From: Joe100 on

Hi this is my first post so here goes I am looking for a slide scanner
having read an extensive post on Nikon coolscan vs. Epson perfection
scanners started by Local Girl last November.
It turned into an in-depth discussion on film scanning.
What I took away from the posts was that the Nikon Coolscan 5000ED and
9000ED are the gold standard of non commercial scanners.
I have a time critical slide scanning project. Watching A
5000ED scanner
Going for $2250.00 + on ebay. Needless to say, will it come in good
working order? How long will I have to save to buy it (to long) etc.
There is an old (like myself) saying
That “The best is often the enemy of the good.” Would
ether the Primefilm
7250PRO3 7200DPI or the OpticFilm 7200i AI Isrd 7200DPI SilverFast AI,
both about $500 US. come close enough to the Nikons?
I know that they don’t really have 7200DPI Optically.
and if they did it might be overkill.
So dose anyone have experience with either of them and the Nikons?

From: Nigel Feltham on
Barry Watzman wrote:

> The only scanners that can touch the Nikon scanners in terms of quality
> are some of the Epson flatbed scanners with Digital ICE. The quality is
> there, however, they are a real pain to use for large jobs (there is no
> automatic feeder available, and there is a LOT more manual film).
> The "going rate" for an LS-5000 on E-Bay is nothing like $2,250; it's
> more like $900 to about $1,200 (this is for the scanner only; add $300
> to $500 for a bulk slide feeder).
> Any of the Nikon scanners from the LS-2000 and later will do a great job
> if they are cleaned and working properly (that's a big if, and it
> applies to all of these, even an LS-5000). LS-2000's are about $300 for
> a complete fully working and serviced unit (they can be had for under
> $100 in incomplete, "as-is" condition, but that's not what you want).
> LS-4000's are about $400 to $550.
> The "consumer" variants, LS-30, LS-40, LS-50 are actually ok and in most
> cases, for most purposes, will do as good a job as their "professional"
> counterparts (LS-2000, 4000, 5000), but they don't support the automatic
> slide feeder, and they are not that much less expensive. [These
> versions are nearly identical (in some cases the only difference is
> firmware) but originally sold for about half the price of the
> "professional" models.]

The consumer models also don't officially support multipass scanning which
is useful when slides have detail you want to retrieve from dark areas
without burning out highlights (or light areas on negs without blackening
shadows), although this is likely to be less of a problem with newer models
(more bits per pixel to start with) and Vuescan can enable multipass on the
consumer units (though a bit slower as the scanner has to pysically scan
multiple times compared to grabbing multi-samples in 1 pass with the pro

Nearly all Nikon scanners are good, the only LS models you're likely to find
that should be avoided are the LS-10 (this one especially, takes 9 mins per
full-res scan, has to be manually focused on the film, and only works
reliably on ancient PC's with ISA based SCSI cards), LS-20 and LS-1000
models. All 3 of these older models move the film instead of the scanning
head so have alignment problems (multipass with any of them results in
ghosting due to movement between scans) and colour isn't too accurate.
A real shame really as they were available in internal 5.25" drive bay
versions so would make a neat scanning solution if they were still any good
(sadly I bought cheap examples of all 3 on ebay before I saw the light and
replaced them with an LS-2000 and a LS-30).