• SilverFast - Quality Scanner and Digital Imaging Software made in Germany since 1986
Company History – Backgrounds – Inventions

About LaserSoft Imaging

LaserSoft Imaging is renowned worldwide as a pioneer in the field of scanner and digital imaging software – both in the area of private and professional usage. The core product SilverFast® manages to regularly come up with advanced technical innovations. Inspired by Rudolf Hell’s outstanding innovative strength in the field of image processing technology,

physicist and visionary Karl-Heinz Zahorsky founded the company LaserSoft Imaging in 1986. He developed the concept of SilverFast in 1994. Today, Mr. Zahorsky, who was involved in the early initiation of desktop imaging and color management, is the Chief Executive Officer of LaserSoft Imaging.

K.H. Zahorsky is also a professional aviator with numerous flights across the Atlantic in a single engine Mooney and Piper Malibu. Follow some of his flights here: www.zahorsky.net

LaserSoft Imaging’s headquarters is located in the baltic city of Kiel, the capital of the most northern German federal state of Schleswig-Holstein. Kiel is also known as the European sailing city with annual international sailing events. A subsidiary for the Americas was opened in Sarasota, Florida, in 1997. A total of around 30 people are employed at LaserSoft Imaging under the co-direction of Ms. Helga Bischof.

The SilverFast range of products includes software for scanners, digital cameras, printers and for HDR imaging, as well as several specialized solutions. LaserSoft Imaging produces very high quality targets for IT8 color calibration. SilverFast is the standard in the field of Scanning and Archiving Software, featuring powerful highlights like fully automatic IT8 Calibration and Multi-Exposure function (both patented).

Company History

  • 1986 – LaserSoft Imaging begins – the company foundation by Mr. Karl-Heinz Zahorsky.

  • 1987 – Start of color processing on the computer with the video digitizer ProViz from Pixelogic, USA. LaserSoft Imaging becomes distribution partner for Europe.

  • 1989 – LaserSoft Imaging provides advice for Canon and promotes their Still-Video, a predecessor to digital cameras. The RC760 was used in the field of newspaper publishing. LaserSoft Imaging becomes consultant for Hell AG in the area of new desktop technologies for color processing.

  • 1990 – LaserSoft Imaging takes over the distribution of Riplink, a system for connecting the Hell Chromacom image processing system to the Mac.

  • 1991 – LaserSoft Imaging becomes a privately-held company (GmbH), for development and distribution.

  • 1994 – First stages of development for scanner software SilverFast.

  • 1995 – The presentation of SilverFast Ai v.1 at the Hannover CeBIT fair. The Epson GT9000 is the first scanner delivered with SilverFast included.

  • 1996 – SilverFast v.2 is released.

  • 1997 – Continuous expansion, a subsidiary in Florida opens. SilverFast v.3 is on the market featuring prepress color tools and 2-level user interface (high-end and entry-level in one software). Additionaly, SilverFast PhotoCD, SilverFast DC and SilverFast HDR are introduced.

  • 1998 – SilverFast v.4 with IT8 calibration is released.

  • 2000 – Presentation of SilverFast v.5 with many new functions such as Multi-Sampling. New version: SilverFast SE.

  • 2001 – SilverFast v.5.5 is ready, featuring NegaFix and a JobManager.

  • 2002 – LaserSoft Imaging is transformed into a private stock company. Further, SilverFast v.6 with many new and improved features is released.

  • 2004 – SilverFast SE Plus, Ai Studio und SilverFast DC Pro are introduced on the CeBit fair. “SilverFast – The Official Book” is getting popular.

  • 2005 – SilverFast PrinTao is new as well as the SilverFast support for high-end Heidelberg (Linotype) drum scanners.

  • 2006 – SilverFast v.6.5 comes up with notedly improved iSRD® infrared dust and scratch removal.

  • 2008 – Patents granted for the Auto IT8 Calibration and SilverFast Multi-Exposure®. SilverFast receives the EDP award for the “best color management software of the year 2008”.

  • 2009 – SilverFast 64bit support and HDRi as valuable features for the Archive Suite.

  • 2010 – Development of the Resolution Target (USAF 1951) and participation in the German Programme for the Future-Economy (ZPW). With its SilverFast OfficeScanner devices LaserSoft Imaging successfully establishes a combination of hard- and software for the German digital system for passport creation.

  • 2011 – The new generation: As a completely new development scanner software SilverFast 8 is released. In addition to the newly designed user interface the WorkflowPilot is introduced as an important core element.

  • 2012 – Digital imaging software SilverFast HDR also released in new version 8.

  • 2013 – Launch of printing solution PrinTao 8 for Epson and Canon large format printers.

  • 2014 – New SilverFast Archive Suite 8 including Virtual Light Table VLT and support for the DNG RAW data format.

  • 2015 – SilverFast v.8.5 including a re-developed JobManager, the JobMonitor iPhone App, a new raw data format HDRi RAW and the ICC Printer Calibration. LaserSoft Imaging is premium partner of the WTSH “Schleswig-Holstein. Germany’s True North.” partner program. The WTSH is an important contact for business development and technology transfer in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany’s northernmost state.

  • 2016 – Many new developments for SilverFast 8.8: ColorServer, SRDx and Clone-Tool.

  • 2017 – LaserSoft Imaging attends the 1st World Market Leader Forum in Louisenlund. Ongoing product range development resulting in support for new scanners (SilverFast 8.8), printers (PrinTao 8) and Photoshop versions (SRDx). Founder and CEO Karl-Heinz Zahorsky rounds the earth in Piper Malibu.

  • 2018 – Development of “Advanced Scanner Calibration” incl. new IT8 Targets according to ISO standard 12641-2, in the design of which LaserSoft Imaging was significantly involved.

  • 2020 – ISO 12641-2 officially adopted by ISO committee. New “Advanced Targets” tested by Fogra, color accuracy confirmed. In addition: SilverFast 9 is released. The user interface, internal processes and algorithms have been optimized for an even better look and feel. The comprehensive 350+ pages E-Book “Create Brilliant Images with SilverFast” is published.

  • 2021 – The SilverFast ExpressScan feature is included with the Archive Suite. It is a new scanning method for digitizing adjacent images in one pass instead of one at a time. A US patent has been granted for the ExpressScan and the patenting process is pending in Europe.

  • 2022 – Launch of a completely reworked SilverFast website.


SilverFast regularly comes up with innovative and powerful feature highlights, invented by LaserSoft Imaging CEO and president Karl-Heinz Zahorsky. Many of these functions are exclusive to SilverFast and some of them are patented or patent pending.


US 8,693,808 & EP 1744278

Software technology that automatically and exactly superimposes several digital image layers: Using Multi-Exposure, transparent image originals such as film strips are scanned twice with different exposures. The significantly increased dynamic range ensures more image details, especially in dark areas.


US 11,558,529 B2 & EP4109866

Scanning method that can considerably reduce the scanning time for flatbed scanners: Originals lying next to each other in scanning direction, such as slides, are automatically recognized and simultaneously digitized in one pass. Time savings of 50% to 75% can be achieved.

Auto IT8 Calibration

EP 1594301 (expired)

Barcode technology that enables automatic scanner calibration: Place the IT8 target in the scanner, start the calibration assistant and the appropriate reference data is automatically downloaded and offset against the calibration measurement data resulting in an individual scanner profile.

Report on LaserSoft Imaging

The 'Photo Special' issue of the Dutch magazine Connected reports on LaserSoft Imaging and its founder and CEO Karl-Heinz Zahorsky. Why is the city of Kiel, important for the imaging industry? What does the German inventor Rudolf Hell has to do with it and what innovations and ideas make the northern German software company a world-leading provider of digitization and digital imaging solutions? You will find out in this article.

Brief profile of LaserSoft Imaging

This 1-page PDF briefly but concisely introduces LaserSoft Imaging as an employer. You will find a short overview of the company structure and core products.