>>>>> "jjc" == Cruz, John J <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> writes:

    jjc> So my real question is should I buy a $200 HP camera at 1.3
    jjc> Meg pixels or a $ 200 HP scanner?

I just reread this and realized you asked about a _scanner_ not a
printer.  Sorry, I've been thinking of buying a color printer, so my
brain was on the wrong track.

I'd buy the scanner.  If you can double you budget, I'd still buy the
scanner.  My Epson Perfection 2450 Photo scanner cost me about $360
and scans a 35mm slide at better than 6-megapixels.  I use it for my
hobby (astrophotography) where I can rarely trust the lab to print an
acceptable result.

In general, paper doesn't have the same dynamic range as film, so
scanning from prints doesn't get you the same results as scanning from
film.  Still, scanning a 4x6 print at 1600dpi (the figure you
originally mentioned) should allow you to print at 17x22 and still
have 300dpi.  You may have to do some work to sharpen up the scan, but
it might work.  Not having gone past an 8x10, I'm not the right person
to ask for how _well_ it will work.

The bigger problem is that the GIMP will only handle 8-bits/color
which means you can't take full advantage of your scanner.  From the
rumors I've heard, this will change in GIMP 2, but I've also heard not
to expect to see that for another year.

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