Copying 35mm Slide Suggestions
I wasn't sure if I was posting this in the right section. I thought about the macro/closeup fotum or chemistry section, but I think it applies more to the 35mm forum because I will only be copying 35mm slides.
I have been searching for a better method of copying 35mm slides than just scanning them. I currently own 35mm Nikon gear (both MF and AF systems). I was looking a the PB5 or PB6 Bellows with a PS 6 Slide Copy Adaptor. Do I need to get a 55mm macro lens for this setup? Am I even on the right track (no pun intended)? I also looked into a simpler setup, a low-cost slide duplicator with T-ring adaptor.
I am starting to accumulate a stack of slides, and I find that scanning them is way too time consuming. Any suggestions?
Look on Ebay for a Bowens Illumitran, Beseler or Durst slide copier. These copiers are high quality, most models include a bellows which couples to the camera with a "T" adapter, and a light source. Some even include a macro lens, but if not, buy an enlarger lens. These copiers will give you excellent results, better than the Nikon bellows and copier attachment because of the light source, and they are so easy to use. Five years ago they sold new for over 1K, now they go for much less than $100.
Kenro slide copier. Has a dichro filter setup for color balance, lets you use any lens with a T-mount, has x-y adjustment and bellows magnification for editing. Cost me 40 or 50 bucks on EBay a couple of years ago.
Keep looking. Beats the heck out of those bellows things you hang off your camera.
tim in san jose
Where ever you are, there you be.
I have an Illumitran but what I normally use is an upside-down colour enlarger head with a Perspex (Lucite) diffuser in an open-ended box or spacer that holds the diffuser about 10cm/4 inches from the light source. The camera is on a Kaiser copy stand above this.
Originally Posted by snegron
This allows me to use dial-in colour correction with tungsten-balance copying films, cheaper and more readily available than daylight/flash balance, lower contrast than conventional slide films -- though the way to lose contrast with conventional films is to allow some flare around the edge of the slide mount, i.e. don't black out the rest if the diffuser deck with black card/paper.
My standard copy set up is a Leica M4P with Viso III, bellows and 65/3.5 Elmar but this is because the M4-P is the only camera for which I have a motor-drive/winder - very useful when copying. When I first copied slides as an assistant 30+ years ago I used a Nikon F with F36 motor drive and 55/3.5 Micro Nikkor. A top-quality enlarger lens on a bellows is just as good.
Depending on what you need the copies for, you can also put a digi camera on the copying mount -- I've done that too...
The Illumitran would be my first choice if you are doing bucket loads of dupes. I've used these units in a photolab and it was not uncommon to get RSI from winding the camera on after a shift.
I have a complete Vivitar bellows set with the slide copying set-up, plus a macro/micro stand which is quite brilliant. It's a universal unit which uses a T mount adaptor.
Compared to the PB4/5/6 Nikon units it is dirt cheap and of comparable value, especially as you will or could use a Nikkor lens.
For slide duping I use a Metz 30 with a pre-flash to lower contrast, then drop in the slide and do the dupe. I have found the 55 2.8 Micro Nikkor to be quite brilliant at copy work.
Roger's idea of using the colour enlarger head for correction is also a very good idea. I did that with a Meopta colour head about 25 years ago when I had some bad slides shot under fleuro lights without a correction filter.
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Thanks for the feedback! I checked B&H for new Illumitrams and slide copiers, but they only seem to stock a system for a Pentax 67. I guess I will have to rely on a bit of luck finding one of these units on ebay or other usd source.
Roger, I am not sure I understand the setup you recommended. If the camera is on a copy stand pointed toward the source (the upside down color enlarger head), would you cover the space between the camera lens and the enlarger with something so as to control lighting (sort of performing like a bellows)?
No need, unless you are working under very bright light that can reflect off the tranny. See sketch.
Originally Posted by snegron
------------ Perspex diffuser resting on open-ended box (spacer)
------------ Light source
Originally Posted by Mick Fagan
Yup, that's one reason I always use a motor-drive camera.
Another is that there's far less risk of moving the camera out of alignment. You only ever move it to reload.
Problematic Nikon F Capabilities, when used for copying.
Isn't that a problem, when the Nikon F, is so coveted,
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks
due to it's 100 % viewfinder area, but problematic
mirror lockup & Motor Drive Capabilities.
to enhance the list of options a bit--i'm very happy with nikon's ES-1 attachment. i stick the 55/2.8 on the PK-13, screw in the attachment at the end and copy handheld, aiming towards the window. never a problem
i did use a PB-6/PS-6 combo before, but i got of rid of it eventually. the continuous dance around the aperture and the need for a tripod were a nuisance while the considerable ratio range of this setup was quite useless to me since i only copied 1:1
ps. no matter which method you choose, get the 55/2.8!