I’ve had a bit of a love/hate relationship with scanning lately – I hate scanning and I love going to the pub to drink beer. I just don’t have the time or patience to scan negatives. I was using an Epson V500, but I wasn’t happy with the results, not even when using it with Vuescan software. I even bought ‘The Vuescan Bible’, apparently all you need to know about this super-dooper scanning program. I may as well have bought a copy of the Old Testament written in Swahili, for all the sense it made.
After a few weeks I gave-up scanning and gifted the V500 to my good friend, and fellow photographer, Andi ‘Bodi’ Howland. I also vowed never to attempt negative scanning ever again. I started sending all my films to a pro lab to be developed and scanned straight to disc, but that’s an expensive business – £16 per film. I’m not sure if the lab I’ve been using has sacked the old scan-man, but if they have, they need to get him back, because the quality has gone right down the shit-pan. Anyway, I decided I could do a better job…
At the end of September, this year, I’ll have completed a photo-essay in Canada and will be returning to the UK with 130+ rolls of 120 colour film, and they aren’t going to process themselves for free. So, I’ve bought another scanner…I know what you’re thinking – “This guy’s an idiot!”, but there is method in my madness. I’ve just gone for a better scanner, the Epson V700. The two scans here are infinitely better than the ones I originally got back from my pro lab and they only took a few seconds to scan. But for me, the main advantage is the cost – the V700 was only £400, that’s the cost of a process and scan on 30 rolls of film.
So, I can kiss goodbye to to October and most of November. I’ll be in my basement saving myself a small fortune.
(both images made with a Mamiya 7II and 80mm lens. Film was Kodak Portra 400 and Tri-X 400 b/w)