Issues with Coolscan V and Ilford B & W film


TPF Noob!
Oct 19, 2020
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I'm not sure if this is the place for this post - mods please move it to the appropriate place if so.

I've had a Nikon Coolscan V for something like 15 years, though I haven't used it for something like 10 years or so as digital photography has taken over my output. I recently pulled the scanner out again, got an appropriate driver online to make it work in modern incarnations of Windows, and began working my way again through some old B & W negatives with a view to improving on the work I did all that time ago. There was a big learning curve involved again, but the results have been pleasing in all facets except one - for some weird reason the scanner is having a big problem accepting Ilford negatives. It accepts maybe half the FP4 strips inserted via the SA-21 feeder, but it flat out won't accept any of the HP5 strips - they just roll in and straight back out, no matter which way I try and orientate them. My go to software is the standard Coolscan 4.0.3, which I always found to be excellent and much less trouble free then older incarnations of Silverfast - yet it wouldn't work with the HP5 strips. I tried using a trial version of Silverfast, then Veuscan - same results. I've cleaned the SA-21 and I don't think it's the issue - anything else I try to put through gets accepted without a problem.

It's got me beat. Anyone else with experience of the Coolscans had the same problem? I'm wondering if there's something in the emulsion that's causing the readers to reject the film. Anything by Kodak in B & W goes through without a hitch - it's just Ilford that's causing the scanner to have fits. And yes, I do vaguely recall that I had the same issues when I first bought the scanner.
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I assume you mean the autofeeeder can't handle that film correctly. My long-dead LS-2000 had a strip film holder (FH-2) that let me insert negatives as if they were slides. The holder held strips up to 6 frames. I don't still have the adapter, but you might be able to find them on eBay or elsewhere. Using the adapter lets you manually frame the negative rather than relying on the autofeeder. Inserted one direction gives you access to those three frames, and turn it around to get the other three.

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