Re: Which scanners REALLY provide 36 bit output? HP?

From: Ian Stirling (
Date: Fri Dec 08 2000 - 15:51:29 PST

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    <snip original message>
    > Second, it is not theoretically possible to "accurately reproduce
    > color." Perfectly accurate "color" has a continuous spectrum that would
    > require a near infinite number of channels to reproduce. All scanning,
    > printing and color display depend on the human perceptual trick that aliases
    > many colors together. It is a miraculous stroke of technical luck that most
    > color perceptions can be aliased to colors produced from small sets of
    > primaries.
    > Imagine if hearing could be similarly tricked using only three pitches:-)

    It is possible to do a spectrographic scanner.
    As a first cut, take an ordinary scanner, replace the fluorescant tube
    with some sort of light that emits over a wider spectrum.
    Now, replace the linear imaging array with a square one, and stick a
    diffraction grating in the optical path.

    The compression of this is sort of the same problem as mpeg, with
    the spectrum as the third dimension rather than time.

    Whereas a 24bit 1200dpi scanner might produce files of up to half a gig,
    a spectral scanner might do half a terabyte. (uncompressed, compressed
    it'd be a lot smaller)

    A poor-mans version of this could be done with a standard scanner (one of the
    older three-pass sort), and simply put in more lamps or filters.

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