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Need to digitize an image or document? Learn which scanner is best for you and how to use it.

Before you get started...

  • Create a folder in the D: Drive Storage on the station you are working at, and label it with your network ID (i.e. abc123). The icon for D-User Storage is currently designated Storage (D) - Shortcut on the desktop of the film scanning computer.
  • To scan black and white AND color film, you will need to check out the film adapter at the main service desk on the first floor of KSL(not Freedman center front desk). Ask a Freedman center staff if you need assistance.

Getting Started

  • Turn on the Nikon CoolScan V ED.

  • Replace the slide scanning adapter with a negative film scanning adapter (can be checked out at the main service desk located on the first floor of KSL).

  • Identify the top and bottom of the negative; the glossy side is the top and the dull side (emulsion side) is the bottom.

  • Insert the negative with its top up into the Nikon scanner (the scanner will automatically draw it in). Film is scanned correctly when inserted in the opposite direction of the pointing arrows found across edge of film.
  • Note: Do not force or bend film into the scanner.

Setting Up the Scan

  • Double click on the Scanners folder on the Desktop and open Nikon Scan. 

  • The software window should look like this:

  • Locate the option bar drop-down menus on the left side of the Nikon scanner window. Select from the film type options menu (middle bar) the appropriate film setting: positive film or negative (color). If you are scanning negative Black/White film, please refer to Negative Black/White Film Scanning
  • Note: negative film is intended making color prints. positive film is intended for making slides. If you are unsure which type your film is, it is most likely negative.

Previewing, Scanning, & Choosing Settings

  • On the left hand side of the Nikon interface (located at the top of the Nikon Scan 4.0 window between the settings and the preview pane) click on the vertical bar to unwind the thumbnail dialog box.
















  • ​In this dialog box click the leftmost box containing the four small boxes. The thumbnail pre-scans of each frame on the film will appear.

  • Optional: Double-click the desired pre-scan image frame to preview in larger format (this does take more time). Otherwise, continue on to the next step.
  • Before scanning the selected frame, click the purple Tools button -> Tool Palette 1 to bring up Tool Palette 1.

  • Uncheck (X's are unchecked) Curves, Color Balance, Unsharp Mask, and LCH Editor.

  • Next, consider which filter options you will use (*Note that adding filters will increase scanning time).

  • Digital ICE removes dust and scratches from scans of damaged slides; leave this on Normal unless scanning a glass-mounted slide (this feature does not work on glass-mounted slides).
  • Digital ROC restores faded or lost colors on scans of damaged slides; leave this on 0 (off) because this can also be done using the Levels function in Adobe Photoshop (Image -> Adjustments -> Levels).
  • Digital GEM removes grain from scans of slides; since Digital GEM is a powerful tool, leave this on 4 unless time is an issue (enabling Digital GEM will add a considerable amount of time to the actual scanning; lowering this value will decrease the additional scanning time required).
  • Digital DEE brings detail out of shadows and reduces hot spots on scans of slides; leave this box unchecked because this can also be done using the Shadow/Highlight function in Adobe Photoshop (Image -> Adjustments -> Shadow/Highlight


  • After selecting the filters you wish to apply, click the green Scan button to scan the selected frame.

  • In order to advance the film to another frame, click on the Thumbnails tab (located at the top of the Nikon Scan 4.0 window between the settings and the preview pane) and select the frame to be scanned.

Finishing Scanning, Ejecting Film, & Saving

  • Once all of the desired frames have been scanned, click the Eject Film button in the upper left corner of the Nikon Scan 4.0 window.

  • To save press File -> Save As.

  • Then select Computer -> Storage D.

  • Save in the folder you have created in the beginning and save thr image as JPEG  (*.jpg, *.jpeg, *.jpe).
  • A JPEG image of "Excellent Quality" will be saved uncompressed; saving the image at any quality level less than "Excellent Quality" will result in quality loss and a smaller file size.