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HP Scanjet G4050 Review part 1: First Impressions

Tobias Key of, Chichester and Sussex portrait photographer reviews:

What’s in the box:

Film holders for mounted 35mm transparencies, 35mm negative strips and a combined 120/4×5 holder. The holders are on a par with the Epson holders for the 4990, in other words adequate but nothing special. The 120 holders can’t hold negative strips completely flat and I doubt the 4×5 could either, again not unusual at this price bracket.

The Software installed without a hitch (I’m using Vista). The most unusual thing I found was that there is no icon to operate the scanner from your desktop, instead you have to press one of four buttons on the top of the machine depending on what you want to do.

I didn’t like the scanning software. It’s very clunky and only offers 8 bit greyscale scans. I already had a copy of hamrick’s excellent vuescan so I quickly started using this instead. Vuescan transforms this scanner’s usabilty and produces much better scans. I honestly don’t think I could recommend this scanner if I had only used it with HP’s own software. In fact, I think I would have taken in straight back to the shop, the HP software does not offer the enthusiast anything like enough control and has a horrible user interface. If you want to buy this scanner for scanning black and white negatives, budget for a third party software package like vuescan or silverfast if you want to get decent results.

Next: some scanning examples

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Also posted in Chichester photographer, scanjet G4050 film scanning review, sussex photographer