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  #1  
11-23-2015, 06:56 PM
microscope microscope is offline
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Hi,

Apologies if this has been beaten to death, resurrected and blown up again.
In my large family, I have been designated as scanner slave.
I would say about 400 photos (b&w and color) of varying size and quality, 200 negatives, and a bunch of
mouse shreddies and scat to clean out : )
Someone suggested the Epson V600 but I've read some reviews/comments about software compatibility, quality control (ex. dust under the glass), buttons/functions not working, crappy tech support, etc.

So I am here to ask ye people in the know the following:
1) What dedicated photo/negative scanner should I buy under $500?
2) And if it doesn't come with good software (ie. all the touch up goodies and relatively user friendly) what software could I buy (under $200 let's say) that will work seamlessly with the scanner?
3) And finally, what DPI and format should I use - I don't mind taking more time since it's not a ton of stuff - and some family members will want to make prints ranging from same size (ex 4X6) up to let's say 12x16

I thank-you in advance kind posters for your time and knowledge
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  #2  
11-24-2015, 09:08 PM
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kpmedia kpmedia is offline
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I'm also the family photo scanner. If it exists, it goes through me at some point.

400 is actually a very tiny amount of images. so this should go relatively quickly. How fast you finish mostly depends on the quality of the scanner and computer.

The V600 is an AWESOME scanner for prints and slides. In fact, the slide scanning ability surpasses the $1k+ Nikon scanner that I use for negatives. Go figure.

The V600 used to be connected to a Windows machine, but it was moved to my Mac some months later. (Mac is better for photo work, because if how the OS integrates with image formats.) I've never had an issue with the drivers, the software, or the hardware. It just works, which is a real treat after having to always fuss with computers, video hardware, cameras, etc.

Get it for $200 from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...OEHNF7LOTBR3NO

I seriously doubt you'll regret purchasing this.

Understand that new film scanners are total crap. And I am NOT exaggerating here! They're really awful. The best scanners were made by the camera companies in the 2000s -- Nikon, Canon, Kodak, Minolta, etc. All you find now is brand X crap from China. So look to buy a quality used scanner.

I would seriously consider the Nikon V: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53...-/252180362193
That's right at $500, and is amazing quality for negative scans.
Tip: Use Vuescan scanner software. It's $89 direct from Hamrick. It's better than all native softwares.

Note that both the V600 and the Nikon V have true ICE+3. That's the dust/restoration hardware filtering. I've posted samples of ICE on this forum before. I don't have any on this computer, otherwise I'd post some more.

I generally scan 4x6 prints at 600dpi, and Polaroids at 1200dpi, on the Epson scanner.
For the negatives and slides, the max optical resolution of the scanner. Understand that negs/slides are measured in pixels, not dpi.

I really enjoy photo related topics, so I'll be here if you have any more question.

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  #3  
11-24-2015, 10:15 PM
microscope microscope is offline
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Dear kpmedia,

Thanks for the detailed reply.
I'm a bit confused because you say the newer scanners are crap but that the Epson V600 is a good choice for what I have to do.
Aren't these Epsons part of that new and crappier batch?
I don't have many negatives/slides, and I don't need the quality to be super.
So in my case, do you think the Epson V600 or V550 would be a good choice?
I heard the V550 doesn't have the full ICE feature (only slides/negative but not photos)
Is this true and does the V600 have the full ICE function?

Thanks
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  #4  
11-24-2015, 10:55 PM
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kpmedia kpmedia is offline
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New/current negative scanners are crud. Buy a used Nikon V for negatives.
New/current flatbed print/slide scanners are very nice -- better, in fact, than what was being made in the early/mid 2000s.

You really do want ICE. It does work on prints with the V600. There's actually two ways to restore/remove noise: both ICE and the Epson dust filter.

The V550 probably does not have the full ICE, no. Everything I've ever read specifically mentions film only.

Note that ICE on film works better than ICE on prints. But what I do is layer the ICE and non-ICE versions in Photoshop, and then correct any obvious blemishes created by ICE. That yields the best quality. (Well, that and the Polaroid Dust & Scratch software, and some Photoshop dust&scratch filters.)

I'm simply amazed at how clear some of the old Polaroid prints are. Colors and details that I never knew exist would suddenly be revealed after the Epson 1200dpi scan, and the various Epson filters (including ICE) were engaged.

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  #5  
11-24-2015, 11:26 PM
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I don't have enough negatives or cash to buy a separate scanner.
So it sounds like the Epson V600 might be the way to go for me.
I don't have the software/editing know-how but I should be able to get some decent scans for my needs.

Thanks
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  #6  
11-25-2015, 07:46 AM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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Another V600 owner chiming in here. The Epson software generally works well. I haven't had any problems with the TWAIN driver under Windows. It does a decent job with negatives for the price, even threw some old square 126 negatives at it and the software mostly auto-cropped them! Nothing will come close to the Nikon Coolscan units for quality negative scans though.

Also keep in mind that if you happen to have any silver B&W negatives like Kodak Tri-X, ICE will not work with them. The infrared sensor it uses doesn't work with silver negatives. This doesn't apply to C-41 (color) process B&W negatives like Kodak BW400CN, those should work fine with ICE.
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  #7  
12-10-2015, 05:56 PM
microscope microscope is offline
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Too bad the Nikon V doesn't do photos too ! : ) I'd hunt one down and pay the bigger bucks for sure.
Just can't justify the 2 purchases for what I have.

Thanks again.
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  #8  
01-04-2016, 08:27 AM
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So I found a guy locally who is renting the following at a good price:

1) Nikon Coolscan LS 50 (V) - which can handle the negatives and slides
2) HP 8290 - which could handle the photos, documents, etc

I already know from people's input here and elsewhere that the Nikon V is a good way to go.
Can anyone help me with the HP 8290 - it seems like a high end photo scanner but how does
it compare to the Epson V600 or 750 for example?

I just don't know anything about it.

Thanks for your input!
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  #9  
01-04-2016, 08:39 AM
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kpmedia kpmedia is offline
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The V600 is still a better choice for the photo prints.

Just warning: Negative scanners are not fast -- not even the pro ones from Kodak. Just be sure to give yourself enough time to scan. Don't underestimate your usage time when renting. The results from the V are worth it, so definitely rent it. Use Vuescan ($80?), not the free software that came with it. It makes a huge difference!

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  #10  
01-04-2016, 10:58 AM
microscope microscope is offline
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Thanks to Site Staff for quick reply!
Ok so I will look if anyone might rent the Epson V600 and I could buy it if not.
I rather not given how quickly tech changes these days.
And I'll rent the Nikon V - there's only like 100 max so I should be able to work through
it quickly - even being a beginner with this.
I downloaded Vuescan and will get familiar with it.
Just a few questions:

* Any other user-friendly software suggestions?
* And if you had to make a top 10 list of most common things to edit/fix with older photos/negatives/slides,
what would they be?

* Finally, what is the basic procedure for cleaning pictures/negatives/slides and the scanner too? Lint-free cloth + scanner spray once in a while for the scanner?

Thanks

-- merged --

I forgot to ask:
There seem to be many Nikon V models over the years (unless I'm looking at the wrong stuff : )
If I was able to locate and buy one, which model would you suggest for tackling negatives
and slides?
And what price range would be reasonable to pay for it (them)?

Thanks
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  #11  
01-05-2016, 11:13 AM
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kpmedia kpmedia is offline
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The Nikon V was about $1k when new. It was announced in late 2003, available in 2004-2005, and gone by 2006.

I got a steal of deal on mine, for $570 open box on clearance (former display in store case, never used) when the model was discontinued back in 2006. At the time, it looked as if new scanners would continue to be released every few years as it had since the 90s. But as it turns out, Canon, Nikon, Kodak and Minolta actually got out of the scanner business. So we were left with almost nothing post-2005.

Due to supply&demand, it never really went down much in price used. So I'd say anything in the $500-900 range is correct for a complete good-working unit. New-old-stock sells for double ($2k) MSRP. Anything cheaper is a warning sign that something may be wrong or missing; check it thoroughly. I've never seen one go for more than original price used, which sometimes happens in the world of photo (lenses especially).

No other software is suggested: Vuescan for the LS-50/V, and Epson for the Epson scanner. They really are best.

Common issues:
- dust/noise not cleaned by ICE; use clone/heal in Photoshop; tedious but fairly easy
- sometimes ICE makes image worse, cannot be used, see previous
- crop
- levels/contrast off, adjust in Photoshop
- color cast, fix in Photoshop
- sometimes HDR is useful for really muddy (mostly Polaroid) photos
- softness; save image, re-open in Adobe Camera Raw (via Photoshop), adjust sharpness here; don't use PS unsharp mask, as it's inferior

You can at times auto-fix excess dust/noise by using a discontinued hard-to-find free Polaroid software that I have for both Mac and Windows. I need to get that upload, as it's very useful. It's better than anything I've ever used, though it has a quirk in unwantedly augmenting color at times. So you have to redo the color tweaks in PS.

Never use paper towels. Paper is trees, and you're essentially cleaning with a hunk of wood splinters. Yuck. Be careful of "microfiber" cloths, as some of those scratch too. Consider Pec Pads for cleaning all film and optics. Never be rough with slides or negatives. Sometimes it's best to leave them dusty, and fix it in software, rather than chance making it worse! A generic photo cleaning solution works okay, but film cleaning fluid is best for film. (I use ROR or Eclipse2 for everything -- optics and film, scanner or camera.)

Eclipse: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=as_li_ss...7U4ZPICZJM73KU
ROR: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=as_li_ss...UWKPIO7BAVZYFJ
Pec: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=as_li_ss...NPTDJOAJXG2C3B

^ These things are cheapest on Amazon. I've looked at B&H, eBay, etc, in the past.

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  #12  
01-05-2016, 09:42 PM
microscope microscope is offline
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Well shoot, just had to make the one year donation for good and speedy advice like that.
Don't know if I'll have much of any follow up, but it was appreciated.
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The following users thank microscope for this useful post: lordsmurf (01-06-2016)
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