How can I tell if a used film scanner is working correctly?

Jul 4, 2007
Redmond, WA
I purchased a used film scanner from a very nice local Craigslister. She says I can return it back within three days if I find any issues with it. So I have to get the testing done this weekend.

Unfortunately a lot of what I want to scan -- some slides from my father-in-law -- won't be available until we go over for July 4th weekend. Until then all I have are some 9-year old negatives shot with a Olympus Stylus point-and-shoot using Kodacolor ISO 400 film, processed by a mass-market shop (Mystic Color Lab).

Thus I'm not sure how to tell if I'm getting a "good scan." Here's a sample scan. Digital ICE turned on (seems to work wonders as there is a lot of dust without it). No other in-scanner processing, or post-processing. Just 8-bit TIF to JPEG conversion.

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

And if anyone's interested, a link to the very large original, in JPEG format.

I was surprised the shot looked a bit soft, but I'm wondering if that's more the camera and film.

Thanks for any advice.
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