Re: Scanning color slides to archive

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Paul Cordes, Aug 6, 2003.

  1. Paul Cordes

    Paul Cordes Guest

    "xavier" <> wrote in message
    > I have a collection of 35mm slides that are still okay, but I'm
    > thinking that it might be prudent to scan and save these to CDs. I
    > have an Epson 1200U Photo scanner (flatbed with a slide attachment)
    > which can do this and Adobe Photoshop.
    > What I would like an opinion on is:
    > 1) What DPI / resolution would you scan at to have quality
    > comparable to the original and be able to get 8 X 12 or 11X 14 prints
    > ultimately and still not have huge files to store? Choices are from
    > 50- 1200 DPI. However, when I scan @ 1200 dpi, I am creating
    > files in the 85-95 Mb size which means about 8/CD. What is the best
    > way to save the files? JPEG, TIFF,?

    Agree with Rafe. You'll never get a decent scan from the flatbed that will
    do the slide justice.
    Get a dedicated slide scanner like a Minolta Dimage Scan III or Nikon
    Coolscan. It'll set you back some but the difference in quality is
    stunning. Trust me on this one. I've saved in JPG, highest quality or
    least compression and the results are good. JPG should be around for a long

    > 2) How would you approach those that are not properly exposed? Would
    > you just scan and store the original? Would you correct with
    > Photoshop (auto or manual corrections for contrast, color, hue,
    > saturation, etc.) and store the best enhancement or just do that from
    > the untouched original at the time of printing?

    The dedicated scanners have software that allows auto exposure and it works
    pretty well. Touch-up in Photoshop if and when you need to print or
    display. If you're like me over 90% of the shots will never see the light
    of day. It's just that you can't predict which slides are in the 90% group.
    You will find that it is time well worth spending to cull the obvious duds.

    > 3) Any other suggestions of how to do this to the best advantage so
    > that the time expended to scan and archive will be done only once? Is
    > there a software program specifically designed to allow you to do this
    > with greater ease than just doing it yourself with Photoshop?

    Most of the scanners come with software that scans and saves. The Dual Scan
    will do 5 slides at a time in the carrier. If you have the money move
    upscale and get one that will load from a stack, otherwise you'll have to
    baby sit while it scans. Scanning is terribly time consuming, each slide
    takes more than a minute. Just long enough that you have to be nearby to
    put in the next batch but not long enough to allow you to do much else
    productive. Scanning is somewhat faster thru a firewire (1394?) port.
    You'll find that most slides have a date stamped on the slide. All of mine
    are saved in file folders by date. I found that the easiest way to get back
    to a particular slide. Then copy specific slides to "Event" folders.
    Events go on their own disks while the date folders go on serial disks.
    Does that make sense?

    > 4) If you were scanning to save for future usage with a digital
    > projector, what resolution would you scan at to give good results with
    > an LCD projector (say 1024 x 768)?

    Scan at max dpi. Reduce for display later. Your LCD projector in a couple
    of years might have a much higer resolution.
    But you're right to do this. I have slides that have been stored in dry
    cool conditions. Some of the 30yr old slides are beginning to fade. Not
    all, just some, and the brand of film doesn't seem to be the determining

    Have fun.......PC
    Paul Cordes, Aug 6, 2003
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