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Which 120 negative scanner

mark kaminsky , Apr 10, 2004; 10:07 p.m.

Hello, I use medium format 120 (Fuji GSW 690) and I would like to get a reasonably priced negative scanner....Which one(s) are suggested ?......It would be helpful if it also does 35mm to 6x9......Thank you...Mark


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Doug Fisher , Apr 10, 2004; 10:55 p.m.

If you can afford them, the Nikon 9000 and Minolta Multipro dedicated film scanners do a great job.  If those are out of your budget, the Epson 4870 and supposedly soon to be released Microtek i900 offer nice features for the money although their raw scans aren’t as sharp as those from a dedicated film scanner.  Good scanning skills and Photoshop skills will allow you to produce some very nice end results though.  The Epson 3170 is a real bargain if you are on a tight budget and don’t think you will need to ever scan larger than medium format.  You could always look for used dedicated film scanners if you were willing to take a bit of a risk.


Doug’s “MF Film Holder” for batch scanning "strips" of 120/220 medium format film with flatbeds

B G , Apr 10, 2004; 11:02 p.m.


I have both the gsw 690 and the gw690 and love them. Great choice of camera!

I use a nikon ls-8000 scanner. It has some flaws, but they can be overcome with practice. I tried a minolta in Calumet and found it unacceptable.

My most important advice to you is, if you buy a film scanner, to buy it new and keep it covered at all times when not in use. Dust will degrade the scan quality fast, and these scanners are not user friendly to clean.

I have some examples at the fujirangefinder.com web site at:


Good luck and keep shooting!


Jeffrey Steinberg , Apr 10, 2004; 11:18 p.m.

I enjoy using the Microtek ArtixScan 120TF.

Does a great job, is cheaper than the Nikon and has good rebates from time to time. I got mine for $1,699 plus $200 off.

--Jeffrey Steinberg, Scarsdale, NY

Mark Rinella , Apr 11, 2004; 01:38 a.m.

I would recommend the Nikon LS-9000 ($2000) , but you will need to factor in the extra cost of the glass slide carrier which is either $240 or $340 depending on which one you choose. It does a great job with 35mm negatives as well as medium format. Version 4 of the Nikon Scan software works very well, but I am finding that with some negatives, I get better scans using Vuescan ($80 for the full edition which includes calibration).

Not sure if all of this meets your definition of "reasonably priced". There also are a bunch of refurbished LS-8000's on eBay right now - not sure how much improved the LS-9000 is over this older model for the type and quantity of negatives you are scanning.

Jean-Baptiste Queru , Apr 11, 2004; 10:52 a.m.

With a 690 it would be sad to settle for a flatbed. A 4000dpi dedicated film scanner is what you really want.

If you have to settle for a flatbed, an Epson 3200 will get you decent 1600dpi scans for a decent price.

Jay . , Apr 11, 2004; 11:00 a.m.

I got the original Polaroid 45, a 2000dpi scanner that does up to 4x5. Paid $200 for it. It needs a SCSI2 interface which fortunately my computer has (I use a Pentium I 233mhz, 256MB RAM, WIN 95. Works for me, no reason to upgrade just to make Gates richer).

Bjarke Schulin , Apr 11, 2004; 11:35 a.m.

I have had great results with the epson 3200 scanner and silverfast se supplied software. i have never used a real mediumformat negative scanner so I can't compare the differens..

Erik de G. , Apr 11, 2004; 09:32 p.m.

Considering the quality of the camera you're using I would recommend to at least take a dedicated film scanner, like the Minolta Multi Pro, the Nikon 9000 or the Microtek 120tf. An Imacon would be an option too if the price were 'reasonable'. Perhaps a used one?

Maybe nice to know is that I have a Scanhancer PM to suppress peppergrain with the Microtek too now. This gives this scanner an edge in price compared to the competition. (There already was one for the Multi Pro. Just see my home page for more info.)

.[. Z , Apr 11, 2004; 10:56 p.m.

Mark, see what happens when you neglect to list a budget in your query?

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