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Which negative scanner software?


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I just picked up a used Nikon Coolscan 5000 from eBay-- now my "digital darkroom" is complete. Before I get started installing it, I've heard someone mention Vuescan software before. Would anyone advise using this software over the Nikon stuff they package with the scanner? What are the advantages (if any) of the Vuescan over Nikon's software? Thanks for your opinions!

 

Mike

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Mike, I posted the same question here a few months ago. I don't know how Nikon's offering and Vuescan compare, but Vuescan was the almost unanimous recommendation from this group. I got it and like it very much. I believe they offer a trial version, so you could compare them yourself.

 

John

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I just picked up a used Nikon Coolscan 5000 from eBay-- now my "digital darkroom" is complete. Before I get started installing it, I've heard someone mention Vuescan software before. Would anyone advise using this software over the Nikon stuff they package with the scanner? What are the advantages (if any) of the Vuescan over Nikon's software? Thanks for your opinions!

 

Mike

 

I had Vuescan at one time. I thought the Nikon scanner software was far better for colour rendition/sharpness etc. You can try for free as a download – puts a watermark on processed files but at least you experiment with (if I remember correctly) no time expiry constraint. Works with Mac, Windows and Linux and innumerable scanners and film types.

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The real test is using it, whatever it is. Download VueScan free, play with it at your leisure. Both VS & N software involve a learning curve. Don't be impatient for excellent results. It's the same as using a leica RF camera. It does not come automatically. Your skill and experience need to build with practice.

 

My vote is VueScan by a mile.

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I've used all three and still flop back and forth. If you use the roll film adapter the Nikon software is the only one that gets the spacing between negatives right.

Vuescan and Silverfast require adjustment from time to time.

Lately, I just been scanning uncut rolls and have gone back to the Nikon Software.

I also did a comparison scanning each of the three with a slide and negative and thought I came up with a winner. All three looked a little different. However, I found when I post processed each one and then compared, There was almost no difference.

Use the one you are most comfortable with and adjust in Photoshop or Lightroom or whatever.

Nice thing about Vuescan is you can scan in DNG format if you want that.

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The way I use a scanner is to get exposure and color balance correct. All else is done in photoshop. Any software will do it. Save the settings and recall for the next neg. No need to start from scratch unless your exposures are off or you shoot daylight film under tungsten.

 

If you try to get a finished product, Vuescan would be my choice.

 

Nikons may not run on your computer and they are not upgrading software, so in the future Vuescan will be the only choice..

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Nikon Scan 4 one day did stop to scan with Coolscan 4000 after I had scan some flawlessly some 250 negatives. Under Window XP. Unsinstalled it, reinstalled it. No go.

 

Turned to Vuescan, Pro which has constant update.

 

No more support from Nikon.

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  • 2 weeks later...
I just picked up a used Nikon Coolscan 5000 from eBay-- now my "digital darkroom" is complete. Before I get started installing it, I've heard someone mention Vuescan software before. Would anyone advise using this software over the Nikon stuff they package with the scanner? What are the advantages (if any) of the Vuescan over Nikon's software? Thanks for your opinions!

 

Mike

 

 

Mike,

 

I tried all mentioned in this thread, starting at end 2007. Several thousand scans later i find myself using Silverfast exclusively. It gives the best results, other real strong points are: the multi-exposure option, focusing (both auto and manual), color management. The learning-curve for SF is steeper though.

 

 

Jan R.

Jan R. Smit

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One other thing to consider if you use the roll film adapter for scanning a full roll.

If you do use it, the Nikon software is by far the best. Spacing between the frames is right on with Nikon, but you have to adjust constantly with Silverfast or Vuescan.

If you don't, scan raw with little or no adjustment and post process and you will find either of the 3 will give the same results.

If you do little post processing, Silverfast seems to give the best results.

In order of overall ease of use, 1. Vuescan, 2. Nikon then Silverfast.

You can Demo each before purchasing.

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I am looking to buy another slide scanner as my Artixscan 4500 went up in smoke about 18 months ago and in any case the SCSI/firewire dongle that I was using on my Powermac was a problem, working OK one day and refusing to say "good morning" on others. I am using Leopard on the Powermac but would like any scanner/software to be Snow Leopard compatible, as that is what I use on my iMac and MacBook Pro. I have looked on Nikon's website and it more or less says "we don't really support SL and if you want to use it, you are on your own. No we don't intend to upgrade any of our Mac Software." Anyone got an recommendations for a scanner that will do both mounted slides and film strips. I am not keen on flatbeds for this. I do have a mounted slides attachment for my Canoscan LIDE600 and the results are awful. I do have Vuescan software. I have about 3,000 slides to do, so I need something quite fast.

 

Wilson

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