Canon updates flatbed photo scanner lineup

Canon updates its CanoScan photo line with a resolution boost and some power-consumption tweaks.

Canon USA

Canon's CanoScan 8800F has been enduringly (and somewhat endearingly) popular on our site, despite the fact that we've never reviewed it. Though it's closing in on 3 years old, which is practically ancient in many of the other product categories we cover, there isn't a lot of technological development either, so it's refreshing not to be barraged with artificially differentiated products for a change. That said, Canon's latest CanoScan, the 9000F, follows up the veteran photo scanner at about $50 more, with a resolution boost for slide and film scans and improved power consumption.

Here's how it compares with its cheaper sibling, as well as its main competitors:

 Canon CanoScan 8800FCanonScan 9000FEpson Perfection V600 PhotoHP ScanJet G4050
Resolution (dpi)4,800x9,6009,600x9,600 (positives and negatives); 4,800x4,800 (reflective)6,400x9,6004,800x9,600
Internal bit depth 48-bit color/48-bit gray48-bit color/48-bit gray48-bit color/16-bit gray96-bit color/8-bit gray
Optical density (Dmax)n/an/a3.4Dn/a
Light sourceLEDLEDLEDn/a
Sensor6-line CCD12-line CCD12-line CCDCCD
Negatives and transparencies12 negative frames; 4 slides; 120/220 format12 negative frames; 4 slides; 120/220 format12 negative frames; 4 slides; 120/220 format30 negative frames; 16 slides; 2 120 frames; 1 220 frame
Maximum media size (inches)8.5 by 11.78.5 by 11.78.5 by 11.78.5 by 12.3
Duty cycle n/an/an/an/a
ADFNoneNoneNoneNone
InterfacesUSB 2.0USB 2.0USB 2.0USB 2.0
Operating SystemsWindows XP or later, 32-bit and 64-bit versions; OS X 10.2.8 to 10.6.xWindows XP/2000 or later, 32-bit and 64-bit versions; Mac OS X 10.4.11 to 10.6.xWindows XP/2000 or later, 32-bit and 64-bit versions; Mac OS X 10.3.9 to 10.6.xWindows XP/2000 or later, 32-bit and 64-bit versions; Mac OS X 10.3.9 to 10.6.x
SoftwareAdobe Photoshop Elements, ArcSoft PhotoStudio, MP Navigator EX, NewSoft Presto! PageManager (Windows only), ScanSoft OmniPage SE Adobe Photoshop Elements 5, ArcSoft PhotoStudio, MP Navigator EX Adobe Photoshop Elements, ABBYY FineReader Sprint Plus OCR n/a
Power consumption18W; 1.5W standby; 1.0W off15W; 0.9W standby; 0.5W off16.5W; 5.5W standby; 1.6W sleep; 0.4W offn/a
Dimensions (inches, WDH)10.7 by 18.9 by 4.0 10.7 by 18.9 by 4.411.0 by 19.0 by 4.611.9 by 20.0 by 4.3
Weight (pounds)9.210.1911.6
Release dateAugust 2007June 2010August 2009January 2007
Manufacturer price$199.99$249.99$249.99$199.99

To put the resolution boost in context: at 4,800dpi, you can generate a scan of a 35mm slide or negative that will print optimally as large as 14x21 at 300dpi; a 9,600dpi scan doubles that in both directions. So for many people, the cheaper 8800F will continue to suffice. If you tend to crop deeply, though, the extra resolution might be helpful. There's also the possibility that the larger CCD will provide improved speed at the lower resolution, and the improved power management may add up over time.

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