Epson Perfection v600 PHOTO Flatbed Scanner Reviews

Epson Perfection v600 PHOTO Flatbed Scanner

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Epson V600 flat bed scanner.

Mar 13, 2012
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review
  • User Rating: Excellent

  • Ease of Use:

Pros:High quality, Easy to use.  Can scan slides and pictures.

Cons:Not the perfect solution for scanning slide film.

The Bottom Line: A solid, and dedicated flat bed scanner.  It is fast, easy to use, very high quality.

This is a good flatbed scanner for the average person. It is a very inexpensive flat bed scanner and it produces good results. I just wanted something to scan family photos, negatives, and slide film for archive purposes. This fit my needs and budget perfectly.

The reason I did not do an all in one scanner/printer is because the all-in-one's I am familiar with (and in my price range) are of a lower quality. Got two of these free with two of my Mac computers. Ya, they were free with the rebate, but the quality was not what I was looking for. Whereas this scanner will go up to 9600 x 6400 dpi. My non-scientific estimate on my slide film scans is that I get around a 25 mega-pixel. This is only an estimate from comparing several digital photos side by side for me to make an estimate of the megapixel quality. I am making this estimate because this was the biggest question I had before buying this scanner. In reality you cannot properly compare film with digital images. Too many other variables (I’m sure someone will chime in on the comments section on this). Plus what I cannot take into account is the loss in color. The color of slide film is far superior to this scanner and I have no idea how to quantify that difference.

In short, this scanner does a good job but not a perfect job.

The reason I didn’t get a dedicated film scanner is because my old photos are not that good. Fine for examples and wall paper, but not for blowing up and hanging on a wall.

Now with the prices of digital SLR cameras, I found it much easier to take photos with my Nikon D5100 then using this device to scan my film. So film has finally died in my household.

Now I do need to tell you there are better dedicated scanners out there. I had some slide film scanned on my co-workers dedicated film scanner and the pictures were a bit better than what I get with this set up. You could easily see the grain before seeing the pixels. With this scanner you can usually see the grain before the pixel, but it is not as fine. Not enough of a difference to make me buy that plus the flatbed. So if you plan on selling your slide film photos, spend the extra money to get a better scanner. I’m not that good of a photographer to sell anything. I primarily take photos for family memories, classroom instruction, screen savers, the fun of it, etc. I won’t blow up anything I have taken with my film camera. So I’m not concerned with the perfect photo scanner, I just wanted a near perfect scan and the Epson V600 does just that.

To install it all you have to do is plug in the power cord, plug in the USB port, then load the software. Easy, takes about 10 minutes or so. I have run it from a Mac Mini and my iMac.

There is a power switch on the left side which is a nice feature to save a little on electricity.

To use this you put the object on the screen and press a button on the front of the scanner. This triggers the computer and it starts the scanning software. It gives you a quick scan and you can edit the settings as you see fit.

You have four buttons in front that automatically start your scanner. A PDF setting, e-mail setting, an automatic print button, and a normal scan button.

If you wish you can disregard the buttons and just operate the scanner with the software.

There are 4 modes with the software.
Full auto- This does all the settings for you.
Home mode- Gives you a few options including digital ice.
Office mode- This is designed for quick scans of documents.
Professional mode- You can control everything. But if you set conflicting setting the program will not allow you to scan. This is pretty much all I use. Just be patient because you will sometimes make mistakes.

Other settings on professional
Can do reflective of film (positive and negative).
Up to 48 bit color
12800 DPI max
Histogram adjustments
Tone corrections
"image adjustment"
Unsharp Mask
Color restoration
Backlight Correction
Dust Removal
Digital Ice Technology
And a couple more under some settings. But these are the main ones.

The files you can save as are PDF, TIF, JPG, PCT.

You have a preview button and a scan button in most modes.

One issue I have had with other scanners in the past is the long lamp warm up time. The V600 will take around 6 seconds to warm up. Not long at all. It also has a back light on the lid that doesn’t seem to take time to warm up, if it does it is less than the bottom lamp so I don’t notice it.

The scanner comes with 2 trays which hold slides and negatives. One holds two 6 photo long negatives of 35mm film (or unmounted slide film) or this same tray holds 4 mounted slides when rotated. The scanner automatically recognizes which tray you are using. There is a second tray which holds 3 large format negatives. I’ve used all three holders positions and they work perfectly. You just put it in and the program does the rest. You don’t have to manually select the photo like with other scanners I have used.

I have also scanned a smaller format negative. I think it was called 110. I used this smaller film on my cheap camera my parents gave me long ago. I also found some in my grandfathers loose film that was also this size. The program does not automatically sense the smaller pictures so you have to manually select each photo individually. This is a pain but thankfully I have very few of these old strips of film that I wanted to archive.

If you are doing a 5 MB scan of a negative, it will take around 15 seconds. If you are doing the highest resolution, which produces a 40-100 MB file, it takes 5 minutes. If you have a large non-transparent photo and you want to scan it at the highest resolution the program gives you, it will take under a minute. So the scanner is fast for me. For $200 I’m happy.

A co-worker said I did not need to scan at the highest resolution. He mentioned something’s that went over my head. But I did a couple of tests and found that I indeed needed to use the highest settings.
I also saved some as Tif files as a test, they were saved as 1GB files. Ya, ouch.

For whatever reason it will not scan a medium sized picture at 9600x6400. It gives you an error message and tells you to reduce the resolution. Doesn’t affect the end product, it scans any photo at a higher resolution than what most people would need. I’ve always been able to see the grains before the pixels in these photos. I have been very happy with the family photos I have scanned. Mark Solo and Alan Leia as computer wallpaper anyone?

There were some professional comparisons out there I looked at before buying this. The articles compared this scanner with other scanners. One was a 600 dollar scanner and it did indeed have better color and better resolution. It isn’t worth it for my needs (an extra 400 or just a small improvement was not in my pocketbook).

One of the things that makes this scanner work well with negatives is the light on the lid. This light shines light down through the negative film (and slide film). This creates a much better scan than other flatbed scanners that don’t have this top light. It is a must have feature if you scan film. I have scanned slide film with a funky reflecting triangle “thingie”, but the pictures were not that good. So make sure your flatbed scanner has this light source up above if you scan film. If all you do is pictures, then you don’t need the top lamp.

You do have a padded insert that covers the lamp when you are scanning photographs. The program will give you an error is you are trying to scan a photograph without this attachment.

Another thing this scanner can scan is bulky objects. The top covering can be raised up to accommodate around a 2-3 inch object.

You do have another option to copy your film digitally and that is to take it to Costco and have them make a CD of your photos while you have the film processed. But they are 5MP photos (I think) and I think they look like crap. I did that once, and never again.

Digital ice.
This is not a gimmick. It takes the scanned image and processes it on the fly to make it a better picture. Things like dust and scratches are taken care of. So you (usually) don’t have to go back over the photo and edit the pixels or use another program to clean up your photo. I found I used this setting a lot with some of my grandpa’s old slides.
Keep in mind that it will take about an addition 5 minutes or so to finish the scan.

Picture quality
You should be realistic, this does not create perfect scans. So professionals, or picture obsessed people will not be happy with this scanner. They need to spend a lot more money to be happy. Now I am very happy because I am just archiving information. My wife just scans books and other school related things. We have had absolutely no problems with the scanning quality.
In short, 99% of the general public (including me) will not notice a difference without several side by side comparisons.

Who is this for?
Someone that needs an inexpensive all-purpose scanner.

I just wipe it down with a soft cloth or special wipes. The outside I wipe down with a damp cloth. The lid also keeps dust out so you don’t need to worry about dust sneaking in.

The screen is 12 inches by 9 inches.

© Alan Lake's Kitchen 2012

Other reviews you might be interested in.
LaCie External DVD RW Burner
External 750 GB external firewire harddrive
Logitech wireless presenter

Recommend this product? Yes

Amount Paid (US$): 200
Interface: USB

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