MORE THAN ANY other piece of technology I've used this year, the HP Scanjet 4890 does more to bridge me from old to new. That's because I have five ring binders full of 35mm negatives from the 80s and 90s that cry out for a peek to the world. Originally, I was going to scan and shunt the strips of film. But then a little voice said, "There are people who have never seen camera film before." So we're going to save the albums in the coolest, darkest recess of the house for as long as they survive. And along the way, we are sharing some scans of negatives and positives in our Flickr photostream. Only family sees them all.
As I have told several people who visited my scans on Flickr, you can scan medium format up to 4000 dpi with the HP Scanjet 4890 but you will need a dedicated computer to run that process. When I push above 400 dpi on a tray full of negatives, I totally exhaust my Dell Latitude D800 Pentium M machine. I need a Core Duo with at least a gig of RAM to image at a resolution good enough to print at A3 size.
After two weeks of hard use, imaging through HP's Photosmart Premier scanning program (4 stars!) and Adobe Acrobat 7, I have found the 4890 to be the best scanner I have used. However, I have not used it for OCR work yet, just for capturing 35mm slides and negatives. For serious photographers, the HP Scanjet 4890 comes with holders to accelerate the capture of medium format film.