SilverFast Ai Studio is known as the standard for professional scanner software. As the premium edition of our SilverFast software series, SilverFast Ai Studio amazes users worldwide and, with its many setting options, also brings out the last percent of quality from your valuable images.
But are you better off using the software that came with your scanner, or should you shell out for a third-party alternative to get the best results? Before I rolled up my sleeves and started scanning, I wanted to answer this question for myself.
Hi all.I quite recently bought an Epson perfection v850 and i'm trying to decide which software to use for scanning 48bit raw images for tweaking (reflective scanning of objects, not film scanning).I have been using silverfast se plus 8 which came with the scanner, and my raw scans are very dark and i discovered i need to get additional software to make use of them properly.What would you recommend i do?
Very good that DPR has published such a test!Personally I however do not yet need a new scanner software as Silverfast in 2019 for free (!) updated the old Win XP SilverFast. That program was years ago "bundled" with my CanoScan 8600F, and was now replaced with a slightly newer version, working well with Win7 and Win10 pro.
Regarding differences between scan programs, you can't get blood from a turnip. The scanner provides the scan basically limited by the min Dmax. All the edits are done after the scan. Unless they're applied equally and knowledgeably, there will always seem to be differences between the scanner programs. But that's operator's error, not the software or scanner.
well, it doesn't matter which software you use when scanning negative film, you just won't get the correct color of traditional darkroom negative film processing , leave alone so many film profiles must be applied. of course sometimes you get good result when letting software auto-leveling like Epson official scanner utility, but in most cases adjusting RGB curves when scanning films is such a pain in the ass.
I've found that VueScan Professional has completely met my scanning needs for many many years. The software is continuously being updated (at no charge!) and does a great job of supporting new scanners. Customer support has been very responsive.
I use SilverFast 9 and it is, IMHO, the very best scanning software on the market. Yes, you do have to make friends with it but once that's done the results are terrific. I'm currently scanning my aircraft slide collection using a PowerSlide 5000 scanner. The image quality is outstanding and the scanner supports batch processing (up to 100 at a time). Here's a link to view some of the downsized images:
Agree. Very timely discussion. I literally just changed out my computers, have a ton of slide, negatives and prints to scan have always used SilverFast and was going to upgrade to 9 until I saw this. Interestingly, I couldn't get my Epson V750 to work on my new computer because I am an idiot loading the V800 software until I decided to look at the front of my scanner. Yes I am a moron.
I have a question that I hope someone can answer: I'm scanning using a Sony a7RII on a macro focus rail set up. Can either of these 3rd party scan software solutions be used with images taken with a camera, not a scanner?
Regarding sharpness. To get best sharpness you need to test and "calibrate". I made high res scans of 4x5 tranprencies on Epson V750 using the holder. Discovered that 4 layers of basic paper under the holder raised it a touch and scans were much sharper. No DOF on a scanner bed. Same held true to other formats. In the end I just stuck thing shirt cardboard on all the holders for sharpest results.I have used all of these scanner programs and most prefer VueScan. Only one I trusted on auto. Once you figure it out it is great and supports almost all scanners and systems. Also many manufacturers take month (maybe years _epson) to update software for new operating systems. Hamrick is always first and saves us time and time again. Plus cost. Silverfast is $$. VueScan is a better value.
Yes, I appreciate the subject and efforts of the author, too. However, flatbed scanners cannot live up to the quality of film scanners such as the Nikon Coolscan 5000/4000 ED and thus make the comparison of the scan software a bit questionable with regard to the output quality, IMO. You surely can compare handling, options etc but quality- wise the hardware is the limiting factor and the software differences are levelled out. If I had no a film scanner I rather would go for photographing the slides via a macro setup than using a flatbed scanner. If you just need small images for the web etc, it doesn't matter that much which hardware option you chose and which software you use . On HQ film or even drum scanners the software differences are more evident. For archiving my best slides, I definetly would go for the best hardware, too. Just my 2 cents.
The moral here is that before buying the program, it's well worth downloading the Demo version from SilverFast's website (by choosing the Demo button on the home page), to check how well it works with the scanner you want to use it with. The Demo software is actually a fully functional version of SilverFast Ai Studio, minus the color calibration feature. The only other limitation is that it watermarks the scans, so you can't really use them. If you decide to buy the program, you can simply enter the license key to unlock it, without having to reinstall anything.
If you're happy with the scan quality you're getting from the software that came with your scanner, there's no reason to consider getting SilverFast. If you want improved quality, but are concerned about having to buy additional copies for additional scanners, take a close look at VueScan, which is less expensive to begin with and which you can buy once and use on all the models it supports.
That said, if you're not concerned about the possibility of having to buy additional copies, SilverFast Ai Studio 8 is an attractive choice, particularly if you want to go a step further and use it in combination with SilverFast HDR to post-process the scans for the best possible results. Depending on the scanner, either SilverFast or VueScan may be the better choice. But for any model that SilverFast works with (but doesn't ship with), it's virtually guaranteed to give you better-quality scans than the software the manufacturer includes with the scanner.
The purpose of scanning software is to digitize paper documents, photographs and transparencies into high-quality image files. This requires two principal components: hardware (the scanner) and software (the instructions on how to make it work).
Last week, I reviewed the Epson Perfection V600 Photo and Perfection V850 Pro scanners. (Read it here.) This week, I want to look at the software side of the process.
The next level up is Epson Scan 2. This software is bundled with all Epson scanners. It is flexible with a variety of features, but recent versions have emphasized ease of use, making advanced features harder to access or unavailable.
LaserSoft licenses its software by scanner. So, you need one SilverFast license for each scanner attached to your computer. I have two scanners, so I need two licenses. Once licensed, SilverFast can switch between multiple scanners attached to the same computer.
Benefit from the years of experience and test SilverFast Ai Studio 8 for free and without obligation. As SilverFasts top-level version it is equipped with the most comprehensive functionality, which also meets the highest standards. SilverFast Ai Studio V8 is the epitome of professional scanner software.
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