Researching the Plustek OpticFilm 8200i Scanner

Recorded on November 1st, 2016

If you’re in the market for a dedicated film scanner and don’t want to gamble on an old Nikon Coolscan on eBay, the Plustek OpticFilm 8200i looks like a good choice. I’ve been reading about the Plustek obsessively and this article, A case for home scanning & the Plustek OpticFilm 8200i by KJ Vogelius, is what ultimately convinced me. The key about the 8200i SE vs. the more expensive 8200i Ai is that the Ai is bundled with the more extensive version of SilverFast than the SE. The hardware is identical in either case. I figure I’ll give the included SE software a throw, knowing that VueScan is always an option if SilverFast is too onerous.

All the sample images I’ve seen from the 8200i series look incredible, revealing film grain that only Nikon and Frontier scanners can show. I expect to have to do some tweaking with each scan, but Vogelius’s comment in the thread below the article makes me feel better about that:

As an aside I’m not convinced that it’s possible or even a good idea to always get “finished” looking images straight from the scanner. It’s probably better to scan pretty flat and neutral and do colour and tonality adjustments in a dedicated tool.

His extremely detailed rolling review of the 8200i on his site is also just astoundingly well done.

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