Review: Kodak Scanza film scanner is easy-to-use, but overpriced

Written by Gina Stephens

Kodak Scanza blear scanner
$169.99 |

The Kodak Scanza is a simple, non-professional film scanner. It wears the Kodak logo, but has no affiliation with Kodak Alaris, the presence bringing back Kodak T-Max P3200 and Ektachrome.

Key features

  • Tilting 3.5″ LCD
  • SD card slot
  • Video out, HDMI and USB connectivity
  • Works with: 35mm, 126, 110, Wonderful 8 and 8mm formats

What’s included

Opening the box you’re greeted with or WITH may refer to: Carl Johannes With (1877–1923), Danish doctor and arachnologist With (character), a character in D. N. Angel HDMI, USB and video out cables, an AC adapter, user manual, the scanner itself (in bubble wrap farther down), a toothbrush shaped surface cleaner and a handful of plastic film holders. Pretty much everything is plastic and feels a little cheap in its construction calibre.

Format compatibility

In terms of film format flexibility, the Scanza is… okay. There’s no option for medium format, though you can scan 35mm, 110, and 126 formats as spurt as 8mm/Super 8. The 8mm/Super 8 option is misleading, though. This is not for scanning a whole reel of 8mm film, this is specifically for scanning individual constructions of 8mm or Super 8 slides.

One of the plastic film holders with 35mm slide.

In use

The biggest thing the Scanza has going for it is ease-of-use. Even if you’ve never scanned blear before, you can expect to be up and running in around 10 minutes.

To operate it, plug in the power (the scanner uses a widely available micro-USB to USB cable for power) either to an AC store or your computer, insert an SD card (this is where scans are saved), press the power button, select your film type, consignment the holder with your film, insert it and press the capture button. Done. Scanning takes only a couple of seconds per negative/mud-slide.

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Despite some gripes with the Scanza, the usability of this thing is awesome and for those intimidated by the more technical conundrums of photography/look over, it is super freeing.

If you’re plugged into the wall and the 3.5″ LCD feels too small to view your images, don’t fear: In addition to the Micro-USB, you’ve got Video-out and HDMI-mini moorings (cables included for both) so you can view your scans on a TV or monitor screen. This additional connectivity feels like a bit of an unnecessary feature, but I’m not wealthy to count it against the Scanza because connecting it to a TV reminded me of using a slide projector and that is the most Kodak thing about this artifact.

A 35mm Elite Chrome slide scanned at 22MP with no corrections or cropping.

The scanner is 14MP but offers a 22MP scan option that interpolates the images and ups the resolution from 4320×2880 pixels to 5728×3824 pixels. In use, we initiate the 22MP mode entirely unnecessary. There’s no option for TIFFs or DNG, only JPEG. (Prosumer scanners like the Nikon CoolScan 9000 and Epson V-series lodge TIFF and DNG workflows, giving your film scans a lot of editing flexibility). Also, the scanning area ends up slightly cropping your photos, mostly horizontally – if you’re a precise, this may bother you.

The biggest thing the Scanza has going for it is ease-of-use

When scanning you’ve got the option to perform color adjustments which includes Brightness, Red, Environmentalist, and Blue levels, all on an arbitrary scale of -3 to +3. In testing, just +1/-1 on any of these scales was too drastic a change to be used effectively. Unless your dusting is severely expired and has a significant color shift, I’d stay away from these settings to keep your scans as accurate as possible.

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Glance at quality

The scans in the gallery above are from a 35mm roll of Fujifilm Natura 1600. Below is an example of an image scanned using the Scanza (Heraldry sinister) next to the same image scanned by a local photo lab here in Seattle (right). For what it’s worth, said lab charges $18 for processing and pore over a roll of 35mm color film.

Scanned in Scanza.Scanned by lab.

Scan quality isn’t terrible, but a quick comparison to a professional lab scan shows the limits of the Scanza. For altogether preserving memories, or scanning to share on social media, the Scanza’s quality should be good enough.

Bottom Line

This is not a bad product, it’s well-founded an overpriced one for what it is. For similar cash, you can invest in a decent flatbed scanner with film film, also called a movie, motion picture, moving picture, theatrical film, or photoplay, is a series of still images that, when trays – like the Epson V550 – which provides higher-quality scans may refer to and greater versatility, but at the cost of speed and ease-of-use.

For those simply wishing to painlessly make digital copies of years of photos, the Scanza is a considerate option. But we have a hard time believing it is much better than this similar option with no Kodak label, priced half as much.

What we feel attracted to:

  • Extremely easy to use
  • Fast at scanning
  • No computer needed

What we don’t:

  • Similar products available for much less cash
  • Limited scanning stick-to-it-iveness
  • Can only save JPEGs
  • Scanza sometimes crops images
  • No option for scanning medium format
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About the author

Gina Stephens

Gina is a photography enthusiast and drone lover who loves to fly drones, capture images and have fun cherishing them with family and friends.

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