Keep in mind that scanning B&W with VueScan allows you to scan using only one colour channel, avoiding the resolution loss from approxiate colour registration. I get a solid 2400 ppi from the Epson.
The sensor of the V700/V750 is a staggered tri-linear sensor array. The 3 color channels are simultaneously scanned with a fixed pitch which is the fixed sensel pitch offset between the scan lines on silicon. So all three color channels are simultaneously scanned at exactly the identical spacing on silicon, for each line increment again. The only variable is the mechanical line increment by the stepper motor, but it is identical for each three color channels. The scanner reads 6 scan-lines (3 colors, with 2 half sensel staggered scan lines per color channel) per scan position.
Therefore there is no benefit to scanning a single color channel, on the contrary, because it throws away the possibility to average the 3 color channels and thus the possibility to reduce scanner noise by that averaging.
Its softness makes it good for b&w negatives. Some scanners like the Old Minolta Multi Pro tend to exagerate the grain. That effect is limited with the Epson.
Part of the softness is caused by the relatively diffuse light, which suppresses graininess. One should calibrate for the distance of the film above the glass platen, it can help to optimize resolution (as far as the lens is capable of it).
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