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Yet More Snappy Stuff

Canon FS4000US Film Scanner

Scanning XPan panoramic format negatives

Canon FS4000US Film Scanner

Officially the FS4000 will not fully scan a panoramic negative from the Hasselblad XPan camera however by using a software application called Vuescan it is possible to scan XPan negs in a two stage process. This is meant to be due to hardware limitations but since the offset works in software it is as if the scanner hardware/firmware can only scan a 35mm frame window - so isn't it interesting that the neg carrier is suitably designed to allow offset working!

Normal 35mm frame - 24 x 36

XPan frame - 24 x 65

The filmholder is a clamshell type which sandwiches the neg strip - notably the holder has capacity for six normal 35mm frames with a plastic separator between frames 2/3 and 4/5 which means that a full panoramic frame is available between dividers.

Filmholder for FS4000US Film Scanner


Use either combination of 1/2, 3/4 or 5/6

eg:    Place xpan neg into position 3/4

Basically the first scan is done on frame 3 with no Frame Offset and then frame 4 is done using a negative Frame Offset (I use -4.495 ) which gives a reasonable amount of overlap to work with.  The trick is to get similar exposure characteristics for each frame so there is no apparent difference when joining the two frames.

I've found this to be tricky but I tend to use fixed focus and also the Exposure Lock feature.

Typical settings -

Lock Exposure : CHECKED
RGB exposure : 2.867 (this will vary)
Infrared exposure : 2.785
Exposure clipping (%) : 0.1

Lock Film Base Color : CHECKED (assume subsequent scans are all from the same roll of film)
Lock Image Color : CHECKED (assume subsequent scans are from the same scene)

Note: Using v 8.1.1 I found the Film Lock and Image Color Lock options were not always apparent ( they seemed to be a subset of the Lock Exposure) but with v 8.1.4 both options will appear directly without the Lock Exposure being checked (maybe this was a flaw that was fixed in 8.1.4 ).

Note 2: Since used v 8.3.26

Projector Review

Braun Paxiscope XL episcope


Interesting machine this. Years ago I was told by somebody of a device known as an epidiascope that could project photo prints (indeed opaque objects) but trying to find out about such things was quite a task. Eventually I found out that this machine was a combination of an episcope and a diascope.

Episcope: a device that projects an image using reflected light

Diascope: a device that projects an image using transmitted light (through the medium).

Well, slide projectors are diascopes so no problem there - however, to find an episcope was a tall order. I never found an epidiascope as such but in the library was a book (dating from the 1930's I think) that described the principle of an episcope and by the time I was trying to think of how to build one lo and behold I discovered Braun indeed sold one. They were all over the place in Germany but fairly rare in NZ.

Brilliant - I could now project prints (and other opaque objects like bus/train tickets, maps, etc) onto white walls which was useful for wee travel talks and stuff. I'm still fascinated by the concept of projecting images using reflected light - should have paid more attention to the ol' physics classes I guess.

For travel/presentation talks the Paxiscope is suitable for small gatherings but the room has to be quite dark. The eyes adapt to the lower brightness of the Paxiscope and if you need to read notes a small film light-box can be used to backlight a paper sheet without interfering with the main display.

These units generate a lot of heat so be careful not to block the air vents or the expensive bulbs will expire early.

At this point I must say that the illumination from the episcope is not as bright as a slide projector so always view the episcope stuff prior to viewing slide stuff otherwise folk will be more disappointed than usual.

  Some folk do not like the brightness (or lack of in this case) compared to slide projectors but if you want to show film prints it is about the only way to do it.

With the digital age the alternative would be to scan the film negs and project the digital snap which presumably will be as bright as slide projectors.

Overall I was pleased with the Paxiscope and it would be interesting to see how much better the XXL model that Braun produce is - it's got 4 x 360W halogen bulbs as opposed to 1 x 300W so I suspect it should burn the house down.


The Paxiscope doesn't have a lens cover but I found that using a Laughing Cow (La Vache qui Rit) cheese container worked just fine. I just needed to make some cuts to the edge and then tape the edge to give a snug fit on the lens.