Nikon has a custom installer both for Macintosh and Windows that is a bit non-standard. Scans I’ve made using it though with Silverfast, see below have appeared on covers of national magazines and as full-page bleeds inside several magazines. Note how easily you can see individual strands of hair, and the complete lack of pixelation. I’ve been reasonably pleased with the results from the Coolscan III. Get VueScan , which still supports this scanner]. A quick trip to the calculator suggested that the Coolscan III would be easily capable of 36MB scans, and perhaps larger. The higher the density number, the more shadow detail you’ll see in your scans.

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Nikon CoolScan III Scanner

The user interface is a little too gimmicky and non-intuitive. The short extent of the USAF pattern targets doesn’t permit the sort of visual interpolation our eyes do naturally on the more extended WG pattern. It all sounded too good to be true: Nikon couldn’t help with manuals or parts for older equipment and I kept getting sent in circles when I called. As you’d expect, the default scan settings produced a rather dark image k.

Let me get this out of the way first: Get VueScanwhich still supports this scanner]. Worth checking out if you can find a good condition used model at a reasonable price. The default scan actually had excellent detail in both the shadows and highlights.

The two scanners turned in an almost identical performance on this image. Since I rarely shoot negative film, I installed the slide adapter in my scanner and have never taken it out thus, I won’t comment on the ability to scan a strip of film.


It’s not mentioned anywhere in the manuals or on the box, but the Coolscan III supports v at either 50 or 60 Hertz. Note that this slide has more dynamic range than the Coolscan III could capture—the slope at the right of the detail shot is blown out to white, the bottom of the full scan shows that the shadows went completely to black.

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The technology behind the defect removal is something called Digital ICE, supplied by an Atlanta-based software company called Applied Science Fiction.

This tends to “fool” scanners’ autoexposure settings, producing artificially dark scans, as did the LS Nevertheless, there’s still a usable range here, and the problem can easily be solved by doing multiple scans one for the snow-covered portions of Denali, the other for the ridge that descends down the middle of the frame to the bottom.

This item may be a floor model or store return that has been used. If you enjoyed this article, please consider sharing it: Some publications have taken the position of scanning everything using the scanner’s default settings, believing this to be most fair, neutral methodology.

A bit more time was spent on making controls slide in and out of “docking bays” and making chrome and drop-shadow buttons than was put into making the software self-evident. Article appears for legacy purposes only. Fortunately, most of the controls are decipherable after a few pokes, especially once you discover that most of the more interesting stuff is hidden in “slide-out panels” that are triggered by clicking on a strange-looking “tab” at the left edge of the control area.


Additional Product Features Media Type. The higher the density number, the more shadow detail you’ll see in your scans.

Exceptional Performance – Exceptional Value! More subtly, we did notice slightly greater color saturation in some strong primaries with the Super Coolscan, most noticeable in the red flowers in the model’s hair in the “Musicians II” test image. For comparison, here’s the same image from the LS k – compressed more than LS30 samplewhich did the best job on this image of any scanner we’ve tested to date.

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Nikon CoolScan III Scanner | eBay

Coolsan can’t I find your works in bookstores? The only differences we could see were a slightly greater level of color saturation, and slightly better handling of shadows in the hair by the LS Accordingly, we have no sample to show you from the LS for this picture. Nikon Photo, Cooolscan and Film Scanner. If you’re a casual user or are only scanning for Web-sized uses, then you’ll probably be decently served by the software supplied by Nikon.

But it wasn’t Digital ICE that caught my attention. This was scanned at the maximum dpi from a laboratory-grade target chrome on glass slide before being cropped down, and would normally give an excellent view of the scanner’s ultimate capabilities.