Scanning Long Strips of 35mm Negatives

Overview Generally with the Nikon film scanner and the SA-21 film adaptor you can only scan 2 to 6 negative strips.  The SA-30 is a bulk film holder that can handle strips of up to 40 negatives.  The SA-21 can be "modified" to flake a SA-30.


This is taken from a blog:!topic/comp.periphs.scanners/-LdJf3r23h4  by Kennedy McEwan Apr 25, 2005:

Incidentally, for those who do not want to take the risk of opening their SA-21 up and making a permanent solder link modification, there is an alternative temporary fix, albeit a little less reliable.

The two contacts of the link in question connect directly to pins 16 and 17 of the blue rear connector on the SA-21. Looking into the rear of the SA-21 with the adapter the correct way up, pin 13 is on the middle row on the left of the connector, so just count 4 and 5 pins across and you get to the two pins in question. These can be shorted together using some very fine wire (I/John used a strand of copper wire from speaker wire ....length of about 14 mm) - thin enough so that the operation of the connector contact is not interfered with. Then hold the link wire in place with some adhesive tape - Scotch Magic tape works quite well for this.

Before pushing the SA-21 back into the scanner, make sure that you pierce the adhesive tape over each contact in the connector block with a pin. This will prevent the corresponding pins in the scanner being subjected to additional pressure as the adapter is pushed home in the scanner.


I took a black sharpie and highlighted the area around pins 16 and 17.

Epson Film Holders

Overview An article on film holders, film sizes, etc.


Film Name Common Name Image (mm) Image (inches) Film Width (mm) Support Holder
110 Pocket instamatics 13x17 16 120
116/616 63 2.5 69 120
117/120 Medium format  57x41 to 83  2.25x1.625 to 3.25 OEM
122/124/125  83x108/140 3.25x4.25/5.5 120
123 4x5 100x126 4x5 OEM
126 26.5x26.5 35 120
127 41.3 1 5/8 46 120
135 35mm film strips 25 35 OEM




Scanning APX/IX240 Film

What is This Stuff APX or IX240 or Advantix film is basically a film developed to make managing of films and negatives easier.  I've seen Kodak and Fuji products.  The film came in cartridges similar to most 35mm film except the negatives stayed in the special cartridges even after processing.  The customer typically gets the cartridge and a proof sheet of all the photos.  This cartridges may be stored in a special case that can handle many cartridges and their proof sheets.  The negatives are not 35mm and in fact are smaller than 35mm in size.  The smaller negative size also impacts the not as good as 35mm.  In order to get prints or digital copies of the film you have either send it to a lab or we handle scanning these using the special Nikon adapter.

Scanning APX or IX240 or Advantix Film Using the Nikon Super Coolscan and the IA-20 adaptor:

  1. Push power button to turn unit on
  2. Unit is connected to Xavier.
  3. Make sure the IA-20 adapter is installed into the Nikon scanner.
  4. Open Nikon Scan 4 software.
  5. When the light on the scanner is solid green, load film cartridge and close door.
  6. Nikon Scan 4's scanner preview window.... a) setting should be set to "APX film" - go to "setting" - saved setting, "APX film" will be at the bottom of on this b) Make sure the next setting is "Neg (Color)" and NOT "Positive".
  7. Click on the thumbnail tab.
  8. Select all thumbnails (click on 1st thumbnail, then shift+click last thumbnail)
  9. Make sure that "Neg (color)" is still selected.
  10. Go to "settings" and click "APX film" profile to apply to current selection
  11. Then hit the green scan button and all the negatives will be scanned and saved.
  12. The batch scan window will appear....check the setting and scan.
  13. After the first negative has scanned, confirm scan looks good (ie. go to folder and open tif or jpg)

Time Statistics

  • 35 minutes to scan 25 negatives (typical cartridge size)
  • 1.4 minutes per negative

Scanning Negatives with the Nikon Coolscan

Here's how to scan negative strips using the Nikon Coolscan 5000 and the Film Scanner unit (SA-21). Quick Start Guide

  1. Insert negative strip into the scanner.
  2. Change setting to "Neg (Color)"
  3. Go to Thumbnail Drawer and click the "multi-thumb" button to scan thumbs.
  4. In the thumbs area <ctrl-A> to select all the images to be scanned.
  5. Under settings, click the user defined settings: "Negative (color)" --- IMPORTANT - if this is not done then only the first image will have the correct settings.
  6. Batch window will appear...fill it in accordingly.
  7. Eject strip - click the eject button when scanning is done.
  8. Go to the next strip and back to step 1.

Preparing the negative strip and the scanner

  1. Make sure that the strip is between 2 to 6 negatives (inclusive).
  2. Make sure the strip is not damaged, too badly warped, or the ends are not square. If one end is square and the other not, it may be more time efficient to just put the square end in and flip the images later.
  3. Turn on the scanner.
  4. Place the negative strip into the scanner a) Place the strip with the emulsion (dull) side down b) The edge with the numbers should be on the left and the "Kodak" label on the right...also the top of the picture should be on the right....little half rounds should also be on the right (NOTE: you can put the strip in with the strip images being upside down and it still works...the image will however be upside down...I've found that some strips work better this way!!) c) when the scanner detects the strip it should automatically start to pull the strip in

Nikon Scan 4 Setup

  1. Open Thumbnail Draw
  2. Select the button with multiple thumbs and this should cause the thumbs to be loaded
  3. Define settings for the scan and save them under settings (don't need to do this each time...just once) -  Make sure the "Scan bit depth" under the "Scanner Extras" on the right hand side of the window is set correctly.  If it is set to 16 bits, any file type selected will re-set to tiff (as only tiff can handle 16 bits).  Generally set it for 8 bits to do jpg's. - set the type button to "Neg (color)" or "Neg (B&W)" - click the "preview" button to scan in the first thumb - orient and crop the preview etc - save the settings under the "settings" button
  4. To scan all negatives: In the thumbnail area, do a <ctrl>-A, or <ctrl> click each thumb, then click the saved "settings" (this is VERY IMPORTANT - if not done, then the first image will have all the settings correct and the follow will not...for example the first will be a jpg and the others tiff's), then click the <scan> button.  The batch window should appear.

Using the Thumbnail Drawer

  1. Batch scans can be performed with film holders and adapters
  2. that support thumbnail previews ( 23): all frames selected
    in the thumbnail drawer are scanned when the Scan button
    is clicked. The images can be scanned at the same settings,
    or settings can be adjusted separately for each frame.
    Multiple Frames, Same Settings
    1. Select one frame in the thumbnail drawer.
    2. Preview the image and adjust settings as desired.
    3. Save changes to settings in the scan window settings
    menu ( 17).
    4. Select all the frames to be scanned in the thumbnail drawer.
    5. Select the saved settings from the settings menu (if this
    step is omitted, the settings in the scan window and Tool
    Chest will apply only to the first frame; the remaining
    frames will be scanned at default settings).
    6. Click the Scan button to scan the selected frames.
    Multiple Frames, Different Settings
    1. Select the frames to be scanned in the thumbnail drawer.
    2. Preview the frames and adjust settings separately for each image
    (use the thumbnail drawer to switch between frames).
    3. Click the Scan button to scan the selected frames.

    Using the Thumbnail DrawerBatch scans can be performed with fi lm holders and adapters that support thumbnail previews ( 23): all frames selectedin the thumbnail drawer are scanned when the Scan button is clicked. The images can be scanned at the same settings,or settings can be adjusted separately for each frame.

  3. done

Time Estimate Info:

High quality jpg's scan (with ICE) at 1.5 minutes per negative.  Lapse time is more like 2.1 minutes.

TIFF's (with ICE) take about 2 minutes per negative.  Lapse time is more like 2.75 minutes.