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Old May 24, 2004, 8:04 PM   #1
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Basically I'm looking for recommendations on a good scanner that does both film and prints in the $500US range. What sort of options/quality should I be looking for? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


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Old May 24, 2004, 11:37 PM   #2
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There is only one IMO and that is the Epson 4870. I would scan film and slides at 3200 PPI rather than 4800 though. The file sizes are enormous enough and 4800 doesn't seem to give much better resolution.

You can scan 4 film strips or 8 slides at once. The feature I really like is the Digital Ice IR scratch and dust removal. Scan times increase with Digital Ice, but once you set it up to scan 20 or 24 negatives you aren't going to want to sit and watch it anyway.

I have a dedicated film scanner and am planning to get the 4850 to convert my lifetime collection of negatives and slides to digital. A dedicated scanner in your price range is good for a single strip or slide, but $500 is on the edge of being able to get Digital Ice and a slide feeder. I've used the film scanner for years to convert individual images, but there is no way I would do my entire collection without Digital Ice and the ability to scan many at once.

It also comes with Elements 2 if you don't have a good editor and the Silverfast lite is excellent. Look at the pages with the film and slide scans. It is pretty good.

Newegg has it for $390 with free shipping in the US, so I would imagine it will be within your price range in Canada.

If you just want to scan small photos and an occasional film strip or slide the HP Photosmart S20 can be found for good prices on Ebay. This looks like a decent price:


Plan on getting a noise reduction program like Neat Image or Noise Ninja for film scanning – especially if you have any ASA400 film. The concentrated light source of a dedicated film scanner seems to accentuate the film grain, but it is there on the flatbed as well. The built-in grain reduction on the Epson seems to work OK, but with some resolution reduction you don't get with the programs. This one is free and should work for grain:
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Old May 25, 2004, 12:28 AM   #3
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Great information... Thanks very much for your advice. I've taken a look at the Epson 4870, and it seemed a good choice to me as well. Glad to have another vote of confidence for it.
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Old May 26, 2004, 10:44 AM   #4
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You might consider theKonica Minolta Dimage Scan Dual IV Scanner (USB2.0 3200 dpi) from Newegg for $265.00 or the Canon FS4000US Scanner with 4000dpi resolution and FARE (their version of ICE)for $429.00 from Broadway Photo in New Jersey...note this is an extremely low price for this unit, retailed for $999.00

Note: these are film/slide scanners which get much better results then flatbed scanners
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