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What are my options for getting slides onto the computer?
Old 12-10-2003, 06:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I've got a few shots i took on E6 slide film that came out pretty nice but I'm having trouble finding someone to scan them for me. What are the various ways to get them on the computer?

Can you do it with a regular flat bed scanner with special software or do you need a special negative/slide film scanner? What does one of those cost?

My local camera shop wanted $1/per slide (no problem) to scan them but they said it would take 7-10 days (kind of lengthy don't you think) and the resolutino would only be a maximum of ~1800x800 (problem!). I asked him if they had a more expensive high res service or if he knew of anyone else that could do it at higher res and he said noone could - I find that hard to believe. I also asked about drum scanning which I know is the best and ultra expensive (~$30/scan?) and he said only printers use that no photo shops have that. That's not true is it?

Anyway I have some shots I need in my computer at at least 2400x1600 if not better (I thought slide film was supposed to have alot of resolution, atleast certainly better than a 3 or 4 mp digital) - what are my options?
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Re: What are my options for getting slides onto the computer?
Old 12-10-2003, 06:54 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Brian,

I work for a commercial printer (in Utah). At the end of this month we are laying off our scanner operator (digital has cut his workload down to nothing) and he is going to work independantly for himself. My company has granted him use of our scanner and related equipment. He has 25+ years experience as a high end color scanner operator, and was doing it long before scanners were ever connected to computers.

Im sure he can do what you need.

IF you are interested, you can contact me and I can put you in touch with him.
Depending on how many scans you have, if you were willing to overnite the film out here, I would bet he could have them all done in a day and on the way back to you via overnite.

His pricing on 35mm scanned to aprox 2500x3000 pixels is $30.00 per scan. Its a bit spendy because to achive that high of resolution from 35mm slides requires oil mounting the slide on the drum.

Let me know if you would like to get in touch with him.

Huvola
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Re: What are my options for getting slides onto the computer?
Old 12-10-2003, 07:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Wow I had no idea it was that costly and I thought you could acheive resolution of ~2000 x XXXX without resorting to drum scanning. This is not that urgent and i don't have the budget for $30/scan but I wouldn't mind having the contact info around for the future incase I ever want to make a poster or something. Feel free to PM me his contact info.

Any idea what kind of resolution you get out of those little scanners you can buy and connect to your computer and how much they cost?
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Re: What are my options for getting slides onto the computer?
Old 12-10-2003, 07:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Yeah, drum scanning is expensive but it is the absolute best. Rather tedious for the operator as he/she has to unmount the slide to drum-scan it (as far as I know). Regarding home PC scanners: the flatbed ones with neg/slide adapters will do the job, but the main problem is anything even remotely in shadow (or contra jour) will drop out to black. I believe this is due to a low dynamic range.

Personally, I use a Minolta Dimage Scan Dual film scanner. I got it for about 375.00 and it offers auto-focus, multiple scan, decent software, etc. This was an upgrade from a canon flatbed with neg adapter. The difference was huge! Shadows retained detail, and images were so sharp that I swear even the grain of the film was in focus. For an amateur, this one does a great job.

If you are a film shooter then it is a wise investment. If it's an occasional thing and you want a scan that rivals digital slr output, drum scanning is really the accurate way to do it.

I hope this helps!
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Re: What are my options for getting slides onto the computer?
Old 12-10-2003, 07:43 PM   #5 (permalink)
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What kind of resolution can you get at a max out of this scanner?

Even for an ocasional thing it seems worthwhile if a drug scan is going to be $30 plus shipping. I have 4 slides I want to scan now, that's 1/3 of the price of the the thing already. 1800x800 resolution doesn't cut it for quality prints back out of the computer IMO so that's not worth while either.

I assume the scanner you're talking about is designed to scan 35mm slides and negatives and nothing else correct?

If I wanted to try scanning with my flatbed what do I need and what's the procedure? Does photoshop have some knid of operation specifically for scannign slides and negatives?
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Re: What are my options for getting slides onto the computer?
Old 12-10-2003, 08:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
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It is spendy, no doubt.

Part of the problem that this guy finds himself in, is because he cant seem to grasp that he has to compete with desktop scanners that while they dont hold a candle to what he can do, are good enough for 95 percent of what people need.

He'll spend an hour on each scan mounting, scanning, color balancing, etc.. and it will be a great job. But what he NEEDs to do is mount all 4 at once, do a batch scan, and call it good. And in the process, drop his price at least in half. And even at that, It would be better than what your gonna get off ANY desktop scanner.

I wish I could get him to open his eyes.

Just out of curiosity, how many people on this board NEED film scanned? and what do YOU feel is a reasonable price for a top notch job?



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Re: What are my options for getting slides onto the computer?
Old 12-10-2003, 08:25 PM   #7 (permalink)
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You should be able to find a photo lab in your area that does Kodak Photo CDs, which is different from Kodak Picture CDs. You will have to pay for the Kodak CD blank, but more pictures can be added to it later if you have more scans to do. Also check the price/quantity discounts, another couple of scans might make it more economical. If you are doing a few, the Kodak Photo CD at 5X res is probably your most economical method and will yield a very good result. You get five resolutions up to 2048 x 3072 pixels. The Pro Kodak Photo CD has one higher resolution, but costs a lot more. It will takes a few working days to turn the job around.

Unless you intent on doing a lot of scans, need to doing something rush, or at odd hours, a desktop scanner isn't an economical method.

Tom
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Re: What are my options for getting slides onto the computer?
Old 12-10-2003, 08:32 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Let me suggest an alternative. I work with a shop in Albuquerque called Gamma Tech. I actually go the opposite way as they put my digitial images on slides for competitions and such. (I have a Nikon coolscan 4000 film scanner and scan my own - works great by the way.) The URL for Gamma Tech is http://www.gammatech.com - click on the scanning menu. They charge $4.00 per scan for what they call "high resolution scans." I would call them (877.293.9440) and see what they say. My guess is that they are using a film scanner like mine or better and I am getting 4000 dpi scans - perfectly fine for printing as I do it all the time.

Hope this helps

regards

Mark Sharfman
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Re: What are my options for getting slides onto the computer?
Old 12-10-2003, 09:12 PM   #9 (permalink)
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The Minolta Dimage Scan Dual III can get 2820 dpi. For me, it does the job. My old flatbed scanner would get 2400dpi. The scans turned out like hell.

Tom Hamilton brought up an excellent idea, Kodak Photo CDs. I have not personally used them, but I have seen examples and they look great; 35mm will enlarge up to 9 x 12 and maintain clarity.

Now that I think about it, a Photo CD would be best in your situation.
Even if you had your own scanner, you'd have to spend time dusting and scanning (like me, I am fool who needs to go digital) instead of taking pictures.

Great advice, Tom
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If you can afford $500...
Old 12-13-2003, 07:32 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Get the Epson Photo Perfection 3200 flat bed scanner. Does everything up to 8x10 and upto some ridiculous 12,000dpi.

Art.
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