Linoscan 1200

Heidelberg has always produced decent scanners, and the latest addition to its range is no exception. The entry-level Linoscan 1200 is affordable, and comes with a full version of LinoColor Elite – Heidelberg’s professional-level scanning software. This is the first time that Heidelberg has offered Elite with its bottom-of-the-range scanner. The 1200 has a maximum resolution of 1,200-x-2,400dpi and 36-bit colour depth. LinoColor Elite needs 32MB of RAM, plus 60MB of hard-disk space – more if you’re scanning at high resolution. Power source
The scanner is USB, but, unlike some other entry-level scanners, it’s not powered through the USB cable. At £399, Heidleberg’s low-end scanner costs over £300 pounds more than Canon’s CanoScan or Umax’s Astra 1220U. This is because it has way more features, and scan quality is higher. The 1200 is more than enough for basic professional needs. On the other hand, the CanoScan does do a reasonable job, and is USB powered. Heidelberg claims it will take only 30 minutes to make the first scan. I’m no scanner virgin, but I’ve never used LinoColor before. Yet, it took me far less than 30 minutes. A few simple adjustments in the scan preview and I had an accurate and sharp image. It took a little longer to scan transparencies, but this was my own stupid fault. The transparency adaptor on the lid of the scanner needs to be plugged-in separately – I forgot. I needed to tweak the resolution – the automatic setting wasn’t high-enough – but everything else was fine. Guiding light
The software has loads of helpful features for the novice and professional alike. There are automatic corrections for many kinds of pictures – for instance, Skin will improve flesh tones, and Technic will bring out the glitz in silver. A definite boon for those doing a lot of scanning is the 1200’s batch-scanning features. It can scan both reflectives and transparencies at the same time. Simply scan using the Overview mode, highlight the areas to be scanned, and then click on the reflective or transparency icon for each picture. It’s easy and will save loads of time.

OUR VERDICT

The Linoscan 1200 is a good scanner, it’s got serious – yet easy-to-use – software included, and it has a transparency adaptor as standard. Heidelberg’s entry-level scanner is not as cheap as other entry-level scanners. If all you want to do is scan in holiday snaps of the kids, go for one of the sub-£100 scanners. But if you’re looking for good image-quality, need to scan trannies, and can spend the extra cash, go for the Linoscan. It’s just a shame there’s no paper manual included.

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