View Full Version : Advice on Scanner purchase

pulling hair out
21-09-2004, 12:11 PM
The Canon CS3000F Scanner is what I'm looking at, as it scans 35mm filmstrips and slides, also if you have Canon bubblejet printers [as I have] the scanner's one-button colour copies direct from scanner,via PC to printer in an instant.

Q1. Is $262 a fair price? [Want to stay with Canon products]

Re: USB ports - my 2 are presently used by Printer and mouse. This scanner uses a USB port but does not support an add-on USB Board.

Q2. If I use my Belkin USB 4 port Micro Hub converter, is this OK, or is it considered an add-on USB Board?

I only have 256Mb Ram on my Toshiba Notebook. Is this going to be a problem, eg. slow things down a lot?

Regards, Marg

Murray P
21-09-2004, 12:28 PM
Hi Marg

I have the same scanner.

The negative film adapter while handy I guees is not a replacement for a proper film scanner. I haven't used mine.

Is it a powered hub/add-on?. It should run off a hub or add-on ports because it has its own power pack although some like to run off the main USB cintroller, try your mouse on the add-on USB and if it works you can just swap them around.

The price will only be worth it if you use the scanners capabilities. What are you goinig to use it for? There are are cheaper models and ones that are probably more laptop friendly.

Cheers Murray P

pulling hair out
21-09-2004, 02:07 PM
Thanks for your reply Murray.

I hope to create a CD of old family photos that I can give out to rest of my family. There were 9 of us kids. Have done the family tree as far as I can go.
Had a scanner long time ago, and saw an article which said you get sharper prints if you scan the negatives, rather than the photo. It has to be a scanner that does this and I want to keep to Canon all the way through. Also have a lot of slides to scan as well.

If necessary I am prepared to put more ram in my notebook - it can accept up to 1Gb.

Hopefully the scanner will be able to do a good job copying out all the family tree notes. Have you been happy with the scanner. Is there anything you would have wanted extra on it to do a good job?

regards Marg.

Murray P
21-09-2004, 02:47 PM
More ram would definitely be good, 256 is a bit light at the best of times but if you start touching up photo's more is better. I have 512MB on a PC and it struggles sometimes (mainly because I work on large files with lots of undoe steps available, each step takes up ram, 20MB image x 20 steps, for eg).

Have alook at A Few Scan Tips (http://www.scantips.com/mission.html), he discusses scanning photo prints, slids and negatives. He's a tad particular so, you could probably get away with a bit less. Some's a bit out of date re hardware but, a wealth of info anway, have good cruise around.

Cheers Murray P

21-09-2004, 07:17 PM
Hi Marg,

I've been investigating scanner's for the similar purposes you want.

From what I have learned the average flatbed scanner with 35mm neg & slide scanning does not produce good results. Your reading that scanning negs & slides "can" give sharper prints rather than scanning photos is correct, if the negs are scanned in a specialised film scanner. These have a very much greater resolution than flatbeds & cost many more 100's of dollars than what you are considering.

It's all to do with resolution & dots per inch. Scanning a 6 x 4" or larger photo at a certain DPI setting will give many more pixels than scanning the little 1" x 1.5" slide or neg. Because when scanning, more inches = more pixels & better resolution. This may not matter if the images are only for use on a monitor, but printing is another thing.

The scantips site Murray suggested confirms this about neg scanning with flatbeds.

Not being able to justify the expense of a film scanner, I've been content to use a basic HP Scanjet flatbed. As long as the print is clear & sharp, the results from scanning 6 x 4 or larger photo have been excellent.

I hope you have success in scanning the family photos.

pulling hair out
22-09-2004, 09:27 AM
Hi Murray,
Know what you mean about "undo's" slowing things down. I used to have a form which broke down your changes into Colour, Sharpness, Contrast, etc and would note each change. Did a lot of "Save As" at different times and start again from that last save. My main annoyance was the printout which often didn't give a colour the same as what I saw on screen. I d/loaded a sheet of colours with the R,G,B,etc beside it, printed it out, compared with my screen, and it was really handy, but this was back in 1997!

Have you ever tried just cutting and copying a section of the main object in photo and doing your sharpness, the "white" thingy [?what it is called], etc, then repeat those changes on the whole picture?

Also read that if have a scanner which has lots of options, you can do a lot of the alterations at the scan point. This was to avoid the fact that each time you make a change after the scan degrade the quality of the picture.

Thanks for the site you gave, will definitely help refresh the old memory.

pulling hair out
22-09-2004, 09:44 AM
Hi Bazza,
Thanks for replying. Would have replied last night, but lay on the couch to watch Coro Street, fell asleep and woke at 2am this morning. Missed the final of Sex and the City which really annoyed me as I always follow it.

Have you decided on a scanner yet? Which ones or makes should I avoid? Don't know anyone with a scanner. Had a HP Scanjet last time but now prefer to go with same make printer/scanner which cuts out a lot of choices.

The slides I'll be using were taken in 1956. Apparantly an Uncle took the shots. He was a keen photographer. I don't know who to leave the originals with in order to let the others get copies. Family is a little divided. Can't afford to get copies done for them all. All I can do is give it my best shot, put them on CD and those without computers can get a camera shop to print them out. Maybe the shop can do a bit of tampering with it.

regards, Marg

16-10-2004, 07:22 PM
Hi Marg,
Apologies for bumping this older thread, but I wonder if you have purchased that Canon scanner or another?

And sorry for not offering advice about scanners, as my experience with scanners is limited. Like you I'm pleased with Canon products, especially printers.

I got the HP scanjet 2300 last year. It was cheap & recommended by consumer.

But the HP software uses IE to display scan options. It would not work with IE6, because of script errors. Tried it on an older PC with IE5, & it works, but thats inconvenient, as it's not my main PC.

Anyway, the scan results of 6 x 4" or larger prints were very excellent.

If only it would work using IE6! So you see I dont have recommendations for you.

Did you decide on the purchase of a scanner? I'd be glad to know of your experience.

Just a PS. Concerning scanning slides/negs. I believe because the originals are so small, that imperfections like dust/specks are a big problem.

Finally I welcome anyone with experience of scanners to offer advice.

Billy T
16-10-2004, 07:51 PM
It's probably a bit late to be saying this, but if it is going to be an important historical family archive, it would be far better to have negs professionally scanned and recover costs from the rest of the family.

If you do it properly now, there will be a quality archive for generations to come.


Billy 8-{)

pulling hair out
17-10-2004, 12:36 AM
Hi Bazza

Didn't get the scanner afterall. Will eventually get them put onto one disk professionally, and leave it to the family to either copy the whole disk or just take the shots that they need.

If I was going to get a really good scanner, I would also need to get a really good program to touch the photos up. There seemed to be so much to do.

One good thing came out of the whole exercise, I have added on some more Ram bringing it up to 512mb. It sure speeds up programs such as AVG, Spybot etc, and also one of my programs that has to bring up lots of results in one action.

The help and info I received from the forum posters was great and hope it helped others in the same situation.

Regards, Marg.

17-10-2004, 12:39 AM
Any idea of the cost of getting this done professionally?

I ask because i have a few people making queries about scanners for doing a small amount of negatives,I normally suggest they get them done professionally but was told the other day by someone they were quoted 10 bucks a negative.....

pulling hair out
17-10-2004, 02:43 AM
>> Any idea of the cost of getting this done professionally?

No, but as the scanner I was going to buy would not have been the best for the job, and was $262, you would get 26 pics done at $10 a negative.
Some of the negatives I have are very old but in good nick. Taken in those kodak box cameras. The negatives are almost the size of a photo itself. Have already had some photos done off them. But will check around CHCH and see what the going rate is. Maybe cheaper in bulk.

Someone also suggested renting a good scanner, but that might also be on the costly side.
I really regret getting rid of my previous scanner, but when my other computer got zapped by lightning and didn't have the cash to get it repaired, I sold everything except the system unit. After reading on the forum about how to do repairs etc, I might have a go at repairing it myself. Kept resetting itself, and there was a bad sector on the hard drive. It even had AMD, which was faster than Intel even then, [bought 1997].

Sorry I can't be of more help
regards, Marg.

17-10-2004, 06:40 PM
yes you can scan them with your $200 odd dollar scanner. the question it comes down to is quality.

if its impt like one poster said, then consider getting them scanned. its not so much of the resolution but hte actual quality of the scanner. flatbed jsut cannot match it. when u are scanning a small strip of film the file size is muche easier to manage than scanning a print.

At the lab you can request a photo CD for a couple of bunks. u can also request a drum scan for much more $$, like upto $100 per print. drum scanners at 19,000dpi. the thing about scanning is the limitation is the scanner. u will always have your film. that would not change but as we can obtain better quality scanners over time we can etch out more quality from the scan.

if u wanted a scanner just for this (high quality) i would reconsider. consider a better scanner or get it done for u as a service. i would consider it if you are using the scanner for other work as well ... where precision is not so needed ....

17-10-2004, 06:44 PM
i see you in chc, www.photo.co.nz has a Meridale Mall? I have bought stuff from them before but never been to the shop, sounds like they are uptodate with the gears etc.. catered for hte pro...

17-10-2004, 06:48 PM
the nege is the size of the photo? oh. scanner will be expensive then. consider it to be scanned for u then. only thing i would be worried about is the satisfaction of color matching, if its slide film u can "match to slide".

pulling hair out
17-10-2004, 09:07 PM
Hi Nomad,
Thanks for that info. The large negatives are black and white and would have been taken in the 1950's, and later ones are coloured. There are smaller negatives going back to the 1940's. Don't know what sort of camera they used. My G.Grandparents built the homestead around or just before 1900, and all the generations have been brought up there. My brother took over the farm and house when my father died. These photos are like a timeframe and it would be terrible if they were lost.

Will hop into town to that shop you were talking about. If they don't have a reduced cost for doing a lot, I will take in a couple at a time. No way would I let all of these negatives out of my sight.

Regards, Marg.

17-10-2004, 11:46 PM
that sounds like a good idea. do a few of what u can afford now.
just be aware that the photo CD are made usually with "personal" dedicated film scanners. generally up to 4000 dpi scans. these are the scanners that u and i can reasonably obtain in our own household if we really wanted to.

drum scanning is v different, much better, pple often say its almost to perfection. v unaffordable to the avg person, even to many pro's.

when make sure u know what u are getting from the scan. photo CD generally cost like $15 for a roll to be scanned or so ... this is usually scanned only enof for 6x4" at 300dpi, which is without interpolation it can make one 6x4 inch, u may be able to print it 2x fold ... of what u are needing, i would suggest the drum scan. let them know, what ur intentions are ... like what prints would u like the files to be able to print to.... thast way u can do a juggle of the price. high resolution scanning require a bigger wallet. but saying so, there is no point having a file that is able to print a A4 but u intend to print larger than that.

17-10-2004, 11:56 PM
i almost forgot. Image Lab at chc cbd has a business only in scanning and printing ....


they have prices online with their PDF document. They also provide discounts for larger quantities.

18-10-2004, 12:10 AM
Bill T was right it is far better to have negs professionally scanned .

I have a Canon CS5000F scanner ,it do a good job on scanning photos but not very good on scanning negatives and slides it take too long for scanning one negative so I endup going to the professional scanning.

18-10-2004, 01:15 PM
just to recap in case i was drifting to the super expensive method.

since u have older odd sized film, drum scan maybe a better option. nz may not have dedicated standard scanners that caters for ur odd sizes. the 2nd point that comes to mind is the age of the film.

if the film was supported by standard ded. film scanners and they are in reasonable shape they are able to make larger than A3 prints given u have much larger film sizes... i heard that 35mm film can make out to A3. some pro's do just this and sell their prints.

the benefit of drum scanning is they hold lot more lattitude. that means a lot more detail than a film scanner. such as shadows and highlights.

18-10-2004, 01:20 PM
if u want u can always do one and see how its like. it may be enof for you. one scan at high resolu is about $20-30.

1. if ur size is supported.
2. if the old tech film still yeields a good scan. they may be harder to scan.

18-10-2004, 03:19 PM
I have a HP 4470C scanner. It's my second. The first went down after a while, and I was impressed by the HP reaction. They offered me a credit note to either buy another HP or any similar priced scanner. I got the same and found it had improved immensley in the time since my first one. It has a negative and slide adapter and I have used the slide adapter a lot. Well over 1000 slides needed doing and I was quite surprised how soon I had the job finished. Good results too. But negatives I find a different story. I agree with the other replies - for negatives you need a much more specialised and expensive device. I eventually made the decision that as I almost certainly have prints for every negative then the best thing I could do is dump all my negatives. I did. (Very brave of me). But then I never managed to get a decent result from any of the negatives I tried.

18-10-2004, 05:41 PM
It seems the price of professional neg scanning may be prohibitive, and Thomas confirms the limitations of flatbed neg scanning.

Here's an idea Marg: You say the negs are mostly B & W from a Brownie camera.

I know those cameras very well. Used to sell them years ago. The most popular model was the Box Brownie. It took 8 exposures on 620 film, each sized 2 x 3 inches. Another model used 127 film with slightly smaller neg size. A more economical solution for a satisfactory result would be to scan good quality enlargements of the negs, on a modest flatbed scanner.

Do you have prints of these negs? If so they are likely to be contact prints. i.e. same size as the neg. These will not scan very well. But the negs are very much bigger than 35mm negs & if in reasonable condition, with a sharp image, excellent enlargements of 6 x 4", 5 x 7" or larger can be made. These will scan well on the flatbed, and the bonus is you have the enlargements to keep. Problem may be to find someone to do the prints. I used to do this, but these days with colour mainly in demand, only few labs do B & W, but there maybe some.

Doing the maths of dpi, pixels etc, shows that this method could provide a better result than scanning negs in a flatbed scanner, when a special quality film scanner is not available. Best wishes, Baz.