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Archive 2012 · Film Scanner
  
 
Jewced
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Film Scanner


I bought a film camera and now I'm obsessed with shooting film but a big limitation is the cost. I'd like to be able to upload my shots to the internet, but after a roll of film is bought, developed, and scanned the cost for one roll approaches $25. I've been doing research and it appears like current film scanners produce decent quality scans and aren't too expensive. I've been looking at the Epson V600 which runs at around $170. It costs $10-12 to get a roll scanned at a lab, so after 20 rolls I'd easily be saving money buying my own scanner instead of paying to get them scanned. I want high quality scans, but they don't have to be perfect and I don't expect them to be. I'm not doing professional work; I just want to be able to upload my film shots to the internet and share them. From what I've been reading I gather that the only way to preserve the quality of the image from negative to scan is with a drum scanner, and I don't care enough to pay to get my stuff drum scanned. If I cared that much about outright image quality I'd just shoot digital all the time. I've heard things about how hard scanners are to use (hence why it costs so much to get a roll scanned), but after my "honeymoon" time with film is over I bet I'll realistically be able to shoot about a roll a week so I won't have to deal with it all the time. Does anyone with experience scanning film have any input?


Jan 01, 2012 at 07:24 PM
chez
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Film Scanner


Have you looked at a service like scancafe which does pretty good work for a very reasonable cost. They also have specials ever so often, making them even more affordable.

The issue I find with scanning my own is the time you need to dedicate to the scanning.



Jan 01, 2012 at 09:01 PM
Jewced
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Film Scanner


Scancafe still costs $10 for a 36 exposure roll of color plus whatever it costs to ship so it's really not any more affordable. Black and white scans are $25 for a 36 exp. roll and that's just ridiculous.


Jan 01, 2012 at 09:30 PM
sjms
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Film Scanner


Plustek 7600i

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/671940-REG/Plustek_A28_BBM310_C_OpticFilm_7600i_Ai_Scanner.html

well reviewed in its range.

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/scanners/plustek.shtml



Jan 01, 2012 at 09:51 PM
deebo7
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Film Scanner


buy a lightbox, a 1:1 macro lens for $200 and a tripod. i "scan" my images by taking photos of them with my camera and inverse the image in lightroom. Im no pixel peeper but it works great for me. its quicker than getting it scanned, cheaper...but you do the work so more time intensive i suppose

go to my www and under "singles" should be a few shots. keep in mind i developed myself too.



Jan 01, 2012 at 09:57 PM
sjms
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Film Scanner


to low a resolution to be any more useful then pocket prints. the losses are amazing. it doesn't work well at all.

if you want printable you want grain level scanning.

i really like to start with a 50MB file as i do. if you are going to archive something at at least try.



Jan 01, 2012 at 11:08 PM
Chuck Eklund
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Film Scanner


I have the Plustek 7600 Ai mentioned by sjms above. It is excellent and Silverfast software it comes with is outstanding. By previous film scanner was a Nikon, no longer supported.

Chuck



Jan 01, 2012 at 11:49 PM
Jewced
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Film Scanner


sjms wrote:
Plustek 7600i

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/671940-REG/Plustek_A28_BBM310_C_OpticFilm_7600i_Ai_Scanner.html

well reviewed in its range.

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/scanners/plustek.shtml

Looks good, but is it that much better than the Epson V600? The 600 is a flatbed and might be harder to use, but it also costs $300 less and can handle medium format stuff if I ever buy a MF.



Jan 01, 2012 at 11:50 PM
huddy
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Film Scanner


Jewced, the plustek 7600i is the bees knees, and easier to use with 35mm film than an Epson flatbed. FWIW, the Epson flatbeds usually start to excel with medium format. It's a shame you missed the sales on the Plustek model as B&H had it for $259.99 shipped on Christmas day. I'd watch if I were you as I have seen them on amazon for as low as $290-300 over the last few weeks intermittently.

If you just want to scan B&W, you can buy the 7400 as the infrared scanning does nothing for dust removal on a B&W neg.



Jan 02, 2012 at 12:00 AM
sjms
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Film Scanner


this is a dedicated film/slide scanner. flatbeds don't come near these in end quality. colors tend to get a little mushy. you just don't get down to the grain
this was shot back in 1990. it was scanned with a Nikon 4000ED






Edited on Jan 02, 2012 at 12:07 AM · View previous versions



Jan 02, 2012 at 12:00 AM
 

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huddy
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Film Scanner


Here is a low-res scan from the plustek model. Film was HP5+ @400 that Dwayne's in Kansas did a horrible job in developing. A quick curves adjustment brought it back from flat, lifeless low contrast.




Jan 02, 2012 at 12:02 AM
Jewced
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Film Scanner


What exactly do you mean by "down to the grain"? Does it have to do with the resolution of the scanner or something else?


Jan 02, 2012 at 12:09 AM
sjms
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Film Scanner


when you scan at highest resolution you want to be able to see the actual film grain in the scanned image at full resolution. then you know you have it at its highest quality level so if you work it you have the highest quality to start from because from this point anything you due will be a reduction of its original quality. so start high not in the middle or lower.


Jan 02, 2012 at 12:41 AM
c00kiem0nster
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Film Scanner


Jewced wrote:
What exactly do you mean by "down to the grain"? Does it have to do with the resolution of the scanner or something else?



i think that is what he is getting at. flatbed scanners usually have mediocre resolution figures and they never meet the advertised features.
so eventually you end up scanning your negatives at a high resolution which then you have to downsize heavily to get an acceptable result. with 35mm that is.
the larger the format you are scanning, the better the results.

with scanners like the one recommended further above you'll see much better results with 35mm film.
and you will really want that, since nothing messes up the joy of shooting film, like terrible scan jobs.
there is so much potential in this medium, and unfortunately you will never quite get to it with the wrong scanner.



Jan 02, 2012 at 12:44 AM
Genes Home
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Film Scanner


I also have a 7600i. It only scans 35mm film and slides. Short of paying a service that uses one of the high end drum scanners you are simply not going to get any better results for editing and enlarging.

The flatbed scanners are fine if ALL YOU ARE GOING TO DO IS MAKE 5x7 inch prints. They are also your only choice (other than a scan service) for scanning medium format film....and you give up about 1/2 (if not more) of the resolution and color depth of the film on a V600 or 700......kind of a losing proposition. If you shoot medium or large format film you need to be prepared to pay the cost of a drum scanned digital file.

Gene



Jan 02, 2012 at 01:38 AM
Two23
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Film Scanner


I have a Nikon Coolscan V for 35mm, and an Epson V700 for 4x5. While the v700 will obviously scan 35mm, I think I get significantly better quality from the dedicated 35mm scanner. I'd suggest the Plustek mentioned above.


Kent in SD



Jan 02, 2012 at 01:46 AM
Jewced
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Film Scanner


The extra few hundred for the plustek over the epson is definitely worth it it seems. Any other dedicated 35mm scanners that I should check out or is the Plustek the best option?



Jan 02, 2012 at 04:25 AM
carnac
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Film Scanner


I've been happy with the Canon 9000F flatbed scanner. The results are quite good, but do take some time. I can put 6 negatives into the holder and let the scanner run. It takes about 5 minutes per negative/slide with the settings that I like. I get around a 25mb file that is fine for what I need with most of my old film pictures, and if I need a really high resolution file for a large print, I can re-scan.









Jan 02, 2012 at 04:44 AM
huddy
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Film Scanner


For now, Plustek is your best bet for a brand new scanner. I'm aware of a German company called Reflecta that makes dedicated 35mm scanners but they don't appear to have much of a distribution/support network for the US.


Jan 02, 2012 at 04:53 AM
chez
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Film Scanner


Jewced wrote:
Scancafe still costs $10 for a 36 exposure roll of color plus whatever it costs to ship so it's really not any more affordable. Black and white scans are $25 for a 36 exp. roll and that's just ridiculous.


Well if you value your time, the $10 is a bargain. You will spend 5 minutes per image for scanning. So for that 36 exposure roll, you will take 3 hours to scan. Is you time worth $3.33 / hour? I know mine is worth much more than that.

Scancafe Aldo produces excellent results.



Jan 02, 2012 at 01:37 PM
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