Choosing between Epson V550 and Canon 9000F

Discussion in 'Scanning and Scanners' started by Rob MacKillop, Jun 3, 2018.

  1. Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Subscriber

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    I've never had a scanner before, and our budget is limited to sub £200. The front runners are the Epson V550 and the Canon CanoScan 9000F Mark II.

    Any advice gratefully received!

    For 35mm and 120mm film only. From what I've read so far, some people prefer to download different software.

    My computer is an iMac.
     
  2. shutterfinger

    shutterfinger Subscriber

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    My vote is for the V550. I have a V500 and V700.
    I have Silverfast SE (V700) and Vuescan but use Epsonscan. I can batch scan with epsonscan but not vuescan. Silverfast scans in 16 bit but outputs in 8 bit unless you buy you Ai version.
    I do all my editing in post processing but some prefer to edit in scan so they opt for the 3rd party software.
     
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    Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Subscriber

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    Thanks for that, shutterfinger. There's not much of quality to choose from in this price range, I fear. Most of the dedicated negative scanners that can cope with medium-format images start at over a thousand pounds, which is way above what I had hoped to pay.
     
  4. shutterfinger

    shutterfinger Subscriber

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    My first scanner was an Epson 1640SU. It only had a DPI rating like the Canons. Later on the better scanners started listing a Dmax rating. Dmax is the difference between the black and white that the sensor can handle. When a scanner does not list a Dmax rating its usually less than 3. I'll take a 3200dpi or 4800 dpi with a Dmax of 3 or more over a 9600dpi with a leass than 3 Dmax as the higher Dmax scanner will give me the rrsults I want, near gallery quality not snap shot quality.
     
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    Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Subscriber

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    Interesting. Never heard of Dmax. I'll look it up. Thanks again.
     
  6. Alan Edward Klein

    Alan Edward Klein Member

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    Film density prevents light from the scanner to go through it. Each scanner has better or worse capabilities to do this. It's measured in dMax. The higher the dMax number, the better it can "see" through the negative and give better scan results. The V550 for example has a dMax of 3.4. The more expensive V800 is 4.0. I don;t know what the Canon 9000 is. The Canon web site does not list the dMax which is worrisome.
     
  7. Poisson Du Jour

    Poisson Du Jour Subscriber

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    From my point of view it is best to let the scanner use the defaults when starting out and leave software and the myriad selections until later e.g. when your knowledge and experience increases and allows confidence in knowing what to apply and when.

    Canon's early software was very good, as is Epson's present day native EpsonScan software — either and both can accomplish basic scans to give you a feel for the results and go from there.
    I have the Epson V750 but the majority of my production print scans are done on a Hasselblad Flextight (at lab). There will no doubt be a number of firmware and software updates to the V550.
     
  8. BMbikerider

    BMbikerider Member

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    or my two pennorth. Go for the Epson. I have had a V500 for several years now and it is miles better than the previous Canon I used to own. Out of all the photographic equipment I have ever owned it has been the most reliable. I originally got it to replace a predecessor to the 9000 which was very very slow. (About 20 mins to scan a medium format negative) I originally bought it when I was still using Widows XP and after upgrading to Windows 7 then to Windows 10 it still worked as well as before.
    Yes the 'D' max of 3.5 is not as brilliant as my Nikon film scanner which is 4.1 but it does a good job with proofing before I print in the darkroom. When making prints, used with medium format, a very good A3, virtually grain-less print in both B&W and colour. With 35mm A4 is about it's limit for GOOD prints. Probably down to the optical system.

    Yup, the Epson is tops.
     
  9. Frank53

    Frank53 Subscriber

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    When my Epson V700 seemed dying, I was looking for another inexpensive scanner to use next to my Imacon (which takes 20 minutes to make a scan at full resolution). I ordered the Canon 9000, but had to send it back because it was almost impossible to make a reasonable scan with it. The worst scans I had ever seen. So I sent it back and after some more trying, the Epson came to live again and is still working fine. Choose the Epson. The software is very good as well.
    Regards,
    Frank
     
  10. bernard_L

    bernard_L Member

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    Two remarks concerning the Dmax spec:
    1. Its significance depends on the intended use. For slides, densities above 3 need to be measured. For instance, Provia has a Dmax of 3.3 or thereabouts. Negative film has a more restricted density range. For HP5, the published D-logE curve stops at D<2.3, at a point approx 3.0 in D above the toe: that is 10 stops (or Zone X if you prefer). For Portra 160, the highest curve (blue) at ~10 stops (zones) above the toe, is at D~2.8. So don't become obsessed over Dmax anymore that over megapickles.
    2. At least some of these Dmax "specs" are highly dubious to me:
      1. Often the number just corresponds to the number of bits delivered by the scanner: each extra bit is ideally a factor of 2 opacity gained, so 0.3 in D. 10 bits --> 3.0 Dmax, voilà! But what is the information content of the least significant bit (LSB)?
      2. Even if the scanned delivers 14 bits output, (4.2 Dmax???) what is the signal-to-noise when scanning through a density of 3? In other words, the scanner does not stop working suddenly at a certain D, the output just degrades progressivsly. There is no industry norm to define the cutoff, so each brand defines Dmax "creatively".
     
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    Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Subscriber

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    Thanks to all for their advice. I've bought the Epson! I recognise there are higher levels of scanners, and I'll look to getting an upgrade eventually. But the v550 will get me started into the world of scanning, and I'll be better educated by the time I come to invest in another. Cheers.
     
  12. shutterfinger

    shutterfinger Subscriber

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    Good scanning is like good photography, it has a learning curve.There should be some good tutorials on line, search engine Film Scanning Tutorial.
    I use Professional mode and No Color Correction which is basically a raw scan to which tonality and color correction is done is post processing software.
    Use a good negative or slide in software auto mode or professional mode default settings to make a base scan to compare adjustments to.
    Scanning above the scanners optical limit is software interpolation. The optical limit for the V550 is 6400 dpi which produces a large file. Most scan at 2400 to 4800 for archiving. For a quick web post I scan at 1200 then reduce to 150 in PS as it produces a better image than a 150 dpi scan.
    Ask questions as needed.
     
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    Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Subscriber

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    Got it. I've seen a couple of videos already, and it looks straightforward enough, both examples used the Epson software. I have Lightroom and Elements 11, both of which I know my way around. I'll probably go for 4800 for archive, reducing to around 150 for online. As I'll be using it for medium format (6x6) I won't be doing big batches, so the time issue shouldn't be troublesome...Unless my wife decides I should scan all the 35mm negatives from when our now 20-year-old daughter was a toddler...that could take a while!
     
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  15. Doug Fisher

    Doug Fisher Member

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    www.scantips.com is still one of the best investments of time for learning scanning. Learn the fundamentals and you will have a foundation to serve you well for all future learning.

    Doug
     
  16. OP
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    Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Subscriber

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    Ah, that will either help or drive me insane ;-) Many thanks, Doug!
     
  17. TonyB65

    TonyB65 Member

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    I'm not quite sure why people dis the Canon scanner, I have the 9000F ii, it's a great scanner for the price, I get pretty decent results from 35mm up to 6x9, and it has decent negative carriers and no problems with focusing, which the Epsons do have. I run it with Silverfast and have no complaints about what it can do, it's not slow comparatively speaking either.
     
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    Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Subscriber

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    Cheers, Tony. A little late for me, as my Epson is due to arrive tomorrow, but good to know.
     
  19. TonyB65

    TonyB65 Member

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    No worries, you should be fine, just thought I'd add a bit of balance on that scanner, enjoy your new scanner, and a tip, use a rocket blower on your negatives and a soft paintbrush and blower on the scanner glass before each run, it saves a lot if time cleaning up dust after you've scanned in my experience.
     
  20. RattyMouse

    RattyMouse Member

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    It's very common. Canon scanners have never gotten much respect from film users. I was almost going to buy a Canonscan 9000 but the relentless negativity towards it put me off.
     
  21. OP
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    Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Subscriber

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    Good tip, Tony. I ordered a rocket blower (I thought I had one, but can't find it) but it won't arrive for another week. I didn't think about a brush, but can see how that would be useful. Cheers.
     
  22. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    In my experience, when it comes to scanning, the operator is as least as important as the machine and the software.
    I have an older Canon 9000F that is quite functional for medium format, and gives okay results for 135.
    But it took me a while to get there! My first results were terrible.
    By the way, flatbed scanners don't really give you much extra benefit if you scan at 4800 ppi. For medium format, consider limiting your scans to 2400 ppi.
     
  23. OP
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    Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Subscriber

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    Really? Okay, I'll make to scans of the same negative, on at 4800, the other at 2400, and compare. I'll bet you are right :smile:
     
  24. Hatchetman

    Hatchetman Subscriber

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    Canon isn't upgrading their software anymore. So my 9000F is worthless unless I buy some 3rd party software and hope it works. Wasn't that good of a scanner to begin with.
     
  25. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    The Canon Support site indicates that the scanner drivers are currently Windows 10 and OS-X 10.6 compatible. Same for the MP Navigator.
    As I said, my current results are a lot better than when I started with it.
     
  26. TonyB65

    TonyB65 Member

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    Indeed, it takes a while to work out the best method and settings, and my scanner works on win 10 no problem.
     
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