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Magnum Photos choose Imacon scanners

Magnum Photos choose Imacon scanners - The world's leading independent photographic organisation, Magnum Photos has installed three new Imacon Flextight 848 scanners in their offices

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Film Scanners

Leading Danish scanner and digital camera manufacturer, Imacon announce the formation of a strategic partnership with the world's leading independent photographic organisation, Magnum Photos. The first step in this partnership is an investment by Magnum Photos of three new Imacon Flextight 848 scanners with batch feeders for its international offices in New York, Paris and London.

Peter Marlow, President of Magnum Photos, comments on the new strategic partnership and the organisation's experience with its new Imacon scanners: "From its creation, Magnum Photos has been about unleashing the freedom and expression of the individual photographer and providing them with real individual control over their creativity - essentially its about encouraging the spirit of independence. We have held true to these principles and we now see these same principles reflected in Imacon's vision.

"It is for this reason we decided to develop a strategic partnership with Imacon. What we see in Imacon is much more than a company that produces a high quality product. Both Magnum Photos and Imacon are working together to provide photographers with greater control and independence over their image management and workflow and an opportunity to further express their authorship and creativity."

Imacon's founder and joint managing director, Christian Poulsen says: "Our new strategic partnership with Magnum Photos ushers in another new and exciting period in the history of Imacon. The name Magnum Photos is synonymous with true photographic individuality, creativity and quality. There is a natural synergy as both Magnum Photos and Imacon are working towards providing photographers with greater control over their image management and workflow, allowing them to focus on their real photographic creativity."

Mr Marlow believes the new Flextight scanners are providing Magnum Photos with a real authority in the scanning, reproductive and archival process, which matches the degree of control Magnum members expect when they take photographs. He envisages the outcome of the strategic partnership will be to give the organisation's members far more freedom and flexibility through the whole process from taking the photograph to creating a scan that is both easy to achieve and technically perfect. With individual photographers having far less resources at their disposal than repro or design houses, the issue of time and managing it effectively is a crucial element to success - "I believe Imacon recognises this - it thinks with the photographer in mind when developing its products."

Steve Book, technical services manager, Magnum New York says: "We have tested the Imacon scanner fully with its latest software. It is far superior to anything I have seen on hitting colour balance and sharpness first time around. The three scanners were installed in the Magnum Photos' offices in September and we are already seeing very significant improvements in terms of scanning and workflow. Having a scanner of the calibre of a Flextight 848 has made a remarkable difference to our in-house operation. In the past, we have found limitations to flatbed scanning in terms of quality and speed, and the expense associated with traditional high-end drum scanners is simply not an option for most photographers.

"The development of Imacon's new FlexTouch software is a major benefit as the less time photographers have to spend scanning and manipulating an image in the studio, the more time they have to be on location and create - this is crucial - as it is their livelihood."

The Flextight 848 offers non-interpolated optical resolutions from 80 dpi to 8,000 dpi and offers true 16-bit colour with a 4.8 Dmax possible in a single pass. The scanner has the ability to scan 100 Mb of data per minute and can handle positive and negative film originals from 35 mm to 12 x 17 cm, plus reflective copy up to A4. The scanner also incorporates the computer-controlled active cooling facility. This technology relies on the use of CCDs, which heat up on one surface only, enabling the CCDs in the Flextight 848 to be designed so that heat is taken out of the scanner. This feature means there is a reduction in noise and an improvement in colour stability.

"The ability to scan a quality raw file and then go back to it when and if further work is required is a major asset," says David Axelbank, technical services manager Magnum London. "In the past there has always been problems with recognising certain colours, in colour negatives in particular. However, the Flextight scanners have an almost intuitive ability to correctly read and assess the image at the Raw File stage. The Raw File profile is so accurate, sharp and noise-free that we upload this file for viewing on our website - once an order is placed we can then go back and make any minor corrections as necessary. This is a significant saving in terms of time and resources. Essentially, we can treat these files as 'digital originals', we try to do it once, and do it right."

About Magnum Photos
Two years after the Second World War ended, Magnum Photos was founded. The world's most prestigious photographic agency was formed by four photographers - Robert Capa, Henri Cartier-Bresson, George Rodger, and David "Chim" Seymour - they created Magnum in 1947 to reflect their independent natures as people and photographers, the idiosyncratic mix of reporter and artist that continues to define Magnum, emphasising not only what is seen but also the way one sees it.

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