Digitizing 35mm slides with a GX8

ralf-11

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put the emulsion side of the film facing away from the camera. This gives the proper perspective from the start. Sometimes, to avoid repairing surface scratches in the film itself, you can minimize these defects by flipping the film around ... then do a "Flip Horizontal" once imported.

if you use a cardboard tube, paint the inside black

a tube ensures that light scattering is minimized

be sure the slide is held at 90o to the sensor plane

"Mrs." ?? what happened to "Madame"?
 
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Do you have any of them around to compare? Are you sure they are are as crisp and detailed as you remember?

How often did we view 35mm slides/film at the sizes and magnifications that our monitors provide today?
Hi @tkbslc - I'm sorry if I confused you. I meant the prints I produced from those transparencies....and all of my prints that I sold were way bigger than anything a monitor can produce. I have some, maybe 36x48 inches, still hanging in friend's houses.

So my question remains - was there something about the Cibachrome process that cannot be matched with digital?

Thanks for you comment :)
 

junkyardsparkle

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nothing I am scanning comes anywhere near the quality that I remember producing - some of the prints I sold were large, too - why is this? Why does the "grain" we see when we digitize not show when printing a Cibachrome, for example. Was the Cibachrome paper a means to an end that we cannot replicate in digital?
Those Viewmaster reels looked amazing to me as a kid... now I'm amazed by how little actual resolution those tiny slides contain when viewed large. The majority of the family slides that I scanned (including the one posted earlier) are half-frame, but look pretty good with the Viewmaster ones as a baseline. ;) I'm not sure if I've ever seen a Cibachrome print, but you should be able to do whatever that process involved using software. If you happen to have a scan of such a print and a good RAW capture of the slide, I'd be happy to take a shot at emulation.

That said, there are a few things I noticed about your picture... first of all, the turtle looks really blown out in an un-filmic way. Are you starting with a linear rendering of the RAW file as suggested earlier? Can't emphasize that enough. The curves applied by cameras (and by LR etc by default) are just really not a good starting point for digital processing, and the contrast boost is one thing that will "enhance" the grain beyond what you expect. Also noticed the ISO 100 in Exif... AFAIK that's an "extended" (as in, fake) ISO setting for that camera, and will make blown highlights even more likely (as in, blown in the RAW data and unrecoverable in software)... probably should use ISO 200. Also, f/2.8 isn't going to help with DOF issues, f/5.6-f/8 would be better... even then, aligning the film with the focal plain is fairly critical. Your shot looks like it drifts out of focus towards the right, so that might be something to check.

EDIT: It sounds like the extended ISO 100 on the GX8 isn't as bad as the 16MP Olympus version I'm familiar with (which routinely attempts to "recover" highlights clipped by 1/3 EV).

If you would be willing to upload a good RAW capture somewhere, we could make this a post-processing challenge. :D
 
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People seem to use primarily Dropbox or Google storage for this purpose in the usual post processing challenges.
I can't use my Dropbox account or GoogleDrive at the moment - both accounts need upgrading which I currently can't do for Covid19 reasons. If you're willing, PM an email addie and I'll send them to you and you can have a play :)
 

Hannety

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You should read this thread, my post towards the end.

Settings with a macro lens are not complicated. Around f5.6 for best sharpness with a bit of DOF for warped film. Use base ISO. Use a blank slide to set exposure by shutter speed to not quite clip also use a blank slide to set white balance in camera or post.
 

junkyardsparkle

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I spent about as much time air dusting the slides as I did mounting and shooting them. I managed to do around 300/hour. The voice of experience says - regularly check the jig for dust/dirt :)
Yep, that's one reason I prefer not to have a diffuser right up against the slide... having it there means there's one more thing you need to try to keep free of debris. :rolleyes:
set exposure by shutter speed to not quite clip
Figuring out how to do this accurately with any given camera can take some trial and error... as mentioned previously, the histograms can be misleading as far as use of the actual RAW dynamic range. Interestingly, on my Olympus cameras, the clipping indicators shown when viewing images in "details" mode actually do correspond to RAW data... so there's that, at least, but it means you have to increase exposure incrementally until you see it creeping in, then back off by whatever headroom you want to leave yourself. Maybe the Pany cameras, being more video-oriented, have better features for this type of thing?
If you're willing, PM an email addie and I'll send them to you and you can have a play :)
I'll do that, but it might be more fun/useful if more people can play... particular if any of them are using whatever software you prefer to use.
 
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I've an older Epson scanner that came with accessories for film and slides.
Always got on well with it and now need to rescan as a disc failure lost my scans.
But agree on previous comments slides (Ektachrome) I used wouldn't hold a candle to expected output from phones yet alone digital camera these days.
When I first scanned I ramped up the quality, output resolution etc and it took ages to scan and gave me images approximately 200mb.
They were pretty ordinary. I then refined my settings and ended with a jpeg of 3mb and looking same as the mammoth before scan.

My slides were bushwalks mostly with some of family.
They looked fantastic in the days of projectors and proper cloth screens, but ordinary now.

I'll be interested to see how you end up Roddy.
 

junkyardsparkle

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I've an older Epson scanner that came with accessories for film and slides.
Always got on well with it and now need to rescan as a disc failure lost my scans.
But agree on previous comments slides (Ektachrome) I used wouldn't hold a candle to expected output from phones yet alone digital camera these days.
Before putting much effort into rescanning everything on a flatbed, you might want to do some tests to compare the quality you get that way vs. with a good camera setup. I've used two flatbeds with transparency adapters (Epson Perfection 4490 and CanoScan 9000F Mk II) and was never excited about the results, but not having a real film/slide scanner for reference, I was willing to assume that the film itself was the limiting factor... when I finally got around to trying to get a good capture with a real macro lens, I was surprised at how much more resolution was actually available in that film! The tricky part is getting a good software workflow that starts from the same linear output you would get from a scanner.
 
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Before putting much effort into rescanning everything on a flatbed, you might want to do some tests to compare the quality you get that way vs. with a good camera setup. I've used two flatbeds with transparency adapters (Epson Perfection 4490 and CanoScan 9000F Mk II) and was never excited about the results, but not having a real film/slide scanner for reference, I was willing to assume that the film itself was the limiting factor... when I finally got around to trying to get a good capture with a real macro lens, I was surprised at how much more resolution was actually available in that film! The tricky part is getting a good software workflow that starts from the same linear output you would get from a scanner.
Thanks. I'm watching this thread with interest.
Appreciate your posting.
 
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I'll reply at length later to you all, with a photo of the set-up I have got to so far, but I'm much happier now accepting the results I am getting, which is fine for sharing on social media.

Here's one for your perusal, and I have a question for anyone keen to do some sleuthing. Where was this photo taken? It's an island in the northern hemisphere with nearly 6000 inhabitants. The image was taken in 1988 on Ektachrome, probably a roll of 200. The view is almost due east :)

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I use a copy stand I have made from a Durst M301 Enlarger. Took off the head, mounted a ball head where the Enlarger head was located and added a light source and I have a copier. Will work later for a slide holder on the light source. My wife had a pro lab in the past where she did a lot of custom work with negatives or slides and she had a couple of units of the slide cleaner which is image #2. It is electric, has a foot pedal to turn it on and off and it has the rotating chamois pads that take off dust or dirt.
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Earlier, I posted a picture of my set up with the enlarger base along with a ball head. I also had a picture of the negative, slide cleaner. This slide was one I copied and it was dirty from sitting in storage in an open box. Still has some cleaning to do in post-processing but not bad for cleaning from the cleaner. The foot control will speed up or slow down the chamois. I do believe digital is sharper than slides but it might have been the operator error when taking the slide in Yellowstone.
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relic

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I promised to post a picture of my setup. I apologize for the delay, but here it is for what it may be worth.

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This is the slide duplicator I that bought from Ebay. The lens is part of it but I am not using it.


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I use an E-PM2 with an Olympus 30-mm macro lens. I added a 16-49 mm step-up ring, then epoxy-glued the frame of a 49-mm filter backwards to the step-up ring. The 49-mm filter ring then screws into the slide duplicator. With the 30-mm lens I didn't need any additional extension,


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This is the out-of-camera jpeg of the slide taken with the setup (downsized only). Original Ektachrome slide was taken with a Pentax Spotmatic with a 50-mm/f1.4 Super Takumar lens. (I should have removed the dust from the slide but I forgot).
 
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relic

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Nice set-up, but it looks like you need to extend the tube a little bit to get the whole slide in the frame?

(BTW, for anybody who doesn't want to do the gluing, reversal threaded adapters exist
Thanks. I'll have to chack again. I thought I had it about right, but I've not used it lately except for a quick shot of the carnations... :)

Edit: I just rechecked: I think it is exactly right with only a very narrow "margin" all around. I think I was sloppy in positioning the slide and aligning it-- sorry. But It probably is a bit short for 126 film square slides (I have very few of those taken with my wife's camera, but not enough to warrant adding an extension, I think).
 
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