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  1. #1

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    Flatbed scanners?

    Okay, after buying my bronica, i'm down on cash for quite a while, and sense we develope most of our own stuff here, i thought it would be handy to get a film scanner so we could just scan them right away after developing them. I was researching them for a while, and noticed that you can get flatbeds with film adapters for really cheap, i know they arn't as good, but would they be decent just for photos to put on the web and such? Does anybody have any slides or negs that were scanned with a flatbed that they could show me, just to see if its worth hauling it in?

    thanks.
    -tyler moore-

  2. #2
    geraldatwork's Avatar
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    Depends on what you call really cheap. Most of the lesser priced flatbed scanners which start around $100 that can scan film only scan 35mm negatives and slides. From what I've heard some of the scanners over $200 can scan medium format and because of the larger negative do a pretty nice job. I am a 35mm shooter mostly B&W and have a lower priced film scanner. Not only is it useful for scanning for the web but I find it very helpful in deciding what negatives to print in the wet darkroom. It also helps to get me started thinking about cropping and what areas need to be dogged and burned. A real pre-darkroom time saver.

  3. #3

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    Go to: http://www.photo.net/photodb/folder?folder_id=96471 to look at color photos, and http://www.photo.net/photodb/folder?folder_id=138425 for black and white photos.

    The film was scanned using a UMAX PowerLook III flatbed scanner with a transparency adapter (light source in the lid). The color is 6x7 transparencies (except for the hose photo in Nevada). The B&W are 4x5 negs.

    The new Epson flatbed film scanners probably do a better job than my UMAX -but it was the best available in 1998. I still use it for "contact sheets" for negative film.

  4. #4
    Eric Rose's Avatar
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    I use an Epson 2450 flatbed scanner for MF and LF. For 35mm I use a Nikon CoolScan. You can pick up one of the 2450's really cheap these days and they are very good scanners.
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    "civility is not a sign of weakness" JFK

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  5. #5
    L Gebhardt's Avatar
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    I would get a used Epson 2450. I have one that I was going to sell on Ebay until I noticed the price they are currently fetching ($80 to $100). At that point it is hardly worth the hassle. But for you this is great - you can get a scanner that does a good job on medium format for a steal.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by geraldatwork
    Depends on what you call really cheap. Most of the lesser priced flatbed scanners which start around $100 that can scan film only scan 35mm negatives and slides. From what I've heard some of the scanners over $200 can scan medium format and because of the larger negative do a pretty nice job. I am a 35mm shooter mostly B&W and have a lower priced film scanner. Not only is it useful for scanning for the web but I find it very helpful in deciding what negatives to print in the wet darkroom. It also helps to get me started thinking about cropping and what areas need to be dogged and burned. A real pre-darkroom time saver.


    Thats the main reason why i want a film scanner too, because you can't really get a good look at negatives or transparencys holding them up to a light, and it would be much more convienent then making many prints (especialyl when slide prints don't preserve the colors).

    What scanner do you have?

    I'd mainly use it for 35mm, but would like to be able to do MF negatives if it could, but it depends on hwo expensive. It takes a long time for me to raise up even 50 bucks, so i try to get stuff as cheap as possible for quality. I saw a bunch of flatbed scanners with adapters for around 30-50 dollars on ebay, do you guys have any idea what i should make sure that they have before i consider bidding? How many dpi, and what bit?

    Thanks for all the help and quick comments, you guys are always helpful.
    -tyler moore-

  7. #7

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    I use a Epson 1640SU Photo (which means it's got the Transparancy Adapator lid) which is a generation or 2 before the above mentioned 2450. It's a 1600dpi scanner. It does up to 4x5 film scans, and does a good enough job with 35mm for previewing and web use. This could be a $30 ebay candidate (remember to factor in shipping as they are relatively large). It also does good quality and quick flatbed scans.

    Some examples :

    35mm
    http://unite.com.au/~u3819a/gallery/images/candid03.jpg
    http://unite.com.au/~u3819a/gallery/...ndscapes04.jpg
    http://www.nlandgl.com/usefilmdayout (all)

    MF (645)
    http://unite.com.au/~u3819a/gallery/...bstracts04.jpg
    http://unite.com.au/~u3819a/gallery/...uildings04.jpg
    http://unite.com.au/~u3819a/gallery/images/nature01.jpg
    http://www.photocritique.net/g/s?zzahAc-p22165230

  8. #8

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    Thanks a lot, again, especially for all the samples.

    If you want to scan mf negatives too, can you just buy a holder for them, or do you have to buy a specific scanner that does mf scans? I'm buying this scanner primarely for negative and slide scanning. You scanned those 645's on your Epson? Did you need a seperate adapter, or did you just scan the prints?

    Thanks once again, i'm still trying to figure out what i really want.

    (on the plus side, my bronica came in the mail today!!!)
    -tyler moore-

  9. #9

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    Generally speaking (there are some exceptions), flatbed scanners that do negs/transparencies do so by shining light thru the neg from behind, rather than lighting a document/print from the front (normal flatbed scanning). To do this, they usually turn off the main scanning light, and activate a light in the transparancy adaptor lid. In my Epsons case, the normal scanner lid gets replaced with another lid with what looks like a 4x5 lightbox in the middle of it. When it scans in neg/transparancy mode, it turns on this light but not the main light. I put the negs in little holders (came with the scanner) that keep them off the glass at the optimun height (1-1.5mm) but it also works just laying them on the glass. Mounted slides just get laid on the glass. The color MF pic above (last one) was from a unmounted transparency so I put that in the holder (the film strip just slides thru)

    So, if you searched ebay for a Epson 1640, you want to make sure it had the TPU (Transparancy Unit) and preferrably the neg holders. You could buy the same scanner without the TPU. Not sure if the same applies for the 2450

    Hope this helps, but you'll be too busy playing with the Bronnie to do too much eBuying

  10. #10
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    If you have a SCSI card, there are lots of older scanners around for cheap. You could look for a Minolta Scan Multi, which handles medium format, or an Agfa Duoscan, which handles transparencies up to 8x10". The two images I posted recently in the standard gallery were from the Duoscan Solo, which is the least capable of them. The most desirable would be the Duoscan HiD, which has better resolution and higher Dmax. Duoscans of various types can usually be had for anywhere between $25 and $150, depending on model, condition, and accessories. If they have the glassless neg carriers, they are handy, but if not, you can sandwich the negs/slides between two pieces of glass using the standard glass transparency tray.

    http://www.apug.org/gallery/showgall...=500&ppuser=60

    Do you have a digicam? If you do, you can also digitize negs and transparencies with a digicam, a tripod or copy stand, and a lightbox, and it works for any format that fits on your light box. Some of the older images on my website were digitized this way, like this cheesy travel shot:


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