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Slide Copiers

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by Hawkman, Mar 20, 2014.

  1. Hawkman

    Hawkman TalkEmount Top Veteran

    940
    Sep 10, 2013
    Virginia, USA
    Steve
    Hi all. I have a hopefully quick question:

    Does anyone here on the forum have any experience, bad or good, with slide copier devices like this Opteka HD2 Slide Copier for Sony listed on Amazon?
    http://www.amazon.com/Opteka-Copier-NEX-3N-Digital-Includes/dp/B0017W5IIE

    I ask because my family has a closet full of old 35mm slides dating back to my birth (and that's a long way), and I was hoping to use my a3000 to get nice 20mp "copies" made myself.
     
  2. Bimjo

    Bimjo Super Moderator

    Oct 28, 2011
    Washington State
    Jim
    I had something similar for my Nikon 4500. You are totally at the mercy of your light source when shooting the slides.

    Depending on how many slides you have it may be worth it to pick up an actual slide scanner (new or used) and then sell it when you are done scanning.
     
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  3. Hawkman

    Hawkman TalkEmount Top Veteran

    940
    Sep 10, 2013
    Virginia, USA
    Steve
    Thanks Jim, but I think a good slide scanner is out of my budget at the moment... and I usually "forget" to sell things when I don't need them anymore. ;)

    However... I was wondering if I could create a setup using a good backlight source, say a Retina-level iPhone or iPad showing an all white screen, and use a macro lens (which I do not have yet) or diopter close-up filters or macro extension tubes. What are folks opinions of close up filters and extensions tubes and the differences between the two macro adjustment add-ons?
     
  4. xXx1

    xXx1 TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jan 15, 2013
    Extension tubes lose quite much light and you need a lens with flat field and high resolution for copy work. Most diopters are junk and again you need flat field and diopter will probably add curvature.

    Lightning isn't very problematic, cool white florescent and a diffuser will work.

    I think that scanner is way to go. I don't know if it will be possible to rent/loan one but they are not that expensive these days. One with automatic slide tray operation would take about one tenth of time compared to shooting the slides anyway.
     
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  5. roundball

    roundball TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Oct 8, 2013
    USA
    Good timing on this thread as I've also been thinking about trying to revisit about a dozen metal slide storage boxes...get them scanned / converted to digital files onto CD's, etc. Good scanners do cost some money and once done with it, it becomes a big paper weight taking up space...then the hassle of trying to sell it, etc...seems to me the financial loss in trying to resell a scanner would go a long way towards paying a service to scan them.
    So I think I'm going to go through my slides one more time...cull them ruthlessly...then find a service to scan the remainder and be done with it. I've been so satisfied with Shutterfly's prints turning out exactly like my images look on my PC that I contacted them about slide scanning but they don't offer that service.

    I'll start a separate thread as I don't want to hijack this one.
     
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  6. Hawkman

    Hawkman TalkEmount Top Veteran

    940
    Sep 10, 2013
    Virginia, USA
    Steve
    Round ball, I've thought of the services myself, but figured a copier / scanner option would give me more flexibility, time wise and otherwise. And if I went the DIY setup route with diopter close up filters or extension tubes, those would be useful in other macro situations.
     
  7. Hawkman

    Hawkman TalkEmount Top Veteran

    940
    Sep 10, 2013
    Virginia, USA
    Steve
    Forgot to mention, no worries... hijack away. :)
     
  8. MAubrey

    MAubrey TalkEmount Top Veteran

    I'm actually digitizing slides right now with my E-M5.

    I'd recommend an actual macro lens and a flat slide illuminator. I have a Gepe Slim Lite 5000 Illuminator. It gives a nice even light that's very natural. Beyond that all you need is a piece of tubing that's the length of the focusing distance you want. I've found that a 52mm screw in lens hood works well with my macro lens (an Olympus 35mm f/3.5).
     
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  9. HabsFan

    HabsFan TalkEmount Veteran

    258
    Apr 10, 2013
    Ontario, CAN
    You might want to try an old school slide duplicator. I've heard the opteka ones don't have the best optics. If you have a 50mm macro, this would be a good option. Actually any 50mm will probably work pretty well. I used a 50mm MD f2 with good results. You will probably need an extension tube or 2 on the mount side and then some spacers and step down rings on the lens thread side.

    http://photonius.wikispaces.com/Slide+copier

    I think I paid about 25-30$ on ebay for one. They are also sold under different names, I have the Miranda version. Nikon made one as well.

    You can get spacers and step down rings here:

    http://www.camera-filters.com/pages/spacerrings.htm
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Hawkman

    Hawkman TalkEmount Top Veteran

    940
    Sep 10, 2013
    Virginia, USA
    Steve
    Thanks Mike.

    I don't have a macro... yet. And that's why I was asking about diopter close-up filters vs. extension tubes. I may have to put that question, "What are the pros and cons of macro lenses vs. extension tubes vs. close-up filters?" in another thread for another time.

    Would the SEL30M35 work well for this? I have read a few mixed reviews about it.
     
  11. MAubrey

    MAubrey TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Well, I can't speak to the SEL30M35. I don't have any native NEX glass (yet). Close-up filters work well for telephoto lenses that already have minimal CA. For shorter lenses, their increase in magnification is limited. The converse is true for extension tubes: they provide significant gains in magnification for shorter focal lengths, but do very little once you get beyond, say, 85mm or 100mm.

    Cambridge in Color has a very nice tutorial on these issues:

    http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials/macro-extension-tubes-closeup.htm

    Anyway, extension tubes are probably the way to go for slide copying simply because (for once) the shorter working distance is pretty helpful. Again those, it will still depend on the lens used, since lenses are designed for optimal resolution at specific distances.
     
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  12. Jefenator

    Jefenator TalkEmount Top Veteran

    876
    Nov 23, 2012
    Oregon, USA
    Jeff
    I got the Nikon ES-1, which is is an attachment that mounts on the filter threads and holds a slide in place with a frosted background. The perfect solution in theory. In practice, I hate it. It's very tedious and the results are not particularly good. (And that was using a Leica macro lens.)

    Using the Nikon CoolScan worked SO much better. (Can't remember the exact model - middle tier with a slide loading adapter.) If you're contemplating paying for a scanning service for 1000 slides, I think you'd come out ahead just buying one of these - especially if you resell.
     
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  13. MAubrey

    MAubrey TalkEmount Top Veteran

    For those interested, here are some of the results from my macro lens copying. I know these aren't NEX photos (they're μ43), but they're relevant to to the discussion. I hope you can see the potential at the very least.

    These slides are 34 years old. I'm digitizing my grandfather's 50 years of travels in Central & South America. I've does 75 slides so far and uploaded about a third of those to Flickr so far. I wish I knew what system he was using, but he went through several and he can't remember which was used for which trips. Then again, it goes to show that gear doesn't really matter.

    <iframe src="https://www.flickr.com/photos/50635732@N02/13959559891/player/" width="1024" height="683" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen></iframe>

    <iframe src="https://www.flickr.com/photos/50635732@N02/13963418854/in/set-72157644193207711/player/" width="1024" height="683" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen></iframe>

    The full set: https://www.flickr.com/photos/50635732@N02/sets/72157644193207711/
     
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