I’ve been shooting some black and white for the last week or so with my new (14-year-old) Leica M7.

Up until now, I had a flatbed scanner that had the capability to handle transparent media. Excepting the fact that it’s crap.

My flatbed is an Epson V700 Photo scanner. As a reflective media scanner, it’s pretty good. As a transparency scanner, it’s a pile of shit.

I took the above shot at the Yves Saint Laurent show at the Seattle Art Museum (SAM). I think the shot looks fairly good. But close up looking at the picture from the Epson, it’s a blurry mess.

Here’s a close-up of the middle of the shot:

Today I got in a dedicated film scanner, the Plustek 8200i. Here’s the exact same portion from that:

One of the biggest problems with the Epson, and likely why it’s having a problem, is that the emulsion side is up and away from the scanner. The scanner is looking through the film base to get to the picture.

Ok, admittedly it might be a bit subtle, but to me, this is a night and day difference. The top picture just looks muddy in comparison and you can’t see any of the grain of the film.