This is an excellent scanner if you've got a lot of scanning to do and want the best possible photographic quality. I'd have given the scanner itself 5 stars if I hadn't had a bit of trouble with the software that came with it.
I got this scanner to replace an old Epson flatbed that just wouldn't work with my ever-newer computers and couldn't do 35mm slides with anything resembling decent quality anyway. I also need to scan in a whole bunch of slides and filmstrips, including some 1940s-vintage Kodachromes. I have an (old) dedicated slide/film scanner, but I never could get it to work with the newer Macs (my main computer is an 8-core Mac Pro)--the SCSI to Firewire converter simply wouldn't work with it, even though it was supposed to. I also do "scanner art" (scans of physical objects), which you can really only do on a good flatbed scanner.
I was pleasantly surprised at the quality of the slide scans with this scanner, even the antique Kodachromes. Scans of reflective images--photos, graphics, documents--also come out very well. And scans of objects (the "scanner art") are excellent!
As long as the slides I was scanning were relatively clean, a light dosing of Digital ICE cleaned up most of the remaining dust/scratch problems adequately. Color reproduction (after calibration, which wasn't straightforward because the files needed were not on the CD that came with the scanner and I had to find them online) and resolution on the slide scans were as good or better than what I get on the dedicated film scanner, with vast improvements in the time it takes to scan them (using a significantly faster and more powerful computer than the slide scanner is attached to, which helps). The 12-slide mount is not bad, and focus seemed to be correct with the default mount settings (I tried the two available adjustments, one that sets it a bit closer and one a bit further away, but the way it was set out of the box seemed best). I have not yet tried the fluid mount attachment, but will do so in the near future to see what the results might be, particularly with older slides/films, some of which will have scratches and other damage.
My only complaint is about the Silverfast AI software which, while powerful, would be quite confusing to anyone who's not used it before (I have, though not this version). The manual, which I downloaded, is HUGE and not particularly helpful, though for someone who is familiar with prior versions of the software, you can probably find what you need. But my real problem was that Silverfast was initially completely unstable. When the scanner was first attached to the Mac (via Firewire) at first it didn't work at all--it simply wouldn't see the scanner, even though the Epson software did. Then, after multiple uninstalls and reinstalls, it would work for a while, then lose the connection with the scanner in the middle of a scan or a batch of scans (I was trying to do 12 slides at a time). On the recommendation of the Silverfast support folks, I switched to USB, which helped, but I had to switch USB cables a couple of times before it would be mostly stable (the longer the cable, the more unstable it was). The Epson scanning software, which was pretty stable (though it didn't like the longest of my USB cables either) doesn't provide enough flexibility for batch scanning of slides (the function that "finds" the frames has a tendency to chop off parts, even when you set preferences to the largest possible size, and you can't adjust the frames after the fact).
Anyway, this is an excellent scanner and I'd recommend it to anyone who wants the best possible quality scans of their photos, slides, films and objects.
Great Little Scanner
I have film, slides and prints that date back 30 years that I finally decided to digitize. I bought the V-750 based upon all the excellant reviews that I read.
The inside glass on the first unit I received was dirty and as per Epson was sealed and could not be cleaned.
I received a new one from Epson in 3 days. Sent out the day I called. I think that I have had service this good before but it has been so long ago and so few and far between that I cannot remember. Epson is a good company to trust.
The scanner was easy to set up. The Silverfast 8 software (I had to jump through a few hoops to download the right free version having just upgraded my Mac to OSX Lion) does everything that I need it to do. I do most of my editing in Photoshop but this program looks pretty powerful for those that don't have Photoshop.
The image quality is superb for film, slides and amazingly enough; prints. It won't match the technical quality of an image right out of a digital camera but no scanned slide or negative ever will so expectations need to be realistic.
A reasonable amount of editing will be necessary to pull back the sharpness and tonality but the color accuracy is excellant. I do; however, like the softer, grainier more photographic look of a print made from a scanned slide or negative.
All the reviews I read indicate that the quality of a scan from a dedicated film scanner is better, but not nearly by enough to justify the additional cost.
I have had a friend run a few scans for me on his older dedicated film scanner that had a reputation of being one of the best and I can not see any difference unless I pixel peep and the differences never show up on a print.
I think that this is a wonderful instrument and very flexible for all my photographic scanning needs. It definitely represents very high quality and value for the price.
I gave this unit a 5 rating. If compared against a $5,000 dedicated film scanner it may drop the rating to a 4.5. Do the math. All things considered...it's a solid 5.
A Real Solution To Scanning Challenges
This is a remarkably easy scanner to set up and use right away. Sure, I haven't used all the bells and whistles, but I purchased it to prepare for a pressing exhibition of my vintage photo images. It has saved the day for me as I have been able to achieve highly successful scans from my older slides in a brief period of time .
Nice, but not the best
Great for fluid-mount scans of medium and large formats. Limited by its lack of auto-focus and film-plane calibration. Best optical resolution is not as good as the Nikon 9000 series, but this is far cheaper.