Ad
Ad
Ad
Pages: [1]   Bottom of Page
Print
Author Topic: Epson V700  (Read 9034 times)
situgrrl
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 342


WWW
« on: January 07, 2008, 12:24:41 PM »
ReplyReply

2 months ago I sold of all of my digital gear and bought a Leica as I have found that less buttons means better pictures.

I shot a test roll of XP2 and dropped it into a local independent minilab in Cornwall.  They ran it through a Noritsu and scanned the files at 18 mb.  I was thoroughly impressed by the results and promised that they would continue to get my business.

After returning from Thailand 3 weeks ago, I stuffed them several rolls of film and asked for the same service.  I managed not to pass out at the price - which had more than doubled - for a slower service - it was still cheaper than the London labs I have used with mixed experiences.....

I thought that using the scan function of a mini lab would be my best bet with regard to price:performance but the recent scans that I have had back are terrible - the shadows go mushy and the highlights are blown.  Looking at the negs (though I don't have my lupe with me) the negs look a touch thin - but more than printable/scanable - the detail appears to be there.  

The shop was pretty unhelpful when I went to speak to them today - the same store assistants that seemed so helpful and knowledgeable when I first spoke to them were disinterested and responded to most of my questions with "It's automatic - we can't control it."  

I am therefore left in a bind: I cannot afford an Imacon - or a Nikon 9000 for that matter.  Will an Epson V700 satisfy my needs?  I wish to print to 16x12 as a maximum size.  I am quite prepared to invest time in learning the software and I am aware of aftermarket neg holders that I would consider investing in.  Does anyone have real world experience with this scanner and 35mm film?  If this is not a suitable option....what do people recommend?  

Finally, with regard to film and processing....I am using XP2 simply because internet wisdom is that it is the best b&w film for scanning - and I have to say that I find it much better than Tri X in that regard.  What is the best way to develop it though?  Basically, I cannot at present afford a pro lab even do dev only - it's managable on one roll of film but I usually get 10 deved at a time - it would amount to several hundred .  I could get a Jobo on ebay however....and have processed plenty of B&W before - do people think that this option is preferable?

Many thanks and apologies for length!
Charly
Logged

Kirk Gittings
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1552


WWW
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2008, 12:47:27 PM »
ReplyReply

I have no idea why anyone would suggest that XP2 is th best film for scanning. I scan all types of film regularly and if the exposure and development was done correctly all films can be scanned well. I think there are very good reasons to shoot color negative films for b&w conversion later in PS, but aside from that I prefer to shoot traditional silver b&w films.

However on the 700 for 12x16 prints from 35mm? Find one and do a test first. It may meet your needs. I use a 750 extensively for some needs, but never for serious 35mm scanning. IMO You are really pushing the limits of this scanner at that size. The advertized 4800ppi optical resolution of this scanner is closer to 2400ppi. Generally, the consumer flatbeds work less well-the smaller the format (I also own a professional flatbed, a Creo/Scitex Eversmart). It may seem counter intuitive, but the smaller the format, the better the scanner you need, because of enlargement ratio partially, a 4x5 only has to be enlarged 4x for an 8x10. I know your budget is limited, but a dedicated film scanner like the 9000 will do much better.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2008, 01:18:23 PM by Kirk Gittings » Logged

Thanks,
Kirk

Kirk Gittings
Architecture and Landscape Photography
WWW.GITTINGSPHOTO.COM

LIGHT+SPACE+STRUCTURE (blog)
xrogers
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 8


« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2008, 01:57:33 PM »
ReplyReply

I expect people were recommending XP2 because it is a black and white film that can use ICE for dust removal on scan.  I'm with Kirk, I'd either shoot color and convert to black and white, or shoot a true silver based black and white film.  The color film allows you to adjust your grayscale conversion based on color---sort of like using filters after the fact.  The silver based films have superior detail and dynamic range.  XP2's greatest virtue, IMHO, is the ability to get it processed cheaply anywhere (an advantage that seems to be vanishing).

Slow films scan beautifully and make excellent prints.  I use and am happy with both TMAX 100 and Delta 100, but in 35mm I slightly prefer Delta 100.  For faster film, I think Tri-X scans just fine (the grain seems stronger than in a darkroom print, but not a problem).

Forget about a consumer flatbed for 35mm film scans to produce 12x18 inch prints---12x18cm it might work, try it.  The flatbed might work well for bulk scanning as well.  For high quality scans, you don't need an Imacon or a 9000 (both medium format scanners).  Look at 35mm film scanners---a Nikon Coolscan IV runs around $500, and will produce a far sharper true 4000 dpi scan (or near enough to the rated 4000 dpi that it doesn't matter).  You can definitely do an excellent 12x18 inch print from a silver neg off the Coolscan IV.

I'd suggest silver black and white, process it yourself either using a Jobo (or just use Jobo tanks without the machine, it really isn't necessary), an Epson scanner for proofing and bulk scans,  plus a dedicated 35mm film scanner for my best shots.

Good luck, and enjoy the Leica!

--clyde
Logged
Kirk Gittings
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1552


WWW
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2008, 02:41:46 PM »
ReplyReply

Actually I think Clydes suggestions are good, though personally I have never used the smaller Coolscans, but sounds like he knows what he is talking about.

I also never thought of the chromogenic b&w films because of Digital Ice. Great point.
Logged

Thanks,
Kirk

Kirk Gittings
Architecture and Landscape Photography
WWW.GITTINGSPHOTO.COM

LIGHT+SPACE+STRUCTURE (blog)
situgrrl
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 342


WWW
« Reply #4 on: January 07, 2008, 04:42:19 PM »
ReplyReply

I understand the reason for XP2 being recommended is that because it is not silver based, the grain scans better - Clyde, as you say, Tri X has an even more prominent grain when scanned.  I have a roll of Delta and one of Tri X that I will process and do comparisons with, though 400 is my usual speed.  I miss Tri-X but have had some superb results with XP2 with the test roll.  The scans from Thailand however, do exhibit a limited DR.  I have attached two pictures - both worked in Lightroom, neither sharpened at all though both have had the "Clarity" run up significantly.  Both were XP2, The baby/mother was at f8 and the fishing pots at F11, Voigtlander 35mm f2.5.

Regarding the scanner, online reviews (photo-i.co.uk) suggest that the V700 - used with care and vuescan is more than a match for the Coolscan V - an option that I could stretch to.  The problem with this is that is does not scan MF and now that I am almost entirely film based (a digital Ixus barely counts!) I see a 6x6 of some flavour in my near future.  I guess that is a slightly separate issue for now though!
Logged

Kirk Gittings
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1552


WWW
« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2008, 04:51:25 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote
I understand the reason for XP2 being recommended is that because it is not silver based, the grain scans better

A good scan/scanner will not enhance grain unless you want it to. The problem with the flatbeds like the 700 is that they do not resolve grain well, leading users to oversharpen which causes a kind of grain clumping with USM which looks like larger grain. A good drum scan for instance requires very little sharpening.

Having done comparison tests to Photo-I, I have never been able to quite duplicate his always favorable results for the Epson scanners in comparison to say the Nikon 9000 nor have other professional scanners I know that have done similar tests.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2008, 04:56:03 PM by Kirk Gittings » Logged

Thanks,
Kirk

Kirk Gittings
Architecture and Landscape Photography
WWW.GITTINGSPHOTO.COM

LIGHT+SPACE+STRUCTURE (blog)
xrogers
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 8


« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2008, 05:27:16 PM »
ReplyReply

It is true that XP2 scans with less grain, but it also (in my opinion) scans with less definition.  I'll take some noise to get rid of that slightly muddy look.  And sorry, I did mean the Coolscan V when I said IV (although the IV is a fine film scanner as well).

I have not personally tested the V700 (I have an adequate flatbed), but many others who know their stuff have (look at the www.largeformatphotography.info forums and similar places for people trying to push flatbeds to their limits).  I've heard nobody but Vincent at photo-i claim this performance for the Epson.  I've also seen nobody able to reproduce it.  Any scan I've heard about of resolution test targets shows the Epsons at about 2400 dpi (what Kirk said).  These same tests show scanners like the Nikon at 3900-4000 dpi.  And scans of negatives show these differences.

You also have to see the raw scans---off the flatbed, they are quite fuzzy, and must have significant sharpening to be usable even for small prints.  The film scans need little (or even no) sharpening to provide a good print.  This sharpening has effects beyond bringing back details, and I don't much like the look of it.  I think the Nikon gives 4000 dpi of high quality pixels, while the flatbed gives 2400 dpi of visibly lower quality pixels.

I don't doubt Vincent's results or competence, but I don't think his goal was not comparison of these scanners.  His test negative (distant construction cranes, if I recall correctly) meets no standard, and it is possible that it limits the ability of the test to discern the real differences between these scanners (maybe 2400 dpi is all the negative has to give).

I'm also not trying to beat up on the Epson scanners.  I think they're pretty good, and might even be acceptable for your 6x6 scanning (many consider them quite good for up to 4x enlargement).  Find somewhere to try it for yourself, and make prints---don't just look at screen images.

I'd wager that if you stick to 35mm film, you'll have a dedicated film scanner sooner or later.

Until Later,

--clyde
Logged
xrogers
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 8


« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2008, 05:45:04 PM »
ReplyReply

I missed Kirk's response---hazards of making dinner and writing a response at the same time!

Quote
A good scan/scanner will not enhance grain unless you want it to. The problem with the flatbeds like the 700 is that they do not resolve grain well, leading users to oversharpen which causes a kind of grain clumping with USM which looks like larger grain. A good drum scan for instance requires very little sharpening.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=165729\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Exactly!  I also think their general fuzzy look forces oversharpening---if I recall rightly, Vincent's article mentions the need for significant sharpening.  You can get this same clumpy effect even with the Nikon scanners and some films.

In my opinion, the less sharpening any capture device requires to get acceptable results, the better.

--clyde
Logged
situgrrl
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 342


WWW
« Reply #8 on: January 07, 2008, 05:56:08 PM »
ReplyReply

Thank you both for the straight talking.  It looks like I'll be finding the money for the Nikon then....Ebay is looking good at the moment so keep your fingers crossed - I deserve a bargain!  I will also go and investigate the missing bits of my guerilla darkroom (a water filter and and a changing TENT will solve these problems
Logged

marc_mcdonald2b
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 9


« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2008, 12:16:47 PM »
ReplyReply

I agree with Clyde. I've had very good results printing 12x18 images from Leica scans using a dedicated 35mm film scanner. I'm still using the long discontinued Konica/Minolta Scan Elite 5400 with SilverFast AI software, but the Nikon CoolScans are also very good. I would add that in my experience the scanning software is almost as important as the scanner and I've been very disappointed in the scanning software that comes with most scanners. I have an Epson consumer flatbed running SilverFast, but I only use it for medium and large format transparencies and scanning reflective media like prints. As others have pointed out, the consumer flatbeds perform much better with larger negs/transparencies. I've never been happy with any of them (and I've owned quite a few) for 35mm scanning. I should also say I only shoot color film and convert it to B&W in Photoshop.

Marc
Logged
wolfnowl
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 5807



WWW
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2008, 04:00:11 PM »
ReplyReply

Charly:

This is something relatively new and I have no personal experience with it, but it  would be closer to your budget than an Imacon...

http://www.microtekusa.com/microtek-artixscan-m1.html

Vistek is selling it for $730 Cdn.

Mike.
Logged

If your mind is attuned to beauty, you find beauty in everything.
~ Jean Cooke ~


My Flickr site / Random Thoughts and Other Meanderings at M&M's Musings
Kirk Gittings
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1552


WWW
« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2008, 05:25:17 PM »
ReplyReply

We are in the process of testing that scanner now. It is likely to be somewhat better than the Epson 750, largely because of the auto focusing, but nowhere near as good as an Imacon. Allot of scanner quality is in the sensors and the difference in the sensor quality between these two is large. Having said that I am not a big fan of the Imacons, for less money you could get a much better professional prepress scanner from Kodak (Eversmart, IQSmart) or Screen (Cezanne etc.).
« Last Edit: January 10, 2008, 05:27:56 PM by Kirk Gittings » Logged

Thanks,
Kirk

Kirk Gittings
Architecture and Landscape Photography
WWW.GITTINGSPHOTO.COM

LIGHT+SPACE+STRUCTURE (blog)
marcmccalmont
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1731



« Reply #12 on: January 11, 2008, 01:47:13 AM »
ReplyReply

Microtek has just come out with a M1 film/flatbed scanner (up to large format in the glass less film scanner) reviews should be out soon $700
Marc

Ops! someone already mentioned it!
« Last Edit: January 11, 2008, 01:48:25 AM by marcmccalmont » Logged

Marc McCalmont
situgrrl
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 342


WWW
« Reply #13 on: January 11, 2008, 06:19:15 AM »
ReplyReply

I've had a look at the Microtek - it sounds a real possibility from the bumf - "a film scanner first."  I do, therefore have to ask why it is designed with 35mm film strip holders to hold 5 negs in a line.....all of mine are cut to 6 since I was about 12 - I don't really want to go hacking single negs off them.

Kirk - how are you finding your testing?  Is there any chance you could send me a 35mm scan?  It would be really helpful.  I'd also like your opinion on the scanner in comparrison with any CCD consumer scanner you might have had experience with.

Many thanks

Charly
Logged

sergio
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 662


WWW
« Reply #14 on: January 11, 2008, 07:32:29 AM »
ReplyReply

I have an Epson 4870 and find it acceptable to scan 4x5 Tmax100 negs properly developed, that by keeping the contrast down by underdeveloping a little, otherwise it won't do the job. Highlights have to be considerably low for scanning in contrast to silver gelatin printing. I have made very nice 24x36 in. enlargements with this method. I wouldn't use it to scan 35mm.
Logged

llap444
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 2


« Reply #15 on: January 11, 2008, 10:11:40 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote
We are in the process of testing that scanner now. It is likely to be somewhat better than the Epson 750, largely because of the auto focusing, but nowhere near as good as an Imacon. Allot of scanner quality is in the sensors and the difference in the sensor quality between these two is large. Having said that I am not a big fan of the Imacons, for less money you could get a much better professional prepress scanner from Kodak (Eversmart, IQSmart) or Screen (Cezanne etc.).
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=166402\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Kirk,  do you actually have the scanner or still waiting for arrival to test. I have found only one reference to having received and started testing (imaging-resouce) but found early "issues" - no additional info now for several weeks.

I have the m1 pro on order, but it is back-ordered - and have been told maybe by the end of the month. Microtek has not replied to my request for status, thus my concern whether or not this scanner will ship and if it will actually meet expectations of good as or better quality than Epson 750.

My scanning needs (in this order): 645, 35mm, occasional scan of 8x10 prints.
I assumed with higher res (compared to epson 750) as well as "no glass" for film, I should be able to get very good 645 scans for prints up to 17x24. Also want to digitally archive all my 35mm - realizing the few very good ones can always be professionally scanned on better equipment -- or am I better off spending 2x + and get the Nikon 9000? I'm pretty picky about quality - but only have to satisify myself - i.e. not a pro.

Your comments / suggestions are appreciated.

Thanks!

John
Logged
Pages: [1]   Top of Page
Print
Jump to:  

Ad
Ad
Ad