One way to convert your favorite memories into digital files is by scanning physical film.
Many photography labs offer scanning services, often using large scanner within the suite to process a complete roll of 35mm film in one minute. But, similar to developing at a lab, having your film scanned by a lab costs money, so many people just like the idea of scanning negatives themselves. These days, many amateur photographers find themselves stuck between a rock and hard place when it comes to digitizing film. They want the convenience of modern technology but they don’t want to invest in all sorts of expensive equipment or have access to only low-quality machinery. While some printers may seem overpriced, there are actually many models to choose from. Meet the Epson Perfection V600.
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The Epson Perfection V600 is appropriate for 35mm and medium format. The max film scan resolution is 6400 x 9600 dpi, which means it can pick up all of the finest details in your photos, even the tiniest flecks of dust or scratches. It includes Dust/scratch removing technology and USB connectivity with MS In the box, you’ll find a scanner, two plastic film holders, power cable and data cable – no software.
Beyond its in-built holders, this scanner is quite straightforward to use out of the box. With that said, before I get into why it is great for scanning film, I would like to give some more context. First of all, as the Epson V600 can be used for a number of scanning applications, we will only cover how well Second, I have been scanning my own film for a longtime using various scanners, and it is without question that there exists a steep learning curve. It can be done right, although it just takes time to assemble the components and ensure you re processing things in a manner that suits your needs.
We all know there are many ways to get a desirable image from scanning films. The opinions in this post are just based on my experiences with the process. When you scan film, it’s like trying to make sense of Raw files; how you process them can have an enormous effect on how they look – particularly when dealing with color and black and white
Getting the V600 up and running is straightforward, too: you lay your negative onto a film holder that’s included with the scanner and snap it shut (don’t forget to place one on either side of the negative). After loading this into the V600, it’ll have devoted its self to scanning your negatives. You can hold up to twelve 35mm or four medium format photographs at once, and also has a holder for mounted slide film.
The holders could be made from something top quality. I’ve used other scanners that have magnetic strips for their holders and also i favor these by a longer shot. After your negatives are set up, it is time to get scanning by using the accompanying software, Epson Scan . The basic process of scanning a photo is similar across different modes. You only need to make some minor adjustments before you commit to your desired scan quality. Seems simple, right? Definitely not.
On my Windows 10 desktop, the scanning software was extremely unstable as soon as I primarily made the V600. I had it linked to my Windows 10 desktop and noticed that it crashed through the preview scan frequently. eventually I couldn t even get my computer to identify that the scanner was on and connected
Although my Windows XP Pro was generally much faster, I would have to put ice packs on the program with graphite. This rendered it useless in humid areas like Florida.
Once I finally got around to getting it ready to go, I found the Mac operating system quite user-friendly. The look is potentially dated, but the process is basic.
Full Automatic Mode
The default mode, Full auto, is the easiest to use but not ideal for some users.
The Home Mode setting enables your scanner to operate quicker than usual.
A scanner should be used in a well-lit room rather than by direct lighting or other light source, but this is not always possible. Use Home Mode when you are scanning facing the window or outdoors where the sun is illuminating it.
I believe Home Mode offers sufficient options without being overwhelming.
Best V600 Printers Review Rating (4.5/5)
Best V850 Printers Review Rating (3.8/5)
Pro mode provides the most options, but beware as that if you are not a professional scanner or do not know what you are doing, it can be daunting with so many scanning quality windows.
Even when in Professional Mode, the desktop can become cluttered with a variety of different modules. A new module called COLOR SCHEME is available to help you adjust colors without overwriting other options.
The following screenshot does not show this because I could not fit it alongside the rest of the windows in my screenshot. If you are a Pro user and want to take full control, the Professional Mode is there for you. For most users though, I recommend using Home mode.
Home Mode provides sufficient control to capture a good image that has been scanned. You can then continue making any adjustments you need, especially to the level of quality in your preferred photography editing software. You can adjust DPI (dots per inch), and brightness, as well as intelligent options – such as color restoration- which automatically lightens dust and other small particles to make your scans perfect.
Home Mode offers a restricted control over the scan, with Professional Mode presenting more options. An additional nice feature is you can change the bit-depth of your scans, with the choice of 8- or 16-bit Grayscale and 24- or 48-bit Color. DPI goes entirely up to 12800 for large prints, so if you’re thinking about making big prints this will establish you right for that.
Above, you can view a comparison of the same image scanned with two different settings. The one on the left is in Home Mode (which surprisingly had less dust and hairs) while the other scan on the right is in Professional Mode (with dust removal turned off). It was more close to how I thought it should look without any manual white balance, The photo was taken using Portra 400VC and processed with a Proxar macro filter.
Below is a gallery comparing scans of images captured on the EPSON V600 with those of an Epson V850.
The Epson scans were all done in Home mode at 4800 DPI. This led to files with dimensions of 6600 x 4400 pixels. Aside from that, there were no other customizations made to either scanner.
When viewed at 100% or on a large monitor, the lab scans display greater detail and finer grain than the Epson scanning. They do a better job of displaying Fujifilm Pro 400H film’s tone. With the Epson projects, there is an interest in color-correction.
The image below, which was scanned on an Epson V600 and edited in Photoshop for tonal balance, can also serve as a posting-ready scan. You can get close to the pro scan colors with just some fussing, but it still looks sharper, more descriptive and less noisy compared to my Epson. The corrected Epson scans look sufficient for social media sharing or small printing even though they may not compare with the professional.
Of course, the lab scans cost money ($10) and scanning takes time. When you’re trying to scan each frame in 35mm film, it can take over 3 minutes per frame–108 total–which is nearly 4 rolls of 36 exposures. If you purchase the Epson for $229.99, on average it would take more than 41 hours of scanning to break even with lab scans which cost substantially more at the time of this article.
Medium format hiccups Sure, the V600 can scan at high resolutions and high color depth, but sadly there is some slight banding present when scanning medium format film that I didn’t notice in 35mm. Banding isn’t uncommon for a flatbed scanner, but it’s something to be aware of.
Some banding can be corrected with Photoshop, but the complexity of your image may make this a challenge.
Below, check out a full gallery of the pictures scanned with an Epson V600 to edit in Adobe Lightroom.
The V600 has its flaws, like flimsy film trays and dated-looking software. But assuming you can get everything set up successfully (sorry Windows 10 users), it’s not too difficult and straightforward to get decent-looking scans with Home mode, particularly if you’re only looking to scan 35mm. However, the time that you will spend waiting for it to scan is less with V600 compared to V850.
Ultimately, for amateurs and professionals alike, I think this is a great product to scan one’s work – or old negatives. But if you need the best quality files with ease of turnaround in addition, your local lab still comes out ahead (in case it’s near).
Here is what we like about the printer.
The Epson V600 printer is a good all-around printer without major flaws, though there are some things that we found less than stellar about it.
First of all, the ink cartridges not only wear out quicker, but they also leak and lose their ability to print cleanly during droplet exchanges or while refilling the cartridge
Flimsy trays make high-quality scans a difficult task. Banding becomes an issue when scanning medium format film. Older scanning software may cause hiccups during the process on some Windows 10 machines