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Thread: Digital B&W vs Film B&W

  1. #1

    Default Digital B&W vs Film B&W

    Hello

    Initially I was delighted that I could transform a digital colour pic to B&W within secs, however, I noticed that digital B&W can’t produce the full grey tone as in film. Maybe my PS skill is limited and I’ve heard that Digital B&W cannot achieve the same tonal quality as in Film, that why I started this thread to learn fm all the experts out there.

    Here’s an example…




    Pls comment…..

  2. #2
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    Digital B&W involves a lot more than simply setting the mode of the image to grayscale or doing desaturation. The best way to do this is via Channel Mixer, where you can tweak quite a bit. Done well, it can achieve results similar to B&W film.

    Regards
    CK

  3. #3
    tomcat
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    Quote Originally Posted by ckiang
    Digital B&W involves a lot more than simply setting the mode of the image to grayscale or doing desaturation. The best way to do this is via Channel Mixer, where you can tweak quite a bit. Done well, it can achieve results similar to B&W film.

    Regards
    CK
    Agreed.

    Lookingeyes: There are some Photoshop actions available that can convert a coloured image to B&W one digitally. The action by Fred Miranda is quite good:
    http://www.fredmiranda.com/DBWpro/

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    very nice, but pardon me, how to print out in hard-copy beautifully, as in what printer to recommend, what paper is good?? pls enlighten.

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    Somehow the characteristic grain and tonal qualities of original B&W film still looks a little different from digital for me, although I have seen quite close(but not similar) results.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by vader
    very nice, but pardon me, how to print out in hard-copy beautifully, as in what printer to recommend, what paper is good?? pls enlighten.
    For the ultimate in digital B&W printing, you'll need to invest in an inkjet printer and a B&W inkset such as the Lyson ones. Using colour inkjet gives very varied results, most of which comes with colour cast. Using the highest possible resolution of a colour inkjet, but in B&W mode works well for some types of images. Lastly, you can also use the Epson 2100P printer with its Ultrachrome 7-colour inkset with good results.

    Regards
    CK

  7. #7
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    check out this month's practical photography... it talks about B&W... digital darkroom and analog darkroom, types of film and comparison charts

  8. #8

    Default Digital B&W vs Film B&W

    Wow…sound so chim…

    Tomcat - I like yr recommendation, hw u tried it out ??

    CK – B&W is a powerful medium but it’s very hard to master. I just want to explore the medium first before building up my digital darkroom. Btw, do u think I can try out some film, get Ruby to dev & print, Ruby seems to be providing a good service.

    May be some CS members can consider to offer their services in this area ??

    My Gallery ...click here!!

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    My advise to you is to do every things yourself... learn more things...what if the lab ****-up the film and say that your exposure sucks? if you know your stuff, they cannot say it's your fault. what happen if they scratch your negs,your important pics will be gone...
    Last edited by vader; 4th November 2003 at 02:24 PM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by lOOkingEyes
    Wow…sound so chim…

    Tomcat - I like yr recommendation, hw u tried it out ??

    CK – B&W is a powerful medium but it’s very hard to master. I just want to explore the medium first before building up my digital darkroom. Btw, do u think I can try out some film, get Ruby to dev & print, Ruby seems to be providing a good service.

    May be some CS members can consider to offer their services in this area ??

    My Gallery ...click here!!
    If you want to venture into B&W, it's best to learn how to do it yourself, from shooting all the way through processing and printing B&W photos. No fun to let people process/print your B&W.

    Regards
    CK

  11. #11
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    i've read somewhere (not verified) that film BW has a dynamic range of about 15 stops. Digital has a range of about half of that, at most. If the 15 stop figure is true, then digital BW is still a very long way from film BW.

  12. #12
    tomcat
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    Quote Originally Posted by lOOkingEyes
    [COLOR=Navy][B][SIZE=2][FONT=Comic Sans MS]
    Tomcat - I like yr recommendation, hw u tried it out ??
    No. Not really into B&W photography myself. Besides must pay for this action if I want to try it.

    There are similar but free Photoshop actions available over the internet if you like to give it a try. There's one at this site, together with an action to simulate IR images
    http://www.nickgallery.com/web_pages/technical%207.htm

  13. #13

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    Hello All

    tks for the valuable comments/suggestions...

    Vader/CK - I agree with u...I'll start with digital first then move up to film. Seeing & visualising in B&W is an art, using digital will shorten my learning curve.

    tomcat - tks for PS actions, I've downloaded it...will try out soon.

    SniperD - tks, I bought the Oct issue, afterwhich I spoted another mag PHOTOSHOP that touched on Digital colour to B&W. May be I get hold of that one too....

    Hopefully, I could share some pics after I've done all the above...

    Gn NIte.....

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