I'm a proud new member here, thanks for having me. I do art photography and just ventured into medium format - got my Hasselblad 503CW with a 60mm CF lens a few days ago. SO excited! Next up: A scanner...
I already own a Minolta Dimage Elite 5400 II (with a Nikon CoolScan V as backup) that I use with great satisfaction for my 35mm stuff. Thus, the new scanner will primarily be used for medium format. Please keep that in mind when discussing resolution further down.
Also, I have quite a bit of scanning experience. I currently prefer Vuescan, but have some SilverFast experience as well. I'll use whatever comes with the scanner, except for questionable and outdated scanner-manufacturer software.
My budget is somewhere between $2.000-$3.000. Resolution and general quality of the scanner is more important to me than scan times. I'm not interested in flatbeds.
I've done a ton of research with everything from Rockwell and many of the excellent discussions in here, yet I remain having a few deciding questions. Hope there's someone out there with proper scanning experience who can broaden my horizon...
Again, with this beast to be used primarily for 120, these are the contenders I've nailed it down to so far:
Minolta Dimage Multi Pro
Nikon 9000 ED
Plustek Opticfilm 120
Knowing that both the Minolta and Nikon do really nice jobs, I still feel reluctant to pay $2500-$3500 for machines that have long been out-phased and is no longer serviceable. If the Plustek turns out to do just as fine a job, if not better, it's a no-brainer. Otherwise, sure, I would consider one of the "oldies".
Here's where I get confused: What is the actual difference in resolution between these scanners. For instance, I know that the Nikon is spec'd at 4000 DPI, but does it ACTUALLY scan 4000 DPI with medium format? And I can't find the DPI for the Minolta - does anyone know?
Now, the Plustek is spec'd at 10600 DPI/5600 DPI optic - what's the difference between the optic DPI and the general DPI? What max DPI does it scan 120mm? Also, I haven't been able to find any proper scan tests/comparisons from that scanner, only the less-than-optimal "released" scans from the company website.
A customer review on B&H Photo mentioned the following:
"I have been scanning my Hasselblad negs at 2650 dpi resolution with the Plustek, and the Coolscan max resolution was 4000, so the scans I'm getting with the new scanner are slightly smaller, though still plenty big for a 24x24 print at 300 dpi. I have made some scans at 5300 resolution on the Plustek, which makes for a file size over 300MB in size, and they look great, too, though I haven't done any careful testing to compare them."
Does that mean that Plustek "only" does 2650 DPI for 120mm? He doesn't mention whether the 5300 scans he did was 35mm or 120mm.
Lastly (sorry for this long post), I know that the Plustek comes with a fixed focus lens. Is that an issue? I mean, isn't focus up to you as a photographer when shooting the picture?
Thanks very much on advance for your time and interest in helping me out. I'm excited to see what some of you recommend.