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Film scanners?

Discussion in 'Other Systems' started by dylandingo, Jun 8, 2012.

  1. dylandingo

    dylandingo Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 12, 2011
    La Crosse, WI
    So I currently have an Olympus e-p2 and ,in a trade on these forums, I got an e-p3 thinking I would enjoy having two cameras so I wouldn't have to change lenses. Well living in Madison and being on the street it worked well, but now I am living in a smaller area in Wisconsin and have no real use for having two Olympus e-px cameras and I have been thinking about finally going into film like I have wanted to do for so long. Well I lucked out and my friend who bought one of my old Canon DSLRs has been wanting to get something smaller so I am selling him my e-p2 and using the money to get a film set up. I plan on just doing my own film developing and using a scanner but I am unsure of what to use. I have a couple ideas but I am unsure if I will be sticking to 35mm or shooting 120 somewhere along the way.

    If I decide to stick with 35mm film I think I am going to get the Plustek 7400. I think this would be better quality of scans but it is very limited in it's uses.
    Plustek OpticFilm 7400 Scanner 60-A1A-BBM310-C B&H Photo Video

    But I was also looking at the Epson v600 and the Canoscan 9000f for 35mm and medium format.
    Epson Perfection V600 Photo Scanner B11B198011 B&H Photo Video

    Canon CanoScan 9000F Color Image Scanner 4207B002 B&H Photo

    Has anyone tried any of these or has any advice on film scanners? I am leaning more on the Canoscan or Epison because they give me the option of shooting in medium format and they are a bit more affordable leaving me more cash for film and chemicals.
    • Like Like x 1
  2. RT_Panther

    RT_Panther Mu-43 Legend

    May 4, 2011
    Plustek is an excellent scanner. I don't shoot medium format so I'm content with my Epson v500...
  3. Epson V700... over here. Happy.. wish the film holders were easier to use though.
  4. alans

    alans Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 28, 2010
    Have you considered the Betterscanning holders? I have a V700 also and will probably try one of those. When I'm scanning I slow way down and take my time - so many nuances to scanning.

    The Plustek is supposed to be a good one for 35mm. I've only scanned 120 with the V700.
  5. yup considered... but considering I use the v700 on an occasional basis, I decided against the extra investment on better holders.
  6. dylandingo

    dylandingo Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 12, 2011
    La Crosse, WI
    I would like the V700, but it is a bit over my price range right now. I would say I have to stay around $250 so I can buy the film developing supplies too.
  7. Dan Ka

    Dan Ka Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 11, 2011
    Northeastern Ohio
    I have spent the last couple of winters scanning transparencies, color and b&w film using an Epson V500 ($179). I have scanned from 16mm Minolta slides and color negs up to 6x6. I'm not done yet, many more to go. 99% of these scans are family photos that are being shared with the next generations.

    I think you should be aware of the following:

    1. Be prepared to spend alot of time. Depending what you want out of the scan, a strip of 6 negatives can take over 30 minutes sometimes alot more. You will need something to do during this time which is ...

    2. Cleaning the film to be scanned is most important and will take up the slack time between scans. Unless you have worked with film in the past (darkroom), you will not believe the amount of dust attracted to the film, scanner glass and scanner cover. Having ICE (dust removal) helps, but, ICE doesn't work on Kodachrome (rip) or b&w. You can still find on the net, Polaroid's dust removal program which works well - some/most of the time. Expect to do hand spotting. I found using a camel hair brush, sweeping gently in one direction down to the intake of an ionic air cleaner works best and quickly to clean film.

    3. You will go through testing software. The Epson V500 & V600 scanners come with Epson's scanning software. The V700 and V750 come with Silverfast (limited versions). Vuescan is a low cost, but, excellent alternative ($40 +/-). I finally settled on just using the bundled Epson software.

    4. You will need to decide what you want to do with the scans. If you are printing, posting on the web, or archiving, you will need to adjust resolution accordingly. Of course, if you do archival scans then printing and posting are included as is "alot" in No. 1 above. The best web site I have found to determine resolution is an oldie but a goodie at Scanning Basics 101 - All about digital images. Since you will probably do some post processing you will want to scan as tif's rather jpg, which also adds some scanning time.

    5. Don't expect your scan to have the same quality and sharpness as your negative. Unless your negative is "perfectly" exposed, you will lose detail in the shadows. With newly shot film you will have a better chance of getting a "perfect" exposure (because you know better). With older shot film, you tried, it looked good back then, but not now.

    6. I have never had any problems with the film holders that came with the scanner. But, you do have to be careful with them they seem too delicate for the job. They need to cleaned also.

    The above may seem negative (no pun intended). But, I have enjoyed the scanning "experience". I scan 35mm film at 300 dpi with a target size of 12x8 (3:2) which yields a tif of 2400 x 3600, 8.6 mb, and prints well at 4x6 and 8x10.

    If you can afford the V700 or especially the V750, then by all means get one. The V500 was the predecessor of the V600 both can yield excellent results. You may be better off sending them off to a scanning service. Of course, your film may get lost or damaged on the round trip - that's a decision you need to make.

    The following scans have been reduced and converted to jpg for posting. In order, Kodak Ektachome 160 transparency, Kodak Vericolor II neg. film, Kodak Plus-X b&w film.

    Attached Files:

    • Like Like x 4
  8. Markb

    Markb Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 9, 2011
    Kent, UK
    All the film stuff in my flickr galleries after mid '07 are from a v700. Before that I just printed 10x8s in the home darkroom and used a cheap as chips old Canon flatbed.

    I'd say the v700 is great for medium format and ok for 35mm. One thing to watch out for is the incredibly aggressive sharpening the EpsonScan software applies by default. It can cause a lot of grain artifacts in traditional b&w film. The supplied holders can be adjusted for focus if initial results are less than sharp

    I'd say Vuescan is well worth the money for better results.

    This is 120 HP5 adjusted for levels and straightened a bit

    Great Court by Mark Bowerman, on Flickr

    35mm Delta 100, levels adjust only

    Doorbells, Florence by Mark Bowerman, on Flickr

    35mm HP5+ with a weird "paisley" grain.

    Docks by Mark Bowerman, on Flickr
    • Like Like x 1
  9. dylandingo

    dylandingo Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 12, 2011
    La Crosse, WI
    Thanks for all that. Looks like I have a lot more work than I originally thought. I think right now I am thinking the v600 may be the scanner I'll get and with the money I save by not getting the Plustrek I'll have to add a camel hair brush to my list. Is the camel hair brush something I should pick up off BH or is that going to be better found on Amazon or something? Since the last good photography store went out of business I'll have to order everything. Sadly the only store in town takes advantage of that fact and has crazy marks up(they wanted an extra $150 or so on a Canon 100mm macro lens I bought awhile ago.) I my buddy isn't picking up my camera for a couple weeks now so I guess I have more time to research.
  10. Dan Ka

    Dan Ka Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 11, 2011
    Northeastern Ohio
    Camel hair brushes are quite common as are sable. Craft stores usually carry cheap ones. If there is an artist's store, get it there. If all else fails, go the local drug or discount store for the best make-up brushes they have at the beauty counter. A 1/2" wide brush should be sufficient. The brushes cost maybe $10-15 at the most, probably less for a variety of sizes. Gently tug on the hairs if you can, don't accept loose hairs. Do not buy nylon or other synthetic fiber brushes, they may scratch your film.

    Good luck.
    • Like Like x 1
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