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[filmscanners] Re: scanner for a lot of slides

Tomek Zakrzewski wrote

> >My first choice would be Nikon LS-IVED but I don't know how fast it is and I
> >suspect that the shallow depth of field would cause too much trouble with
> >old slides.
> >I don't know Minolta, Acer or Umax scanners - would any of them be your
> >recommendation?

I know that you will already know this since you have an LS-4000 but I'll say 
it anyway!
If you have lots of slides to scan, one negative aspect of the Nikon is that 
the scanner
can only hold one slide at a time: some of the other makes have slide holders 
which take
4 slides and enable you to batch scan them.  Get a second holder and you can 
get a
production line going.  I remember an SS4000 owner saying that they used 2 
holders with
their scanner and 2 separate networked PCs - one PC just to batch scan the 
images and
save them to disk and the other PC for any Photoshop adjustments needed.

> Currently we're using Microtek 3600. It takes one minute for one scan but
> two things several things are unacceptable with it: no ICE, it sharpens
> images even when sharpening is switched off and it show banding on scans
> from dark slides which are made slightly brighter. The dmax is also to low.

I would hesitate to recommend the Minolta Elite II: I tried 2 units which both 
went back
because of red channel banding and other CCD anomalies in the very deep 
shadows.  If it
wasn't for these issues, the Elite II would have a pretty impressive Dmax.  
Also, there
has been some suggestion that the Minolta scanners do some sharpening as 
scans from other brands apparently seem less grainy and show less artifacts.  I 
able to try them with the Firewire connection as I only have USB on my PC but 
they really
seemed quite slow, especially compared with the previous version of the Elite.  
On the
plus side, though, I didn't find any DOF issues with them.

>From memory the Umax is just a rebadged Acer (or rather Benq which is the new 
>name for
Acer).  Considering its price, most people seem pretty happy with the Acer.  
From your
perspective, though, it has a disadvantage that it has to make a separate IR 
pass when
ICE is switched on and I think this adds very considerably to the scan times.  
So even
with Acer/Benq/Umax's ability to batch scan, I suspect the Nikon would be 
faster if you
intend to leave ICE on permanently.

Unfortunately, none of the current batch of entry level scanners have 
everything you
need: ICE, good Dmax, low digital noise, clean shadows and even CCD response, 
good DOF,
fast scanning speed and batch scanning facilities!  I would suggest you 
prioritise which
of these is really key to your needs and work from there.

Good luck!

Al Bond

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