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Epson 'Perfection'? Well, maybe not.
on 21 January 2011
This is the second scanner I've tried, so I suppose I'm still relatively new to the world of scanning negatives. The first I tried was the super-cheap and absolutely abysmal Veho... STEER CLEAR of that one at all costs. I returned it the day it arrived, and immediately started looking around for higher-spec machines which were still purse-friendly.
When this one arrived I was overjoyed. The build quality is very good, and it filled me with hope. Similarly, on installing the software, I was impressed - very slick and user-friendly.
For the first 36 negs or so, the resulting scans continued this trend. There is a plethora of options in the professional scanning mode so the quality of the scan really is as good as the length of time you're prepared to spend scanning - the higher the resolution the longer the scan takes, clearly.
But (and there's always a but), here comes the reason why this product (which on first impressions was brilliant) received only 2 stars from me. After I'd scanned my first film, I noticed a dark line appearing across the middle of the frame. It's less visible in some frames and appalling visible in others, but it is always there. I googled the problem and found that other people using this scanner and scanning colour negs (mine are all black and white) found a red line appearing, rather than the dark shadowy one I saw. Either way, this appears to be a common issue with the V330.
Luckily, I have Photoshop and these lines are easy enough to edit out, but I only edit the ones which are to be published online - for those of you looking to scan family pictures without the hassle, I'd look for a different scanner.
A second, intermittent problem has also presented itself, but seems to only happen once every ten or so scans. This particular problem sees the 6th frame (the last on the strip being scanned) be cut in half in the 'thumbnail' mode. It's easily resolved, however, by using the 'normal' preview mode to scan.
Finally, the scanner developed a third problem - corrupted images in colour scanning. I contacted Epson directly to see if there were solutions to these problems and whilst first appearing to be helpful, my problems were met with a shrug of the shoulders and I was given advice to return the unit with no indication that a different unit of the same make might be any better.
I returned the scanner and was issued a refund. I now have a Canoscan 9000f which, I must say, is a great deal better, faster, quieter and with much better scan quality to boot, even when comparing scans made at the same resolution (1200 dpi).