unexpectd film scanner problem

Discussion in 'Scanners' started by Mike - EMAIL IGNORED, Apr 7, 2006.

  1. I thank all those who responded to my previous
    post advising me that a flat-bed will not serve
    my purpose. Now I have been considering the
    Minolta 5400 (5400dpi) and the Nikon 5000
    (4000dpi). Since I want high resolution, I was
    previously advised on this group that the 5400
    is probably the better choice, and that it the
    additional resolution would make a difference.

    However. I just learned that Minolta has gone
    out of business. Did I hear that: "The best
    laid schemes o' mice an' men Gang aft agley"?
    Would you still consider buying a Minolta?

    Thanks for your advice.
    Mike - EMAIL IGNORED, Apr 7, 2006
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    Scott W Guest

    Very few photos have much detail that scanning at even 2000 ppi will
    not pick up.
    The loss from scanning at 4000 instead of 5400 will simply not be an
    issue, IMO

    If others feel that 5400 is needed I would sure like to see a scan to
    support this

    Scott W, Apr 7, 2006
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    hans Guest

    IMO the KM5400 does a great job but is not constructed to last forever.
    When I called the MinoltaI service department end of last month to
    inquire how the repair of my unit was going they told me that it just
    made it before they were all fired as of April 1... So unless you can
    get one at a huge discount I would look at something else like the new
    Epson flatbeds.
    -- Hans
    hans, Apr 7, 2006
  4. I have the KM-5400, and I seldom use the full resolution. I usually scan at
    about 1400, and sometimes at 2700. This results in files of the order of 10
    megabytes, and under 2 megabytes after fairly high JPG compression.....More
    than adequate for my purposes. The only real use of the higher resolution
    scans to me is if I want to crop something out of the background of one of
    my slides/negatives....Then I will use the greatest resolution in order to
    get the best image. But usually, the slide itself isn't good enough to
    extract much from an image unless the image is at least 25% of the original
    picture area.....IOW, if I have to crop less than that, it's going to be a
    loser, even at 5400 pixels per inch. If I had to do with a 4000 pixel per
    inch scanner, I wouldn't have any problem with that. If you are accustomed
    to taking tripod photos of stationary subjects, and really need the
    resolution, then you might want the 5400 dpi.
    Sony is taking over the maintenance of the KM scanners, and I have heard
    bad things about their service from others, but I have no experience in this
    area myself.
    William Graham, Apr 7, 2006
  5. On Fri, 07 Apr 2006 15:19:28 -0700, William Graham wrote:

    Most of my pictures are taken with a tripod. Many are of
    stationary objects. Most with negative films 160 ISO or less.
    I often crop, at least for rotational correction.

    Mike - EMAIL IGNORED, Apr 7, 2006

    Tony Polson Guest

    Until last year I had cheap access to a drum scanner. But it failed
    and we couldn't justify the cost of repair. So I rented a Minolta
    5400 scanner. It worked OK, but the dynamic range of the scans was

    Then the 5400 II was introduced. I rented one late last year. It had
    much better Dmax and I was very happy with the scans - they were as
    good as the old Howtek drum scanner I used, with very good Dmax. But
    the scanner broke and had to be returned for repair. The transport
    gears had fractured.

    A second 5400 II scanner had the same problem. Brand new out of the
    box, it worked fine. But the transport gears soon broke. I took it
    to be serviced at Konica Minolta UK and they told me they had a
    backlog of several dozen waiting to be repaired, all but a few with
    the same transport problem. The few others had a variety of problems.

    Apparently the metal transport gears of the 5400 were replaced with
    plastic on the 5400 II, presumably to save cost. So you have a choice
    between a well made 5400 with poor Dmax (a good flatbed scanner will
    beat the Dmax, that's how poor it is) or a flimsy 5400 II which makes
    excellent scans, but not many before it breaks. You choose.

    I chose a Nikon Coolscan LS5000ED. Alas, the resolution is lower than
    the Minolta 5400 but it is superbly made. I have one on order but the
    dealer has loaned me a Coolscan LS4000ED until it arrives.

    Nikon Europe are taking orders for the final production run of the
    LS5000ED, after which no more will be made. Check on the situation in
    your country. If you want the LS5000ED, now might be the last chance
    you have to order one. I will be buying a second Coolscan, probably
    used, as backup, because I don't want to risk being left to scan
    slides on a flatbed when my LS5000ED dies and I can no longer source a
    new one.
    Tony Polson, Apr 7, 2006

    Frank ess Guest

    If you drill down through the last photo on this page
    you'll eventually arrive at an illustration of what a hand-held 35mm
    scan at 2400 ppi can get you. HP PhotoSmart S20, cheap and useful, may
    be good enough.
    Frank ess, Apr 8, 2006

    Scott W Guest

    So the question is would you get any more detail with a 5400 ppi scan
    then a 4000 ppi scan?

    Scott W, Apr 8, 2006
  9. On Fri, 07 Apr 2006 23:52:24 +0100, Tony Polson wrote:


    Google does not find LS5000ED, or variations thereof.
    It does find "5000 ED". Any idea why?

    Mike - EMAIL IGNORED, Apr 8, 2006
  10. On Fri, 07 Apr 2006 16:18:57 -0700, Scott W wrote:

    Yes, that is the question. I have postings from the past
    that say the answer is "yes". On the other hand, the
    question may be moot in view of what I read about the
    mechanical quality of the Minolta, and the quality of
    service from Sony.

    Mike - EMAIL IGNORED, Apr 8, 2006

  11. See Jim Hutchison's scanner bakeoff results, and some of the
    sample scans on my scan snippets site. The Minolta 5400 is
    (or was) capable of very impressive scans, and in some cases
    it is visibly and measurably sharper than the best scans I can
    do on my LS-8000, which is no slouch.

    <http://www.jamesphotography.ca/> // scanner bakeoff

    The two sharpest scanners in the 2004 bakeoff are
    both Minolta 5400s. The next two down the list are
    4000 dpi Nikons.

    <http://www.terrapinphoto.com/jmdavis/> // scan snippets

    See scans by Bart van der Wolf and Meino DeGraaf.

    I also disagree with Scott that there's no resolution
    on film beyond 2700 dpi. I worked for a couple of
    years with a Polaroid SprintScan Plus, which was
    a 2700 dpi scanner. Results from the LS-8000 are
    visibly better.

    There's no doubt that increased scanner resolution
    is a matter of diminishing returns. But with the right
    technique and film, that 5400 dpi from the
    Minolta *can* be observed.

    rafe b
    Raphael Bustin, Apr 8, 2006
  12. Yes. Rotational crop corrections don't require any extra resolution....I do
    that a lot too. But when I crop out a background image to blow it up, then I
    will sometimes use the maximum resolution my scanner has. - And it seldom
    does much good, because the film just doesn't have the resolution to begin
    with, and the scanner can't make a silk purse.........
    William Graham, Apr 8, 2006
  13. The name as molded into the front of mine is "Super Coolscan 5000
    David Dyer-Bennet, Apr 8, 2006
  14. Mike - EMAIL IGNORED

    Colin D Guest

    'LS 5000 ED' is the first site up in Google if you search on 'ls 5000

    Colin D.
    Colin D, Apr 8, 2006
  15. Mike - EMAIL IGNORED

    HvdV Guest

    I suppose this was what happened to my scanner too though they said they
    replaced the transport motor (+ gear?). When I got it back I found a leaflet
    in the box warning to be very careful with loading the slide tray: one should
    make absolutely sure is closes perfectly. Hopefully this will prevent further
    trouble as I suspect getting a Minolta scanner repaired will be difficult now
    that their repair shops have closed, at least this seems to be the case in

    -- Hans
    HvdV, Apr 8, 2006
  16. Yes, I must have mistyped it yesterday.
    Mike - EMAIL IGNORED, Apr 8, 2006
  17. Mike - EMAIL IGNORED

    Scott W Guest

    Yeah but I did not say there was no detail past 2700 ppi, go back and
    read what I said. I did say that most film has little detail past 2000
    ppi, and this it true. I also said that the extra detail going from
    4000 ppi to 5400 would not likely make any difference.

    If you want a real eye opener try this, take this image, the sharpest
    scan I have seen to date.
    down sample it to 3000 ppi and back up to full size. Now use USM at 0.4
    and 50% and compare it to the original. Now only do I see no loss in
    detail but the noise is reduced making the image that was down sample
    and back up looks better IMO.

    Scott W, Apr 8, 2006
  18. Mike - EMAIL IGNORED

    Tony Polson Guest

    It's an extremely common problem. My local Minolta specialist dealer
    told me that the 5400 II failure rate had been over 50%, with very few
    of his customers having heavily used the scanner.

    It's a pity because, optically and electronically, it is a marvel,
    giving results that can only be bettered with a drum scanner. It even
    beats the Imacon Flextight 3 I have access to. Praise indeed.

    But mechanically, it is complete and utter junk.
    Sony agreed to take on the warranty liabilities. Presumably this will
    only apply to Konica Minolta equipment purchased since April 1, 2005.
    But I don't know how they will *service* the equipment, at least here
    in the UK, because none of the Konica Minolta photo technicians has
    been hired by Sony (as of March 31, 2006, they have all been fired)
    and the Sony technicians have zero Minolta experience ...
    Tony Polson, Apr 8, 2006
  19. Mike - EMAIL IGNORED

    Alan Browne Guest

    Utter crap. The 5400 has more dynamic range than any negative or
    reversal film.
    Having trouble keeping your stories straight Polson?

    "I bought one, returned it for a replacement within a week, and then
    found the replacement failed within a month. The camera store
    couldn't offer a new replacement but offered me a "refurbished" model
    with a substantial rebate." -- Tony Polson, 24 Jan 2006.
    Utter tripe. The Dmax of the 5400 is beyond any negative or reversal film.
    Alan Browne, Apr 9, 2006
  20. Mike - EMAIL IGNORED

    Alan Browne Guest

    See my other comment. I have no examples to post handilly, but next
    time I do have a good example of it, I will post it. I do less 35mm
    scanning these days as I shoot 35mm less and I haven't received my Nikon
    9000 yet for the MF (hopefully the week after next).

    Alan Browne, Apr 9, 2006
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