Using a Nikon Super Coolscan 4000 with Modern PC

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by Sandy Vongries, Jun 6, 2017.

  1. Currently using Coolscan 4000 firewire and NikonScan 4.03 with Windows 10 64-bit OS. Here's how to do it. Go to Nikon Coolscan, Nikon Scan, Driver: 64 bit Windows Vista / Windows 7 / Windows 8 for information on updating NikonScan driver. The inf file that you want to update for firewire is Nks1394.inf. Unfortunately the driver is now an unsigned driver according to Windows. Go to Windows 10: Disable Signed Driver Enforcement to get instructions on disabling signed driver enforcement. It all works. Thank goodness for helpful people on the web to continue to help patch the Nikon software.
  2. Sandy Vongries

    Sandy Vongries Administrator Staff Member

    Thanks, Dennis! My wife who is the house computer guru says it looks good! Will drop you a note if I get it working.
  3. The key is the 64 bit driver for the Nikon scanner. I did this to get my Nikon 9000 scanner to work with NiionScan 4.03 with Wndows 7 64 bit professional software. I have since updated to Windows 10 Professional and the Nikon 9000 scanner still works. My motherboard has a Firewire input and it works with the Nikon 9000 scanner.
  4. FWIW, I've been a Vuescan advocate for years, but I finally decided I'd had enough the other day with my Coolscan V and did a bunch using Nikon Scan.

    Specifically, I had roll of Ektar 100 that was giving me fits. For one thing, I COULD NOT get the color correct in Vuescan. Second, the lab inadvertently scratched my negatives to heck(yes, they didn't charge me and also gave me two rolls of Ektar) but Vuescan seemed to struggle with getting rid of the scratches. By "struggle with" I mean that it didn't do a darn thing for them with IR cleaning set to "low". I've become afraid to crank the cleaning up in Vuescan as it tends to induce ugly artifacts with larger defects that are even more difficult to remove than the dust spots themselves.

    In any case, I fired up Nikon scan, set it to run a preview on all frames when I fed a strip in, and then went to work. Initially, I had issues getting around since I'm use to the workflow in Vuescan, but ultimately I found that my scans needed very few tweaks(the color looked good on nearly every one of them with the auto settings) and when I did need to tweak I found it easier and than in Vuescan. From there, I just set up a 6-scan batch and came back an hour later. Best of all, the scratches were mostly gone and what was left took just a few swipes with the spot healing brush to get rid of.

    You all probably know this, but Digital ICE refers to both software and hardware. The hardware is the infrared scanning channel, and the software is the Kodak algorithms that use the IR channel scan to remove dust and scratches. The Nikon and Epson scanners have the hardware to support ICE, but their software packages also include the "real" implementation of ICE. Vuescan can use the IR channel, but their algorithms are an imitation that sometimes does a decent job and sometimes fails miserably.

    I say all of that jut to say that I would do what it took to use the software that came with the scanner, or at least have it as a tool in the toolbox. AFAIK, the newest version of Nikon Scan for Macs is PowerPC native, which means that it is will no longer run as of OS X 10.7. I have it running on my MacBook Pro in OS X Sierra using a Snow Leopard Server virtual machine in VMWare Fusion(Apple does legally allow you to virtualize SL Server on Apple hardware) and I've been able to get my scanner to work. With that said, I just leave it and my V700 connected to my G5.
  5. I wasn't happy with Vuescan on my LS 8000 either, for different reasons. You're a bit luckier since the Coolscan V has a USB port, you can use Fusion or some other virtual machine software. But Firewire isn't supported with Fusion or any other similar product that I know of, so I'm out of luck with that approach.

    So if you can't use a virtual machine that means your Mac has to be able to run Snow Leopard or earlier, - even if you're just booting off another drive or partition. My 2011 Intel iMac will run Snow Leopard but still couldn't see the scanner. So like you I have it connected to a G5. I run the G5 headless and use screen sharing to connect to it. I'm not sure what all the calibration issues are that that approach might introduce but so far I'm happy with it.

    It's a bit worrisome knowing that I'm using software that will never be updated but it works. I can always go back to Vuescan if it addresses the shortcomings with respect to my coolscan or gets some other great new features.
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2017
  6. That's interesting on Firewire. I actually run my V700 over Firewire. It's FW400 so I don't know if the scanning times are appreciably different(the V700 has both USB and FW), but I just prefer it overall as an interface(it's on the same G5). My main MBP is one of the last made with FireWire(albeit you can use a dongle via a Thunderbolt port on newer computers) and I suspect that Vuescan would work fine with a FireWire scanner. I've never tried virtualizing, though-from what you said it sounds like VMWare is a no-go.

    I have a third scanner, a Polaroid Sprintscan 35. It's fairly dated, uses a user-replaceble fluorescent tube, and is SCSI. Still, though, it's fast and it's one of the few dedicated film scanners I know of that can scan SuperSlides(I have a lot of old family stuff on them). Unfortunately, SCSI has proven to be a bit of a headache since I "upgraded" from a Quicksilver G4 to the G5 about 6 months ago. My Quicksilver has a factory-installed Adaptec 2930CU card-a card with Mac ROM that is supposed to be bootable although I've never tried it. It has an internal 50 pin and an external high density Centronics-I did manage to find an HD Centronics cable to standard 50 pin Centronics. Unfortunately, though, despite being an Apple shipping card in a computer that met the system requirements for Leopard(dual 1ghz), it was "dead" in Leopard. I even tried doing some Unix magic(or rather a friend remoted in and did it) to transplant the kexts from Tiger, but it was still a no-go. That actually surprised me, since a firmware compatible card should "just work." If I wanted to use the Sprintscan, I had to boot in Tiger.

    The G5 has thrown an additional wrench in the works with regard to SCSI. I'm using the dual 2.7 rather than a Quad(even though I have a couple of Quads) partial for the fact that it has PCI, or rather PCI-X, slots. Unfortunately, the G5 slots are keyed(I think) for only 3.3V so the cheap and plentiful Adaptec cards that work in G4s won't physically fit a G5 and wouldn't work if you did modify the card to fit. I bought a couple of different Adaptec cards and found one that worked in Leopard, but was never successful in finding an external cable for it(68 pin LVDS IIRC). I now have a PowerDomain branded card(Adaptec name for Mac cards) that fits a G5 and SHOULD be compatible in Leopard(or at least there's a kext there for it). It also has the relatively easy to find 80 pin LVDS external ports. Unfortunately, it is also dead in Leopard and causes Tiger to kernel panic on booting. It works fine in the G4s I've tried, so I don't know what's going on with it. I have the dual 1ghz Quicksilver set up and optimized now for OS 9 gaming although it should run Tiger without any issues(I had a Core Image capable card in it, which made it pretty much OS X only, but the Geforce 4Ti in it now is decent enough for Tiger). I might just go back to using that particular computer for scanning with the Sprintscan...or I use my dual 1.42 MDD.

    BTW, anyone using a G3 or G4 tower with a USB scanner would be well advised to add a PCI USB 2.0 card to it. Sonnet makes the best ones, but anything with an NEC chipset should be plug and play in OS X albeit you might run into sleep issues. Most G4 towers(with one weird exception under even weirder circumstances) have USB 1.1(12.5 mbit/s) while the Yikes! and B&W G3 have USB 1.0(1.5mbit/s). Suffice to say you WILL see a big bottleneck there. Most iBook G4s and aluminum PowerBooks have USB 2.0, as do the late iMacs and eMacs. All G5s have USB 2.0.

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