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Thread: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

  1. #21
    Corran's Avatar
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    Re: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Ruttenberg View Post
    I have found that many out there have an unrealistic expectation of what a drum scanner can do.
    There's also not nearly as much on the film when shooting 4x5 at f/32 compared to a 35mm image shot on a great lens at f/5.6. And while you might've set the Epson scan height and all of that, most folks will have lesser results "out of the box" with an Epson.
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  2. #22
    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    Re: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

    Steve, I couldn't tell the difference from what you posted which gives me high hopes when I order the 800 or 850.

  3. #23
    Peter De Smidt's Avatar
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    Re: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

    Quote Originally Posted by Corran View Post
    There's also not nearly as much on the film when shooting 4x5 at f/32 compared to a 35mm image shot on a great lens at f/5.6.
    Bryan's right. At some point using a higher resolution is more about minimizing noise, in analogue photography that's mostly granularity, then it is resolving subject detail. If one doesn't print large enough for the granularity to be visible, all the higher resolution scan leads to is increased time needed for the scan, increased storage space, and slower editing.

    This speaks to an advantage that drum scanners have. Namely, they can minimize noise through aperture choice and not just by increasing spi.
    You often feel tired, not because you've done too much, but because you've done too little of what sparks a light in you.
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  4. #24

    Re: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Ruttenberg View Post
    I have found that many out there have an unrealistic expectation of what a drum scanner can do. One comment I hear often, especially on photography forums/sites other than here is the drum scan should make the flatbed look awful (paraphrase) and they are shocked when the differences are subtle, like in shadow areas and fine detail on the edges, gradations, etc. For some reason, they have this idea that a drum scan provides detail unheard of and then become disappointed when they see it doesn't and start talking something must have been done wrong if the drum scan is not light years ahead of the flatbed. I was even in that camp until I started researching this topic for the last year.

    What I have found is that in one aspect the drum scanner is much better, it provides that last 10% that is beyond a flat bed scanner. But unless you're looking for it or you are a consumer of the image, not the producer, you will not consciously know the differences. Your eye/brain just knows there is something different, maybe better in the image. If I did a side by side comparison and said nothing, I highly doubt anyone could say which was drum scanned and which was flat bed scanned.

    I am getting the drum scanner for that last 10%. Not because it is the holy grail of scanning and will produce images that are radically superior to a flatbed. I love my Epson and will not part with it, but if I need that extra 10% that is where the drum scanner will come in. Especially with 8x10 because the Epson has a fixed focus and aperture whether 4x5 or 8x0 scanning. 4x5 I can at least adjust the height of the holder to get better focus, 8x19 it is what it is. The drum scanner lets me choose aperture, set focus etc regardless of film size.

    I will be posting up a wetscan version of the b/w of Alstrom Point in the near future once I receive that file from the owner of the company.
    That's probably because on all photo forums people evangelize drum scans like they bring you to a higher plane of existence. It's also possibly because most are using Epson scanners with poor height calibration. Why on god's green earth they do not release a unit with AF I have no idea. It's quite an egregious oversight that they apparently build into the units.

    When it comes down to it many an exhibition or book was probably scanned with CCD line units like a Coolscan or Imacon. It would have to be quite a rarified frame for me to consider drum scans frankly.

  5. #25
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

    Years ago, I used a 'Service Bureau' to drum scan 2, 35mm slides, circa 1997

    Cost $60, quality, terrible

    I bought a CoolPix Scanner, scanned all my slides, that $1000 digi toy died long ago, but the scans were better.

    My cell phone took a snap today of an 11X14 film portrait on a light panel, then V700 scan. The client and I cannot tell the difference on my monitor or iPhone

    I am making contact prints ot it. No digi file will be saved...
    sin eater

  6. #26
    Steven Ruttenberg's Avatar
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    Re: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Klein View Post
    Steve, I couldn't tell the difference from what you posted which gives me high hopes when I order the 800 or 850.
    Look at the 100% crops. Aside from magenta cast of Epson scanner, the details are softer than the Howtek. To me it is quite obvious. And for scan resolution it is faster to do a 3200dpi scan than a 6400 and bin to 3200. I find the base images of the Howtek to be much better to start. In the end though as long as you set focus height properly on the V850 and do linear scans it will give great results.

  7. #27

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    Re: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Ruttenberg View Post
    Look at the 100% crops. Aside from magenta cast of Epson scanner, the details are softer than the Howtek. To me it is quite obvious. And for scan resolution it is faster to do a 3200dpi scan than a 6400 and bin to 3200. I find the base images of the Howtek to be much better to start. In the end though as long as you set focus height properly on the V850 and do linear scans it will give great results.
    Color cast aside, after sharpening and all other corrections have been performed, at what size print can the difference between scanners be discerned ?

    Perhaps a better way of asking the question is: what degree of enlargement is required for the difference to emerge ?

  8. #28

    Re: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Ruttenberg View Post
    Yes, those are 4000dpi scans. We had to use a different aperture to avoid the grain becoming so pronounced it looked like digital noise (ie, chose the aperture manually instead of letting the software choose the aperture). The owner of the company who did the scans for me is using DPL software. He scanned at 4000dpi, when you look at the image as scanned it shows 4000dpi.
    You shouldn't need to change from the auto aperture when scanning Provia. You'll get the 6.35 micron aperture which corresponds to 4000 ppi. You would only manually select apertures when scanning color negs but not for fine grained transparency. Having made literally thousands of scans on the same scanner for the past twenty years, this is something I'm quite familiar with. Do you know which aperture they actually chose?

  9. #29
    Steven Ruttenberg's Avatar
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    Re: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

    No, but I will ask at what aperture he used. He just mentioned the auto aperture was showing too much grain and as these were just for comparison didn't spend a bunch of time on them to fine tune them. When I start using the drum, then I will need to develop my skills all over again for the new machine.

  10. #30
    Steven Ruttenberg's Avatar
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    Re: Comparison of Howtek 8000 Resolve to Epson V850

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Lee View Post
    Color cast aside, after sharpening and all other corrections have been performed, at what size print can the difference between scanners be discerned ?

    Perhaps a better way of asking the question is: what degree of enlargement is required for the difference to emerge ?
    Good question indeed. And I would guess when I start printing above 16 x 20. I plan to make same rather large panos and 32x40 images. Plus, for my astrophotography and astronomy research, the drum scanner will give me better images suited for the science aspect of things.

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