Friday, April 29, 2011

Part III: Epson Perfection V750-M Pro Scanner Review – Conclusion

In Part I of my review of the Epson Perfection V750-M Pro Scanner, I talked a little bit about the Copy Utility and Epson Scan. In Part II I went more in-depth on SilverFast AI. From those two reviews you can easily see the path of converting your film based prints or negatives to digital using the built-in features and software of this scanner. The same philosophy applies to slides and medium format film based products.

Living Day to Day with the V750

I’ve had the V750-M a few months now and I’ve actually been surprised at how much I’ve actually used it. At first I thought I’d just do some basic stuff for the review and then it wouldn’t get much use. However, I’ve found that I really like the quality of the scans so I tend to prefer it over my scanner built-into my cheap office multi-purpose printer. The Copy Utility works well, but I actually find myself using it to scan to PDF more than to the printer itself.

I’ve been very pleased when I have a color image or document to scan at the results I get compared to what I had been used for quite some time. The Epson software is definitely very user-friendly and just works.

If you are considering this product for a business where low tech employees will be using it, I think with the correct default settings and a desktop shortcut it would be as easy to use as a copy machine.

Photo Restoration

Photoshop imaging experts can certainly make their V750 pay for itself by doing things like photo restoration – especially if you use the fluid mount on old black and white negatives. Photo restoration is time consuming work, but the ability to start off with a great image helps a ton. Surprisingly I found the Epson software to be superior at providing a great starting point from a color standpoint, but SilverFast AI was better at auto detecting and correct scratches. I still had to correct a few spots missed by SilverFast via the healing brush but it was no problem. Digital ICE was useless in both products, which is why I had no luck with the Epson software. Here’s some examples taken from a print made in 1971:

EPSON Scan – Digital ICE Standard Auto Exposure with Color Restoration Applied

Mouse over to see after Photoshop, mouse out to see how it came out of the scanner
SilverFast AI – with is proprietary scratch removal
Hover for a 1 minute Photoshop edited version

The original image has the same basic red hue to it so this is a technically accurate scan, but not a nicely color corrected version which I got from the Epson by simply clicking a checkbox. SilverFast AI is super difficult to use so it may be possible to get these results, but I found going into Photoshop much easier and faster. Hover rover the image above for a quick 1 minute edit.

Both photos show that the image is damaged and I didn’t try to tackle that as there seemed to be nothing in the software to help me there.

Optical Character Recognition (OCR)

This scanner comes with OCR software called ABBYY FineReader Sprint, unfortunately it doesn’t work with present day operating systems. When you visit Epson’s web site it redirects you to Abbyy’s web site. After a support request I was sent this letter:

Just to let you know, we do not sell nor distribute ABBYY FineReader Sprint. This software is provided by scanner manufacturers such as Epson, Lexmark, and Canon to their customers.

Please contact your scanner manufacturer directly to inquire about a replacement or updated copy.

Best Regards,
ABBYY USA Technical Support

The back and forth finger pointing between the two companies basically meant that I needed to find another solution, so I did not test this feature. Users of Adobe Acrobat (the real thing, not the free reader) have OCR software that could be used instead. Many companies these days offer solutions starting around $49.95, so I didn’t consider this to be significant show stopper for me.


Quality scanning is slow compared to the time it takes to make that copy on your typically office copier, so don’t expect instant gratification. There’s also lots of settings to dial in for what seems an endless number of scenarios that you could set before making your final scan. However, I think most people will have a dedicated purpose for using their scanners so once you have everything dialed in the results should be fairly quick. The scanner needs a moment to warm up if it has been sitting idle and the scan speed depends on the settings chosen. A casual observation is that it felt about as fast as saving an image with a few layers in Photoshop. Not painful, but not instant either.


If you are someone doing photo restoration or who wants control while converting your old film library to digital, this is an outstanding product. Scanning is a time consuming process, but like printing it can be very rewarding when you get the results you want. Third party services will give you about the same level results you’d get from a third party printer, so control freaks will appreciate what self-scanning brings to the table.

I found this to be a very enjoyable product to use both for my photography as well as my business needs. I highly recommend this scanner to anyone in the market for a high quality imaging product.

You may find other portions of this review by clicking the following hyperlinks:

Where to Buy

Lean more about this scanner at Epson’s website or order its replacement, the V850, at B&H or Amazon


Epson USA provided me with a V750 scanner for the purpose of doing this review. If you purchase using the links provided in this article, I may get a commission. Thanks for supporting this blog by using my links when you are ready to make your photography related purchases!

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Chet said...

We've got some 20,000 Kodachrome slides to scan to digital format. Would you recommend the V750 for his task? If not...any other recommendations?
Chet said...

Hi Chet,

If you want full control over the process yet, but personally I'd probably shoot myself if I had to do that many. I'd probably farm it out to a good service like scan cafe and see how I liked the results. For images that you don't like the results for, then you could consider using the V750 for that (hopefully) smaller subset.

Anonymous said...

Hello Ron,

I'm entertaining the idea of transfering old photos to digital as a business. Do you have any idea how these companies are doing this and what type of equipment there using?
Ryan said...

Hi Ryan,

No, I have no idea, but I'd say that unless your super wealthy and are just planning to do it as a way to pass the time (i.e., you don't need the money) then I'd say don't quit your day job.

The people with the greatest need for this service are typically the ones who can least afford a service. The drum scanner services make it cost prohibitive to do it right one scan at a time with something like the V750.

There's a demand for the service, no doubt, but people struggle to justify the cost of the scanner so I think unless you are super lucky it will be hard to profit from such a service.

That's my 2 cents at least.