Slide/Negative Viewer?

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Ngothien, May 30, 2012.

  1. Ngothien

    Ngothien Member

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    I'm a bit confused. I understand slides are positive and you just pretty much shine a light to get see the image on a wall or whatever. But what makes a negative positive?

    And what would you recommend as a negative viewer? Getting prints 4x6 prints every time I develop black and white film is costly which is why I'm hoping there is something available to let me see my shots/
     
  2. jayvo86

    jayvo86 Member

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    I just view my negatives on a light table. (Viewed as negatives, of course.)

    However, you can check to see if you can get a "contact print" from your local lab. Each image would be the same size as the negative, but would be the positive image. If you're into darkroom printing, you can always make a contact print there.
     
  3. chuck94022

    chuck94022 Subscriber

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    My teenage son taught me a trick. Put the negative on the light table. Stare at the center of it for a good 30 seconds to a minute, as long as you can go without blinking.

    Then lift your eyes and look at a blank white wall, blinking rapidly. You should see your image in positive (caused by the chemical persistence in your eyes). Not perfect by any means, but it does work and is rather cool.
     
  4. vintagesnaps

    vintagesnaps Member

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    What makes a negative positive is the darkest parts of the negative block light, and the lighter portions let more light thru. So if you have it in an enlarger, the more black portions block light from hitting the paper while the lighter portions allow more light to reach the paper, which of course causes the paper to darken.

    I have a small light box that's just about the size of a 4x6, it's by DotLine; I got it some years ago at a local camera shop whose owner since retired and went out of business. It can be plugged in or run on batteries.

    When I've gotten B&W film developed, I've often gotten a contact sheet instead of prints - and usually needed to make sure the lab/camera store knows not to adjust, especially if I've bracketed shots.
     
  5. Vaughn

    Vaughn Subscriber

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    Over time, one can start seeing one's negatives as positives -- easier to do with nice big LF negatives -- but still difficult for me to do with faces.
     
  6. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    A negative is made into a positive by printing it, duplicating it on another film, or by scanning and rendering as a positive.

    Any minilab can do this for you with color film.

    A light table will allow you to view negatives and slides, but there are projectors and other equipment made for slides.

    PE
     
  7. kerne

    kerne Member

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    For quick previews I use my phone. The camera in my phone has an "invert" option. Works fine for quickly previewing B&W negs. And it's helping me to learn to "see" negatives.
     
  8. TomStr

    TomStr Member

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    i put my negatives on a light table (or use a white piece of paper on a sunny window, gives a great light table) and use the d*g*tal to take a picture of them and turn them into positives, works fine to get an impression.

    Tom