As an experienced photographer, you might still be stuck with some of your films. Many older photographers have not made the change from film to digital photography, and this means dark rooms to help develop film.
However, the best negative scanner is the bridge between film and digital photography.
The purpose of the negative scanner is to help individuals port their older negative film to computers.
It is a revolutionary piece of equipment that brings the past and the modern age back together.
The two can be combined and many of your older film images can be imported onto a digital computer, which makes them easier to view.
If you are new to photography, you might never have heard about the negative scanner. However, the following article aims to change all of this, and you should be able to use the quality negative scanner to import these images.
We will look at the best neg scanner and what you need to make sure you find the right one.
10 Best Negative Scanner Reviews
Before we get into some of the technical aspects, we must consider the negative scanners as pieces of equipment.
This article aims to help you better understand these pieces of equipment. Here are some of the top negative scanners on the market today that you might want to consider looking at:
1. KODAK SCANZA Digital Film & Slide Scanner
- FILM TO JPEG IN SECONDS – Powerful 14/22MP KODAK Film Scanner Converts Old 35mm, 126, 110, Super 8 & 8mm Negatives & Slides to JPEG Digital Files - NOTE; THE SCANZA WILL NOT CONVERT FILMS OTHER THEN 35mm, 126, 110, Super 8 & 8mm Negatives
- LARGE, BRIGHT 3.5” TFT LCD – High Definition Built-In Color Display Features Adjustable Brightness & Convenient Tilt for Easy Operation & Image Viewing
- AN ADAPTER FOR EVERYTHING – Unit Arrives w/Multiple Film Inserts & Adapters for Fast, Flexible Operation; Big One-Touch Buttons Allow for One-Step Scan & Save
- INTUITIVE USER INTERFACE – Includes Helpful Tray & Insert Directory; Easily Edit Image RGB & Resolution, Browse Gallery [SD Card NOT Included, supports up to 128GB] & More
- CABLES & EXTRAS INCLUDED – Mac & PC Compatible Converter Comes w/USB Power Cable, HDMI Cable, AC Adapter, Video Cable & FREE Film Cleaning Brush. Use the included brush to also clean the light box of dust and speckles, to avoid marks on the scanned images.
The KODAK SCANZA Digital Film & Slide Scanner is one of the more advanced options on the market today.
Not only is it made by Kodak, which is one of the oldest and most reliable film brands, but it is also a functional scanner.
It includes numerous different scanning ports and converts film of all sizes to JPEG images.
The scanner includes all the cables you would need to have it connected to your PC and should be compatible with most different PC’s on the market today.
Images can also be edited with different software and while you won’t be using photoshop, you should be able to have most of the images ready for use.
The scanner is reasonably priced and the only thing that is not included in the SD card. You might need to buy the SD card separately.
However, it should not be an expensive endeavor. This unit should be functional and it will ensure that you get great value for your money.
- Includes all accessories
- Easy to connect to PC
- Numerous scanning ports
- Reliable brand
- SD card not included
2. Epson Perfection V600 Color Photo, Image, Film, Negative & Document Scanner
- Create extraordinary enlargements from film: 6400 x 9600 dpi for enlargements up to 17 Inches x 22 Inches. Maximum Scan Area 8.5 x 11.7 inches. TPU 2.7 x 9.5 inches
- Remove the appearance of dust and scratches from film: Digital ICE for Film
- Remove the appearance of tears and creases from photos: Digital ICE for prints
- Restore faded color photos with one touch: Epson easy photo fix included
- Scan slides, negatives and medium format panoramic film: Built in transparency unit
The Epson Perfection V600 Color Photo, Image, Film, Negative & Document Scanner is one of the more traditional scanners on the market today, and it will scan almost anything.
The unit is designed to create enlargements and should allow you to enhance most of your images to the correct size. You can also remove tears and creases.
One of the great features is that you can edit some of the images when you have them in the scanner.
This means that if an image has some faded colors, you can restore some of these colors with the editing process.
It is great for some of the older images, which many people don’t have any access to anymore or want to revamp.
While the scanner is slightly more expensive than some of the competitors, it might also be more functional. You don’t need to warm up the scanner, and it can be used immediately.
It also means that scanning images directly onto your PC should be very easy and the energy-saver feature means that it will not cost you too much.
- Energy Saver Feature
- Allows you to edit images
- Scans almost anything
- Great for older films
- It can be expensive
3. KODAK Slide N SCAN Film and Slide Scanner
- SAVE OLD PHOTO MEMORIES: 14/22MP Digital Film Scanner Lets You View, Edit & Convert Your Old Color & B&W Negatives [135, 110, 126mm] & 50mm Slides [135, 110, 126mm] to Digital Files & Save Directly to SD Card (NOT INCLUDED)
- 5” LCD DISPLAY WITH GALLERY MODE: Features Large, Crystal-Clear Screen with Wide Viewing Angle for Instantly Previewing & Editing Photos | Great for Sharing with Friends & Family or Using as an Elegant Digital Picture Frame in Home or Office
- CONVENIENT EASY-LOAD FILM INSERTS: Quick-Feeding Tray Technology Allows for Continuous Loading Action, Making Scanning Fast & Simple! Includes 50mm Slide Holder, Adapters for 135, 110 & 126 Films, Cleaning Brush, USB & HDMI Cables
- EDITING WITH A SINGLE TOUCH: Advanced Capture Software Enhances, Resizes & Converts Photos Via Easy ‘Scan’ Button—No Complex Screens or Settings! | Easy Options Let You Choose Film Type, Adjust Color/Brightness & Assign Date/Time
- SUPER CHIC. UBER COMPATIBLE: Device Handles All Your Old Slides & Negatives, Supports SD or SDHC Cards [Up to 32GB] (NOT INCLUDED) & Connects to Any Type-C USB-Enabled Computer | Gorgeous Design Blends Seamlessly w/ Your Home Décor
Sticking to the Kodak brand, we have one of their cheaper options on the market today. The KODAK Slide N SCAN Film and Slide Scanner is one of the smaller options but it is very similar to the first one that we have reviewed.
The unit is made to enhance some of the old films and bring them back into the 21st century with modern scanning.
Once you have the unit set up, you can also edit it with a single touch. The 5-inch display should be more than enough to enable you to see the images, which should make it much easier for you to edit them if that is needed.
The basic feeding tray means you can continuously feed the scanner with film for faster scanning.
It is also one of the more functional options, and regardless of your PC. It should be able to connect effortlessly to almost any PC.
It can hold numerous different storage devices like SD cards, but these are not included with the unit. For the price and functionality, we would certainly recommend the scanner.
- Versatile compatibility
- Uses numerous storage features
- Ideal for all film
- Connects to all devices
- Storage devices not included
4. Epson Perfection V850 Pro scanner
- Pro quality color & detail - get unparalleled scans W/ 6400 dpi resolution & Adv
- Remarkable tonal range - 4.0 Dmax for smooth gradations & fine Shadow detail
- Exclusive dual lens system - selects from 2 lenses for optimum results
- Operating systems: Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows XP professional x64 Edition and Mac OS X 10.6.X, 10.7.X, 10.8.X, 10.10.X
Moving up, we find some of the more advanced scanners on the market today, and these scanners might be more expensive, but they offer some of the best features.
The Epson Perfection V850 Pro scanner is a high-quality scanner that features 4.0 Dmax, which should allow you to make edits to some of the finer details and shadows.
One of the great features is the dual lenses system that is on offer and these offer crisp and clean scanning of images.
If you are still dealing with film negatives, these should provide you with some of the clearest images you can think of. As mentioned, it also enables you to edit the images and make changes.
One of the major downsides is the price. Unfortunately, this is not the cheapest negative scanner on the market today.
However, it will eventually pay for itself over the numerous uses that you will have with it. If you are serious about photography, this is certainly one of the top scanners that you can choose from.
- Dmax 4.0 technology
- Clear dual-lens scanning
- Reliable brand
- Allows you to make edits
- Very expensive
5. DIGITNOW 22MP All-in-1 Film & Slide Scanner
- Converts 35mm/135, 110, 126Kpk and super 8 films, slides & negatives into digital JPEG format within 2 seconds.
- Stand-Alone and no computer required, tranfers your old film/slides to Color or Black&White picture in SD card(up to 32GB, not included) and supports to adjust the brightness or color of image.
- With software interpolation, digitized photo quality up to 22 megapixels
- Mac & PC compatible, transfers High resolution Images to your computer, laptop, smartphone and tablet
- View the scanned photos directly on integrated 2. 4” color LCD screen, or connect it to TV for larger screen display. Easy to operate for elderly.
If you find yourself strapped to a tight budget, you might want to consider the DIGITNOW 22MP All-in-1 Film & Slide Scanner.
The scanner features all of the different film types and sizes, which means that you can connect it with almost every type of film. It should convert all film into JPEG images in just over 2-seconds.
While the scanner is functional to scan images, you don’t need to use a PC if you are only looking to view these images.
Unfortunately, it does not have the editing software that many of the other scanners boast, which means you will only have the scanner that you can work with. However, it does look great to use.
The scanner can convert images from the film, and it should have a resolution of around 22MP. However, the best feature is certainly the price, and this will be one of the most affordable scanners on the market today.
It will easily connect to your devices and you can use it regardless of the age of the film or the size of it.
- Easy to use
- Converts all film without a PC
- Easy to connect to PC
- No image editing
6. Magnasonic All-in-One 22MP Film Scanner
- PRESERVE OLD MEMORIES - Quickly and easily converts 35mm/110/126/Super 8 film negatives & 135/126/110 slides into high resolution 22MP digital JPEG files
- MULTIPLE WAYS TO VIEW - Using the stunning 5'' LCD screen, view your film, slides & scanned images directly on the scanner or use an HDMI cable (not included) to view on your TV or monitor
- BUILT-IN MEMORY & SD CARD SLOT - With a convenient 128MB internal memory and an SD card slot for up to 128GB of expandable memory you'll be able to scan and save a lifetime of photos
- NO COMPUTER NEEDED - No complicated or expensive photo-editing software or driver installation required, you can adjust brightness, RGB color correction, flip and mirror directly on the scanner
- FAST & EASY SCANNING - Simple setup for frustration-free operation to effortlessly scan your photos in less than 5 seconds each with the included fast-loading film trays
The Magnasonic All-in-One 22MP Film Scanner is very similar to the previous one that we have reviewed. It features a 22MP scanner that will improve some of the images and the quality of these images.
It only takes a few minutes for you to set up. The scanner will take around 5-seconds to completely scan images.
Aside from the HDMI cable, the scanner offers numerous ways for you to view these images. You can connect them to your PC or use the 5-inch LCD to make viewing much easier.
Additionally, you don’t need to have a computer to view these images, which should make life relatively easy for most people.
The scanner is also one of the more affordable options on the market today. However, one of the leading features is the fact that it comes with a 128MB built-in memory. This will enable you to store some of these images if needed.
- Large 5-inch display
- Takes 5-seconds to scan
- Easily connects to PC
- Built-in memory
- Very basic system
7. Plustek OpticFilm 8200i AI Negative Scanner for Mac
- Built in infrared channel can detect dust and scratches on the surface of the original negatives and slides. It is highly useful for defect removal without retouching the images
- Bundles Lasersoft Imageing SilverFast Ai Studio 8 ( US 299 )
- Standard IT8 Calibration Target (ISO 12641-1 compliant 1997) helps you ensures accurate color results , reducing the need for repeated scans or extensive post processing color correction
- HDRi function - captures this information into a 64bit color HDRi file or a 32bit greyscale HDRi file
- Support Windows 7/ 8/ 10 and Mac OS 10.7.x ~ 11.x (Big Sur) , user can download driver from Plustek website.
The Plustek OpticFilm 8200i Ai is another one of these advanced scanners that have almost everything you need already built-in.
It features a state-of-the-art design and while the unit does not have a display, it easily connects to all your devices. You should quickly be able to connect it to your PC or MAC depending on your preference.
One of the main features is the IT8 Calibration Target, which has been patented and should ensure that you have accurate color targets.
It also enables you to enhance some of the colors that you often find in older films. When you have it connected to your PC, you should be able to do some of the editings as well.
There are no real downsides to the unit, and the price seems right for the features that you will receive.
The unit is easy to connect, but it might not have a display for you to look at some of the images that you have scanned into the device.
We would recommend it as one of the top options for beginners just starting.
- PC or MAC compatible
- Accurate color enhancing
- Reasonably priced
- IT8 Calibration Target
- No display feature
8. ClearClick Virtuoso 2.0
- Quickly & Easily Scan Your Old Film, Slides, & Negatives to Digital Photos at 22 MegaPixels (Interpolated) - SD Card Not Included
- Extra Large 5" Preview Screen - See Your Photos in "Real Time" As You Scan
- Works with 35mm, 110, & 126 Negatives and 50mm Slides - No Computer or Drivers Required
- Mini HDMI Output - Output To TV As You Scan or View Scanned Photos After You Scan (Mini HDMI Cable Not Included)
- Full 2-Year Warranty From ClearClick (Extendable To 3 Years With Product Registration) & Free Tech Support from ClearClick, a USA-Based Small Business
When traveling, it is often better to consider having something smaller. A smaller scanner can often be helpful to ensure that you don’t have all the baggage of carrying these units.
The ClearClick Virtuoso 2.0 is one of the perfect options. While it might not have any advanced or high-end features and it will get all the basics done.
The scanner works with all forms of slides and you can integrate most of your older film with the unit to get the best pictures.
Once you have them read, it will enhance them to 22MP. However, you cannot make any edits. The great thing about this scanner is that you don’t need to connect it to your computer to have it work.
Since the scanner is mostly designed for beginners, you will find that it is one of the more affordable options.
It can even be considered the best flatbed negative scanner and should work no matter where you find yourself.
A full 2-year limited warranty will be handy to ensure that you can effectively test the product.
- Small and portable
- Connects to TV
- 2-year warranty
- Features are very basic
9. Medalight LP-100N 5 x 4 Inches Ultra-Thin LED Light Panel Negative and Slide Viewer
- 【Ideal color temperature】：5000K+/-200K；the slide viewer can make the color be restored to 98% of its original while the other LED lights can only reach to 92%~95%. The most realistic effect of an object can be presented by using this excellent light panel and glare-Free.
- 【Easy to use】：Bright White fluorescent light with double layered illuminated surface .So you can watch the negatives and slides by putting it on it.Scan films with other softwares( SlideScan app -scanning photo slides ;FilmBox app - scanning film negatives)and save photoes on your phone.Record the beautiful moments.
- 【Portable and good quality】：Highly portable construction that is built to travel，Ultra-Thin 0.50" frame，Weight：260g.Acrylic plate makes the browser not easily scratched.
- 【Multiple uses】：Can be used as inspection platform for some precise products.Such as for artwork, tracing, calligraphy, embossing, lettering and more.
- 【Long lamp life】：Use 6 AA batteries or 9V1A AC adapter(Not Includes). USE More than 10000 hours.
As mentioned, many seasoned photographers still believe in some of the older methods, and the Medalight LP-100N 5 x 4 Inches Ultra-Thin LED Light Panel Negative and Slide Viewer is the perfect scanner for many of these seasoned professionals. It might not look like much, but it is great for checking image quality.
The portable scanner is battery powered and you can feed most film into the scanner to view the quality of the image.
Additionally, it will enable you to enhance the quality of images as well, which could be handy for beginners. The unit is also very easy to use, which means that no high-tech skills will be needed.
This might not be the best negative scanner if you want to improve images and enhance certain aspects, but it is one of the top options for those that simply want to scan images when they are on the go.
The scanner is affordable and works with 6 AA batteries. Seasoned professionals that travel and use film will certainly like it.
- Small and portable
- Enhances Image Quality
- Great for travelers
- Very basic
10. zonoz FS-5 Digital Film & Slide Scanner
- FILM TO JPEG IN SECONDS – Powerful 14/22MP zonoz FS-5 High Resolution Film Scanner. Converts Old 35mm, 126, 110, Super 8 & 8mm Negatives & Slides to JPEG Digital Files. Perfect for Enhancing & Printing Old Photos & Sharing Old Film Formats on Social Media.
- SIMPLE & EASY TO USE – Largest on market, 5-Inch Wide Screen TFT LCD Color Display, – High Definition Built-In Color Display Features Adjustable Brightness. Simple and Easy to Use Stand-Alone Operating Film & Negative Scanner - No Computer or Software Required. Mac & PC Compatible "Plug-and-Play" no drivers or software required.
- AN ADAPTER FOR EVERYTHING – Unit Arrives w/Multiple Film Inserts & Adapters for Fast, Flexible Operation; Big One-Touch Buttons Allow for One-Step Scan & Save
- INTUITIVE USER INTERFACE – Once the image appears, press "Capture/Scan". It is that easy. Dedicated Scan & Home Buttons Provide Easy One-Press Scanning & Quicker Menu Navigation; View & Edit Current Slide or Gallery Pictures on the Color Display. Includes Helpful Tray & Insert Directory; Easily Edit Image RGB & Resolution, Browse Gallery, (supports up to 32GB SD Card) & More.
- WHAT'S INCLUDED – FS-5 Film & Negative Scanner, 35MM Slide & Negative trays, USB Power Cable, Worldwide Voltage 110V/240V USB AC Adapter with USA/Canada Type B & EU Type C Plugs, Film Cleaning Brush & User Manual. Use the included brush to clean the light box of dust and speckles, to prevent marks on the scanned images.
Lastly, we have the zonoz FS-5 Digital Film & Slide Scanner. While the brand might not be one that many people know, it is one of the rising brands that comes with some incredible features.
The scanner aims to give you portability and functionality. It also enhances the quality of images to 22 MP when scanned in.
Like some of the high-end options we have seen, it is a large product, and you will need to connect it to a solid power source.
Once the unit is connected, it should not take you too long to have it functional and ready for use.
It comes with a variety of different adapters as well and these will help when connecting it to various media sources.
Value is always something you want when buying any product, and since the brand is not as well known, this is one of the cheaper options. However, cheaper does not mean that it lacks in quality.
You will certainly get some great value for your money when you choose it. We would recommend it for beginners.
- Solid design
- Significantly enhances images
- Unproven brand
What to Look for Before Buying a Negative Scanner
Now that you have most of the products down, you should also consider looking at this buyer’s guide. The guide aims to show you what you need to look for in the best negative scanners.
We will be looking at some of the high-end features and all that you will need to keep in mind. Here are some of the most important features to consider:
One of the first things you will need to look at is the format of the film that you will be using. For medium format, you will probably be needing the scanner that accommodates the 120mm film effectively. This will ensure that it can easily handle and read some of the films that you be using for images.
For the basic film, you will need a 35mm negative scanner that accommodates 35mm film. The 35mm film is one of the more consistent formats, and this is the format that you will probably be using for most of your film scanning.
You also need to determine why you are using a film scanner as this will depend on help with functionality and allow you to determine which one you need.
If you are an experienced photographer without a dark room, you can find a scanner to help with this. Additionally, you can also use it to convert some of your current films to digital format.
Dust reduction technology is not something that everyone always uses. However, it is a great option if you want to clean the film when you have it processed.
However, you should often still clean them with compressed air and a cloth.
You will want to consider the scanning resolution as well. There are two types of main scanning resolutions.
The hardware and optical resolution can be functional, but few people understand the meaning. We would recommend finding an all-purpose scanner that can accommodate both of them.
The color depth feature is one of the main features that will often help with making sure you get great quality images.
Having good color means that you can enhance images to make them better and the color will be crisper.
If you want one of the top scanners, you would want one that offers you a greater number of bits per channel.
Frequently Asked Questions
With all this information and products, many people might still be unsure about some of these canners.
We have determined some of the most common questions on the internet. If you are still struggling, here are a couple of great answers to some of these questions.
1. What Does a Negative Scanner Do?
The main purpose of the negative scanner is to allow the individual to scan some of their negative film images.
It will enable the person to edit them and set them up for use later on. They can also be integrated and scanned into a PC.
2. What is the Best Negative Scanner App?
There are plenty of applications, but the Kodak Mobile Film Scanner is from one of the most reliable brands and it offers some of the best images that you could use.
3. Can You Still Get Prints from Negatives?
As long as you have the negatives, you can make as many prints as you want. However, losing the negatives means you can make any more prints.
4. How to Scan Negatives With a DSLR?
It can often be tricky, but by setting up your camera and turning on live view, you can zoom in and scan these negatives.
The downside is that you might need some expensive applications like Negative Lab Pro to assist you.
5. What is the Best Way to Scan Old Negatives?
Using one of the top negative scanners is always the preferred choice. These units have all the features built-in and you simply need to press a button to have them work.
We would recommend trying one of the top negative scanners.
Buying the best negative scanner can often be a frustrating and tedious process. However, you should master the art of these scanners once you get to play around with them.
We would recommend the negative scanner to ensure that you get the best value for your money and get to scan these negative film images.