Plustek presented Opticfilm 120 Pro
Old 10-28-2018   #1
hanskerensky
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Plustek presented Opticfilm 120 Pro

At the German Photokina fair in September 2018 Plustek presented an updated OpticFilm 120, the name got the addition "Pro".

Some of the major improvements :
- Manual adjustment of focus possible.
- Coded film carriers which are automaticly recognised by the scanner.
- Faster film carrier transport

At Plustek Germany this blog article with some images :
https://plustek.blog/2018/10/05/prem...t-informieren/
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Old 10-28-2018   #2
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Now that is interesting - lack of focus was always a deal breaker for me. I'll have to see what the premium charged for this is though..

Thanks for the heads-up
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Old 10-29-2018   #3
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Originally Posted by c.poulton View Post
Now that is interesting - lack of focus was always a deal breaker for me. I'll have to see what the premium charged for this is though..

Thanks for the heads-up

Indeed, for many people this was the reason for not buying the Plustek Opticfilm 120. Good they understood that and are willing to invest in improvements.



I have an OF120 unit now close to 5 years and hardly miss the focus feature except for when scanning mounted slides were the thickness of the slide mount also plays a significant role.


btw I did not see or hear anything from the new Pro untill I stumbled upon a new download map at the Plustek Support site
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Old 10-29-2018   #4
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Did they ever fix the banding issues that plagued these scanners, or at least, plagued the people who talked about them online?
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Old 10-29-2018   #5
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Lack of focus is a total non issue unless you are scanning mounted slides.


I'm glad to see that Plustek is making improvements to their 120 scanner. There would be a lot of improvements that I would recommend.



I've been using my Plustek 120 scanner for nearly 4 years and never have seen any banding in images.
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Old 10-29-2018   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hanskerensky View Post
At the German Photokina fair in September 2018 Plustek presented an updated OpticFilm 120, the name got the addition "Pro".

Some of the major improvements :
- Manual adjustment of focus possible.
- Coded film carriers which are automaticly recognised by the scanner.
- Faster film carrier transport

At Plustek Germany this blog article with some images :
https://plustek.blog/2018/10/05/prem...t-informieren/
Not a lot of information at this link, but it does say that Plustek plans to start selling the improved model at the beginning of 2019. There's also the opportunity to sign up for updates, which I did. I'll translate and post anything new.

This may finally prod me to pull the trigger on one of these.
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Old 10-29-2018   #7
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Thanks Chip and thanks OP for sharing. It sounds interesting. I had a Plustek 120 previously and found it reliable once I'd got used to a few little quirks.
Plus it's always really good to hear of any new developments in film scanning, especially medium format.
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Old 10-29-2018   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hogarth Ferguson View Post
Did they ever fix the banding issues that plagued these scanners, or at least, plagued the people who talked about them online?

Banding is still an issue. Hope they will address that too.
Banding generally only shows up in the sky part of negatives which have a sky visible with a certain type of blue color and density. For me personally not a big deal.
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Old 10-29-2018   #9
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Originally Posted by hanskerensky View Post
Banding is still an issue. Hope they will address that too.
Banding generally only shows up in the sky part of negatives which have a sky visible with a certain type of blue color and density. For me personally not a big deal.

Does that mean there is no banding when scanning slides? And perhaps B&W negatives?


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Old 10-30-2018   #10
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Does that mean there is no banding when scanning slides? And perhaps B&W negatives?


- Murray

Not in the slides and B&W that I did scan with my OF120.


I had the most visible banding issues with Fuji Reala negative film.
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Old 10-30-2018   #11
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Originally Posted by hanskerensky View Post
Not in the slides and B&W that I did scan with my OF120.


I had the most visible banding issues with Fuji Reala negative film.

That's good to know. Thanks!


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Old 10-31-2018   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hanskerensky View Post
Banding is still an issue. Hope they will address that too.
Banding generally only shows up in the sky part of negatives which have a sky visible with a certain type of blue color and density. For me personally not a big deal.

I have scanned thousands of images on my Plustek 120 and have never once seen banding.
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Old 11-01-2018   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ted Striker View Post
I have scanned thousands of images on my Plustek 120 and have never once seen banding.

That's a good thing to know !


Sometimes there are cases in which low quality film development might show similarity to banding. I had quite a discussion about this image from a Normandy trip. After further testing (90 degree rotation scan) I could only conclude that fault was in the film, not in the Plustek :



La Normandie in 6x6 (29) by Hans Kerensky, on Flickr
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Old 11-03-2018   #14
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B & H lists the Plustek OpticFilm 120 as discontinued; no longer in stock. Hopefully the new one is available soon.
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Old 11-03-2018   #15
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I thought my OF120 was fine but then noticed this after desaturating everything but yellow and green.

007-2.jpg


I bought my scanner in 2014 and it was replaced because of this issue. When the new one came, it seemed to have a transport issue which took me a while to figure out what was going on. Plustek offered to replace it again, I seem to recall, but I didn't want to cause a fuss or waste a precious day off waiting for another scanner to be delivered. Then I drifted away from medium format and the scanner has laid dormant since then. The photo above is a file scanned in about 2016.
So, I've been in touch with Plustek to see if they can help me out, acknowledging that my scanner is well out of warranty. They haven't been in touch with me directly, but have told my dealer that they can't help me out because the model is discontinued.
Firstly, it sounds like the model is indeed discontinued.
Secondly, I'm pretty peeved that I supported Plustek as an early adopter of this scanner, and it sounds like they don't want to stand by their 4 year old product which has a known fault.
Thirdly, I would recommend that nobody races into buying that new OF120Pro scanner, and if they do, thoroughly test it to your satisfaction and act on any problems immediately. You never know when a company you have a high regard for, and thought you had a good relationship with, is going to let you down.
We'll see what happens regarding my own situation.
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Old 11-03-2018   #16
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Pete, is the image with banding that you posted above from color negative or color slide film?


It sounds like Plustek stood by the scanner when you bought it, but you chose not to follow up on it at that time (if I understood you correctly). I'm not surprised that they won't help you four years later with a scanner long out of warranty and discontinued. I would be disinclined to fault their customer service under such circumstances. Your experience does bring into question the general reliability of the product, however. Let's hope the new scanner has the bugs worked out.



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Old 11-03-2018   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hanskerensky View Post
That's a good thing to know !


Sometimes there are cases in which low quality film development might show similarity to banding. I had quite a discussion about this image from a Normandy trip. After further testing (90 degree rotation scan) I could only conclude that fault was in the film, not in the Plustek :



La Normandie in 6x6 (29) by Hans Kerensky, on Flickr



This is definitely uneven developing, not a scanning issue.
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Old 11-04-2018   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CMur12 View Post
Pete, is the image with banding that you posted above from color negative or color slide film?


It sounds like Plustek stood by the scanner when you bought it, but you chose not to follow up on it at that time (if I understood you correctly). I'm not surprised that they won't help you four years later with a scanner long out of warranty and discontinued. I would be disinclined to fault their customer service under such circumstances. Your experience does bring into question the general reliability of the product, however. Let's hope the new scanner has the bugs worked out.





- Murray
C41 film.
Yes, I can see that side of the argument, but it sounds like the design was faulty from the outset, and in Europe manufacturers are suppose to supply back up for 10 years (I think). I guess I shouldn't expect much from them. I'll not be buying another scanner now. I have to say I think the 7000 and 8000 series scanners are brilliant little things. I love my 8100.
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Old 11-04-2018   #19
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this announcement is very interesting.
I'm quite happy with my 120 but I'd buy the new version if there were other improvements over the adjustable focus (not a problem for me, never scanned a slide...)
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Old 11-05-2018   #20
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this announcement is very interesting.
I'm quite happy with my 120 but I'd buy the new version if there were other improvements over the adjustable focus (not a problem for me, never scanned a slide...)

It would be nice if Plustek had their own software rather rely on the awful SilverFast. That software is horribly designed and ridiculously buggy. They could massively improve their scanner and the experience with it if they just took control of the software side. I can't imagine this would be difficult for them since they intimately know the hardware. It is such a shame that one is reduced to using SilverFast to get full operation of this fine scanner.
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Old 11-05-2018   #21
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Originally Posted by Ted Striker View Post
It would be nice if Plustek had their own software rather rely on the awful SilverFast. That software is horribly designed and ridiculously buggy. They could massively improve their scanner and the experience with it if they just took control of the software side. I can't imagine this would be difficult for them since they intimately know the hardware. It is such a shame that one is reduced to using SilverFast to get full operation of this fine scanner.
I agree...
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Old 11-05-2018   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ted Striker View Post
It would be nice if Plustek had their own software rather rely on the awful SilverFast. That software is horribly designed and ridiculously buggy. They could massively improve their scanner and the experience with it if they just took control of the software side. I can't imagine this would be difficult for them since they intimately know the hardware. It is such a shame that one is reduced to using SilverFast to get full operation of this fine scanner.
Anybody is of course free to use Vuescan for scanning with the OF120. I know that this program also works, i'm scanning with it just at the moment I write this.

Vuescan is also not an easy program but much cheaper.
Plustek should give customers an option to buy the OF120 Pro without the expensive Silverfast software.

Personally I stay with Silverfast as it just gives better scan results.
However I still, after years of use, discover new things on a regular base !
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Old 11-05-2018   #23
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I found a useful looking YouTube vid on using Silverfast (although using Epson scanners but I think it will hold for Plustek.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qtpm...58&app=desktop

Also, I had word back from Plustek regarding my problem. What do people think I should do? I'm worried that I'll spend a fortune sending it there for them to say it's a hardware issue and can't be fixed.

"Out of warranty ( scanner is at least 24 months old):

In case of a suspected hardware failure you may send in the device on own risk & expense to our European service center which is located in Germany. Blanket cost of check/repair to that scanner model is GBP 210.00 + tax (19%) + shipping from Germany back to the UK.

As soon as the scanner has arrived at our RMA we will send you an official cost estimation note to that scanner with detailed payment information. We do only accept advance payment via SEPA (no credit card, no Paypal)."

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Old 11-05-2018   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete B View Post
I found a useful looking YouTube vid on using Silverfast (although using Epson scanners but I think it will hold for Plustek.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qtpm...58&app=desktop

Also, I had word back from Plustek regarding my problem. What do people think I should do? I'm worried that I'll spend a fortune sending it there for them to say it's a hardware issue and can't be fixed.

"Out of warranty ( scanner is at least 24 months old):

In case of a suspected hardware failure you may send in the device on own risk & expense to our European service center which is located in Germany. Blanket cost of check/repair to that scanner model is GBP 210.00 + tax (19%) + shipping from Germany back to the UK.

As soon as the scanner has arrived at our RMA we will send you an official cost estimation note to that scanner with detailed payment information. We do only accept advance payment via SEPA (no credit card, no Paypal)."

Pete
That's a though nut to crack Pete

My personal experience with the German service department is good. They exchanged my first unit, which was out of focus, with a new one. But that still was in the warranty period.

You might point them out to this posting and tell them that a good repair would make a positive impression when announced over here.
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Old 11-06-2018   #25
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Originally Posted by Pete B View Post
I found a useful looking YouTube vid on using Silverfast (although using Epson scanners but I think it will hold for Plustek.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qtpm...58&app=desktop

Also, I had word back from Plustek regarding my problem. What do people think I should do? I'm worried that I'll spend a fortune sending it there for them to say it's a hardware issue and can't be fixed.

"Out of warranty ( scanner is at least 24 months old):

In case of a suspected hardware failure you may send in the device on own risk & expense to our European service center which is located in Germany. Blanket cost of check/repair to that scanner model is GBP 210.00 + tax (19%) + shipping from Germany back to the UK.

As soon as the scanner has arrived at our RMA we will send you an official cost estimation note to that scanner with detailed payment information. We do only accept advance payment via SEPA (no credit card, no Paypal)."

Pete

You should have had your issue fixed when it was under warranty. Plustek would have been obligated to make things right.


If you buy the new one, then fully shake it out making as many scans as you can during the warranty period. There is little to no additional risk buying a scanner as compared to any other electronic device.



Buy from a reputable retailer as well. Many offer return privileges. Use Vuescan first if installing SilverFast negates your return privileges.
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Old 11-06-2018   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ted Striker View Post
You should have had your issue fixed when it was under warranty. Plustek would have been obligated to make things right.


If you buy the new one, then fully shake it out making as many scans as you can during the warranty period. There is little to no additional risk buying a scanner as compared to any other electronic device.


That's what I wrote (in my posts above)
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Old 11-06-2018   #27
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This is an honest review about the OF120. Scanner manufacturers should read this before they design anything further.
I dug out my OF120 to try one last time with new drivers and software before sending it off for repair.

Rather than continue hijacking this thread, I've started one here
https://www.rangefinderforum.com/for...80#post2846480

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Old 11-07-2018   #28
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This is an honest review about the OF120. Scanner manufacturers should read this before they design anything further.
I dug out my OF120 to try one last time with new drivers and software before sending it off for repair.

Rather than continue hijacking this thread, I've started one here
https://www.rangefinderforum.com/for...80#post2846480

Pete
Thanks for posting this review. It's hilarious, truly uproariously hilarious. Beyond comical.

While the author does get a lot of things right: SilverFast is indeed a horrible program, written by a company that has virtually no understanding of workflow, he gets the conclusion totally wrong. The results this scanner produces are AMAZING. Absolutely amazing. 35mm film takes on a whole new life when scanned by the OpticFilm 120. I would not even shoot 35mm film if I had to rely on a flatbed scanner. Those types produce pure mush compared to the OpticFilm 120. If I nail the focus with my 35mm cameras, the scanned results are amazingly sharp and able to be printed very very large. I am 100% satisfied with the final results.

Further, the author failed to test the scanner using VueScan, which eliminates 90% of the problems of SilverFast. It is very cheap software and radically improves the user experience.

This is a high end scanner, able to compete with the long discontinued Nikon CoolScan 9000. It is (was) priced appropriately. It is discontinued now because a new model is on the horizon, not because it is a failed product.
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Old 11-07-2018   #29
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he gets the conclusion totally wrong. The results this scanner produces are AMAZING. Absolutely amazing. 35mm film takes on a whole new life when scanned by the OpticFilm 120.
I posted that video link and my thoughts before I sat down and taught myself Silverfast this morning. I knocked out a few scans, including a 35mm one. I certainly think the scans are very good. In fact, I really like Silverfast! Once I understood what I was supposed to be doing, I couldn't understand how I didn't understand before. Also, I only scan 1000x1000 generally. At that size, the scans are really quick. If I ever want to print something, I'll scan at higher resolution. I'm seriously impressed by the Plustek 120 and Silverfast, and I'm reluctant to send it off for a service in case it gets damaged!
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Old 11-07-2018   #30
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I posted that video link and my thoughts before I sat down and taught myself Silverfast this morning. I knocked out a few scans, including a 35mm one. I certainly think the scans are very good. In fact, I really like Silverfast! Once I understood what I was supposed to be doing, I couldn't understand how I didn't understand before. Also, I only scan 1000x1000 generally. At that size, the scans are really quick. If I ever want to print something, I'll scan at higher resolution. I'm seriously impressed by the Plustek 120 and Silverfast, and I'm reluctant to send it off for a service in case it gets damaged!
Pete
SilverFast is by far, the worst piece of software I have ever used. There are so many problems with it, that it's almost impossible to comprehend competent people coded it.

Batch scanning is an absolute joke.

The sheer repetition of having to set the same settings over and over and over and over and over and over again take an already mind numbing process and turn it into one that is beyond crushingly boring. When using SilverFast, I hate scanning more than any words can say. I curse LaserSoft at every session I sit down to scan. When using Vuescan, I find it a tolerable process.
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Old 11-07-2018   #31
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SilverFast is by far, the worst piece of software I have ever used...
Perhaps this is a bit of hyperbole on your part.

I have certainly used much worse software and I am not a software geek by any stretch of the imagination.

Silverfast is quite usable. Learning it does take some time but once it is mastered it works quite well.

The biggest headache is the fairly frequent crashes (approximately once every couple of sessions) but even those are pretty easy to recover from; just irritating.
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Old 11-07-2018   #32
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Perhaps this is a bit of hyperbole on your part.

I have certainly used much worse software and I am not a software geek by any stretch of the imagination.

Silverfast is quite usable. Learning it does take some time but once it is mastered it works quite well.

The biggest headache is the fairly frequent crashes (approximately once every couple of sessions) but even those are pretty easy to recover from; just irritating.
Not even a little bit of hyperbole. I have never used a worse piece of commercial software than SilverFast. It is an appalling mess of a program. It is painful to use. I have to build up stamina in order to subject myself to its insanity.

It is so inefficient that it staggers the mind. I have to do so many repetitive tasks, that it numbs my mind. Thinking about that an actual human designed it to be this way confuses me to no end.

My Plustek OpticFilm 120 works just fine and will probably last me a good 5-10 more years. Yet if Plustek released a new OpticFilm 120 that cost $2000 and did NOT use SilverFast, I would buy it immediately to replace my old one. SilverFast is that bad and I want away from it that much.

No hyperbole at all.

Your mileage may vary.
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Old 11-07-2018   #33
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I posted that video link and my thoughts before I sat down and taught myself Silverfast this morning. I knocked out a few scans, including a 35mm one. I certainly think the scans are very good. In fact, I really like Silverfast! Once I understood what I was supposed to be doing, I couldn't understand how I didn't understand before. Also, I only scan 1000x1000 generally. At that size, the scans are really quick. If I ever want to print something, I'll scan at higher resolution. I'm seriously impressed by the Plustek 120 and Silverfast, and I'm reluctant to send it off for a service in case it gets damaged!
Pete
I, too, would be hesitant to send it out for repairs, especially if you plan is to use it mostly for B&W. In my own case, I rarely shoot C41, so I would be using it almost exclusively for E-6 and B&W. This is all useful information for me, because at some point I will want a good scanner for 135 and 120.

You might try some scans of B&W before you make your decision to send the scanner out. It would be nice if, after all the problems with this machine in the past, it could work well for you now.

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Old 11-07-2018   #34
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SilverFast is by far, the worst piece of software I have ever used. There are so many problems with it, that it's almost impossible to comprehend competent people coded it.

Batch scanning is an absolute joke.

The sheer repetition of having to set the same settings over and over and over and over and over and over again take an already mind numbing process and turn it into one that is beyond crushingly boring. When using SilverFast, I hate scanning more than any words can say. I curse LaserSoft at every session I sit down to scan. When using Vuescan, I find it a tolerable process.
This is not quite true. Batch scanning can be greatly speeded up by using the functions Save Frame setting, Load Frame setting and Frame, copy to all.
Also it is possible in the settings menu to activate an automatic prescan of every selected frame. When this is done it is possible to use the Find Frame feature on every preview to set the scanning area quickly.
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Old 02-25-2019   #35
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Does anyone have news about this product? Has it been released? I can't find the old Plustek 120 for sale anywhere, and at the same time I can't find this new 'pro' version for sale, either.
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Old 02-25-2019   #36
Ted Striker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by albireo View Post
Does anyone have news about this product? Has it been released? I can't find the old Plustek 120 for sale anywhere, and at the same time I can't find this new 'pro' version for sale, either.

Seems like a botched product launch. I know a few folks who have had to switch to other brands of scanners after they could not find any OpticFilm 120's. Really poor planning on Plustek's part.
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not so close
Old 05-01-2019   #37
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not so close

I contacted the European support and 120 PRO release don't seem so close

"OF 120 we already phase out and run out stocks there's no more in the market.
The OF120 Pro will not launch so quickly it will be around end of 2019 or 2020.
Thanks"
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Old 05-01-2019   #38
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Originally Posted by riccimar View Post
I contacted the European support and 120 PRO release don't seem so close

"OF 120 we already phase out and run out stocks there's no more in the market.
The OF120 Pro will not launch so quickly it will be around end of 2019 or 2020.
Thanks"

What a disaster.
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Old 05-03-2019   #39
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Boo! I was holding off on buying an OpticFilm 120 in anticipation of this.


Can anyone recommend a modern scanner that handles 35mm and 120? (Or maybe wait a few more months for the 120 PRO?)
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Old 05-03-2019   #40
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Same here. I'm considering the Reflecta MF5000 but reviews are mixed.
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