99% of the time I am a total Nikon fan…but this week, I am hating them.
Here’s why. As a former 35mm shooter of transparencies (slide film) I have thousands of film images the get digitized whenever I have time or the need arises. By far the tool for scanning that has the best combination of quality and price is the Nikon CoolscanV ED slide scanner. I bought mine years ago for around $1000 US, maybe a bit more. It is one of the most anti-obsolescent camera products I will ever own. Or so I thought…
Last summer after lightning fried my computer, I got a new 64 bit Acer i7 PC with Vista installed. After some major initial frustration with file permissons etc. I have had a pretty good relationship with Mr. Gates and his software.
In the meantime, I had no need to use my slide scanner till a few weeks ago, when I got in interesting request for some very old slide images. Strange that one!
The darned scanner had not even been plugged in to the new computer, so I made all the connections but of course Vista couldn’t find the correct drivers. Why is it always the most simple things with computers that cause the most trouble – pluging in a device to a new computer shouldn’t be such a pain!
Anyway, I hunted for the CD, the manual, searched on line for several tedious hours trying to navigate the byzantine Nikon website(s) for an updated driver for Visa 64.
By about midnight, exhausted and defeated, I found this on Nikon’s site:
The use of Nikon Scan software with Windows 7 (any version), or Mac OS 10.5.x or later, or any 64- bit operating system (including 64-bit, 32-bit or Compatibility mode) is not supported.
We suggest trying a third party software option such as Vuescan from Hamrick.com or Silverfast software.
WTF!? Looks like Nikon is flipping us – their target market – the bird. They have given up on supporting one of the prime tools of the trade, amongst their most enthusiastic and dedicated customer base. Urrrgggghghgghghghg! I hate Nikon! The upshot…
If you need to use your Nikon Coolscan V ED with a 64 bit system or a Mac OS 10.5 or later – you CAN’T use Nikon’s software. You can’t use your old driver. There is no NEW driver. The scanner software will not work with your system. Forget about geeky tricks to add files to certain folders, or download other dlls. You’re a photographer not a computer technician. Save yourself hours of frustration and let me take away your pain. Here’s your fix:
I dutifully followed Nikon’s suggestion and bought Vuescan from hamrick.com. I bought the Professional version for $79.95 (unlimited upgrades and RAW support among other things). Well, well…my old Kodachrome slides from 30 years ago look particularly snappy! I’m loving this new software. You will too. There’s a Standard Version for $39.00 which may be perfect for you.
Thank you Ed Hamrick! And thank you Nikon – keep making amazing cameras and lenses and ditch all the software (more about Nikon SW coming up – all good). I love Nikon!