This is one of those nasty technology-obsolescence issues that will be popping up for decades to come... I have a friend, an avid photographer, who has closets full of slides. She's moved into the world of Aperture, but scanning slides is a tedious chore.
You can buy a dedicated slide / film scanner ($80-$1500 depending on quality & feature set. I'd stay away from "Pacific Image" - unless they've done given some serious new attention to their drivers & software).
Or you can use any old flatbed scanner that has film / slide support (a drop-in holder for slides, plus a lighted panel inside the lid of the scanner). You can achieve acceptable quality scans using this method.
In either of the scan-it-yourself routes, you will save yourself considerable time and effort by ensuring that the scanner glass is super-clean, and the slides are also free of dust. That won't eliminate post-processing, but it will help. In all cases, you'll need to drop these fellas into Photoshop or some other image editing application to remove dirt / dust / scratches; fix exposure, colour, etc.
Or you can ship your slides off to the local photo store that provides the service (or even courier them to various services you can find online). Check reviews of those online services carefully, and look for hidden costs (in post-processing, if you request it and/or if they offer it).
The downside to not doing it yourself: no control over the quality. The upside: no new equipment to purchase, your time isn't wasted.
well, Egremont, I can't help you a lot. basically, you'll need a scanner that can handle
slide film, whether in individual slides or in strips-or you'll need to find someone who
has one and is willing to lend it to you-or you can buy one. Yes, Nikon does make a film
scanner, but at $2,700 it may be a bit out of your price range (then you may want to buy the automated slide attachment, for an extra $500)-tax not included on anything, of course
semi-consumer grade stuff is about $250-$300...
failing that, you may want to take it to someone to scan for you. I'm no expert, but I have scanned over 8,000 35 mm slides, 800 4x5 positives (and negatives), so I have done some work in this area...
My Epson Perfection 2450 is almost 8 years old and obsolete by todays standards. Quite adequate for scanning slides and negs of all sizes up to 5x7. I would assume newer Epson flatbed scanners would do an even better job. For that rare occasion when you really need to squeeze everything out of the slide spend the bucks and have it done professionally.
If you have no other need for a scanner by all means consider the dedicated transparency type scanner.
Either way you can make it a project that is spread over months or years rather than a one week marathon.
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To: Gerbill - CubaMark - johnb1 - pm-r - and eMacMan
I thank you all for taking the time to respond to my query about moving my slides to my computer.
Did not realize that it was such a complex task. Should have understood that more specialized equipment would be needed and unfortunately I do not have a projector anymore. I could have tried pm-r suggestion.
I would imagine that none of you would be impressed by the product that my search suggested. One of the options was at Amazon.com offering a Opteka Slide Copier for my Nikon from 47th Street Photo. Last one left at 29.95, originally 99.95. Appears to attach to camera as a lens would and it has a slot for the slide and then you "click".
Reminds me of a Viewfinder. You have to be old enough to know what that is !
Thanks again for all your advice. I will let you know if I come up with a solution that works for my budget.
Another suggestion not yet given is to sort your slides first. You can buy a loupe or use a magnifying glass to make it easier on the eyes.
I scan slides for clients (as does ScanMan) and I always recommend this to my clients.
2 huge reasons:
1. we're now in the digital age so we snap and erase photos faster then ever possible. That means you probably have slides where someone is smiling in one slide, not smiling in the next yet it's the identical snap. Or someone is waving in one, then not in the other. I always see this in clients who don't sort. I had one fellow with 21 photos taken of him in front of a garage he owned - they were all the same photo, but yet all different in the smallest sense. He had quite a few like that.
2. related to #1, it's a chance to organize your slides be it in envelopes marked with dates/events/titles etc... or in the slide boxes. It will eventually help yourself (and anyone else if you decide to hire someone).
3. Costs savings - no sense scanning slides which mean the same as other slides. I tell my clients they are getting more bang for their buck essentially.
4. Memories - half the fun is going through your old photos, remembering the trips, the family members, times of old. People have told me going through their slides or photos gets them even more excited to see the final product.
As for scanners, I have an Epson V700 and it can do slides, but of course, not nearly as fantastic as my Nikon dedicated slide scanner (the Epson isn't as costly either).
The other factor is learning the software. Plenty to learn and know for both scanning and post processing. But if time isn't necessarily a factor as you mentioned, it can be a very rewarding process.
I was fortunate / smart enough to pick up one of the entry level Nikon Coolscans before they were discontinued. Cost me about $500 and is just a smaller version of the one that they still sell. Probably not quite as good a resolution as the $3000 machine but gives me a very good quality scan, much better than your average $100 scanner, I've very happy.
You might want to talk to someone at Vistek if there is a store in your area. I actually attended one of their recent Saturday morning workshops that was on restoring old slides and negatives. They focused a little too much on printing the scanned file for my liking, I'm just looking for any knowledge on transferring my slides to digital. They did mention an Epson flatbed scanner that had a good quality slide scanning capabilities. I believe it was a special holder that fit into the lid.
I've started some of it but as mentioned in an earlier thread, it is a long tedious process. You might want to pick up a lightbox to assist you with the previews before selecting what to scan. I bought one from Loomis & Tooles, the arts supply store. I think I paid about $30-40 for mine. Allows me to put a page of slides on it to help decide which slides I want to scan.
Pick up some cleaning supplies. Vistek sells the Pec-12 cleaner and the Pec-Pads. This stuff is the gold standard in the industry for archival work. At the same time you might want to pick up some Print File Archival pages to store the slides in after you've scanned them.
went through this a few years ago. i bought a nikon coolscan V film scanner (i think it was), for about $900, although i think they dropped in price. it was the best thing without going to a drum scanner. the nikon has LED lighting, so there won't be a colour shift as the light source ages.
a film scanner is much better than a flat bed scanner. for starters, there is dust removal software (unless you have kodachrome, where it won't work. i forget why!) the film scanners have much better dynamic range as well. (regular scanners probably have improved, but are probably not as good still).
it is very time consuming, maybe a couple of minutes a slide, but if you do it while you watch tv or futz with emails, it is ok. doing your own is much better than a commercial transfer and the reason is you can set your own black and white points, giving you the maximum contrast. you can set them quickly once the machine prescans. any other adjustments are best made after the scan is done.
you could probably buy a scanner on ebay, do all your slides, and then sell it again...