#365FilmProject / 69 - DSLR-Digitizing Negatives / by J.Z.

You've now seen quite a few 365 project negatives and slides. I thought I'd squeeze in a post on how I scan them.

For quick scans of 135 film, this is my set-up for b/w negatives and slides (I let the lab do the scanning of color negatives):

DSLR scanning with a Nikon D850

From left to right:

  • Slide copying adapter (Nikon PS-4): At the front, slides clip in one by one, rolls sit curled up on two plates on either side of the matte screen. At the rear, the adapter has light-tunnel type of bellows that attach with a clip inside 52mm filter threads. The front part of the adapter can be moved to center the slide/negative. 
  • Step-up and step-down rings: The copying adapter is designed for lenses with a focal length of about 50mm. I use a 80mm, for which the bellows of the adapter are too short, hence the rings.
  • Rodenstock APO Rodagon-N 80mm f/4, a superb enlarger lens, optimized for "flat" objects. The lens attaches to the main bellows with a M39/F-mount adapter.
  • Bellows (Nikon FB-4), which are great for any kind of macro stuff (the FB-4 even has some basic but robust tilt and shift functions).
  • Nikon D850: It can be used on the bellows without rings, other than what you may have read in forums. Just attach the camera in portrait mode and then turn it to landscape. As you can see on the picture above, there is enough space to move it on the rails wherever you want it.

Works fine and allows a very fast workflow. I scan one roll - including batch inversion in Photoshop and basic adjustments in Capture One - in about 20 minutes. On the Nikon LS-9000, which I use for images I want to put on paper, the same process takes at least three hours. 

With that, back to 365.