Epson Perfection 2480

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Epson Perfection 2480

Pros

  • High speed, good image quality, image restoration features

Cons

  • Nothing notable

Bottom Line

An excellent choice for the average user, the quick-study Epson Perfection 2480 Photo scans quickly and creates good-looking images--from both photos and film--all at a bargain price.

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The Epson Perfection 2480 Photo is relatively inexpensive, yet its fine image quality and brisk performance make it excellent value. The 2480 scans both photos and film, and like previous Epson scanners, it has push buttons that quickly launch common scanning tasks, along with a versatile scanning driver (Epson Scan) that offers different user modes for novices and veterans. For example, if you choose the Perfection 2480 Photo's Full Auto mode in the driver, the scanner will recognise the type of printed image (such as a colour or black-and-white document) or type of film (negative or positive); it then scans and saves the image for you--all at the press of a button. Professional mode, on the other hand, offers complete manual control over the scanning process.

The 2480 performed very well in our speed tests, using its USB 2.0 interface. When scanning at lower resolutions (100 and 300 dots per inch), the 2480 turned in about average speeds; but it scanned fast enough at 600 and 1200dpi to earn a lower cumulative time than most other scanners in its class. For example, it scanned a 4" x 5" black-and-white photo at 600dpi in just under 26 seconds; most other SOHO scanners take from 28 to 41 seconds to complete the same scan.

Overall image quality was also impressive. The 2480 produced attractive scans of both colour and monochrome documents. It had accurate reproduction of the brightness and contrast in a black-and-white photo scanned and printed at 600dpi. The 2480 also produced accurate colour and sharp details in the on-screen reproduction of a 4" x 5" colour photo scanned at 100dpi.

The Epson Scan driver includes enhancement features that can improve the look of aged transparencies; its colour restoration, dust removal and film grain reduction features all worked well. And the 2480's optical resolution of 2400 by 4800dpi makes it possible to enlarge 35mm images up to 8" x 10" with sufficient image quality for printing. However, the 2480's film adapter can scan only a maximum of two 35mm slides or three frames in a filmstrip at once.

Bundled software includes ArcSoft PhotoImpression 5 for image editing, ABBYY FineReader 5 Sprint for optical character recognition, and Epson Smart Panel, which helps you accomplish a variety of tasks such as creating low-resolution images for uploading to a photo-sharing Web site, or for sending via email or fax. The optional automatic feeder handles multiple photo prints up to 4" x 6", as well as business cards, but it was not available for this review.

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