How to scan sprocket holes and film borders?

Much like other film formats, you can scan sprocket holes and film borders using scanners like Epson, or dedicated film scanners like the Lomography DigitaLIZA scanning kits.

Sprocket Rocket Photo by @yuvs scanned with the Lomography DigitaLIZA

1. With flatbed scanners

Scanners like Epson usually come with scanning software like EpsonScan or SilverFast. To scan sprocket holes and film borders, you will be needing a scanning mask like the DigitaLIZA scanning mask. Insert your film into the kit and proceed with scanning.

In the scanning software, set your document type to film, and choose the film type and resolution. Afterwards you can use a photo-editing software to adjust the borders of your scanned images, and edit the size, brightness, contrast, color balance, saturation and more.

When scanning with sprocket holes visible you may encounter a common problem where your scanner produces an unwanted color cast, resulting in a washed out image. This happens because scanning software can get confused by the exposed sprockets and so produces inaccurate colors. Luckily, when using flatbed scanners there is a simple fix for this issue. For explanations on how to solve the problem you can read this article if you’re using a Canon Scanner and this one for an Epson Scanner.

2. With the Lomography DigitaLIZA+ and DigitaLIZA MAX

Photo by @braucci taken with the Lomo LC-A+ and scanned with the DigitaLIZA MAX

Scanning with the DigitaLIZA+ and DigitaLIZA MAX means you won’t be needing a flatbed scanner and can scan your photos using a digital camera or just your smartphone. Just insert your film into a DigitaLIZA scanning kit with the 35 mm holder, and take photos using your digital camera or smartphone.

Likewise, you will be needing a photo-editing software or a phone app to crop and enhance the digitized images as your prefer.

Be sure to check out our dedicated DigitaLIZA page for tutorials and our Scanning Like a Pro pdf guides!

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