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Thread: Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

  1. #1

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    Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

    There have been many threads already on this topic, though as I am on my way searching for a scanner and leaning towards and older pro or semi-pro (does such a thing exists?) flatbed scanners I thought it may be worthwhile to bring some of these informations under one roof.

    My point is simple - what are according to your opinin older/used proffesional flatbed scanners that are worth to have a look. I ask for the flatbeds only as the drum scanners although capable of the highest quality results require to much work for an ordinary photographer to get a scan and tend to be large and also more expensive. Let's put the top price limit on $5000 (although I would probably spend "a bit" less than that)

    If possible I would like to ask you to comment on:

    - Pros
    - Cons
    - Caveats considering necesasry software/hardware
    - Basic specs (resolution, weight, size)
    - Your opinion about the scan quality
    - year of production
    - Reasonable price range on the used market for a fully working unit
    - Price/availability of possible accesories or software

    I have in mind scanners like, Creo Eversmart, Agfa Duoscan T2500, Polaroid SprintScan 45 Ultra, Screen Cezanne, Fuji Lanovia, Creo IQSmart (?), etc ... (to cover a wider range, tha last ones would probably not fit the $5000 limit)

    Personally I want to use such a scanner not only for 4x5 but also for 6x6 and maybe for 35mm and would like to be able to get a decent 6x enlargement at 360dpi printed. Print should look good when viewed from 30 cm distance.

    thank you
    Matus

  2. #2
    Peter De Smidt's Avatar
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    Re: Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

    I bought a Screen Cezanne for about $1000. The Cezanne Elite is supposed to be faster. One thing to look for is the ability to save in 16-bit, the Cezanne does so for color scans but not for bw scans. (I scan my bw negatives as color positives to get around this.) Generally, you'll be dealing with SCSI II scanners that run on Mac OS9. If you need something different, make sure to look into, as software updates, parts,... are really, really expensive. For example, the software update to allow me to use os10 would cost as much as my scanner did.

    Another thing to consider is resolution. While my Cezanne can do a claimed 5300 spi, it only does this as a narrow strip, approximately 1.5" wide. Hence, with 120 and 4x5 negatives, you may have to scan to strips and stitch them together. Some of the Kodak/Creo scanners do this for you, which might be a time saver.

    Try to find something that is still supported.

    Basically, I bought my scanner as an alternative to a Nikon 9000, with the added bonus of large format scanning capabilities. So far, I'm very happy.

  3. #3

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    Re: Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    There have been many threads already on this topic, though as I am on my way searching for a scanner and leaning towards and older pro or semi-pro (does such a thing exists?) flatbed scanners I thought it may be worthwhile to bring some of these informations under one roof.

    My point is simple - what are according to your opinin older/used proffesional flatbed scanners that are worth to have a look. I ask for the flatbeds only as the drum scanners although capable of the highest quality results require to much work for an ordinary photographer to get a scan and tend to be large and also more expensive. Let's put the top price limit on $5000 (although I would probably spend "a bit" less than that)

    If possible I would like to ask you to comment on:

    - Pros
    - Cons
    - Caveats considering necesasry software/hardware
    - Basic specs (resolution, weight, size)
    - Your opinion about the scan quality
    - year of production
    - Reasonable price range on the used market for a fully working unit
    - Price/availability of possible accesories or software

    I have in mind scanners like, Creo Eversmart, Agfa Duoscan T2500, Polaroid SprintScan 45 Ultra, Screen Cezanne, Fuji Lanovia, Creo IQSmart (?), etc ... (to cover a wider range, tha last ones would probably not fit the $5000 limit)

    Personally I want to use such a scanner not only for 4x5 but also for 6x6 and maybe for 35mm and would like to be able to get a decent 6x enlargement at 360dpi printed. Print should look good when viewed from 30 cm distance.

    thank you
    - Pros
    Much higher scanning quality than consumer flatbeds. In some cases, especially the EverSmart scanners, almost on par (or better) than many drum scanners.

    - Cons
    Big and heavy. Also true of drum scanners.

    - Caveats considering necesasry software/hardware
    May need vintage computer operating system. Many of the vintage flatbeds work with MAC 0S 9.2.2. Also true of most vintage drum scanners.

    - Basic specs (resolution, weight, size)
    Again, big, heavy and take up a lot of space. A Scitex/Creo EverSmart weighs around 150 lbs.

    - Your opinion about the scan quality
    Definitely on a much higher plane than what you can get with the consumer flatbeds. In the case of the EverSmart scanners, close (maybe better) in performance to Howtek D4500 or 6500.
    See thread at http://www.hybridphoto.com/forums/sh...=7018#post7018

    - year of production
    EverSmart scanners, late 1990s to present. Many models, ranging from 2540 spi optical to 5600 spi optical.

    - Reasonable price range on the used market for a fully working unit.
    Depends on model, but from $5k for EverSmart Pro to $10K for EverSmart Supreme. These prices are from dealers who guarantee the product. Bargains sometimes available on ebay for much less, but you take a chance.

    Newer models not often seen on market.

    - Price/availability of possible accesories or software
    Quite a number from Creo/Kodak, but expensive.

    The great selling point of EverSmart scanners, and IQSmart also, is that they employ a proprietary software that allows one to scan at maximum optical resolution anywhere on the bed, and over the entire bed. This is unique to high end flatbeds. In other words, if your computer can handle it, you can scan a 12X17" negative at true optical resolution of 5600 spi (EverSmart Supreme and above), 3175 spi (EverSmart Pro and Pro II), and 2540 spi (EverSmart, EverSmart Jazz and Jazz+).


    Sandy King

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    Re: Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

    - Peter -

    What resolution does the Cezanne delivers acrossthe whle bed ? I guess I would only rarely go beyond 3200 dpi even with smaller formats.

    - Sandy -

    Which software/harware should come along with EverSmart Pro (II) models ?

    How does the Jazz/Jazz+ models compare to EverSmart Pro scanners ?

    I was not upto now involved with Mac computers so I do not have a good idea about their OS. What is considered old and what new? Were there some major changes in the archistecture/design of the Macs that do not allow to run older software on more recent OSs?
    Matus

  5. #5
    jetcode
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    Re: Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

    the Cezanne interpolates up to 20,000 dpi, I am working on a 4x10 image scanned at 3600spi and I cannot tell that is was interpolated, the image is clean minus the usual dust issues

  6. #6

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    Re: Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    - Sandy -

    Which software/harware should come along with EverSmart Pro (II) models ? And if you have a firewire conversion you can run OSX.

    How does the Jazz/Jazz+ models compare to EverSmart Pro scanners ?

    I was not upto now involved with Mac computers so I do not have a good idea about their OS. What is considered old and what new? Were there some major changes in the archistecture/design of the Macs that do not allow to run older software on more recent OSs?
    You can use oXYgen with the EverSmart Pro II. This allows saves in high bit.

    Most JAZZ/JAZZ+, EverSmart and EverSmart Pro models use the older EverSmart Scanning Application, which only allows 8 bit saves and must be used with the older OS 9.2.2. However, if using OS 9.2.2 does not turn you off these scanners will work as fast and as well under a MAC G4 running OS 9.2.2. as under OSX.

    There is a very big difference in the operating system of MAC OSX and all previous MAC systems, including OS 9.2.2 which was the last of the classic MAC systems.

    Sandy King

  7. #7

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    Re: Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post

    What resolution does the Cezanne delivers acrossthe whle bed ? I guess I would only rarely go beyond 3200 dpi even with smaller formats.
    This answer was posted recently on the Scan Hi-End forum on Yahoo.

    "The scanning resolution of a Cezanne over the entire bed iis 589ppi (the Cezanne has a 13.5" wide flatbed that has to be covered by one 8,000 pixel CCD.

    The Cezanne can only stitch in line art and Copy Dot modes so you've only
    got one pass of the CCD to capture color artwork."

    The fellow who posted this information seems to know what he is talking about so I assume it is accurate, though I don't know enough about how the Cezanne works to say for sure. However, apparently the Cezanne zooms in to cover smaller areas, and then the resolution increases.

    Sandy King

  8. #8

    Re: Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    . . . . scanner and leaning towards and older pro or semi-pro (does such a thing exists?) flatbed scanners . . . . . top price limit on $5000 (although I would probably spend "a bit" less than that)

    If possible I would like to ask you to comment on:

    - Pros
    Major one for me is a greater true Dmax and Drange. You are more likely to capture colour in shadow areas, which can be important if you shoot transparency film. Resolution is a different comparison, and considering file size limits of some older software, it might not be the best way to compare.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    - Cons
    Older software needing older computer, or often a SCSI connection. Set-up can be tougher, though once it is up and running should be seemless. There is also a Ratoc FR1SX FireWire to SCSI, though it doesn't work on every flatbed scanner, and it is not easy to get working properly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    - Basic specs (resolution, weight, size)
    Seriously, investigate Dmax and Dmin. The better older gear will give real numbers. You can probably work with 3.2 Dmax on most transparency scans, though ideally 3.4 to 3.8 would be better, especially if you do lots of night photography. A better Drange could allow more subtle transitions in colour.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    - Your opinion about the scan quality
    Most of the mid to high level gear within the last ten years is quite good. However, lamps can age and colour shift, sometimes beyond the ability of the software to work around. There can also be an issue of noise during scanning, especially RFI with SCSI connections; sometimes really tough to trouble shoot and figure out. These things can compromise scan quality.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    - year of production
    The main issue as you find older gear is the sofware. SilverFast make some updated versions for some Heidelberg/LinoType/LinoColour and other scanners, though it is not really that cheap. Then you still have an issue of making the SCSI connection work.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    - Reasonable price range on the used market for a fully working unit
    Unless you are really lucky, I doubt you can get into anything not needing service nor software for under $1000. However, if you find a good deal on a full working set-up, definitely don't wait too long making a decision.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    - Price/availability of possible accesories or software
    Outside of SilverFast for some older scanners, there might be a newer version of software for Screen or Creo/Kodak that might work on some scanners. Oil mount kits are something else, though usually expensive. Then there is a nice scanning starter pack for wet mounting that Prazio make, which is quite affordable and works on many flatbeds.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    I have in mind scanners like, Creo Eversmart, Agfa Duoscan T2500, Polaroid SprintScan 45 Ultra, Screen Cezanne, Fuji Lanovia, Creo IQSmart (?), etc ... (to cover a wider range, tha last ones would probably not fit the $5000 limit)
    I think that AGFA was just a reworked MicroTek, like some Linotype scanners were reworked UMAX; not that it is a bad choice, but your software is very limited and you should not pay much for something like this. The Polaroid is surprisingly good, though service might be an issue. There is also an old Nikon scanner for 4x5, but not easy to find and no longer supported. The really good Heidelberg flatbed was the Topaz, though it is somewhat large and heavy for what you get. Better/best AGFA was the XY15, though in reality that is an older Fuji flatbed (FineScan?), and I think getting the actual Fuji would be better, but only if it has all the software and film holders.

    So that leaves Dainippon Screen, and Creo/Kodak. Just be careful on older software, and be sure to have all the holders. You should be able to replace the lamps on most older Creo scanners (some Scitex too) yourself, though any other service would be expensive. Missing software would be very bad. Same goes for Fuji, which I would never consider without the software.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matus Kalisky View Post
    Personally I want to use such a scanner not only for 4x5 but also for 6x6 and maybe for 35mm and would like to be able to get a decent 6x enlargement at 360dpi printed. Print should look good when viewed from 30 cm distance.

    thank you
    Kein problem! One nice thing is batch capture mode on some of the older flatbed, which can make doing many 35mm scans much faster. When you see speed performance specifications on some older scanners, it is often scans per hour based upon 6x7 (cm) film. Anyway, 6 times 360 is 2160 . . . so I think that part is somewhat in reach. More usual is 300 times 8 for 2400, and quite a reasonable target; though I still suggest putting more emphasis on Dmax.

    Ciao!

    Gordon Moat Photography

  9. #9
    Ted Harris's Avatar
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    Re: Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

    Sandy's comments on the operation of the Cezanne are correct.

    One needs to be bit careful with the Creo Jazz and Jazz+. These are good scanners but they were not manufactured by Creo, they are rebadged Microtek 4000 XY scanners, In fact, the 4000XY, which is still manufactured and sold in a few markets, has never been available in North America because of the marketing agreement (still in effect) between Creo and Microtek.

  10. #10

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    Re: Used pro flatbeds - who are they ?

    Thank you for all you answers. I get the point of the importance of the completness of the scanner considering the necessary software and hardware accesories.

    I also agree that the Drange and Dmax is more important than the resolution as all the scanners discussed have high resolution anyhow.

    I found THIS file with list of high-end scanners and it seems that at least on paper all of them bring at Dmax at least 3.8

    Still, I would have a few questions considering the accessories. I have not found yet any webpage with detailled descriptin or technical specifications for any of the scanners mentioned so I would like to ask which hardware and software should come along with following scanners so that nothing is missing and the scanner can be used. What would be optional accessories that are not necessary but useful? Pleas, if possible, be detailled:

    - Creo EverSmart Pro
    - Creo Eversmart Pro II
    - Screen Cezanne (FT-S5000)
    - Screen Cezanne Ultra (FT-S5500)
    - Fuji Lanovia Quattro
    - Fuji Finescan 2750 & 5000
    - Polaroid SprintScan 45 Ultra
    - ....

    I mean - if there is a scanner for sale - I would like to know wheter it is complete or not.

    Could you elaborate on the software side a bit more for some of the models if possible ? I mean - what was a standard software for a given scanner and what was an update ? What are the differencies ?


    - Gordon -

    you mention that Heidelberg Topaz as "somewhat large and heavy" - could you be a bitmore specific? Which Fuji scanner(s) do you ahve in mind?

    - Ted -

    What is Wrong with Creo/Microtek Jazz scanners ? Hm, they do not seem to be abundant in Germany..

    - Jetcode (or others) -

    could you elaborate a bit more how do you scan with Cezanne scanners?

    thanks
    Matus

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