Need scanner recommendation for 4x5 negs

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by ed_pierce|2, Sep 12, 2003.

  1. Please forgive my laziness; I really don't want to spend hours
    learning about scanning and researching various models. I know very
    little about digital stuff.

    I'm looking for a scanner which will scan 4x5 negatives as well as
    8x10 prints. The scans will be used for the web and email
    high quality printing. However, I would like the pictures on my
    future web page to look as good as possible, so I'm guessing that
    scanning my 4x5 negs will be the way to go.

    These four models are offered with the new system I'm looking at from
    Dell. Which would you choose, or something else?

    1) Epson Perfection 1670 Photo Scanner

    2) Visioneer 9220 Flatbed Scanner

    3) Canon Lide30

    4) Visioneer 9020 Flatbed Scanner

  2. The Epson 3200 (around $400) and 2450 (around $???, less than $400) are the two most often recommended around here for reasonably priced, high-quality scans of MF and 4x5. They might provide a little bit better scan than you need, but I can vouch for the fact that they are very good for the price. I use a 3200.

    Make sure the scanner you choose can scan 4x5 transparencies. Many flatbed "photo" scanners (i.e., one with a diffuse light built into the lid for scanning transparencies) don't have a large enough transparency area to scan 4x5 -- i.e., they can scan 35mm strips, but not anything larger.
  3. Hi Ed,
    For your requirements, definitely the Epson 3200. The Canon 9900F would be my second choice. Look here for a review of both:

    Note that the 3200 is at two different price points depending on the software bundle (at least in the U.S.).

  4. Epson 3200; cheap and good.
  5. I've been using Epson 2450 for quite a long time for scaning my 4x5 slides. It has a very little bias towards red. Its speed is fast and the film holder is good enough to avoid any Newton ring. Comparing to Microtek film scanner which scan film without going thru the glass, Epson is only half of its price and should very much exceed your need and expectation.
  6. I'd go with the Epson also: quick, easy, gets the job done!
  7. jbq


    Epson 3200 for $400. Epson 2450 if you are really trying to squeeze a few bucks. Those peak around 1800dpi. If you really want extra detail, a good Microtek with a glassless holder with get you 2500dpi, but that's more expensive.
  8. Hi, if you have good 8x10 prints from the 4x5 negs, I would just scan those and skip neg scanning. A suitable scanner for prints might be around $100.
  9. Thanks all. There's a bunch of refurbished 2450's out there for under $250. Cool!
  10. He said he wants to scan 8x10 prints. I didn't think the 2450 and the 3200 could scan 8x10 prints but then I don't own one so I have no personal knowledge. I just assumed that since they can't scan 8x10 negatives they also can't scan 8x10 prints. Seems a little odd that they can scan one but not the other but then lots of things about digital seem a little odd to me.

    For web work you're better off IMHO scanning your 8x10 prints rather than the negatives. The quality difference between scanning negatives and scanning prints won't show up on the web and you presumably already have the prints in final form, whereas if you used the negatives you'd have to emulate the burning, dodging, etc. work you did in making the prints.
  11. The Epson Perfection 3200 and earlier 2450 scan 8x10 prints (or documents to A4 size), and have a narrow transparency adapter that measures about 4.5x11 in the relatively thin lid for negs and trannies. Earlier Epson Expression Pro models had a much thicker, full-size transparency adapter lid that would scan negs up to 8x10, but at a lower resolution.

    I'd be cautious, Ed, of earlier models that may not continue to have good support. Check the site to see what they are currently selling. I currently use the Epson 3200, and have been quite pleased with it.
  12. jbq


    Brian: as odd as it seems, those can scan transparencies up to about 4x10, and prints to 8.5x11 - transparencies are limited by the backlight, and prints are limited by the width of the sensor and the length of the glass.

    I imagine that creating a (partially) collimated uniform 8.5x11 light in a small package isn't as easy as it seems, and that Epson considered that the market for a scanner capable of widths higher than 4" wasn't worth the effort and/or the cost.
  13. Ed, I can't comment on the ones listed, but can tell you for the $ the Microtek Scanmaker 5900 is a decent buy for around $150 and it comes with a transp. adpater for up to 4x5 (4800x2400 dpi). Not a high end by any means, but great for proofing and the odd print. Good luck..
  14. Ed, You can check the Digital Forum for additional infomation on different scanners. Neil
  15. Thanks for the information about the 2450 and 3200, digital never ceases to surprise.
  16. I have an Epson 3200 and it works great for 4x5" negs/slides and 8x10" prints, but the originals you want to use are so big that pretty much anything with a decent transparency lightsource works.

    OTOH, if you get a new Epson, you can quickly and easily print high quality digital prints from the scans, provided that the sizes are reasonable (maybe 12x16" and smaller)

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