Friday, 1 August 2008

Scanner Reviews

Why are decent reviews of film scanners so hard to find? Cameras are easy. If I want to find opinions of a DSLR, say, a Canon EOS 450D there are pages and pages of debate about every intricate feature. Even old film cameras are well represented on the net. Want to know why a Nikon F2 is so great? No problem. With scanners though, it's a different matter. The few that are out there roughly divide into two distinct camps.

Firstly there's the 'isn't it great to put all the old family snaps on the computer' type. These make the assumption that we all shoot digital and preserving the 'old' pics on the computer is pretty cool. These reviews are useless to a photographer.

Secondly there's the 'I bought this and it's great/junk'. These are usually accompanied by examples showing how great/useless it is. These example almost always have basic scanning errors like incorrect black and white points or a colour balance that is just so so wrong it screams. The reviewer either doesn't notice these faults, or blames the scanner for their inability to use it properly. These reviews are also useless to a photographer.

Scanning isn't easy. It's fiddly, time consuming and frustrating. But it would really help to see reviews of equipment by people who know the basics. Anyone?

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