Do you think we'll ever see this MF scanner?

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by rodeo_joe|1, May 21, 2011.

  1. I've been following this product on Primefilm's (Pacific Image) website for a little while, but the release date keeps getting put back. Link: http://www.scanace.com/product/pf_120.html
    An affordable scanner of this spec would be welcome, but will it just turn out to be vapourware? What do you think?
     
  2. "Affordable" and "high end medium format scanner" should not be in the same sentence unless there is some sort of tech breakthrough and radical change in the marketplace. Precision stepper motors, good optics, and good software do not come cheap. There is a reason a Nikon 9000 costs what it did when it was made, to say nothing of the Hasselblad-Imacon scanners. It is hard to believe that there will be an increase in the demand for such a product. Low numbers mean high costs. Good luck.
     
  3. As far as I can see, not even Primefilm have put the words "Affordable" and "high end medium format scanner" in the same sentence. However their previous 35mm offerings have all been priced very competitively, and they'll need a USP or some other incentive to get any market share at all. Since the spec isn't much different from what Nikon have to offer, I'd be very surprised if the price-point was anywhere near Nikon's. Plus they obviously already have the components, tooling and design expertise to put together a creditable scanner. And let's face it - a scanner's not a terribly demanding engineering feat by the standards of a Blu-ray player or laser printer. But a good lens is a vital ingredient and probably the major part of the cost.
    Anyway, it remains to be seen whether this reaches the retailers at all.
     
  4. Since the spec isn't much different from what Nikon have to offer,
    To clarify: Nikon has officially been out of the film scanner manufacturing business for at least six months.
     
  5. B&H has it listed with a pre-release price of $1,950, so that's a good indication it should get to market. It'll be interesting to see what David Brooks at Shutterbug has to say about it. But given its fairly high price and lower resolution than the CoolScan 9000 (3200 vs. 4000) I doubt anyone would buy it just to scan 35mm. But for 120 the scanner could be wonderful, especially if SilverFast and Vuescan support it. It might even help bring CoolScan prices back to earth.
     
  6. Ouch...I thought it would be closer to the $99 I paid for their 35mm scanner that did a decent job.
    for that price, I'll stick with 2000-2400 dpi from my $200 Epson V500. The whole reason I shoot 120 is that it's so much more forgiving to scan than 35mm. You can print pretty big out of 6x7 at 2400dpi, and 3200dpi isn't that much of a jump.
    Yes, there are other benefits to scanning with an expensive scanner, but I compared my lowly scanner to a $10,000 Tango drum scan of the same Kodachrome slide, and didn't see a stark difference. If something as hard to scan as K-14 doesn't show serious flaws vs the best scanner available, I'd expect almost no visible difference between the V500 and this puppy.
     
  7. I agree with Gregory. But then high end and affordable are a relitave statement and $2000 is more affordable than than the $13000 for the Hasselblad-Imacon scanners.
     
  8. A few years back a friend had a Minolta Dimage Scan Multi PRO Scanner with about the same specs. Could this be an update/re-do of that model? It would make sense to start with the Minolta basic engineering and maybe even some leftover parts as a base rather than start from scratch.
     
  9. "Nikon has officially been out of the film scanner manufacturing business for at least six months." - thanks for the info Ellis, I genuinely didn't realise that. Since my last dealings with the very unhelpful people at Nikon UK, I've kind of lost interest in what Nikon is or isn't doing these days.
     
  10. You can still get Nikon scanners though. And they are well worth both the effort of finding one and what you have to pay for one.
     
  11. I have done plenty of dumb things in my life, but one smart thing I did was buy my Nikon 9000 when there were still some available new. It is an incredible machine. I paid "only" $2300 for it, and also bought a glass film holder. I could sell it now for what seems to be a going price of $3500 to $4000, but that would surely be a dumb thing to do. I don't use it real often, but when I do, it is almost invaluable.
    In my opinion, the Prime Film machine will have to meet an extremely high standard to equal the Nikon. Whether it can or not remains to be seen I suppose.
     
  12. If it is anything like the Pacific Imaging 35mm scanners I have used it will be a POS. And a high priced one at that.
     
  13. As Michael indicates, if PI has been unable to make any really good scanners so far, what makes everyone think they will suddenly come out with something to challenge a Nikon?
    It's hard to imagine a large enough MF market unless this new scanner can appeal to the service bureaus.
     
  14. Scott, unless you have first-hand experience using PIE scanners I suggest you reserve judgement until the new scanner is actually out. I've never read anything good or bad about PIE, but it makes sense for them to enter the higher-end market now than Nikon is out. And given the prices 120 Coolscans are going for, it's easy to imagine a large enough market for the new scanner, including scanning services.
     
  15. Looks good but only 3.6 d-max ? Doesn't say anything about autofocus. OMG how hard is it to build a decent scaner ?
     
  16. What makes you think we won't? Their website says it will be available in June. According to my calendar, it's May.
     
  17. I don't know about you fellas but I'm happy with my Epson V700. It came with plates to accomodate 35mm, MF, 4x5, 8x10, as well as being a decent flat bed scanner for just under $600 Cdn. It might take a little more farting around than a dedicated film scanner, but the extra versatility was worth it.
     
  18. The V700 is versatile Jeff....but for MF and 35mm, it's poor compared to a decent film scanner. I use mine primarily for 4x5, where it's pretty good.
     
  19. This Dmax or density range business has got really overblown out of all proportion. A true Dmax of 3.6 should be all that anyone needs. No reversal film ever produced has a Dmax of any more than 3.8 in real-life use and with standard processing, while negative film shouldn't exceed a density of 3 under any circumstances. Also, once that theoretical 3.8D has been projected through a lens for scanning and been subject to unavoidable flare, it's probably going to drop to well under 3.6 anyway.
    Even if you could accurately and linearly capture a density range of 3.8 (that's a brightness range of over 6000:1) you'd never be able to reproduce it; either on a computer screen or on paper.
     
  20. I wonder if a nice digital camera with MLU, such as a 5Dii, and a macro lens on a color temp-controlled light table would do just as well as some of these scanners. Of course, no IR and you'd have to figure out a way to keep the negs/slides flat but it may provide images as good as the PI/Reflectas.
     

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