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Digitising slides,best method?

Discussion in 'Everything Film' started by swanseadave, May 21, 2012.

  1. swanseadave

    swanseadave Well-Known Member

    I can`t remember the last time I dug out my projector and screen so I thought it might be a good idea to digitise them(several hundred)

    I cannot afford a dedicated film/slide scanner so thought maybe a slide copier with suitable Sony A mount adaptor.

    Anyone got any thoughts?
  2. Roy5051

    Roy5051 Well-Known Member

    The problem with a normal slide copier is that you would not get the whole slide on the copy, just the APS-C sized portion. I have a similar problem, I want to copy several hundred (maybe thousand?) slides and have been lucky enough to pick up an HP Scanjet 4850 on Freecycle which seems to do a pretty good job, according to my test runs. But even with 4 slides at a time, it is probably going to take forever; ah well, I am retired......[​IMG]
  3. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    If you buy and sell on ebay why not buy a used Nikon scanner, do the slides then resell it on ebay? This should entail minimum loss, just the outlay tied up while you have the scanner. If things went your way it could cost you nothing, fickle as ebay is.

    The problem with most slide copiers is that the lenses are not all that good. I did have some success using an old Panagor slide copier (a type with no lens, basically an adjustable frame) on the front of a Sigma 50mm macro lens. There was enough adjustment to include the full frame on an APS-C camera.
  4. John King

    John King In the Stop Bath

    The only problem with Nikon Scanners is they do not load onto Windows 7. If you still have the XP version you are ok with the last two versions of the scanner at least. It is still going to take you ages to do several hundred though.
  5. Bob Maddison

    Bob Maddison Well-Known Member

    A lot depends on the slide copier. There are two varieties: one replaces the camera lens because it has it own very small aperture lens; the other fits onto you own lens and is really a super close up lens complete with slide holder. I have used the latter type (made by Ohnar) recently to digitise 25,000 slides. I found that a lens of ~100 mm focal length gave me a full (APS-C) frame from a FF slide. Hence I used my 100 mm macro as the camera lens. I used auto focus excepot for the very few slides with insufficient contrast, and the lens was used at f8 or f11. Illumination was by flash which was set up to be off axis (to minimise possible flare) and I had to reduce contrast and saturation for best results. After a little experimentation, I arrived at a standard set up which made digitising 25,000 fairly painless doing about 900 - 1000 each day. This was far quicker that using a scanner!
  6. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    I don't know about Nikon ones, but Minolta ones have that issue. It's resolved in my case with VueScan software, which works fine with Win 7.
  7. Benchmark

    Benchmark Well-Known Member

    I think (and sincerely hope) you are wrong about this John. :)

    Nikon provided an updated driver to work with Windows Vista, which I believe uses similar code to Windows 7, but wasn't very popular. I haven't done any scanning for a while, but my Nikon Super Coolscan 9000 seems to work fine with Windows 7 x64, and images process much, much faster than under Xp.

    I have also found that later versions of Photoshop (CS 5.0 onwards) will open Nikon raw files created by the Nikon scanning software. This is really useful as I don't find the Nikon software to be particularly helpful, but it does have dust and scratch removing tools and grain reduction.

    PS: According to my son, you can run a 'virtual Xp machine' in Windows 7 if you need to. Windows 7 also has various compatibility modes which might be worth a try.
    Last edited: May 21, 2012
  8. swanseadave

    swanseadave Well-Known Member

    Hmmm,thanks gentlemen.I`ll have a think and maybe try ebay.

    It hadn`t occurred to me about the APS-c not filling the frame using a slide copier.

    I used to have an Ohnar years ago for copying slides for competitions.I gave it to my nephew who sold it!There`s gratitude for you.:mad:
  9. Meredith

    Meredith Well-Known Member

    You just use Vuescan instead. My Minolta scanner drivers don't work with Win7. I use the Vuescan driver and the original Minolta software with no problems.
  10. Malcolm_Stewart

    Malcolm_Stewart Well-Known Member

    Morning Dave,

    I'm pretty sure that at either this year's Focus on Imaging, or at last year's, there was a stand offering slide-scanners looking like a magazine type slide projector, and allowing you to load 36 slides and scan them automatically, in batches. At the moment, I can't recall the name of agency, but hopefully my memory will do its subconscious thing during the day! Didn't have to wait that long...

    Here we are complete with prices - ouch!!

    I can confirm that my Epson Perfection flatbed 4870 PHOTO is of little use for bulk scanning, although it's good for most things.
  11. RobertCoombes

    RobertCoombes Well-Known Member

    Getting Nikon scanners to work under Windows 7 (64) is easy. The fix is trivial which makes Nikon's attitude bad. Visit www.exposedvisions.com. My Coolscan V ED is now not a £500 door stop.
  12. swanseadave

    swanseadave Well-Known Member

    Ouch indeed Malcolm!Over £2000 is way out of reach.I am checking Ebay occasionally.There was a KM scanner `tother day but SWMBO`s not keen of spending.:rolleyes::D

  13. LargeFormat

    LargeFormat Well-Known Member

    I couldn't get my Coolscan 5000 to work with Windows 7 so I use VueScan which I think would be worth its cost even if I hadn't had the problem.
  14. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    It's certainly worth the cost I paid for it - got it free here some years ago. ;)
  15. swanseadave

    swanseadave Well-Known Member

    Has anyone photographed a projected slide digitally?I`ve not tried but it occurred to me it may be a viable alternative with the camera tripod mounted/MF.

    Just a thought.:cool:
  16. Bob Maddison

    Bob Maddison Well-Known Member

    Tried many years ago but all sorts of problems. For a start, you are tied to the resolution of the projection lens. Also, exposures can be quite long. Not only does the camera need a firm mount, but so does the projector. There is also the problem about uniform illumination. It isn't possible to get the camera and projector axis very close together and this gives some distortion too.

    I have successfully copied 8mm cine to video by projection, but I used a back projection screen to get round the co-axial problem.
  17. beejaybee

    beejaybee Marvin

    Actually this is the easy bit. Just stick a half silvered mirror in the light beam, the light from the projector can shine through this & the camera can be on axis & pointed straight at the screen too.

    The limited resolution of digital projectors is a much more serious issue, as is getting an adequate colour balance unless the projector can be profiled in a similar manner to a decent monitor. Which brings me to the point that you might as well display the image on a (good) monitor & photograph that.
  18. Bob Maddison

    Bob Maddison Well-Known Member

    Not quite as easy as the image is reversed, although this can be corrected later. The screen I used had a translucent matt finish so I had true back projection. Nevertheless there were problems with movement between video camera and screen / projector such as vibration if anyone moved around the room!
  19. swanseadave

    swanseadave Well-Known Member

    Thanks,looks too difficult so I`ll abandon the idea.
  20. John King

    John King In the Stop Bath

    I am correct I believe or so I have been told by Nikon themselves. They have not made any updated software for their scanners (I only asked about the 35mm ones) There is a way around it by using the Silverfast program, but in the Nikon Techie's opinion that too can be hit or miss.

    I am not too bothered although the option would be nice. I still run my wet darkroom and print mono and colour. It's a way of getting myself out of the mainstream and back into a bit of piece and quiet.

    I do have an Epson 700 flatbed that will scan negatives and slides to quite a high standard and this will work on Windows 7, but the results don't have the same 'feel' as a proper darkroom print.

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