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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2005

    Converting Slides into Digital Images: Slide-Scanner vs. Copying with Macro Lens

    Has anyone had any experience using a digital SLR with a good macro lens (in my case, the Nikkor 60mm Micro on a D70) to copy old-style 35mm photographic slides, thus converting them into 'normal' digital images? How would this compare with the sort of quality you would get using a purpose-built slide-scanner?
    Any comments appreciated

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Even a flatbed scanner from Epson will be a lot better working than a digital camera. Better dynamic range, for about the same price as an adapter thing you need for photographing them with your camera, better ability with negatives, specialized software to get rid of dust and scratches.

    And a specialized 35mm slide scanner will do an even better job, with better resolution.

    It can be done with your camera, but an ideal solution it is not.
    Canon EOS 350D, Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 macro, Sigma 18-50mm F2.8 DC EX, Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 L USM, Tokina AT-X124 Pro 12-24mm F4, Soligor 1.7x C/D4 DG Teleconvertor, Manfrotto 724B tripod, Canon Powershot S30

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Charlotte, NC
    I have used the Epson RX-500 for this, as mentioned. While it does a great job, and I have made good prints off of slides shot decades ago, it is not a fast process. If you have a lot of slides, I am not sure that the workflow would be ideal.

    Of course you could utilize a service for around $.40/slide plus shipping.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Palmer, Alaska
    I have found that the dedicated 35mm slide copiers and flatbeads with adapters provide excellent results, but with 3000 slides at 6 slide per scan (dependent on the device) at optimally 10 min/scan and fiddle time adds up to 10 days to 2 weeks of fully dedicated time to preserve somewhat degraded 30 to 60 year old slides. Slide copying attachments for DSLRs and even some point and shoots utilize my time much more efficiently. I would not recommend this for exquisite photographic artwork, but my early stuff from the 50's & 60's was anything but that.

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