Slide and Negative Scanners
Color Slide and Color and B&W Negative Scanners
In August of 2022, I started a massive project of scanning at least 2,000 color slides and well over 10,000 color and black and white 35mm negatives.
Years before I had purchased an affordable miniature scanner, but I had let it languish. It was a Wolverine F2D Mighty.
Look below for the scanner I would BUY NOW if I had to get a new one.
Slides and Scanner Bed Must Be Dust-Free
I got it back out to scan about 400 of my slides from a 1972 geology field trip to the Southwest USA. The first few scans were horrible as there was all sorts of black spots on the digital image.
I looked at the slides and there was some dust on them. I got out my trusty hand-squeeze air brush for cleaning camera lenses and took care of the slides. I re-scanned them and the black nasty spots were still there. I used a flashlight to look inside the scanner and there was the problem. The glass scanning bed was covered with dust and debris. I had left the scanner out in my office uncovered for a few years. What an idiot!
My tiny scanner did a marvelous job. Here's the exact scan from one of my slides. It's me at age 20 out in New Mexico.
How Fast is the Scanner?
Once you press the C (convert) button, it takes about two seconds to scan the slide on my Wolverine scanner. Newer scanners might be faster. You then press another button to SAVE it and the digital file is sent to the SD card you insert into the back of the scanner. Once again, new scanners may be a single push of one button to complete the scan and save it as a digital file either internally or on a removable SD card.
How Many Slides Can You Scan?
You can scan an unlimited amount of slides. The only limiting factor is the capacity of the SD card you use. Most scanners have an upper limit as to the storage capacity of the SD card. Suffice it to say I can scan hundreds of my slides on the one SD card.
Where Do you Store the Digital Images?
I store my digital images on a separate hard drive and up in the cloud on my Google Drive.
How Do You Organize the Digital Images?
I decided to have nested file folders. My structure depends highly on years, then events within that year. Here's an example:
Carter Family Photos
Hike to Subway Tunnel
Mass Rumble Events
Woodstock Rock Festival Rain-Soaked Photos
Is it Easy to Scan?
Yes, it's easy. The most important thing is to insert the slide or negative with the shiny surface of the slide/negative UP. The slide and scanner bed MUST BE dust-free.
How Do You Clean Dirty Slides and Negatives?
Dirty slides and negatives can be carefully cleaned with water, a small amount of mild liquid dish soap, and a SOFT artist's brush to remove hard-to-remove dust or debris. Dry them very carefully with almost no pressure using a clean very soft cotton cloth. Do not let them air dry as water spots can form. Arrange a phone consult call with me if you have detailed questions about the best method I use to clean the slides and negatives. Remember, I have YEARS of darkroom experience working with processing film and prints.
What Scanner Would You Buy Now?
Here are several scanners you should look at:
GO HERE to see ALL of the Slide and Negative Scanners. Be sure to READ the reviews before purchasing.