AFairley, I agree. CCD technology has much improved since I purchased my Minolta 5400. It would be interesting to compare a slide scan from my Minolta to a photo of the slide taken with a full frame DSLR and macro lens. Unfortunately, I donít have such a camera.
As has been noted, multi-sampling is designed to reduce scanner noise. Iíve tested it on my scanner and I see no difference. Maybe my scanner has so little noise that there isnít any benefit. Iím not sure, but others have reported the same results. I guess if a scanner has the capability to multi-sample, then give it a try see if it helps.
Also, as has been noted, multi-scan can serve two purposes. It can be used to reduce noise much like multi-sampling, it can be used to scan at more than one exposure which are then blended much like an HDR image, or both.
However, every scanner with a hardware exposure adjustment can multi-scan for ďHDRĒ purposes regardless whether itís supported by the scanner software. Moreover, if youíve bracketed your film exposures, you can also get additional benefits. The key to making it work easily, however, is Photoshopís auto align function.
Hereís how it works: Do two or more (more than two can be better) scans of your film with different exposures. Better yet, if you have bracketed film exposures, use them. Then load the scans into PS in layers, with the darkest exposure at the bottom, then the next darkest, etc. Auto align the layers. Use the ďBlend IfĒ sliders to blend the different layers. Make sure the blends are very gradual so that you get a seamless blend. With this method, you can easily target which portions of each layer you want to use. Once you get the hang of it, itís pretty easy. Donít expect miracles, however, there is only so much information you can squeeze into one photo.