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MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?



 
 
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  #1  
Old February 10th 06, 09:23 PM posted to rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
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Default MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?

I know this is the old Polaroid, but I've never had the opportunity to
use one or see the output. In the past I have had access to a Nikon
8000 with good results, but now it's time to buy my own.

Has anyone done a rigorous comparison? Let's pretend a used 8000, new
9000, and new 120tf are all the same price - I'll make the $$$
judgement based on the quality differences. I don't care about
scanning speed or ICE gizmos - just straight-up scan quality. Thanks
in advance.

  #2  
Old February 10th 06, 09:36 PM posted to rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
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Default MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?

I should add that I have a preference for negative film, but am
interested in transparancy performance as well.

  #3  
Old February 10th 06, 10:29 PM posted to rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
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Default MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?


"hassy_user" writes:

I know this is the old Polaroid, but I've never had the opportunity to
use one or see the output. In the past I have had access to a Nikon
8000 with good results, but now it's time to buy my own.

Has anyone done a rigorous comparison? Let's pretend a used 8000, new
9000, and new 120tf are all the same price - I'll make the $$$
judgement based on the quality differences. I don't care about
scanning speed or ICE gizmos - just straight-up scan quality. Thanks
in advance.



James Hutchison posts MTF data he

http://www.jamesphotography.ca/bakeoff2004/scanner_test_results.html

LS-8000 #1: MTF50: 26.92, CA: 0.26
LS-8000 #2: MTF50: 19.52, CA: 0.465 [mine]
LS-8000 #3: MTF50: 18.7, CA: 0.592

Microtek 120 #1: MTF50: 18.4, CA: .894
Microtek 120 #2: MTF50: 18.1, CA: .768
Polaroid 120: MTF50: 17.95, CA: 1.27

[CA = chromatic abberation, smaller # = better]
------------

You'll see scan snippets from both models on my scan-snippets site.

These two scanners use different light sources and that will
explain most of the difference in their apparent sharpness.
120tf uses the more traditional cold-cathode (ie., diffuse)
source while LS-8000 uses LEDs, which act more like a
point source (see: Callier effect.)

There's a price to be paid for that: the Nikon, while giving
sharper scans, will also show film grain and defects that
the Polaroid (Microtek) will hide.

With regard to ICE, all I can say is: don't discount it.
When I bought my LS-8000, I assumed it was a scam
and that I'd be have it turned off most of the time. I was
100% wrong on that score. It's turned out to be a lifesaver.
I spend almost no time retouching scans. The LS-8000
snippets on my site are all done with ICE turned on.

Personally: I've owned three film scanners that were
either branded as Microtek or OEM'd by Microtek.
All are now gone, but the Nikon remains.


rafe b
www.terrapinphoto.com
scan snippets
www.terrapinphoto.com/jmdavis


  #4  
Old February 11th 06, 12:09 AM posted to rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
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Default MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?

Great info! Thanks Rafe. I suspected that the Nikon was better, but
wanted some firmer evidence. I might even try out the ICE

Now do I wait for good used 8000 or just pop for the 9000......

  #5  
Old February 11th 06, 12:42 AM posted to rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
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Default MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?

On 10 Feb 2006 16:09:29 -0800, "hassy_user"
wrote:

Great info! Thanks Rafe. I suspected that the Nikon was better, but
wanted some firmer evidence. I might even try out the ICE

Now do I wait for good used 8000 or just pop for the 9000......



A new one is $1800 at BH. A good used one,
about half that, give or take.

FWIW, an LS-9000 took first place in Jim Hutchison's
2005 "bakeoff" although that one was done by very
different rules (deliberately more subjective.)

IMO, some of the very sharpest scans on my
"snippets" site -- by Max Perl -- are done on
a 9000, from 35mm BW GigabitFilm using Nikkor
prime lenses.

There are a few "fixes" in NikonScan software
that only work on the 9000. Most of these are
for nuisance-level bugs that have well known
workarounds.

BTW, you mentioned you work with C41 film
mostly -- you'll find the analog gain
(exposure) controls very useful for that.

Having independent R/G/B lighting means
that exposures for the three color channels
can be set independently.


rafe b
www.terrapinphoto.com
  #6  
Old February 11th 06, 01:11 AM posted to rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
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Default MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?

In article ,
rafe b rafebATspeakeasy.net wrote:


Having independent R/G/B lighting means
that exposures for the three color channels
can be set independently.


rafe b
www.terrapinphoto.com


Ah -Very interesting, every so often you prove to be of value


--
"To announce that there must be no criticism of the President,
or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong,
is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable
to the American public."--Theodore Roosevelt, May 7, 1918

greg_____photo(dot)com
  #7  
Old February 11th 06, 05:14 PM posted to rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
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Default MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?

I have a Mircrotek 120tf. I think it does a slightly better job in the
shadows on slide film than the 8000, based on scanning a slide on my
120tf and the same slide on Rafe's 8000. That said, rafe is correct
about ICE being worthwhile - but its not a significant problem if you
keep your negs/slides clean. The other thing that I should mention
about the 120tf - the Microtek software sucks - it can't actually scan
a 6x7 at 4000dpi without crapping out. And Microtek customer support
is useless. Fortunately, the 120tf also includes Lasersoft's
Silverfast software which works pretty well.
Peace,
-chasfs
http://chasfs.com

  #8  
Old February 11th 06, 07:17 PM posted to rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
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Default MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?

One thing to keep in mind when budgeting for the excellent Nikon 8000 and
9000 scanners is that many users have posted they feel the Nikon glass
holder is a necessity to get good corner to corner sharpness with mf film.
I think Aztek still sells a wet mount kit for those scanners too, just in
case that interests you and you need to factor it into your decision process


Doug
--
Doug's "MF Film Holder" for batch scanning "strips" of 120/220 medium format
film:
http://home.earthlink.net/~dougfishe...mainintro.html


  #9  
Old February 11th 06, 08:43 PM posted to rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
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Default MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?

Recently, chasfs posted:

I have a Mircrotek 120tf. I think it does a slightly better job in
the shadows on slide film than the 8000, based on scanning a slide on
my 120tf and the same slide on Rafe's 8000.

based on the very different results between two 120tf scans on the scanner
bake-off page that Rafe referenced, I'd say that it would be hard to draw
conclusions about the hardware. I'm sufficiently happy with my 120tf that
I wouldn't run out and buy the Nikon, even though such a move would be
essentially free for me.

That said, rafe is
correct about ICE being worthwhile - but its not a significant
problem if you keep your negs/slides clean.

That's an important consideration. I clean my film prior to scanning, so
that I don't have to fix things after the fact.

The other thing that I
should mention about the 120tf - the Microtek software sucks - it
can't actually scan a 6x7 at 4000dpi without crapping out. And
Microtek customer support is useless. Fortunately, the 120tf also
includes Lasersoft's Silverfast software which works pretty well.

I have a love/hate relationship with ScanWizard Pro TX. If it worked, as
does ScanWizard Pro for the flatbed ArtixScan models, I'd never use
Silverfast AI, as Scanwizard Pro (not TX) has a far more productive UI.
But, unfortunately, you are right. ScanWizard Pro TX is broken and not
likely to be fixed since Silverfast AI 6 is included in the package. While
I wouldn't go so far as to say that Microtek customer support is
'useless', they have been helpful in areas under their control, but they
aren't in a position to make Pro TX work.

Neil


  #10  
Old February 14th 06, 03:59 AM posted to rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
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Default MF Scanners - Microtek 120tf?

On Sat, 11 Feb 2006 20:43:17 GMT, "Neil Gould"
wrote:


That's an important consideration. I clean my film prior to scanning, so
that I don't have to fix things after the fact.



Right, and you never get into accidents,
so no point seatbelts or airbags, either.

Seriously though, I've got access to some
excellent film processing these days, but
even so, without ICE, there'd be plenty
of touch up and cleanup to do.

I've finally figured out how to make ICE
work on the 4990, so this is the first time
I've been able to use it with my LF stuff.
What a relief.

The downside is that an LF scan with ICE
(2400 dpi/48 bits) takes about 45 minutes.



rafe b
www.terrapinphoto.com
 




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