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Neg Scanner wisdom pls

Hello I am looking around for a great neg scanner… 35mm to medium format.
I have only ever borrowed a supercool Nikon 8000, which was pretty great.. but am totally unknowledgeable in the ways of other Makes…? Does anyone have any wisdom to share on this topic Pls? I am a Mac user, if that makes a difference..?
 I know they are expensive,,, and that will be another issue, right now i would like to know about quality.
thank you thank you  :)

by [a former member] at 2006-01-21 12:28:01 UTC (ed. Mar 12 2008 ) brooklyn , United States | Bookmark | | Report spam→

Sveva, one word: Imacon…they are not cheap, but if you can afford one, you’ll never look back…

by [former member] | 21 Jan 2006 14:01 | back home in Brussels, Belgium | | Report spam→
salut bruno, merci pour ton conseil… et encore merci pour iView ca m’est vraiment indispensable depuis que tu me l’as install . au fait…any clue on why it doesn’t work for digital images? i have a canon 20D, et ca quit quand j’y mets les converted tif from Raw?
j’espere que tout va bien
imacon, here i come

by [former member] | 21 Jan 2006 15:01 | brooklyn, United States | | Report spam→
The Nikons are very good, actually, and will do the job for you, but the price is high, and if you are going to spend that much, why not wait, save and spring for the superior Imacon.  If money is a problem, you can also look into the cheaper alternative of buying an Epson flatbed that doubles as a neg/transparency scanner — I have heard mixed things about this, but given the price it might be a viable alternative.  I am currently using an Dimage Scan Dual IV, which is a great deal for the money, and has the advantage of being light and portable, but it is  only good for 35mm,and that is a significant drawback.  The Imacons are unbeatable, and while they cost a lot, it might be worth it if you, like me, intend to keep shooting a lot of film and simply converting it to digital purposes afterward. 

Another point: The Epson appeals to me in part, because I like to print in the lab, and while I know that involves an extra step, I am happier with the results.  Plus you could argue that, with the print in hand, as well as the digital file scanned from that print, you have all the bases covered.

by Jon Anderson | 21 Jan 2006 16:01 | Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic | | Report spam→
I have an Epson 4870 and have been pretty happy with it in terms of neg scanning.  Its optical resolution (4800dpi) is enough to make fairly large prints at 300dpi and a maximum optical density of 3.8Dmax means that it will be able to properly represent the entire range of densities present on the negative in the digital output file.  It also comes with trays for scanning 35mm, MF, and 4X5.  So if you work in a format other than 35 (as I do) you do not have to order any additional accesories to scan the film.  The Epson software is a little clumsy and it takes some work to get things properly configured.  The automatic options are generally only good for scanning in family photos.  The software tends to be a little over eager in cropping out the edges of the film and usually ends up cutting out some of the image.  That is why either using the sivlerfast software or configuring the epson software is essential.  It can scan at 48 bits and does a pretty good job with color transparancies.  Although, with lager negs scanned at full resolution and in 48 bit mode it takes a while.  Scanning a 4X5 neg at 48bits, may take an hour, assuming it doesnt cause an error because of the incredible amount of memory it takes to execute the scan.  All in all, for the money I dont think you can do better.  I have made exhibition prints from 35mm and 4X5 negs scanned with my Epson and they looked very good.  Digital noise isnt really much of a problem and the ability to scan both transparent and reflective documents is a blessing for those of us without the money for a drum scanner or two dedicated scanners.  Anyhow, thats my 2bits.  Here is a review of the product.  http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/other/display/epson-4870photo_2.html
hope this helps

by John Klukas | 22 Jan 2006 23:01 | Bangkok, Thailand | | Report spam→
I use an Epson 4990 mainly for M/F and L/F negs and chromes and I find it excellent for the money although it’s obviously not as good  as an Imacon or drum scanner. For prints up to A3 it’s difficult to tell the difference between the Epson and the Imacon if you use the Epson properly. I’ve found the Silverfast software to be much better than the Epson, and for B&W I always scan the negs as colour 48bit which creates a really nice file. I find you need to use a bit of sharpening skill in Photoshop as well to get the best  out of the scans, but I’ve been really pleased with the scanner since I’ve had it.  For 35mm I’ve not found it to be as good as my Canon FS 4000 or the Nikon Coolscan 5000.

Just my 2 cents too !

by Barrie Watts | 23 Jan 2006 04:01 | North Wales, United Kingdom | | Report spam→
thanks everyone, gonna do my homework now check all these scanners   :)

be well

by [former member] | 23 Jan 2006 09:01 | brooklyn, United States | | Report spam→

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Jon Anderson, Photographer & Writer Jon Anderson
Photographer & Writer
Ocala Florida , United States
John Klukas, Photographer, Assistant John Klukas
Photographer, Assistant
Bangkok , Thailand
Barrie Watts, Photographer/Photojournal Barrie Watts
North Wales , United Kingdom


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