IT8 targets for Scanner Profiling

15th September 2015 Scanning


Where to find them

A good source of inexpensive, quality IT8 targets is Lasersoft Imaging (makers of the excellent scanning software - SilverFast).

If you want to calibrate a film scanner, you need a reference transparency. The best are reputedly the Hutch colour targets, but they are very expensive and in our experience don't justify their cost.

Instead, you can use the industry standard IT8 calibration target. This will give you 98 percent of the results of using a Hutch colour target for about 20 percent of the cost.

LaserSoft Imaging also manufactures IT8.7/1 and IT8.7/2 targets for scanner calibration: Silverfast IT8 targets. (With patented Auto-IT8-Calibration feature when using them with SilverFast itself, but also usable with any scanning software that offers IT8 calibration - including Vuescan.)

Silverfast also have Kodachrome IT8targets.

Kodak and Fuji also make these, but they charge a fortune, and a guy in Germany also makes ok ones for reasonable prices: Wolf Faust Affordable IT8 Targets...but we recommend LaserSoft as the best/most reliable supplier and this is where we get our own targets.

How to use them

Once you have the target and reference file (i.e. a file that says what the target colours should actually be), scan the target and compare it to the reference. From this, a translation table (i.e. profile) is made between what you got (i.e. the colours in your scan), and what you should have got (the actual measured colours of your target).

Higher end scanning software typically has an IT8 calibration routine built in (e.g. both Vuescan and Silverfast so). If not, you can contact us to build the profile for you here - we just need your full size scan of the IT8 target plus the reference data you received with your target.

An IT8 colour transparency target