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Scott Pickering

Transfer Company = New Lasergraphics "Director 10K"?

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Just wondering if anyone has heard of any transfer houses in North America that will be getting Lasergraphics "Director 10K" transfer scanners? It supports 8mm right up to 35mm. I don't see how 10K will help with 8mm, but it would be interesting to see the results. I am currently getting some old Super 8 scanned at 5K on a Lasergraphics Scanstation with the 5K upgrade. I also have some 16mm to do as well. Just thinking down the road.

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We are looking into this scanner, waiting to hear back from Lasergraphics on some pricing and technical questions. That said, I believe it's priced similarly to the previous Director Scanner, which is pretty expensive (several hundred thousand dollars). I don't think you're going to see a lot of these out there any time soon, because I'm not even sure they're shipping them yet,

 

The primary advantage of the Director would be HDR, but that's really only going to be useful on underexposed reversal, or on some B/W prints. It's also pretty slow, which means the cost to scan on this is likely going to be much higher than on a faster machine like the ScanStation, Xena, etc. HDR doesn't get you much on negative or print.

 

I honestly wouldn't expect to start seeing these scanners appear in the wild until sometime next year at the earliest.

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Thanks Perry. Glad to hear you guys are considering it. I wonder what your cost per foot would be at 10K? I'm sure you won't know that till later, but I'd be curious on that. I'd also wonder if you'd have to upgrade your computers to work with the 10K files. Its sure to be processor heavy in workload.

Edited by Scott Pickering

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Thanks Perry. Glad to hear you guys are considering it. I wonder what your cost per foot would be at 10K? I'm sure you won't know that till later, but I'd be curious on that. I'd also wonder if you'd have to upgrade your computers to work with the 10K files. Its sure to be processor heavy in workload.

 

There's no way we could really come up with accurate pricing until we have the scanner (if we get it at all). I don't think that for the time being most people will be asking for 10k files, but it is a great way to oversample for 4k or even 8k output, much like we do now with 4k scans for 2k output (Super2k, we call it).

 

As for our systems, we're building out the infrastructure now to handle much higher data rate footage than we can currently work with. This week, in fact, I'm testing and performance tuning a centralized SAN that's on a 40Gbps backbone - that's 5 Gigabytes/second throughput on the network. The drives in the SAN (currently 48TB, but with space for up to 168TB more) will probably be the bottleneck, likely topping out at about 2GB/second.

Edited by Perry Paolantonio

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It would be nice to have a real RGB full frame sensor 4K Super 8 HDR scan, especially for reversal and print films. I'd be very curious to see a comparison. Like Perry said, though... definitely no reason for a Super 8 10K scan unless you're talking an 8K presentation.... then maybe it might make it look more like an actual film projection and avoid up-scaling artifacts.

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Does anyone know which camera is used in the new Director 10K? I assume they use a 10k Bayer pattern sensor. Does anyone know specifics? Can the same, or better, camera be used on Xena?

 

Craig

PHI

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Lasergraphics uses the same Spark20000 5K cmos sensor as the Scan Station in Monochrome instead of color Bayer and a pizeo pixel shift system like the Arriscan to make 10K.

 

CMOSIS has just introduced a 8K version of this cmos sensor, it is about 7900 x 6000 pixels 12-bit.

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IMO this is about the best sensor for film scanning these days, but it just doesn't have the speed of the cmos sensors:

 

http://www.onsemi.com/PowerSolutions/product.do?id=KAI-16070

 

We have one of these color ex-Kodak 5K CCDs in our second Xena Dynamic Perf scanner, and a monochrome version in the Pin Registered Xena.

 

We will be taking delivery of a Scan Station P with 16mm and 35mm gates in a week or so also.

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I was just curious, what makes the KAI-16070 a better sensor? It doesn't seem to have more mega-pixels, does it have a better pixel density? More latitude? Or it just appears to deliver a better performance in tests?

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Low noise and bigger pixels. Generally, larger pixels are better in lower light because more photons hit the photosensitive cell and you get a better signal to noise ratio. On a film scanner this matters because the light source typically has a limited range. So it can be tuned into the sweet spot of the sensor to maximize the amount of light, thus reducing noise.

 

 

This sensor is bayer pattern for color, but without the bayer filter it's just a monochrome sensor. On scanners that work the way the Lasergraphics Director does, you get separate flashes with Red, Green and Blue light, to create a composite color image. That avoids the bayer pattern, but it takes 3x longer for each frame (still, measured in fractions of a second).

 

Of course, with a sensor that has a higher pixel count, you can oversample and reduce noise that way as well. But used as described, this sensor would allow for a non-bayer full RGB scan with low noise, without needing to oversample.

 

Nobody really needs an 8k scan, at least not right now, so the real benefit of the high pixel count in the new Director has to do more with oversampling. At least, that's how I see it.

 

-perry

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Thank you! That explains a lot.

 

I would have assumed pixel density would have been more important. I thought smaller pixels sharpen the image, to improve the signal to noise ratio, couldn't just more light be added (Especially without a bayer filter)?

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Smaller pixels packed together doesn't necessarily improve signal to noise -- I mean, look at a cell phone camera with a tiny 4K sensor, that sensor has a lot of small pixels packed together and generally those cameras do poorly in low light levels with a lot of noise.

 

Where you see some improvement is simply in very large sensors where you have so many total pixels recorded that either the noise is very small in size and harder to see (compared to a lower pixel image seen at the same size) unless you enlarge the image or you've oversampled enough that you can apply some noise reduction because you are going to finish at a smaller size.

 

What improves noise is exposure, so if the sensor has large photoreceptors that are naturally better collectors of light, then you'd have less noise problems. Of course, there are other things a manufacturer can do to reduce noise in the system too.

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Thanks Perry! I think I will just move along with my super8 K40 project (with out HDR) or this will be just an other excuse not to do it 'yet'...

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Thanks Perry! I think I will just move along with my super8 K40 project (with out HDR) or this will be just an other excuse not to do it 'yet'...

 

 

You should contact LaserGraphics directly and ask them if there is anywhere you can send your Super 8 Kodachrome project for an HDR Director Transfer. They'll tell you if it's out there anywhere yet.

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Hi Scott,

 

We don't like to discuss our upcoming purchases publicly, but suffice it to say we're always looking at new scanners and upgrades to our existing scanners.

 

Speaking of, we recently upgraded our ScanStation to HDR, something Lasergraphics showed at NAB this year. It makes a big difference with underexposed reversal and overexposed negative. Here's a quick look at one example: http://www.gammaraydigital.com/blog/now-offering-hdr

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