Slide Color Saturation

About Slide Scanning Saturation

Interested in learning about slide scanning saturation? Saturation is the state or process that occurs when no more of something can be added. Full saturation in the case of slides would be when the slide is as vibrant, bright and colorful as it can get given the original slides and slide scanning settings. It is the density or deepness of the color.

Some people get saturation confused with hue and brightness. They are all aspects of color. Hue is the wavelength within the visible-light spectrum at which source energy output is the greatest. Brightness, which is closely related to contrast, is a relative expression of intensity of visible light source energy output. Saturation is an expression of relative bandwidth of visible output from a source of light. It is one of three coordinates in the HSL and HSV color spaces. It is determined by a combination of light intensity and how much it is distributed across the spectrum of different wavelengths.

Vibrancy and saturation are not the same thing, either. Vibrancy enhances overall tone, focusing in particular on the blues in a slide image. Saturation acts on the whole picture, but more subtly. What you can’t achieve with one, you can sometimes achieve with the other. If you are just focused on the blues, maybe vibrancy is enough.

We know that it can get a little bit confusing, so feel free to call DpsDave if you need further clarification regarding slide scanning saturation. If you are interested in broader topic of slide color quality, you can visit the respective page on this website. On this page, we want to dive into slide saturation by providing some examples.

Examples of Slide Saturation Changes

To provide you with an image of saturation, we’ll use Disneyland and Batman as two slide scanning saturation examples to illustrate the two different color schemes. Disneyland is full of highly saturated colors! Batman movies are made with unsaturated colors. The colors at Disneyland make us feel happier, while the drab colors in the Batman movies give us a sense of dread and hopelessness. Interestingly, under-saturated colors are also used to convey a romantic or nostalgic feeling, like when a photographer uses a fog filter. Colors that are on the low end of the saturation scale look gray in comparison. Ultimately, a black-and-white photograph is completely un-saturated.

These photos below are examples of this effect:

Slide Scanning Saturation Taken Into Account as Part of DpsDave Slide Scanning ServicesColor Hi Sat

Colors with high saturation are bright and bold. Professional sport teams and race cars are good examples of where highly saturated colors are commonly shown.

If you are interested in seeing more slide scanning saturation examples to compare, please call DpsDave at 866-935-1361. If you have had your slides previously digitized and still have the originals, we might be able to point out where saturation could have been adjusted better.

Editing Slide Scanning Settings for Saturation Levels

Now that you understand a little about the differences between the drab-unsaturated colors and the colorful-saturated colors, you can understand that when scanning slides to make digital images, special equipment is required. Without our special equipment to take into account slide scanning saturation, those bright and cheery Disneyland pictures can turn into drab and dreary digital images that belong in a Batman movie.

Before you consider saturation, you usually want to look at balancing colors. Once you have balanced them, you can then brighten the colors as needed. When you are ready to adjust saturation, there are some considerations. If you saturate colors too much, the slide colors will look “plastic,” and if you adjust saturation too much, it can make the photo seem cartoon-like. You can increase saturation to increase purity of colors so much that only six primary colors are in the image: red, green, blue, cyan, magenta and yellow.

DpsDave’s goal is to have scanner settings set appropriately to minimize any post-scan editing and breathe new life into your digitized slides. This is one reason why we preview all images before the scan process is complete.

We keep an eye out for artificial colors in the image (such as colors that don’t really exist for a component of the image) and for any loss of detail. We rarely increase above a value of +20 for this reason, unless it will improve the overall quality of a final digitized slide image.

To avoid any clipping that may occur, we protect saturated colors that are either too dark or too light. If this is done correctly, textures will be brought out even in areas with highly saturated colors. DpsDave is skilled at maintaining the balance between bringing out details and preserving colors. Some scanners and editing software are not able to protect these saturated colors. We can, and we do! That is one thing that really sets up apart from other slide scanning service providers.

If you are curious about tips for getting a good saturation upfront when taking any future pictures or making adjustments in Photoshop post digitization, our slide scanning saturation professionals can definitely help with that!

How DpsDave Takes Saturation Into Account

When scanning slides, capturing the images’ saturation is difficult. The dynamic range of a scanner is the critical specification for accurately capturing color. When a slide is scanned into digital image, each spot on the slide is scanned 4 times. Each time, a different color filter is used. A clear filter is used to capture the contrast as described above. Then, red, green and blue filters are used sequentially to capture the color of each spot. With regard to the filters, they need to be set to bring out the right saturation in these colors.

Here at DpsDave, we want to keep all of your colors the way they were intended when you first took your photo by taking all of the slide scanning saturation considerations into account. We hope to ensure that when your digitized pictures are returned to you, they will look the way that they did when you first took them so many years ago. Don’t wait! Call DpsDave today at 866-935-1361 to get started!