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Epson Perfection 4490 Photo review

Epson's mid-range flatbed is a great all-rounder

Our Verdict

The 4490's a great compromise buy, blending performance with affordability

For

  • Price combined with versatility
  • Excellent scan quality
  • Good scanning speeds

Against

  • Price combined with versatility
  • Excellent scan quality
  • Good scanning speeds

The 4490 offers much of the appeal of the 4990 Photo but at a far lower price.

It boasts the same 4800x9600dpi resolution for a start, though the stratospheric resolution figures being bandied about by scanner makers nowadays do need to be approached with caution.

The theoretical sensor and stepper motor resolution (which is what these figures refer to) are no longer the limiting factor in recording detail. They haven't been for some time. It's the scanner's mechanical and optical precision that determine its resolving power, and that's down to manufacturing and design, not pixels.

Photographers should note that the 4490 can scan both 35mm and medium format films, and comes with Digital ICE dust reduction, which was previously only found on dedicated film scanners. Non-photographers, meanwhile, can automate the usual common scanning tasks - PDF, email, copy and scan - using buttons on the front.

There's even an optional 30-sheet A4 ADF (Automatic Document Feeder). So, although the 4490 appears to have a strong photo bias, it's actually a very efficient and capable office workhorse. This is backed up by speedy scanning times, although performance when descreening our A4 magazine page was a little disappointing.

From a distance, it was hard to distinguish the 4490's scan results from those of the other Epsons; scan quality was first rate. The descreening filter's effect appeared to be a little patchy. Some parts of our page were smoothed effectively; in others the printing pattern remained.

The unscreened 150dpi scan came out very well, though, with clean photo rendition. The 6x4 photo scan was great, but it was apparent by now that all the scanners could accomplish this with ease.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSheetfed Scanner
Optical Resolution4800 dpi
USBYes
Product FamilyPerfection
Brand NameEpson
Scan ColorColour
Grayscale Depth16-bit
Interpolated Resolution12800 dpi
Hardware Resolution4800 x 9600 dpi
Maximum Mono Scan Speed (ppm)3.529
Maximum Color Scan Speed (ppm)8.571
Maximum Mono Scan Speed (sec)17
Maximum Color Scan Speed (sec)72
Height113 mm
Width272 mm
Depth475 mm
Media Type35mm Film, Medium Format Film, Film, Transparency, Photo, Plain Paper
Colour Depth48-bit
ManufacturerEpson Corporation
Product Model4490
Product NamePerfection 4490 Photo Sheetfed Scanner
Product LinePerfection
Image SensorCCD
Manufacturer Part NumberB11B176022
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.epson.co.uk
Marketing Information

You can be confident of retaining even the finest details from your originals with the Epson Perfection 4490 Photo. At 4800 x 9600dpi optical resolution and 48 bit colour, it's not only a professional colour scanner, it's also easy to use. Just four buttons control the process: Start, Copy, Scan to email and Scan to pdf.

In addition to standard 35mm filmstrips and mounted slides, the built-in film adapter also supports medium format (up to 6 x 12cm), negative and positive film.

The Epson Perfection 4490 Photo comes with all you need to restore old film and photos. During the scanning process DIGITAL ICE Technology automatically removes scratches, tears and dust from old or damaged film. An advanced software package including Adobe Photoshop Elements 3.0 and Epson Creativity Suite gives you total control over the enhancement and editing of your scans.

Platform SupportedPC, Mac
Limited Warranty1 Year
Weight (Approximate)4 kg