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[filmscanners] Re: What can you advise?

I'm not sure if this has been mentioned but LaserSoft has released SilverFast 
Ai version 6
that has a new "grain and noise" removal feature as well as several other new 
The upgrade, at least for the SprintScan 120, is $65.00 (U.S.).  One new help 
feature are
tutorials using Quick Time movies.  I have just downloaded the upgrade but have 
yet to
install it.  It will be a day or two - I'm waiting for a new glass carrier, I 
broke mine

Jim Sims

Arthur Entlich wrote:

> I don't basically disagree with Jack that Digital ICE IR cleaning and
> some of the other features in that package can have benefits in scanning.
> For the sake of new list members, who don't know the name yet, Applied
> Science Fiction, is in fact the inventor and licenser of the products
> Jack is speaking of.
> The only bone of contention I have with Jack's statements are that
> scanners having the dICE features doesn't in and of itself make them the
> best scanners.  In fact, some of these scanners, IMHO, have real weaknesses.
> Also, be aware that if you scan a lot of black and white films (true
> black and white, as opposed to chromogenic C-41 process films) dICE IR
> cleaning does not work, because the process requires IR light
> transparency, and true black and white film is opaque to IR lighting
> where the silver is.
> Most desktop scanners currently equipped with IR cleaning tend to
> emphasize surface defects, and the manufacturing defects Jack speaks
> about, making those scanners great candidates for having IR cleaning
> routines, like dICE.  This is a good way to resolve that bothersome
> problem which leads to greater grain visibility and the need for a lot
> of spotting work to remove these surface and other defects.  IR cleaning
> can be a godsend for images with lots of embedded dirt, scratches,
> fingerprints or fungus.
> The other side of this issue is that for true black and white film, dICE
> cannot be used, and therefore you still have to deal with this extra
> grain visibility, dust, dirt and scratches.  Specifically, the Minolta
> and Nikon scanners tend to cause this when dICE is not used.
> The Nikon scanners also have a minimized Depth of Field/focus, and there
> have been many complaints about this by users.  It is difficult to get a
> fully focused scan with paper mounted slides, slides in some plastic
> mounts or curled film.  However, if you are used to a drum scanner, then
> you might be comfortable with removing slides from their mounts, etc.
> Some people use glass carriers, but newton rings may present themselves.
> So, what is the alternative?
> A few scanners make good use of diffused cold cathode lighting, and
> similarly to how this works in the wet darkroom with a standard
> enlarger, this lighting can vastly reduce the visibility of grain edges,
> dirt, dust and scratches.  The advantage of this approach is that it
> does this with all film types, including true black and white.
> Examples within your classification of scanners include the Polaroid
> SS4000, SS4000+, and the same basic model by Microtek, the Artix 4000T
> and 4000TF.  These scanners do not employ dICE or any other IR cleaning,
> but for any film that is not manhandled, you will find little clean up
> necessary if you follow basic scanner "hygiene".  Polaroid does offer a
> Dust and Scratch software (stand alone and plug-in) which isn't as
> effective as IR cleaning, but does a nice job with most situations, and
> is done post-scan.  It is currently available for Windows machine, but
> is supposed to be made cross platform to Macs within the next month or
> two.  You should also be aware that dICE, GEM and some other functions
> that were mentioned do increase scan times considerably, so sometimes
> using the stand alone Dust and Scratch software may save time, overall,
> when it is required.
> The Polaroid SS4000+ and Microtek 4000TF both use USB or Firewire and
> are 4000 dpi.  Both come with Silverfast 5.5 a very powerful front end
> product (which I think sells unbundled for about $450).  It has a
> steeper learning curve than the manufacturer's supplied software
> (Polaroid provided Insight, and Microtek has their own product). These
> scanners will also work with Ed Hamrick's Vuescan.
> The Benq (used to be Acer) Scanwit 2720 and 2740 (with dICE) are both
> SCSI, and are very reasonably priced and seem to be well built products,
> but 2700 dpi and SCSI.
> In the 35mm scanner market, Minolta doesn't currently offer a 4000 dpi
> scanner (the Minolta Dual Scan II (USB) and Elite II (USB/Firewire) are
> 2820 dpi).  Nikon has the LS40 (2900 dpi) and the LS-4000 (4000 dpi, but
> using the collimated lighting source and those inherent issues).  The
> only other 4000 dpi scanner I know of is the Canon FS4000.  It is a
> diffused lighting scanner with an IR cleaning process called FARE.
> However, although it is by far the least expensive 4000 dpi scanner, the
> major complaints are that it is quite slow (even on firewire), it
> suffers from noisy shadows, and the Canon software is not as good as
> others, and although Vuescan works wit it, some problems are still being
> worked out to make the IR cleaning work with that software.
> I've been very pleased with my experience with the Polaroid SS4000+, in
> spite of not having any IR cleaning or grain reduction processes built
> in.  I have found the Insight software intuitive and very usable,.
> However, I mainly scan slides and black and white films.  For negatives,
> you may wish to use Silverfast (supplied).
> So no one accuses me of not providing full disclosure, I will mention
> that I provided beta testing to Polaroid on the SS4000+ and the Dust and
> Scratch filter software.  I also own a Minolta Dual Scan II, and have
> owned HP S10 and S20 film scanners.  Although I have not owned a Nikon
> film scanner, I have done considerable research into the products,
> gathered years worth of reviews and reports from users, and viewed their
> output.
> Art
> Jack Phipps wrote:
> > Congratulations Geoff! It must be exciting to be able to pursue your art
> > full time. I would recommend a scanner with Digital ICE. It does an
> > excellent job of removing defects, not just dust and scratches, but film
> > manufacturing defects that appear in many images. Digital ICE is available
> > in Minolta, Nikon, and Benq (Acer) consumer scanners and many other
> > commercial scanners (Kodak, Durst, Noritsu, Gretag, Agfa, etc). Microtek
> > recently announced Digital ICE for their flatbed scanners as well.
> >
> > Nikon and Minolta also offer scanners with Digital ROC that restores color
> > to faded images and Digital GEM that removes noise (grain) from images.
> > Digital ROC is available as a Photoshop compatible plug in as is Digital
> > SHO. Digital SHO is a valuable tool that helps reveal shadow detail without
> > affecting the highlights. Both plug ins are available as a free trial from
> > www.asf.com.
> >
> > If you are used to drum scans, you may want to consider one. They are
> > available on the used market and even though the technology is quite old, it
> > is still the measuring stick used for scanning comparisons.
> >
> > Good luck with your scanning.
> >
> > Jack Phipps
> > Applied Science Fiction
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Geoff Clack [mailto:geoffc@adept-design.co.uk]
> > Sent: Wednesday, September 25, 2002 8:52 AM
> > To: Jack Phipps
> > Subject: [filmscanners] What can you advise?
> >
> > Hello filmscanners
> >
> > I am a new list member. Apart from a real interest in scanning (I've
> > notched up 50 years experience as a photographer and 40 as a graphic
> > designer) I've joined you in the hope of obtaining guidance in making
> > a film scanner purchase decision.
> >
> > At work I generally use hi-res scans from drum scanners so am
> > undoubtedly fussy. As I near retirement (well, give up the day job)
> > my hope is to develop my interest in photography and, using Photoshop
> > etc., combine this with my ability as a painter to produce prints (I
> > started at Art School as a painter but couldn't see my parents being
> > able to support me so moved over to a graphic design course. I'll
> > never know if that was a wise decision - but most friends who
> > persevered as painters are now international names and wealthy!).
> >
> > Anyway, as I look through the pages of Macworld, and read the
> > filmscanners list, I see reviews and mention of a variety of film
> > scanners (and related problems). So far, to me, no model stands head
> > and shoulders above the rest.
> >
> > My spec includes: 35mm, 4000-ppi, Firewire and value for money. You
> > may know better.
> >
> > What can you advise?
> >
> > Geoff.
> >
> > ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
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