Auto-framing? Is it possible with SF6?

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cyro
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Auto-framing? Is it possible with SF6?

Postby cyro » Wed Feb 02, 2005 6:48 am

Hi,

I am batch-scanning 2000 slides and right now I have set the frame a little larger so that I will scan everything and not miss slide area due to slight variations in slide frames etc.

Is there an autoframe option in SF6? How would I do this? Maybe I am overlooking something blatantly obvious?

Thanks,
-CyRo

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LSI_Bruhn
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Postby LSI_Bruhn » Thu Feb 03, 2005 11:08 am

Dear cyro,

there is no autoframe recognition, yet. But we are working on a solution.
For now I just want you to give some hint about the frame inset on the option panel.

It is for sure better to scan a larger area so you won't miss anything.
But if you set the frameinset to a higher value it is for the automatic adjustment. If there are many black borders the inset will avoid to use them on the automatic adjustment.

kind regards
Sascha Bruhn

LaserSoft Imaging AG
Luisenweg 6-8
24105 Kiel

wildhorsesinc
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Postby wildhorsesinc » Sat Aug 27, 2005 12:49 pm

it is really a shame the application is so timeconsuming. its really a dissappointment and annoying. how hard can it be to have the choice to scan multiple negatives? truth is that batch scanning is virtually pointless with silverfast.

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Postby LSI_Bruhn » Tue Aug 30, 2005 7:39 am

Dear wildhorseinc, but what would you suggest to make it better ?

kind regards
Sascha Bruhn

LaserSoft Imaging AG
Luisenweg 6-8
24105 Kiel

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Postby wildhorsesinc » Tue Aug 30, 2005 8:45 pm

i suggest choices. a possibility to chose for myself how i want the application to work. for instance like photoshops actions. now its too timecosuming and laborous to use silverfast. i also would weant autoframe and a proper batch-scan solution, so that i can scan three negatives (6x6cm) at once and set the application to scan all three negatives the same way. dont know if i am able to say it clearly. sorry

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Postby Jens » Sat Sep 17, 2005 9:18 pm

LSI_Bruhn wrote:Dear wildhorseinc, but what would you suggest to make it better ?


Hello LSI_Bruhn,

I agree with wildhorseinc. I have been working with Silverfast AI 6 (all updates applied) for a month now and I'm still confused sometimes and have to search features. It may well be that SF is efficient and fast to use for people who have known the program for ages, and that my suggestion will make some tasks harder for an experienced SF user, but in terms of usability and according to style guides they would be improvements.

Silverfast is surely a great program and the architecture behind it as well as the image algorithms look good to me (I'm not a photography professional, though).
But the usability is very bad. I have had some involvement and experience in software development and style guides. Here are my main gripes:


1. Silverfast produces too much waiting time.

* It freezes every time the scanner does something, and often lets my scanner readjust itself (if that's what it is) when I'm not actually asking for a preview or scan.
I don't know if and how this is necessary, but my Reflecta Proscan 4000 makes SF wait all the time. For example, I have a set of negatives to scan.
I put the negatives in the scanner.
SF freezes until the scanner has arranged the negs.
I click on the overview button to see all slides on the film.
Scanner works for 10 seconds (why? there is nothing to do yet!), SF freezes.
The overview appears (but with the wrong pictures. Can SF detect whether the film has been changed and erase the pics in the preview?)
I click on "create Preview" (the Play button - why is this a "Play" button? And why does the explanation for the buttons while hovering over them, appear in SF's MAIN preview window, and not - like the other buttons - in a tooltip popup? Please make these text buttons, the icons are really misleading. IMHO.)
wait for some minutes until all previews have been scanned
click on one picture
wait for some minutes until a bigger preview has been scanned
etc.

* Batch settings. Maybe I haven't understood enough of SF, or I'm not the typical SF user. I want to scan in about 300 negatives with as little manual intervention as possible. I haven't found out yet whether SF readjusts the "auto" setting (second button from the left in the main SF window) for each negative it scans, when in batch mode, or how to automate this setting.

What I would like is:
- insert negatives
- automatically scan all thumbnails and all previews (this takes time)
- let me adjust all settings for all pictures, switch between them at will, *without* starting up the scanner again
- let me press "Start" (or whatever) and then scan all pictures (this takes time)


2. Silverfast violates just about every GUI style guide in existence.

* There is no "main" window and the tasks you can prepare are not seperated according to what they manipulate. There are tasks that change the scan procedure (ie ICE) in the preview window and not the scan window, and there are tasks that change the preview in the scan window (ie. auto-contrast settings).
* Silverfast's windows (especially the tool dialogs with the smaller title bar) don't automatically arrange themselves according to screen space and cannot be minimized or resized properly. The icon bar at the left side of the preview window (why is it at the left, and not at the top like every other program does it?) is often obscured by some tool windows.
* Silverfast's windows are very stubborn regarding window focus. The preview window stays in the foreground even in *front* of Windows error messages that freeze Silverfast (e.g. when I click "scan" and the File dialog window points to a non-existent network share, Windows pops up an error saying it can't connect, but you don't see the error, because the Preview window obscures it).
* There are menu items that open popup windows when selected [e.g. the GANE menu item]. This requires you to *re*select an already selected item when you want to change settings. This is highly unintuitive. A drop down menu and a button "Details" or "Settings" beside it would be more consistent.
* There are buttons that cannot be pressed down but *do* open a window. I don't know whether the GUI is too slow but most of the buttons in the main preview window just don't go "down" when clicked. You don't know if anything happened.
* There are buttons that should be radio buttons or checkboxes because they toggle settings. Like the ICE button vs. the iSRD button, which seem to exclude each other, and with iSRD another button is added, which adds to the confusion.
* There are too many non-resizable windows where resizing would make perfect sense. For example, the GANE preview window.
* There are too many small settings dialogs that overlap and tend to be in the way all the time. Buttons for "OK", "Cancel" etc sometimes are at the bottom, sometimes somewhere else.
* The "Exit" button is right next to the "Scan" button (easy to hit accidentally) and between(!) Scan and Options buttons.
* The densitometer belongs to the Preview window, not to the main window, and is not a setting related to the actual scan process, i.e. should not be a tab in the main window.
* Often it is not clear whether a window is modal or not. E.g. when the overview window is active there is no indication that you *cannot* use the Negafix window or the preview window (why not?). Clicking in the main window causes a flashing title bar, which is OK - why don't the others?


These are some of the improvements I'd like to see. I would like to see Silverfast behave like a normal application. This would probably require a major interface overhaul, however.

Please spend some time thinking about this. I would appreciate it. :)


Jens
http://www.jensbenecke.de > My Homepage
http://news.jensbenecke.de > My Blog

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Postby Jens » Tue Sep 20, 2005 6:33 pm

LSI_Bruhn wrote:Dear wildhorseinc, but what would you suggest to make it better ?


Hello,

some more points regarding user-friendliness:

* the "Quicktime" icons do not look like help icons. I would like to see these converted into a help icon (or put them in a menu and call them "Help").

* the Quicktime icons do not do anything if the QT player is not installed. Since the Quicktime player is not standard on Windows and Apple forces you to install iTunes if you want Quicktime, maybe a different format is more useful, that can be played with Windows and Mac by default. Perhaps plain MPEG? I guess if you choose a Windows-Media format the Apple users will hunt you down :-)

* The cursor when trying to adjust slide positions is unintuitive. It's a form like |-->, and it is not clear whether the tip of the arrow or the end of the arrow mark the adjustment position. I would suggest converting this into a function that allows the user to grab and actually _move_ the whole prescan (the part that has been scanned) inside the prescan window left or right, and adjust the slide position from there.

Thanks,

Jens
http://www.jensbenecke.de > My Homepage

http://news.jensbenecke.de > My Blog

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EMaerkel
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Postby EMaerkel » Fri Nov 11, 2005 1:07 am

<img src="/img/forum/243032.jpg" align="right" hspace="5" vspace="5" border="1">Another problem in batch scanning occurs with the hardware based infrared dust removal (iSRD):
In my batch scans, I do no prescan, instead I look afterwards for bad scans in order to repeat them.
In the 100-magazine I often have several slides masked, often as a square (rather than rectangle). Because there is no auto-framing, silverfast always scans a rectangle or extends to a much larger area. This could be easily removed later by some software, however another problem comes up: The dust removal function "sees" the masked area within the frame as dust and tries to interpolate these areas - which results in a meaningless image extension (subject to manual removal).
The problem is: While the dust removal completes within seconds with standard frames, these scans need a very long processing time of several minutes (10 min for example).

I have 3 improvement suggestions:

1) If there were an auto-frame-detection, the dust removal software would not do useless and time consuming processing outside the actual frame.

2) Where possible, you can use the infrared channel data as an indicator for the frame size instead of the image contents - as black areas of the image are not so in the infrared channel this can be used as a reliable indicator for the image frame.

3) Large black areas in the infrared channel cannot indicate dust, scratches or anything else that could be successfully corrected by the dust and scratch removal function. Such areas should be excluded from this procedure.

Regards
Eckart M?rkel

Asterixxx
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automatic recognition of slide area and user friendlyness

Postby Asterixxx » Sat Aug 26, 2006 11:55 am

I have to agree. I have the latest version of the silverfast software, and I bought a digitdia 4000 in order to be able to do batchscanning. Even the simpelest of softwares (like cyberview) recognise the slide area automatically. Why is it then so difficult for a program like silverfast (that costs a lot of money) to incorporate this feature !!!

I have now wasted two days trying to set the frame dimentions for a batchscan, and still it will scan the whole area of every frame (35x35mm). I am slowly giving up and am considering to start scanning with cyberview again.

This feature to automatically regognise the active partition in every field would be a great addition to the software, and would increase its value considerably

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Workflow ? (or not !)

Postby Asterixxx » Sat Aug 26, 2006 12:37 pm

I started of prescanning a whole magazine of slides. After seeing that the slide area in the scans was not recognised automatically I wanted to go back to scanned image nr 1 by means of selecting the thumbnail. Great was my surprise when I found out that the slide, before I could start working on it, had to be scanned in again. So what's the use of the first scan anyway apart from generating some empty thumbnails!!

Then I painstakingly went through all the slides, selecting the area that should be scanned and correcting their orientation (since all slides have to be scanned in again every time this took me some time for all 50 slides)

Finally after I had done this I started the batchproces in order to scan all slides in the loader. Big was my surprise when afterwards none of the selections, I took so much efford of doing, were respected and all slides were scanned on a full 35x35mm.

What kind of system is this exactly ?

I am now scanning with cyberview (which was free with the scanner by the way).
- Automatic recognition of active picture (some mistakes but then you can run through them and correct them without the pictures having to be scanned again every time).
OK, so the quality of the pictures is not that great. ...
Who gives a damn since the batch scanning seems to be close to unusable anyway.

Dear developers. I have to agree with most of the people in this post. If I would have known I definately would not have paid this kind of money for the software.

ImageCutter
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Re: Workflow ? (or not !)

Postby ImageCutter » Tue Oct 24, 2006 6:24 pm

Asterixxx wrote:I have to agree with most of the people in this post. If I would have known I definately would not have paid this kind of money for the software.

Iam totally agree with you.

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President_LSI
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Auto Frame Detection

Postby President_LSI » Tue Nov 28, 2006 7:20 pm

Auto Frame Detection in SilverFast 6.5

Dear SilverFast user,

Auto Frame detection is coming in SilverFast 6.5 which will be out in a few days! We will shortly bring this feature into the batch scanning capability with the Reflecta DigiDia or the Primefilm Powerslide.

best regards

Karl-Heinz Zahorsky
President
LaserSoft Imaging AG


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