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copy 35mm slides with Opteka Digital Duplicator


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I need some help with equipment that is new to me. Hopefully someone out there can help me.


To copy my 35mm slides I am trying to set up a Opteka Digital Duplicator HD10 with my Pentax KD10D. The unit arrived with minimal direction. The unit came with a detachable achromatic 10 diopter macro lens. It also says that a lens with a focal length between 80 and 120 mm is required to achieve full size copies. My question is: do I use my 55-300mm lens in place the included macro lens or in conjunction with it.??



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  • 2 months later...

As I've said before, and will say again as it becomes appropriate, only a few people have ever been satisfied with results from these devices. The class as a whole are widely available on eBay, 'new' in box, because people bought one, tried it once and put it in the closet thereafter where their heirs found it.


If you must do it in the camera, get a copystand, a macro lens, and a light box for the slide.


Dedicated scanners are more expensive, but they mostly actually produce acceptable results.


Alternatives (center and lower right will work well, tho' not as good as a scanner IMHO):


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  • 3 weeks later...
Use a film scanner such as a plustek opticfilm 8200ai. Slide copiers went out in the 1990's. A scanner will give you uniform lighting, corner to corner sharpness, color temperature control, dust, scratch, and grain reduction and leave you with a file that you can archive or print to over 24 x36" depending on the image and film. Not to mention instant image preview and not having to develop film.
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  • 3 months later...

I bought an Opteka "Digital" slide duplicator several years ago and quickly outgrew it. They're not bad -- they typically will do a better job than a flat-bed scanner if your camera has a high enough resolution sensor. The key though is having a very good lens that will fit within the range they require and which will have a front element size that you can mount your duplicator to. I was using my Canon EF 28-85mm zoom. It was annoying because I had the camera set to AF and every time I mounted a slide, the camera would do its AF thing, and rotate the slide, so I'd have to recenter it every time.


As I mentioned, I outgrew it because I could see, from close examination of my slides, that it wasn't capturing all the detail. So what I did was I used my Opteka slide duplicator as the basis for a custom slide duplicator. I removed that 10x diopter internal element, and took off the front slide mount so that there was only a flange left on the front of the slide duplicator. Then I bought off eBay a cheapo zoom slide duplicator (paid like eight bucks for it) and removed the slide stage, which was just held on by metal clips. I then pushed that stage onto the end of the slide duplicator. The advantage to this arrangement was I could move the slide around, reposition it if I wanted.


The duplicator had 52mm threads at its rear, which was perfect because I had a macro lens -- a Nikon 55mm f/3.5 Micro Nikkor to be exact -- that had 52mm front filter size. So I threaded the duplicator onto my macro lens. When I mounted it to the camera, the magnification was all wrong, but I found that, by using about 25mm of extension tubes, I could get real close to 1:1. I was using an APS-C Canon, by the way, with its 1.6x crop factor.


These days I use the same duplicator but I have a Sony NEX 7 that I use now. With its 24.3mp sensor, I can resolve even Kodachrome 25 grain. But the Sony has a 1.5x crop factor, which led me to have to change things around with my dupe setup. It got complicated, but I have a lot of adapters and stuff for Nikon, so I was able to come up with a conglomeration that works, and gives me almost exactly 1:1. Just a wee bit bigger than 1:1 as it turns out. Here's a pic of the setup I used with my Canon:




And here's the setup I use with my NEX:



I also kept my eyes peeled for a roll film stage that was held on by clips. I found a Spiratone one on eBay and picked it up for cheap. The roll film stage makes it much easier to shoot dupes of negatives and unmounted slides.


Here's a shot showing the NEX with a flash that I use for illumination. I usually set the flash to 1/16 power.


I'm pretty happy with my setup using my NEX.


The results are outstanding. The NEX 7 records images at a resolution of 4000 x 6000 pixels, which is the same as the high-end, and very expensive Nikon CoolScans. So I'm able to get the same resolution images at a small fraction of the price.


Canon FTb, Canon FL 35mm f/2.5, Kodachrome 64, duped with the above NEX rig:



The same Canon FTb and FL 35mm, Kodachrome 64, duped with the above NEX rig:



A Lola 332 at an SCCA Race at the old Riverside International Raceway, circa 1986, Canon F-1, Canon nFD 200mm f/2.8, Kodachrome 64, duped with the above NEX rig.



I could go on . . .

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