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best film scanner today
Erich Schlegel, Photographer
Austin | TX | USA | Posted: 11:17 AM on 05.10.09
->> Friend of mine is asking for recommendation for best film scanner. He works with Mac. Recommendations?
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Mike Last, Student/Intern, Photographer
London | Ontario | Canada | Posted: 12:34 PM on 05.10.09
->> For 'the best film scanner' you'd probably be looking at the Imacon Flextight X5. Amazing scanning quality... and whoever invented those film holders was pure genius! But, the $17,000 price tag could be a bit prohibitive.

It really depends on how much money your friend has for the scanner, the amount of scanning they plan to do (scanning 5000 photos would be better to send out), and what film sizes he or she plans to scan.
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Anthony Phelps, Photographer
Wellington | Wellington | New Zealand | Posted: 12:05 AM on 05.11.09
->> The Nikon Coolscans are still excellent.
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Andrew Villa, Student/Intern, Assistant
San Jose | CA | United States | Posted: 2:11 AM on 05.11.09
->> I've used the nikon coolscan 9000 ED quite a few times. It's a wonderful machine that works with Photoshop CS4 quite well. You can import the files directly from the scanner into photoshop, a very nice feature. It's not cheap, but from what I've read and experienced it's the best without buying a drumscanner.
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David Harpe, Photographer
Louisville | KY | USA | Posted: 9:16 AM on 05.11.09
->> It really depends on how good he can afford. If you need the absolute best, chances are you would be better served by letting a professional lab do the scans for you. It would probably be cheaper in the long run versus investing $20k in a scanner, software and a computer.

For most of us mortals the Nikon Coolscans are really good. I've used the 35mm-style Coolscan V and the larger 9000 and both are good.
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John Harrington, Photographer
Washington | DC | USA | Posted: 11:54 AM on 05.11.09
->> Erich -

Just a suggestion. Film scanners are running $1k or more these days, and I just posted today a blog piece on photo scanning here:

At $0.24 or so, he could outsource over 4,000 images and still break even, not to mention the time savings.

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Wally Nell, Photographer
CAIRO | EG | EGYPT | Posted: 3:39 PM on 05.11.09
->> Has anyone used an old-fashioned slide copier to copy analog slides to digital? You know, the one with the 52mm thread and a contraption at the end? Any thoughts?
I have a load of negatives and slides in storage in the US and storage is becoming an issue. My thoughts are to scan a few thousand (most important ones) using a scanning service like ScanCafe, and the other few thousand with a copier. I would welcome thoughts.
As to the thread, the scanners I normally used when I still lived with film, were normally the Nikon Coolscans, and they did a magnificent job. They just took a long time per scan.
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JC Ridley, Photographer
Coral Springs | FL | US | Posted: 11:51 AM on 07.13.09
->> My Nikon Coolscan 5000 is just about as much of a paperweight as a Canon Mark III. It was just serviced and it lasted an entire three days.

The first repair replaced the carriage unit and main PCB. After initially working, now it won't auto focus and returns the "hardware error" warning light, yet again.

It makes no difference if I use the apocryphal Nikon Scan 4 software or Vue Scan.

Outsourcing is not an option, with 30k slides to scan.

Anyone use something other than Nikon that doesn't cost 20k?
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Chris Peterson, Photographer, Photo Editor
Columbia Falls | MT | USA | Posted: 9:47 AM on 07.14.09
->> Still pricey, but a used Scitex Eversmart scanners are tough to beat. I bought one for $4,000. It's a massive scanner and weighs about 180 pounds, but you can scan anything that will fit on its flatbed, from 35mm film to 11 by 17 flat art. It does a great job with ALL film types and the software, considering it was written 15 years ago, is almost as complex as Photoshop is today. You can also scan dozens of slides all at once. It runs on OS 9, but a G4 with a SCSI card can be had for $150 or so. An investment? You bet. But if you're serious about scanning film, it's a nice option because the scanner has such a wide dynamic range, even difficult slides turn out well.

The one problem with this scanner is dust. Slides have to be spot on clean or you'll get dust specs. There is no digital ICE. Wet mounting helps, but doesn't cure dust and scratches.

Also: Don't buy one on eBay unless you can actually watch it run. Genesis equipment sells them used, with all the software, drivers, etc. They're a very complicated machine and won't run without the right software. When you fire it up, the scanner sounds like a spaceship taking off.
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Thread Title: best film scanner today
Thread Started By: Erich Schlegel
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