DS Forums


Transferring slides to pc or memory card

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 21-11-2012, 11:29
Forum Member
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 44

Sorry if this is the wrong place for this question but I couldn't see any other obvious thread.

I'm after a device to transfer approx 400 slides to digital format. I've seen a few advertised in Coopers catalogues and other similar booklets from the weekend papers but I was wondering if anyone had personal experience of any device who could recommend one.

It's to be a Christmas present for Ma - ease of use a priority
gillhammer is offline   Reply With Quote
Please sign in or register to remove this advertisement.
Old 21-11-2012, 12:20
Forum Member
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: S Wales
Posts: 1,309
I've done a fair bit of slide scanning and its quite straight forward if a bit technical for the uninitiated. Epson do a good range of flatbed scanners that can do the job but there are dedicated slide scanners out there too - these tend to be more expensive for good ones.

You can get cheap slide scanners on ebay and similar sites but unless you only want a token or low res scan don't bother with them, 35mm scans have great detail and colour, cheap scanners will reduce this to less then mobile phone photographic quality.

And 35mm slides are quite difficult to scan properly due their density, negatives are easier.

Also slide scanning is very, very time consuming, each slide would take about 5 minutes per scan without any post processing, I normally like to tidy up the scans but that takes knowledge of photo editing software and not to say, some experience of how to correct scans for colour and contrast.

All in all its a mixed bag, you need a lot of time and large learning curve to scan 35mm slides properly or you will have a poor quality image.
Dirtyhippy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-11-2012, 14:09
Forum Member
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Essex
Posts: 16,288
If its a one off, it might be easier to pay somebody to do it.
c4rv is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-11-2012, 16:00
Forum Member
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 1,074
As mentioned it is a lot of work for 400 slides, best to edit it down to the really good ones.

I have a standard A4 type flatbed scanner which has a backlight in the lid and mount for slides/negatives. It automatically turns the negatives to a positive.
You can of course do other stuff like copying paper documents etc so much more potential use than a just a slide scanner.

The optical resolution you need for a 35 mm slide needs to be greater than about 2,400 dpi. I prefer HP scanners as I'm more familiar with that brand.

Ease of use is not something that comes with doing quality scans. It requires some practice and technical knowledge to get a good result, and a lot of time.

If they do not have that time/interest to do the job, it is probably best to have someone else do it.
Helmut10 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-11-2012, 16:59
Forum Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,815
If its a one off, it might be easier to pay somebody to do it.
I would go for that option, too, as Helmut suggestes an' all, othewise once all the slides are scanned, you're left with a gadget you don't really need again.
Sue_Aitch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-11-2012, 20:41
Forum Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 128
I asked a friend who is a bit of a photographic expert about digitising slides and he recommended projecting the slide onto a screen and photographing the image with a digital camera. When I tried it several years ago my camera was just not sensitive enough but last year I needed to copy several slides so tried with my newer pocket size digital camera.

My projector dates back to around 1960 so was not that bright. With the camera on a tripod it took quite a while to get the best setup which was when the camera was next to the projector lens for minimum distortion then zoom in so the photo fills the camera screen. The end results were good enough for the laptop slide show which they were part of.

The original slide projected picture quality was not that good possibly because of the camera user had to guess the aperture and focus settings and often got it wrong. Maplins often advertise 35mm film scanners for about 30 and did think about giving it a try to digitise my parents slides. However only 10% of the pictures are worth keeping so may stick with the camera method.
jcjeffe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-11-2012, 11:15
Forum Member
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Yorkshire
Posts: 4,391
I asked a friend who is a bit of a photographic expert about digitising slides and he recommended projecting the slide onto a screen and photographing the image with a digital camera.
With respect, he must be a bit of an expert - that way of doing it is bad because it brings the worst qualities of the projector, it's set-up, alignment, the screen/wall, the camera and the operator into the final result.

You can get adapter lenses that screw onto the end of a DSLR zoom lens, or even attach directly to a DSLR (the ones like this that aren't dust-tight risk ruining your DSLR). You pop the slide in the end, and take a photo. They work, but the weakness is the quality of lens in the adaptor, and on your DSLR (which may have limitations you never noticed until you try to use it for this!).

The main advantage of these approaches is that, once you're set up, they're potentially much quicker than a dedicated scanner. But the image quality is poorer.

I agree with the others: for 400 slides, pay someone to do it properly. 25p-50p per slide last time I looked. Check your slides in a slide viewer (or just hold them up to the light) first to make sure you don't pay someone to scan the duff ones.

If you can find a cheap-and-nasty solution that is good enough, and have the time to use it, then you can save a lot of money money.

Remember: it is a slow job, and few of these things have automatic feeders - on most, you have to put each slide in on its own, click a button, wait (sometimes minutes, maybe seconds), take the slide out, put the next slide in, watch the software crash, reboot your PC, etc... you get the idea!

It would be interesting to hear from anyone who has tried one of the cheap scanners that are currently available.

Hope this helps.

2Bdecided is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-11-2012, 11:42
Forum Member
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Redditch Worcs
Posts: 17,363
I bought a good quality high res slide film scanner (Minolta) used on e-bay (quite a while ago). After scanning all my slides and negatives I sold it same place for pretty much what it cost me.

I have a flatbed with a slide/negative attachment, it's not as good as the purpose designed item but if the end result is going to be normal sized prints (4x6" for example) then it's more than adequate. A proper slide scannner will easily give you an A4 print of a 35mm slide.

Be aware you need quite a substantial hard disc to keep them on. Really high res scans produce pretty large files (as do high res digital cameras).
grahamlthompson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-11-2012, 14:47
Forum Member
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Witham, Essex.
Posts: 266
I bought one of these recently: http://www.maplin.co.uk/5mp-compact-...scanner-647101
It seems to do the job ok. It will scan slides and negatives.
The only long term problem I can see is that the negative holder is a bit flimsy.
I have not tried to do 400 slides!
witham1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-11-2012, 15:34
roland rat
Inactive Member
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 12,657
As mentioned it is a lot of work for 400 slides, best to edit it down to the really good ones.
I started doing this on Jan 2011, and had over 2000 35 mm slides, it took time to do them, and would do around 40 per week, including editing the photo, I even fixed woith the slides were damaged

come xmas 2011, I presented my family a dvd slide show, and this included dvd box cover which I printed my self, and the dvd also had a printed cover

It was well worth the time doing this
roland rat is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Forum Jump

All times are GMT. The time now is 02:00.