View Full Version : The usual scanner dilemma...
I've been offered an Imacon Precision II for a superb price ($1500). After reading all the webpages I found and the previous posts in this forum, it seems that the only Imacon that is really good is the newest 949. I briefly tried out the Precision II 3 years ago with very unsatisfactory results, but I believe it was my fault (I didnít know I had to adjust USM to -60, and wasnít very good at reading histograms and adjusting curves) and I now feel more confident about my scanning capabilities. I shoot 6x9, 4x5 and recently 5x7, but I also have a collection of b/w 6x6 that Iíd like to scan. Iím interested in outputting 4x5 at a max. of 5-6x, which the Imacon should be able to resolve, scanning the format at 1800 optical. Has anyone used it extensively? Does anyone know at what optical resolution does it scan 5x7? Is it worth it, or would Iíd be better off with an Epson 4990 and a used Nikon 8000 or Minolta Multi pro for around the same total?
Thanks in advance,
I own one. SCSI version, connected through a Firewire/SCSI converter to the Mac. With the SCSI version you can use Flexcolor until version 4.0. The actual Imacon to compare the Precision II with is the Imacon 646. Compare the price!
If you want to throw up the money for a new Imacon, then I would point to either the 646 or the 848. The 949 is more or less only speedier...
My experiences with Precision II are fine. This piece of metal - well, it is more than that! - is absolutely a work horse. A Nikon 9000 does a fine job as well, but it won't scan 4x5 nor is the lower speed comparable with the Precision II. I can't say anything on how the results are comparable, since I haven't had time to compare some old stuff canned on a Nikon 9000 with a scan on the Precison II. What I really like on the Nikon is ICE technology, but even there I had some touch-up to do. What I like on the Imacon is Flexcolor, a fine piece of software, in my view better than the Nikon software.
The Precsion II can do the job you mentioned it should. I scan my MF negs on 3200 dpi, LF on 1800 dpi (as you mentioned). If you get it printed on a Lambda then 200 dpi (real size) will suffice.
You wouldn't mention 4990 anymore when you've done some scans with the Imacon, they are worlds apart!
I wouldn't hesitate to buy it- looking at the modest price.
Thanks Andreas. Does the Firewire/SCSI convertor work fine? I don't have SCSI and working on Firewire would sure be easier. However I don't mind getting a SCSI card if it will perform better (probably will). I've heard the PII is slow... how much time does it take for you to scan a 4x5 neg. at 1800 dpi, 16 bit?
Thanks Andreas. Does the Firewire/SCSI convertor work fine? I don't have SCSI and working on Firewire would sure be easier. However I don't mind getting a SCSI card if it will perform better (probably will). I've heard the PII is slow... how much time does it take for you to scan a color 4x5 neg. at 1800 dpi, 16 bit?
Thanks Andreas. Does the Firewire/SCSI convertor work fine? I don't have SCSI and working on Firewire would sure be easier. However I don't mind getting a SCSI card if it will perform better (probably will). I've heard the PII is slow... how much time does it take for you to scan a 4x5 color neg. at 1800 dpi, 16 bit?
oops, sorry for the triple posting...
I don't know where you got the idea that the 949 is the only one that is any good. They are all superb. I have a Flextight Photo and it is FANTASTIC. If you can get an Imacon for $1500, run don't walk to buy it. My Photo is by far the best scanner I have ever used. I also have an Epson 3200 and a Sprintscan 45i. The 949 is *marginally* better in terms of noise in shadows because of the cooling, but we are talking the difference between diamonds and ... I don't know, slightly nicer diamonds. All other consumer scanners are Zircon.
The converter I use is recommended by Imacon [http://www.imacon.dk/sw339.asp#second]. Pretty simple. Don't forget to turn on the SCSI device (sanner) before starting the computer, it's only SCSI!
I haven't taken the time how fast/slow the scans are done - I would estimate about 10 min at highest resolution. But as John said, it might be wise to consider the speed the scanner gets into your hands...
I also have the Imacon Flextight Precision II scanner. I have it conected to a G5 with a SCSI card, the card cost me $395 from adaptec.
As for scan time at 4x5 1800 dpi .16bit it takes around 15 minutes. I agree with John run don't walk for $1500, mine cost me $ 4000 on ebay and I am very happy, take my word for it.
Thanks to all for your comments. I'd better get running!
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