The following explains how we entered the configs for our Nikon ED 4000 scanner, using the Nikon software version 3.1, and as seen on our PDF screen shot.

1) Launch Nikon Scan. Two windows will appear as follows:

  • On the "control window" (it says "Nikon Super Coolscan 4000" at the top) select "positive" for slides and then select Calibrated RGB (we use Adobe '98). If you are scanning Kodachrome select "Kodachrome" instead of "positive").

  • On the Tool Palate we use the following (please note that we do not touch MOST of the settings on this tool palate, most are NOT necessary):

  • 2) Under Unsharp Mask: click on the little page icon with the down arrow at the right and select ALL at the top of the menu list and then enter these numbers in the fields in the lower right:

    NOTE: it took us a day to learn that you had to HIT RETURN after entering each number in the field to actually enter the field value!

    3) Under Digital Iced Cubed:

    4) Under scanner extras:

  • Pixel data size: Scan bit depth: we use 8 (unless the image is going to press, then we use 16)
  • Manual focus: we don't touch this
  • Multi sample scanning: we use normal (1X) for screen images and super fine (16X) for images going to press (note: for images going to press we also scan at 55MB not 21 MB).

  • To batch scan select IMAGE at the top of your window and then select slide feeder at the bottom of the pull down menu. Enter a number greater then the number of images being scanned so the last scan will come out. We then check all the boxes in the next dialog box. Then we enter the subject code for the image prefix and select the hard drive where you want the images to go, we use TIFF, and then hit OK and off you go!

    After we are done scanning we open each file in PhotoShop and crop. At 100% we check for "ghosts" (funny little fuzzy areas left over from a large dust area) and scratches. The ICE feature is great for removing DUST but NOT scratches, you will need to check for these and remove them in PS at 100%.

    We usually at this point also apply one application of Unsharp mask to make the image just a little bit sharper (if the image is a detail you might want to apply this twice). Go to FILTER>SHARPEN>UNSHARP MASK and enter the following:

  • Amount: 50
  • Radius: 1.0
  • Threshold: 0
  • We then apply curves and fix the skew accordingly.

    OK, that's a run down. Here are a few final notes:

    1) As with any scanner, the results are dependent on the operator and how much skill and knowledge is applied, both in understanding the various software controls and the type of film being scanned, mounts used, etc.

    2) It is suggested that sharpening is applied during the scanning process and in the Unsharp Mask feature provided in the software (and not just in PS). You will need to determine the right setting based on your images and individual results, however a setting in all channels at 100 / 6/ 0 is suggested as starting point.

    3) 8 bit scanning is fine for most multi media applications, 14 bit is recommend for images going to press.

    4) Some people have reported a degradation in the sharpness towards the edges of the image. This may be a hardware problem or an issue with the slide mount, e.g. warping of the mount.


    You can reach Nikon at 1.800.645.6689 with any technical difficulty.

    If you have specific questions about any of our settings please email Scott Gilchrist at scottİ and I will be more then happy to TRY and help. Again, remember, your results may very depending on your computer set-up, type of film, the mounts you are using (you can't use the ICE feature with glass mounts) and so on.


    Best of luck!

    Scott Gilchrist, B. Arch, M. Arch.
    2858 Chamonix Nord
    Montréal, QC
    H4R 3B7 CANADA
    toll-fee: 1.877.655.9855
    fax: 1.514.332.1445