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Re: filmscanners: My replacement 8000 is banding like the first one :-(

In a message dated 7/21/2001 5:14:06 AM EST, artistic@ampsc.com writes:

> Actually, Nikon LS2000 and LS30 and I suspect all the newer 35mm
>  models, at least, move the scanning "unit" (CCD, lens and lighting
>  source and any mirrors), and not the film.

Yes, every CoolScan Nikon scanner I've seen, including the
newer ones, work this way (I haven't seen the LS-8000 yet though).

>  This does probably allow for more accurate scans in multi-pass
>  situations.

I don't think there's anything intrinsicly more accurate about doing
scans this way instead of the way the Polaroid SS4000 does it
(moving the film carrier).  However, the key differentiator appears
to be the way the hardware/firmware in many scanners work.
Some scanners (like the Nikon scanners) appear to find the
zero position once upon startup, and keep track of the stepper
motor position to do accurate repositioning.

Flatbed scanners also use stepper motors, and in theory
could reposition accurately.  However, many scanners
(including the SS4000 and most flatbeds) appear to use
either a microswitch or an optical sensor to detect the
zero position of the scanner.

Using a microswitch or an optical sensor to detect the
zero position is less accurate than the resolution of
most scanners, which makes multi-pass multi-scanning
impractical with these scanners.

>  Probably the best manner for multi passes, is when the scanner allows
>  for each "line" to be multi-scanned without moving anything

The thing that totally amazes me is that scanner manufacturers
like Acer (AGFA resells also) and Microtek (Polaroid resells also)
haven't figured out that they can extend the product life of their
scanners and make them more competitive by adding single-pass
multi-scanning.  I'll bet it wouldn't take more than a few hours to
add this to the firmware of most scanner manufacturers.

There are a few other simple things that can be added to the
firmware of scanners without much work.  One prediction:
a major scanner manufacturer is going to release several
features like this in the next year that will drive several of their
competitors out of the scanner business.

The low-end scanner business is quite competitive - witness
AGFA's recent abandonment of the low-end scanner market
(the Acer scanners they've been reselling).

Ed Hamrick


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