Film Film scanner advice

TraamisVOS

Hall of Famer
Nov 29, 2010
124
Melbourne, Australia
I recently bought a Hasselblad Xpan and am in the market for a film scanner. I've done a bit of searching and found that an often recommended film scanner is the Plustek OpticFilm 120 but they're a bit hard to find at the moment. I am seeing the Plustek OptciFilm 8100 still available though - is this able to scan Xpan film? I believe the 120 is able to scan regular 35mm film, Xpan film, and medium format film. But I think the 8100 is only able to scan regular 35mm film but I'm unsure whether it can scan Xpan film as well.
 

agentlossing

Veteran
Mar 23, 2015
104
Andrew Lossing
I just got an Epson V550, and I believe you can scan the raw film strip by placing the negative on the scanner without the frame holder... I will try and test this for you so you know whether you can get the full wide frame! The V550 is really nice for the price: I got mine from Adorama refurbished by Epson for $119.

I'm jealous about the Xpan, by the way. Love the format and the camera itself looks amazing.
 

agentlossing

Veteran
Mar 23, 2015
104
Andrew Lossing
The V550 definitely lets you scan wide 135 strips, you don't even need to place the negative without the holder. Just pick the option in the software that shows the whole scan instead of automatically slicing up the frames, then obviously you will have to crop to the actual pano framing.. It lets you scan very high DPI so you can get good resolution. This is a screenshot of the negative strip:

 

TraamisVOS

Hall of Famer
Nov 29, 2010
124
Melbourne, Australia
The V550 definitely lets you scan wide 135 strips, you don't even need to place the negative without the holder. Just pick the option in the software that shows the whole scan instead of automatically slicing up the frames, then obviously you will have to crop to the actual pano framing.. It lets you scan very high DPI so you can get good resolution. This is a screenshot of the negative strip:
Reading your posts have set me down a different path, I'm now considering the Epson V scanners. I looked them up, I'd like to get a bit more resolution in my scans so I'm looking at the V600 or possibly the V800 too.

I'm seeing some webpages talking about using some kind of film plate to hold the film flat. Is that what you use too?
 

TraamisVOS

Hall of Famer
Nov 29, 2010
124
Melbourne, Australia
I'm 80% sold on the flatbed scanners after reading agentlossing's advice, and seeing your recommendation for the HP.

There seem to be some views that flatbed scanners aren't as sharp as a dedicated negative film scanner, I'm having a look at that at the moment to see whether I'm likely to notice it or not.
 
May 6, 2017
69
The challenges I have with flatbed scanners is that they collect dust.
Lots of dust.
And in places not easy to access, such as the inside of the glass on the flatbed.
The higher the resolution the worse it gets.
 

agentlossing

Veteran
Mar 23, 2015
104
Andrew Lossing
Dedicated negative scanners are supposed to be crisper, but they're also really expensive. The ones you commonly see available that advertise somewhere between 18-22MP scans are cheap and up-res pretty low quality scans.

Dust can be an issue, fortunately the software does include digital ICE for reducing dust and scratches. I've yet to get totally dust-free scans, but I'm not handling my negatives optimally for avoiding it. Compressed air cans help though. I don't think there's a way to completely avoid dust.
 

TraamisVOS

Hall of Famer
Nov 29, 2010
124
Melbourne, Australia
Dedicated negative scanners are supposed to be crisper, but they're also really expensive. The ones you commonly see available that advertise somewhere between 18-22MP scans are cheap and up-res pretty low quality scans
I can't find a cheap dedicated negative scanner that can do Xpan film anyway.

I do the occassional paid work so I'm thinking I need something that is perhaps halfway between pro and bare consumer level. The flatbeds may be the way to go now that you guys have put my mind on them.
 

agentlossing

Veteran
Mar 23, 2015
104
Andrew Lossing
I think the only difference between the V550 and V600 is the 600 has digital ICE capability for scanning photos as well as negatives, the 550 has it for negatives only.
 

Latest posts

Latest threads

Top Bottom