The Lomography Smartphone film scanner
Looks like Lomo have some big plans up their sleeves, by combining modern smartphone technology and portability with a film scanner they could be on to another winner.
Lomo have certainly been upping their game in recent months, with lots of press coverage and the release of their Belair camera. And now they have decided to start up a Kickstarter campaign to get their latest plan on the road…The Smartphone Film Scanner. And it has been a success for them already, they are well over halfway to meeting the goal of $50,000. Not bad at all.
Though I must admit, I am quite surprised that they are doing a kickstarter. It is not as if Lomo is a small company that is short of cash, they have the money to develop this themselves. If you couldn’t already tell, I am quite opposed to Kickstarter anyway, but I don’t really think that Lomo needs to use this platform for their ideas.
Anyway, I digress. So, what do we have here?
Well, it is a portable scanner, that utilizes your smartphone to scan your 35mm negatives (sorry, no 120, maybe in the future?). It is a simple concept, much the same as the old slide film adapters of the past that allowed your film camera to shoot negative copies of all of your slides.
This is a great idea for all of the people that are either just getting into film or are not about to take things to the next level. The quality is not going to be all that great, as you are using a smartphone and it was never designed for this. But it will give your images that distinct Lomo edge. It will also make posting your film shots on instagram etc all that much easier.
The process will be done through an app (which I really hope you will not have to pay for if you have bought the scanner), which will also allow you to edit your images in your phone.
Although Lomo claims that the scan will be off sufficient quality to print and share, I think they are reaching a little bit far when they claim that you could archive them too. I mean, you could, but if I am archiving scans of my negatives I want the highest possible resolution, preferably done in RAW or TIFF files, zero dust and with Anti Newton glass, but that is just me and I am a geek. These will be usable images for the instant generation who can chuck them on flickr whilst riding the train home from getting their negs developed.
I think one thing that is cool about this is the size. It is tiny and portable, which makes it easy to scan on the move. I for one like that as I am soooo tired of lugging my Epson GT-X970 around with me every time I go travelling….
But really, that is a good thing, it will make sharing your images that much easier, especially for the portable generation who now seem to do everything through their phones.
And it seems that the pricing should be pretty friendly too, making it even more accessible. I joke about my Epson, but that thing did cost a fortune and is a serious investment if you are only just getting into film. The Lomo scanner is going to be a lot more attractive to many.
I think this is a smart move on behalf of Lomo, and even if the product is not perfect, it is going to give a new group of people great access to film and that cannot be a bad thing at all.
What are your thoughts on this? Have you supported the campaign? Tell us what you think.