View Full Version : Scanner for Gallery Submission & Making 8x10 Negs

Robert C. McColloch
30-May-2005, 00:07
I am considering the following scanner to be used for
A.) Submitting prints to forum gallaries as well as for transmission to some of my photographer friends. Also,
B.) I would like to explore the possibility of making 8x10 negatives for contact printing AZO from 4x5 negatives since I don't plan to get an 8x10 camera.
My primary interest is the former.
Any comments or suggestions would be appreciated.

Micro Tek 6100 Pro $275 plus shipping
Optical resolution: 3200 x 6400 dpi
Interpolated Resolution (maximum): 65,535 dpi (PC)
Lamp source: Cold Cathode ray
Dmax: 3.8 – 4.2 range shadows
Included Software:
LaserSoft Imaging SilverFast Ai 6
Adobe Photoshop Elements 2.0
Adobe Photoshop Album SE
Microtek ScanWizard™ 5
Microtek Scan, Copy, Email, OCR, Scan to Web utilities
ABBYY FineReader Sprint OCR
Kodak Digital Science Color Management
Adobe Acrobat Reader

Brian Ellis
30-May-2005, 04:51
Before buying a scanner I'd suggest reading the article by Ted Harris in the current issue of View Camera magazine. For $275 my guess is you'll get a scanner that will be fine for viewing photographs on a monitor but I can't imagine that it will be suitable for the enlarged negatives you're considering. However, I haven't used this scanner so I can only guess. You presumably knowthat the manufacturer's specs mean almost nothing. Apart from the fact that scanners in your price range seldom actually achieve more than half the quoted ppi at best, and apart from the fact that there is no accepted standard for quoting dMax so that the manufacturers just come up with some method of testing that shows off their scanner to best advantage, there is more to a good scanner than just ppi and dMax, as the article by Ted Harris makes clear.

Herb Cunningham
30-May-2005, 05:38
We had several scanner seminars at the View Camera conference last weekend, Michael Mutmasky (sic) and another expert gave us more information than most could absorb. Bottom line: Microtek 1800f or 2500f. Any cheaper it would be Epson. the difference seemed to be in the array of sensors. They also said Agfa duoscan was good as it was a re badged Microtek. They were down on Imacon.

Bernard Languillier
30-May-2005, 07:21
Would you care to ellaborate a bit on their Imacon comments?

I have been using a Precision III for some time now, and the results, although not perfect, are very decent.


Ted Harris
30-May-2005, 08:12
I am sure the Microtek Scanmaker 6100 is a reasonably adequate scanner for scanning images for use on the web or for email exchange. I can’t really say anything beyond that because we didn’t look at scanners in that class for either the View Camera article or the Conference presentation. If you are on a very very tight budget you might be better served by looking at a refurbished Epson 3200 or 4870 which are available in about the price range you quoted. Bottom line is that, if you want to scan for eventual printing, it is unlikely that a scanner in that class will give you what you want. Michael and I agree that you can get acceptable scans from the entry level photo scanners from Epson and Microtekk (4990 and i900 respectively) but you really are better advised to step up to the Microtek 1800f for results that begin to bring out the tonal range in your original, unblock shadow detail, etc. Of course, you can go up and up in price and capability from there as you will see in the View Camera article.

Several quick general considerations, first pay little or no attention to the manufacturers published specifications and second think about your end use and your maximum requirements; in your case scanning to produce an 8x10 negative for contact printing. This is a non trivial exercise and one where you want all the scanning power you can afford to give you the best possible final print. Look for another article in the next issue of View Camera as well; this time focused on the strategic planning you should do when planning your scanner purchase and total digital workflow ... aimed at working backwards from end product again. As we discussed briefly in the first article and again at the Conference there area a lot of factors to consider, not the least of which is the amount of computing power you now own.

Ted Harris
30-May-2005, 09:19

We were not down on the Imacon in an absolute sense. We were down on the Imacon line in terms of value for money. From all our tests you got better results from the Creo/Scitex Eversmart at the top of the line and comparable results from the Microtek 2500/2500f for way less money than any of the Imacon's.

Daniel Grenier
30-May-2005, 09:53
For galleries and friends etc a basic scanner will do - but not to make negs. However, in lieu of making larger negs for contact prints, you need to consider enlarging your 4x5 negs onto Azo with the new special light source designed espacially for this purpose. Check out the Azo forum and read all about it. Good luck.


Henry Ambrose
30-May-2005, 15:25
I suspect that this scanner will make pretty good 8X10 negatives from your 4X5 originals. You're not asking much in terms of enlargement, so take note of Ted's advice about working backwards from the desired result. Your desired result of 8X10 negs and then contact prints is not too tough. Its real easy to spend loads of money to get a better scanner but you don't have to do so for your stated task.