.00 with any kit, or
    purchased without kits for $25.00.
You are viewing the dry scanned image.
    Run the mouse over the image to see the true
    saturated colors on film wet-scanned with
Copyright ScanScience / JAF 2012
USER'S REVIEW of ScanScience
Raw Scans, untagged with any color space can go directly to Photoshop to be tagged with a non-clipping,
non distorting color space like the relatively new Adobe Wide Gamut RGB. With digital cameras choosing
RAW should allow you to select a color space, but not always: you may find that a clipping color space like
Adobe RGB or worse,  sRGB were tagged to the image file, shortchanging the palette of modern printers
like Canon's IPG 5000, and 6300, and Epson 4800.
could print the reds, greens and blues that are printable today. These vintage color spaces suited vintage
printers, not todays modern printers and inks: After all your printer is limited to the colors in the selected
color space. Color is a very critical issue for gallery prints and Art Photographers: You have opted for
below is a must read.

COLOR:  FILM VS THE DIGITAL CAMERA  - Excerpts from the forthcoming eBook Total Scanning 2
All graphs Images & Graphs in this page produced by
ScanScience with  Chromix Software. Copyright
range: Only colors within by the color space are available
to the printer. Today's modern printers and inks reach
further afield into reds, greens blues which were
unprintable years thus require color spaces that will make
those colors available. Because vintage color spaces like
sRGB and later Adobe RGB, (which many photographers
still use) were developed for vintage printers and monitors,
those color spaces of yesterday are inadequate today.  If
you value color, it is time for a change in color space or
printer or both.

The representation of color is a 3 dimensional affair which
plots the chromaticity coordinates in the horizontal axis'
and luminance in the vertical axis. (2D graphs are a
simplification). This is shown in 3D Figures 1 and 1a, 2 and
2b, (on the right), where the base is the gamut of visible
colors, the CIE, shown here for comparison. The wire
frame in the 3D graphs represents color working spaces,
i.e. Adobe RGB and Adobe Wide Gamut RGB (AWG). The
solid color figure within the wire frame is the 3D profile of
Canon's Image Prograph 5000 set out against the color
space in the wire frame, and the CIE gamut in 2D as the
base. Evidently both color spaces are smaller in places
than the printer profiles. The wire frames are smaller than
the printer profiles which bulge -out. Where that happens,
those colors outside the color space will be unprintable,
and not fed to the printer, even though the printer is
capable of printing them. The printers call for a larger color
Fig 1
Fig 1a
Fig 2
Fig 3b
Fig 4
Film, like the eye sees logarithmically. Digital their
capacity, it spills over neighboring sensors.
Film-generated images have as result a
naturalness that is driving photographic artists
back to film.  Large-format film can produce
ultra-fine detail, beyond a digital camera's
capacity. Know of a 220 MP digital back for 4 x 5?
That is how many MP would be required to match
digitally the content of 4 x 5 film.
Color also may be another reason for using film.
film scans you are free to choose the color
space which is probably the most important
decision you will make.
This is also shown In 2D figures 3a, which shows
the ICC range of colors visible to the eye, against
the Adobe RGB color space, (triangle) and the
gamut of colors printable by two printers. In this
figure we see that the Adobe RGB color space is
smaller than the colors printable by the Epson
4800 and Canon IPG 6300.
In figure 3b, where the color space is AWG,
clipping is avoided. At the present time, no printer
is yet capable of printing the full range of visible
the ICC range of visible colors). Advances in inks
and printers have expanded the range of
printable colors. Reaching further to print all
visible colors is no doubt the holy grail of printer
Larger color spaces than Adobe RGB and sRGB, were already available before the introduction of Adobe
Wide Gamut
color space but they had big problems:  These color spaces bulged with false colors that
caused severe
color shifts and distortions.  

Kodak, introduced the first big-color space when, tired of the inadequate tiny the color spaces available at the
time,  introduced ProPhoto RGB, which was much larger than then available color spaces.  From the extreme
of a color space,
that was too small to render an image with fidelity it went to the extreme of rendering an
image with lack of fidelity because that color space bulged with false colors in the blue areas. The false colors  
existed only in numbers but are not visible to the eye.  
 This is shown in Fig 4. Imaginary colors in a color
space have the effect that the image's pixels are spread into the bulge of false
and imaginary colors  
destroying the natural color balance
. The result is major compensations and color correction in editing.
Adobe Wide Gamut RGB solved this problem, it adds no false colors and it only contains real, visible colors.
Adobe Wide Gamut is
the preferred the color space for now and the future.
Printers still fall slightly short of filling Adobe Wide Gamut, and do not yet have profiles to match it, requiring
color adjustments, -though fewer, but not clipping any colors in film. Presently, Don RGB, another named
color space, comes closer to match available printers. As this is written, digital camera manufacturers such
as Canon  now use AWG instead of ProPhoto RGB in their latest version of their application, Digital  Photo
Professional (DPP).  With Wide Gamut RGB, Adobe has successfully created a modern color space tailored
to modern times.  

Film users are free to choose a color space for their scans but digital users can't always do that and many
find that their RAW files are tied to clipping spaces like adobe RGB. (sRGB, short for skinny RGB or other
unprintable words that begin in s), does not deserve mention in the realm of art printing.
Fig 2b
Fig 3a
NEW!   Focusing Target #9.17
Essential for all scanners, a must for flatbed scanners.
Order yours now
We recently had an opportunity to scan an ideal image made with a 5 x 7 camera and B&W film, by well
Known photographer Craig Alan Huber from "In Platino Veritas Images" in Washington State.  This image
gave us the opportunity to show the differences between fluid scanning and dry scanning which are shown
here.   Thanks to Mr Huber for generously giving his permission use his image and post the results.

At ScanScience we scanned the negative on an Epson V750 using Silverfast 6i at 3600 ppi resolution, on a
16 bit gray scale, using
ScanScience tools and Lumina Scanning fluid. The result was an enormous 750 MB
plus file, which gave enabled us to crop various sections at high resolution and magnification.   This very high
resolution scan for such a large negative was chosen as it delivered the best looking image at high
magnification.  We also tried a scan at 6400 ppi, found no improvements, only bloated files that took longer to
scan, so we did not use it.

The optimum focus of V scanners is known to vary so we first determined the optimum elevation for our unit
by scanning the new ScanScience target. It turned out to be
2.6 mm,  so all scans including the dry scans
were run at 2.6 mm. (The negative was very flat so the un-sharpness of the dry scan was due solely to the
inadequacies of dry scanning, which throws away much of the quality.)

We show below two small crops of the image from the center and corner at 200 % magnification. Both
images are raw, with no manipulations whatsoever by the scanner software or Photoshop.
You can see many more wet/dry scan samples by clicking the ScanSamples tab in the main
Image 1, is a small section at center, and you can
see that hole in the mesh of the source image.   
wet scan at left of image 1,  easily blows
away the dry scan on the right by a large factor,
-helped by the fact that at center the lens is
sharper. You would not know the image was that
sharp from the dry scan. The detail in the mesh
and it contrast are phenomenal in the wet scan.
Image 2 is a small crop from the left corner of the
source image.  The wet scanned image is still
sharper than the dry, but the difference between
them is not as great because camera lenses are
less sharp at the corners. Notice also that the
blacks are blacker and contrast is greater in the
wet scan.
IMPORTANT: You can not use Epson Scan to
access the high resolution optics in the V750 or
V700. You must use Silverfast or Vuescan.

Image from Source 5x7 Negative
  1. ScanScience kits are the essential tool to drive high the best photo optics to excellence.
    High quality optics are wasted on Dry scanning.
  2. If you have a fine scanner, ScanScience tools drive that scanner to the max.  Pro-
    summer scanners will deliver amazing quality when used with ScanScience tools.
  3. Precise focus is extremely important.  An off-focus scan is the most common cause of
    ordinary wet scans. With flatbed scanners, the accuracy of the film plane elevation is an
    absolute necessity especially with flatbed scanners.  With the ScanScience target and
    tools you can be sure of dead accurate focus and high-quality images.
  4. With the V700 you must have dedicated software like Silverfast ot Vuescan to access
    the high resolution optics. Generic software like EpsonScan, only scan at low
Image 1
Dry Scan
Scancience Kit Fluid-Scan
Image 2
This Just In From Australia:

    " I have been happily scanning and am very impressed with the Scan Science product. I posted
    about it on my blog here:"    Michael Hood's Blog

Extracts from Michael's Hood  Blog:

    " The cost of all the materials is pretty reasonable and very much worth the investment. Why pay
    for expensive camera lenses when a lot of detail is lost in the scanning stage? The Scan Science
    Lumina fluid is great and I appreciate the work that has gone in to making it perform well and
    (very importantly) be safe to use. I imagine it would not be very much fun to work with something
    that is more toxic and less tolerant. I urge anyone thinking about this using this method to not
    hold back and stop wasting time with lesser scans, fluid mounting is well worth it."
  • The images below are an example of what can be produced using the ScanScience kit for the Epson V750, using the whole of  two minutes spent on preparing
    the fluid mount.  These images are raw scans without sharpening or any other artifacts.
  • These images are but one example of the leap in image quality that owners of other scanners such as the Nikon 9000 and Creo and Hasselblad/Imacon
    scanners can expect by using our technology.
  • The improvement in resolution, contrast and dynamic range are evident in these B&W images - The color images in the Samples page are equally stunning!
                              SITE INDEX

  • The Welcome Page gives a general idea of what to expect from Fluid-Scanning
    against Dry-Scanning, and the artistic advantages of fluid scanning over dry
    scanning. You also find here find new announcements about our products.
  • The Scanner Kits page shows the products we offer for your scanners. If you
    don´t find your scanner here send us a short email.
  • The LUMINA fluid page describes the health and technical advantages that make
    Lumina the preferred choice of experts.
  • The Technical page tells you about the optical advantages of Fluid over Dry
    scanning and of its origins in microscopy. Additional data on color management is
    given in this page.
  • The Samples page shows comparisons of Fluid Vs. Dry-scanned images from
    various films.
  • The Gallery page displays images by well known photographers scanned with our
  • Click on the About-US page tells you who we are and why in 9 years of business
    we have become the Web's main fluid-scanning suppliers.     
  • Click on the Contact-US to place your order or to discuss your projects and
    needs,  your scanner, the film-formats used and your planned workload.  Once you
    have defined your needs we send you a PayPal invoice that you OK to place the
    order. With PayPal you can use your credit card.
  • The BUYNOW Page has a link to the Price List and Catalog, and info on shipping to
    various locations.

Professional Photo Artists,   
Institutions and universities the
world over use our products to
produce high quality images for
galleries and archives.

  We do  not advertise, nor
use friends post
on our behalf or
negative ones about our

e are into our ninth  year of
Our business has
expanded thanks to word of
mouth from satisfied
                 JUST IN
   From well known photographer Charles Cramer
whose magnificent landscapes were published in
the May 2013 issue of Outdoor Photographer
Magazine and whose images grace our Gallery page:

   "I have switched from  Kami mounting fluid to
Lumina. It works just as well, is safer, and the odor
doesn't cause headaches".
  "I've done about 160 scans this summer of my 4x5s,
and have found some nice images hiding in my
archives.  It's been great to use Lumina!"

 Note: Mr. Cramer uses a Tango drum scanner.  
Visit our new Gallery page to see some of his
beautiful images.

    Our LUMINA Optical Super Fluid replaces old
    scanning fluids, with a safe  material for film and
    equipment which is also pleasant for the operator.
    Wipe it dry and let it dry a few minutes, no mess no
    drudgery.   Two minutes turn a mediocre dry scan
    into a superb scan!