Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 Test report
In summer 2018 Braun Phototechnik released the Multimag SlideScan 7000 as the successor of the Braun Multimag SlideScan 6000 on the market. With this device the magazine scnanner series of Braun Phototechnik goes into the forth loup already. It has begun in the year 2004 with the Multimag SlideScan 4000.
From outside the magazine scanners of Braun Phototechnik never have changed. From the first device from the year 2004, the Multimag SlideScan 4000, over the last device Multimag SlideScan 6000 up to the newest release Multimag SlideScan 7000 the cases and the operational keays have remained the same. There were changes only inside the case. so the resolution increased from 3600 ppi to 5000 ppi at the model change in the year 2012. And at the latest model change the resolution hase increased even to 10.000 ppi according to the manufacturer's data. We will examinte that point exactly in this review.
Equipment, accessoires and performance data of the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000
The Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 is a film scanner, which is specialized on digitizing mounted 35mm slides. It can scan complete slide magazines in batch mode and even recognizes automatically if the frames are in landscape or in portrait format. The Multimag SlideScan 7000 can process mounted slides from CS magazines, universal magazines (DIN 108), LKM magazines and Paximat magazines.
If we compare the new Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 with its predecessor Multimag SlideScan 6000, we do not recognize any differences at the scanner case except for the label with the model name. Also, if we compare the data sheets of both scanners we hardly find any differences. Only the scan resolution has increased from 5000 ppi o 10.000 ppi. A duplication of the scan resolution sounds like a mile stone in the development history of the Braun magazine scanners. However, as we will se below in the chapter image quality, the declaration of 10.000 ppi is only a marketing instrument.
As our measurements show, the effective resolution is equal for a nominal resolution of 5000 ppi and 10000 ppi, so that there is no difference if a scan is made with 5000 ppi or 10000 ppi. The result is effectively the same. Due to this reason we will speak of a 5000 ppi scanner instead of a 10000 ppi scanner in this review, even if the manufacturer declares the resolution with 10.000 ppi on its data sheets.
Since the effective resolution of the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 does not change when scanning nominally with 5000 ppi or 10000 ppi, we we speak about the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 of a 5000 ppi scanner and not of a 10000 ppi scanner.
The Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 scans the inserted slides with the help of a LED light source. Additionally there is an infrared channel integrated, which samples the film material on mounts and depths and thus can detect dust (=heights) and scratches (=depths) on the film material. In the scan software these detected heights and depths can be corrected with the surrounding pixels in a correction operation process. This correction procedure is called Magic Touch at Braun Phototechnik.
The scanner works with a colour depth of up to 48 bit. However, normally one creates image files with the usual 24 bit. The manufacturer declares the maximum density with 4,2, so that one can calculate a density range of less then 4. This is an acceptable value in the film scanner area, however not a peak value.
The Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 has the dimensions 300x290x125 mm, and so it is a pretty compact device. Earlier slide projectors had similar dimensions. With a weight of 2,9 kg it is light weight compared to other technical devices. Most components are made of plastic, this is the reason for the light weight. The scanner does not require much space on your desk. However, you have to calculate with additional space in front of and behind the scanner, so that a slide magazine can be pulled into the scanner and pushed outof the scanner at its back side.
Except for the power button on the back side of the case there are only 3 additional buttons at the front side of the Multimag SlideScan 7000. By pressing the button with the black point you can start a single scan in the CyberView scan software. In daily use you hardly will make use of that button. Much more important are the arrow keys with which you can transport an inserted slide magazin forward and backward by one slide. Above the right arrow button there is a small hardly visible LED which delivers informations about the stat of the scanner.
Additionally the scanner has a small light field in which you can insert a mounted slide and watch it under light. As soon as you have placed a mounted slide in this light field slot and press it downwards the light field illuminates automatically. If you remove the frame, the light switches off automatically. This small slide viewer function is a practical tool if you want to view a slide quickly, e.g. in order to make sure that you will scan the right photo.
As described above the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 ca process mounted 35mm slides fully automatically from different magazines in batch mode. In most cases the slides are on colour film. However, the scanner also can process black and white films. In this case you have to switch off the automatic scratch and dust removal function, since this correction procedure only works for colour films. The Multimag SlideScan 7000 cannot process film strips at all. However, it is possible the mount negatives on film strips into normal slide mounts und then scan them out from a magazine.
According to the manufacturer's data the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 has a maximum scan field of 36,5 x 36,5 mm. The 35mm format has a film area of 36x24mm. So it is possibly to scan both portrait pictures and landscape pictures directly out of the magazine. The CyberView software recognizes automatically if the actual slide is in portrait format or in landscape format and rotates the scan area by 90° if necessary. The Multimag SlideScan 7000 also can process Super-Slide-films (127-er films) with a film size of 36x36mm. You may have bought a couple of such films on museum visits and put them into your slide collection.
In the scope of delivery of our test device there was a printed manual and a DVD with the CyberView scan software. However, the manufacturer has announced that in future the manual and the software only will be available by downloading it from the manufacturer's website and will not be included in the scanner package any more.
Installation and set-up of the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000
The Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 has two connections at its backside of the case: One connection for the power cable and another for the USB cable. The scanner will be connected to the computer via this USB interface. It is a USB 2.0 interface, which is downwards compatible to USB 1.1 and upwards compatible to USB 3.0 Is it state of the art in the year 2018 to equip a new dvice with a USB 2.0 interface, although USB 3.0 has become the new standard a long time ago? Yes! During the digitalization of a slide both inside the scanner and inside the PC a lot of computations have to be done, however ony a few data have to be transferred over the USB interface. If the scan of a slide takes several minutes, the data transfer takes only a couple of seconds.
There is only one important thing to consider during the installation process of the Braun magazine scanner: First the scan software CyberView has to be installed, and then the scanner must be connected to the PC. At the installation process of CyberView the driver for the scanner is installed automatically. Not before the CyberView installation the scanner must be connected to the PC and switched on. Windows recognizes the new device after switching it on and uses the just installed driver for it. Shortly after switching on the scanner, the green LED at the front side of the scanner blinks. As soon as the blinking changes to a permanent green the scanner is ready to use.
Now you can start stanning the first slide magazine. Therefore one inserts a slide magazin into the magazine slot from the backside of the scanner until it hits the transport arm of the scanner. Now the scanner is ready to use - everything else will be controlled over the software or the buttons at the side of the scanner. With only a couple of clicks within the CyberView scan software a slide is scanned with the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000, or the scanner automatically scans slide by slide out of the magazine. But attention! Scanning slides has to be learned like photographing. A picture is made quickly just by pressing the trigger of the camera. But in order to make a really good photo, you need a lot of experience and you have to know how to use your camera in detail. The same holds for a film scanner. A scan is made quickly, but in order to achieve good, satisfying results you have to concern yourselfe with the different setting methods of the scan software in detail.
After the installation of the scanner, first you should check if the installed scan software is actual and if there are firmware updates available from the manufacturer. Braun Phototechnik releases new versions of the scan software and of the firmware in irregular time periods. With souch updates errors in the operation and in the data processing inside the scanner are corrected or new funcions are integrated.
Scanning mounted slides with different magazine types
The Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 is a pure slide scanner. It can process 35mm mounted slides directly out of different magazine types. But it can neither process film strips nor other film formats. 35mm film strips, no matter if positive material or negative material, can be cut into singular pictures and put into slide frames, so that they can be scanned as mounted slides. But other film scanners are better suitable for this job. iese auf diesem Weg verarbeitet werden können, aber dazu sind andere Filmscanner besser geeignet. Thus the Multimag SlideScan 7000 is a specialist under the film scanners, fully optimized to scan large amounts of mounted 35mm slides, which are stored in slide magazines. The following magazine types can be processed with the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 according to the manufacturer's information:
- CS magazines for 40 or 100 CS slides
- Universal magazines with DIN 108 for 36 or 50 slides
- Paximat 36/36S, 50/50S und round magazines 100/100S
- LKM magazines
The history of slides has brought other different magazine types, which, however, cannot be inserted into the Multimag SlideScan 7000. If you have stored your slides in exotic slide magazines or in simple plastic boxes or in archive sheets, you have to resort them into one of the above mentioned magazines before scanning them with the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000. In our online shop there are different slide magazines available. However, gradually they disappear from the market type by type. For instance, the round magazines (carousell magazines) have not been available any more for many years.
The favourite magazine of the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 is a CS magazine with CS frames. At the digitalization of CS frames out of CS magazines the fewest errors occur during a batch scan process. Also during the processing of round magazines the error quote is relatively small. At universal magazines or LKM magazines it depends on the state of the inserted slide mounts. The error quote, however, is highter than the one for CS magazines.
What does error quote meam at a magazine scanner like the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000? In the ideal case you insert a complete slide magazine into the scanner, make the desired settings and then start the batch scan procedure. After a nice shopping tour or a complete working day you return to the computer and enjoy over 50 or 100 scans on your hard drive. However, this ideal case happens more seldomly than regularly. Somtetimes a slide mount just gets stuck while it is shifted into the scanner; then the scanner stops and waits for an interaction of the user. During the digitalization of slides out of CS magazines souch errors occour about every 30-50 scans; at other magazine types more often.
So it is not the case that you can let the scanner work alone for a complete day. Much more you have to look for the state of the scanner again and again. If you have bad luck you start the scanner and it gets stuck already after the first or second slide. If you are lucky, the scanner processes 50 slides until the first error occurs. In practice you let the scanner work alone and make a check every half an hour and restart the scanner if neccessary.
The Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 processes mounted slides directly out of the magazines in batch mode. Since it happens again and again that a slide gets stuck you should check the scan procedure in regular time intervals and interfere if neccessary.
If you want to scan thin frames stored in universal magazines or in standard Paximat magazines (i.e. not type S), the transport arm of the Slide Scan 7000 has an orange adaptor, which you can put on the transportation arm so that the area of the arm is wider and it can process better thin frames. So you can avoid that the transport arm does not hit the slide mount and does not feed any slide into the scanner.
Over a slide lift, which is on the upper side of the device, singular frames can be inserted into the scanner and ejected. This is very practical if you want to scan a singular slide or if you want to make sure that you insert the right slide into the scanner. Also the small slide viewer at the side of the Multimag SlideScan 7000 can be very userful in order to quickly check a slide before beeing scanned.
A very important point at the digitalisation of mounted slides is the cleaning of the films before scanning. Often lots of dust particles have come onto the surface of the film material in the course of the years or decades, which get into the scanner when beeing scanned. A small dust particle, which can hardly be recognized with your eyes, is sufficient to produce undesired strips at a scan, if this particle gets on the CCD line sensor of the scanner. That's why yhou should clean your slides before scanning from dust particles using compressed air. It is even better if you clearn your slides before scanning with an anti static brush and thus reomove electrostatic charges from the films. Because the cleaning of the film material before scanning is so important we summarize this point:
Before you insert mounted slides into the scanner they have to be cleaned by all means. You will get better scans and protect the interior of the scanner from dust.
One thing has to be mentioned again and again: If you purchase a magazine scanner like the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 you can digitize complete magazines full with slides after a short training period. However, we recommend deeply, to extend the training period to a couple of weeks in order to get to know and learn how to use the different setting possibilities within the scan software.
The provided scan software of the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000
The Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 is equipped with the manufacturer's software CyberView, which was available in the version X5.16 at the moment of our scanner test. Cyberview offers basic functions to control the scanner including the slide transport and offers a small selection of useful tools for the image optimization.
If you click on the button with the colour circle a new windows opens with three sections:
With the variations you can make adjustments with small thumbnails regarding brightness and chromaticity. The option color matching provides a brightness-, a contrast- and a saturation slider. With the curves and layer tool you can control the gradation curve and the tonal values. Unfortunately the adjustment possibilities of all tolls are very imprecise. Tools like selective color changing are not even available.
The special elements for batch scanning consist of five buttons. The slide transport can be controlled by those (forwards, backwards, load magazine, current postiton set and go to...) and a small window named Thumbnails. With this you can show a preview of all slides inside the magazine or just a selection. However, a preview of all slides is very time consuming because a preview scan of every single slide has to be done even if the preview scans are made with a small resolution.
By clicking the button Presettings... a new windows opens with different settings like the storage path, image name, MagicTouch and multi exposure. Here you also can choose the file format JPG or TIF.
CyberView is a simple scan software which offers to the user alle basic and neccessary functions in order to digitize mounted slides. Due to the restricted functional scope no precise setting possbilities are available. Therefore the software is easy to learn and one can concentrate to the essential for scanning slides.
The image quality of the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000
In order to examine the image quality of the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 first we concentrate on the resolution, which the scanner achieves in practice. The manufacturer Braun Phototechnik declares the nominal resolution with sensational 10.000 dpi. This is an astronomical value and reminds of past times, in which drum scanners of the size of a small car sampled film material with highest resolutions. We start with the scan of an USAF target with the resolution of 10.000 ppi.
As result of the scan scan of an USAF resolution target with the nominal resolution fo 10.000 ppi we get the adjacent image, which enhances to a 100% view if you click on it. The image shows the interior area of the USAF target. We can clearly distinguish the 3 horizontal bars of the element 6.5 from the white background. For the vertical bars, however, we only can distinguish the singular bars from the background at the element 6.4. on our website about the measurement of the resolution of scanners we have a resolution chart, from which we can take out a resolution value of 4598 dpi for the element 6.4 and a value of 5161 dpi for the element 6.5. As an average value of these two measurements we get a value of approx. 4900 ppi.
Let us interpret this measurement value: If we scan a slide with 10.000 ppi and get effectively only 4900 ppi it is disappointing. Finally the scanner achieves hardly half of its nominal value in practice. However, if we compare this measurement value with that of the predecessor Braun Multimag SlideScan 6000, we realize an increase of the effective resolution from 3900 ppi to 4900 ppi. This is a significant progress. If we compare the effective 4900 ppi with the corresponding value of other film scanners, we realize that this is a top value, on which Braun Phototechnik can be proud of.
What happens if we scan the USAF resolution target instead of the nominal resolution of 10.000 ppi only with the half resolution, i.e. 5000 ppi? The result is given in the adjacent picture. The interior area of the USAF target seems to be smaller compared to the above scan with 10.000 ppi, since the pixel nomber is divided in half both in the horizontal and in the vertical direction. Anyway, we recognize the same elements 6.5 and 6.4, respectively, as in the 10.000 ppi scan. So we also measure an effective resolution of about 4900 ppi at the 5000 ppi scan.
Let uns interpret also this value: If we make a scan with the nominal resolution of 5000 ppi and achieve an effective resolution of 4900 ppi, we see an absolute top value, which is achieved only by a few other scanners. The effective value of 4900 ppi also is a peak value compared to other scanners. However, it is a bit disappointing that the nominal value of 10.000 ppi given from the manufacturer Braun Phototechnik only is a marketing value which has nothing to do with the reality. It does not make any sense to digitize an original with 10.000 ppi if one gets effectively the same information as with a 5000 ppi scan. That's wwhy we speak about the the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 not from a 10.000 ppi scanner but rather from a 5000 ppi scanner in this review.
The Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 is a 5000 ppi scanner, which effectively achieves approx. 4900 ppi. Thus the effective resolution is about 98% of the nominal resolution. With this value this magazine scanner of Braun Phototechnik takes a leading position in the resolution hierarchy of all film scanners.
So we give a small negative point to the manufacturer Braun Phototechnik, because it offers the Multimag SlideScan 7000 as a 10.000 ppi scanner although it is a 5000 ppi scanner in reality. Therefore we can give a plus factor for an effective value, which achieves 98% of the nominal value, and for the absolute value of 4900 ppi for the effective resolution, which means a top value in terms of resolution. With its effective resolution of 4900 ppi at nominal 5000 ppi the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 even beats its competitor Reflecta DigitDia 7000, which achieves a similar effective value only at a nominal resolution of 10.000 ppi und thus delivers blown up image files with more than 75% double pixels. So the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 is very good in terms of resolution and is an ideal for other film scanners.
The scan speed of the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000
Let us examine the scan speed of the magazine scanner Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 now. Some guy may argue that the scan speed is not essential for a magazine scanner which digitizes complete slide magazines fully automatically. Iff you start the scanner with a slide magazine early in the morning the scan job is finished in the evening, no matter if it takes 5 or 8 hours. This is right in the ideal case, however, in practice it happens more seldomly than regularly that a magazine runs through the scanner fully automatically without getting stuck a couple of times until it is scanned completely. Then the scan speed is essential after all. We have tested the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 at a Windows 10 PC with Core i7 CPU and 16 GB main memory. The scanner has been connected to the PC via an USB 2.0 interface. We have measured the following scanning times with the scan software CyberView:
|Process with CyberView X
|Preview of a slide
|Scan of a slide with 2500 ppi
|Scan of a slide with 5000 ppi
|Scan of a slide with 10000 ppi
|Scan of a slide magazine with 100 slides with 5.000 ppi
We have measured the values for scans with 10.000 ppi only for the sake of completeness. Since it does not make sense do scan with 10.000 ppi with the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 these measurements are irrelevant. So let us have a look at the important values for scans with 5000 ppi. A scan with 5000 ppi takes a bit more than 3 minutes. Since normally one scans with the scratch and dust removal function MagicTouch the measured time of 5:15 minutes for a 5000 ppi scan is the guiding value. If we remember 5 minutes for a scan as a rule of thumb, this is a considerable time for one scan. And this time can even increase if additional filters are switched on within the scan software.
It is astonishing that the scanning times have increased compared to the predecessor Braun Multimag SlideScan 6000, i.e. the new Multimag SlideScan 7000 is a bit slower than its predecessor. Therefore it delivers a significantly higher effective resolution.
So all in all the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 is a slow scanner. If you intend to digitize a slide magazine with 100 slides in the batch mode you will have to calculate indeed with a complete day work for you or the scanner, respectively. You have to restart the scanner a couple of times, if a slide gets stuck, but in the evening you will have finished one complete magazine. Indeed, this is not fast, however, the batch scan procedure runs alone except of some interruptions.
Braun Phototechnik limits the warranty for the Multimag SlideScan 7000 to a number of 20000 scan processes. A scan process can be an index scan, a prescan or a main scan. If you choose the option multi-exposure within the scan-software, the film will be scanned twice and the scan counter increases by 2. The same holds for multi times scans. In autumn 2018 this warranty restriction was abandonned by Braun Phototechnik.
The Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000 claims to the top of the 35mm film scanners thanks to its very high resolution and thanks to its very high effective resolution. It is a specialist for the digitalization of large amounts of 35mm mounted slides directly out of the slide magazines. No other magazine scanner can keep up with the Braun Multimag SlideScan 7000.
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