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Author Topic: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?  (Read 3474 times)

FarQinell

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Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« on: April 13, 2012, 08:04:45 AM »
I have thousands of old black & white foll film negatives (6x6, 6x7 and few 6x9 and 645 and some 35mm Kodachromes) to scan and upload.

Can anybody please offer recommendations (Canon, Nikon, Fuji etc) for few good ones to choose from - from first hand experience?

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Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« on: April 13, 2012, 08:04:45 AM »

CanineCandidsByL

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2012, 03:56:06 PM »
I'm fairly happy with my Epson Perfection V700 Photo, and they have a V750 for wet process scanning.

However, it is a slow process and I don't have much scanner experience outside of this model, so I'd take my own comments with a grain of salt.

Superka

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2012, 09:52:50 AM »
Nikon 8000 is the best choice. Nikon 9000 is much faster, but is not as sharp as Nikon 8000.

mws

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2012, 10:06:44 AM »
I just put up a post about this the other day. I went for the Canon 9000F. It's not a dedicated film scanner, it's a flatbed that also does film, but for under $200 the price was right. I've also heard good things about the Epson V600 at the same price point. For my limited use (shoot film for fun now and then) it seemed like it would be good enough. Seeing as you have several thousand shots to scan you may want to go for a dedicated film scanner.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2012, 10:08:15 AM by mws »

pdirestajr

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2012, 10:08:49 AM »
A great budget scanner for $200USD is the Epson v600. For digital sharing/ archiving and small prints it's fantastic.


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BillyBean

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2012, 11:11:35 AM »
I have a Nikon Coolscan IV, which is a 35mm dedicated negative scanner. If you have a lot, a dedicated negative scanner is going to produce much better results, and be easier to use, than a flatbed scanner with a converter. The key thing to realise is that its not an issue of pixels - its about the dmax - the dynamic range if you like. These things are expensive for a reason.

You mentioned both black and white and Kodachrome. Be aware that all scanner types can struggle with these two negative types. Black and white negatives that have been traditionally developed (i.e. not a C41 process) will not tolerate an infrared channel scan, which means you cannot remove dust and scratches automatically. If your negs are dusty, therefore, think carefully about post-processing, because regardless of what the scanner maker says, you could hit issues. As for Kodachromes, these also have challenges, because (so far as I understand it) they have quite a 3 dimensional makeup physically, which means that getting the scan in focus can be challenging (you can actually see this structure if you look carefully at the neg). And the colour balance is different too, though that's easily addressed. Nikon scanners have a Kodachrome setting which works pretty well - I've scanned thousands of Kodachromes from the 1950s and 1960s with excellent results - there is a very slight softening, but post-processing sharpening addresses this quite well, and Kodachromes survive very well compared to other negatives, so the overall outcome is excellent. (of course, one should really talk about positives, rather than negatives, in the case of Kodachrome...)

There is a Rocky Nook book on scanning slides and negatives, which is pretty good.

According to Lightroom, I have scanned about 10,000 old negatives and slides, dating back to the 1950s. So I can heartily recommend the Nikon scanners (even though I shoot on Canon kit...). They crop up second hand quite regularly. No one makes decent negative scanners new anymore...  :(

TexPhoto

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2012, 11:33:42 AM »
My vote is: Weed out the 10-100 photos you really want, and have them professionally scanned.   This is a slow tedious process, and your results will not be as good as professional results.

I did use a Nikon 8000 a few years ago, and thought the process is very slow, it produced good results.  Maybe buy a used one, then sell it after.

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2012, 11:33:42 AM »

swannd

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2012, 12:22:36 PM »
I haven't had a lot of experience with other scanners, however I have had good results with a CanonScan FS4000 that I picked up second hand. Combine this with VueScan software, and calibrate it. I purchased a Kodachrome and a Fuji IT8 target as i shot Kodachrome for many years, and then transitioned to Provia. Again its only good for 35mm (or APS!).

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kbmelb

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #8 on: May 01, 2012, 12:26:12 PM »
I use to use the Nikon CoolScan 8000 and it did a great job but at a very slow rate. The best results were with multi-pass scanning, especially with 35mm. I found four passes worked best. Never used the 9000.

I think whatever scanner you choose check to see if it will do multi-pass scans. I imagine this is all software so you could check to see if Silverfast supports the scanner and buy their software to get multi-pass ability.

tron

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2012, 12:28:00 PM »
I have the Nikon Coolscan 5000 for scanning 35mm (my only NIKON item!)

It is very good! Since you have mostly medium format to scan the best would be a Nikon 8000 or 9000.

I assume it will be very expensive though...

RC

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2012, 12:39:11 PM »
From a similar thread a few days ago:
http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=5636.msg107811#msg107811

Have the Canon 8800F, bought it specifically to scan my 35mm slides and negs.  I also have an Epson Perfection 636 (SCSI interface), with slide and neg adapter.  The Canon blows the Epson out of the water for slides and negatives--in fact that is why I bought the Canon.  I see the 9000F on Amazon for $204

So far I have been very happy with the 8800F.  My Kodachrome slides have turned out brilliant with all the rich colors and details.    Even most of my Wife's over exposed Ektachrome slides (oops, she shot ISO 400 in daylight on a P&S in Europe) have been reasonably salvaged by tweaking software settings.  Haven't tried scanning negs yet, still working on years of slides.

Kernuak

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #11 on: May 01, 2012, 01:54:28 PM »
I have a Nikon Coolscan V ED, from what I gather, the optical quality isn't as good as the Nikon 8000/9000, but it is significantly cheaper. However, one thing to be aware is compatibility. The software isn't compatible with Windows 64 bit and you have to download an update from the Nikon site, which is hard to find to work with Vista (presumably that would work with Windows 7). There may also be compatibility issues with later versions of Mac OS, so it's worth checking. This is all assuming that you can still get hold of Nikon film scanners, as Nikon were phasing them out, hence the lack oif updates. There may be some third party drivers available to enable continued use. Silverfast will give you the same functionality (probably more) as the Nikon software, but it still uses the Nikon drivers. I believe that VueScan enables continued use, but I'm not 100% sure and I haven't yet tried it. However, I haven't been entirely happy with the results, as the images look quite soft and noisy (there is a known fault on the V ED where the mirror gets covered in dust, requiring a nervously executed clean), so you may be better off with TexPhoto's suggestion of weeding out a small number for professional scanning.
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Policar

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2012, 02:54:46 PM »
I really like the Nikon 9000, but it's fairly expensive ($4000-$5000 used).  I am having some weird software issues with Silverfast and my Nikon 5000, and I wonder if compatibility might be an issue with the 9000, too, when using the newest software (on OSX).  You need to scan using multi-pass or else there is a lot of noise, but the results are great otherwise.  The glass carriers are a must; they sometimes give you Newton's rings but not so bad and they make flatness way better.

Just a warning...this will be a very slow process, especially if you use multi-pass.  If you don't want to make big prints but are doing this for archival purposes instead, an Epson flatbed is way cheaper and, from what I've seen, not bad.

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2012, 02:54:46 PM »

goretexguy

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #13 on: May 01, 2012, 03:46:23 PM »
I own and use the Nikon Coolscan V and it works great.
With regard to Kernuak, I'm using 64-bit Windows 7 and have no issues with the latest Nikon drivers. I'm also using the stock Nikon software, which works well enough, rather than paying for the probably-nicer Silverfast.
I've had the scanner for several years now, and have handled both slides and negatives of Kodak, Velvia, etc. )I haven't done any B&W, though.) I've been very pleased with sharpness, color and resolution.
A word of caution: it does take some practice to get excellent results. Out of the box, expect odd color casts.

Kernuak

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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #14 on: May 01, 2012, 05:18:15 PM »
I own and use the Nikon Coolscan V and it works great.
With regard to Kernuak, I'm using 64-bit Windows 7 and have no issues with the latest Nikon drivers. I'm also using the stock Nikon software, which works well enough, rather than paying for the probably-nicer Silverfast.
I've had the scanner for several years now, and have handled both slides and negatives of Kodak, Velvia, etc. )I haven't done any B&W, though.) I've been very pleased with sharpness, color and resolution.
A word of caution: it does take some practice to get excellent results. Out of the box, expect odd color casts.
I never got around to trying different settings, so I doubt I got the best out of the software. I am interested about compatibility with 64 bit Windows 7 though and I'm wondering whether Nikon relented and updated the drivers, as it's probably been a couple of years since I investigated.
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Re: Film Scanners - any user recommendations?
« Reply #14 on: May 01, 2012, 05:18:15 PM »