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FORUMS Community Talk, Chatter & Stuff General Photography Talk 
Thread started 26 Oct 2008 (Sunday) 13:13
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Old Photographic Plates to Digital?

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484 posts
Joined Nov 2006
Oct 26, 2008 13:13 |  #1

As I was rummaging through some boxes with old family letters etc. I found a few dozen photographic glass negatives (correct term?) from a 100 years back.
I'd really like to get these digitalized ASAP, as I can see that they're scratched and look quite frail already.
My question is, how can I get this done the easiest and cheapest way?

I'm afraid I don't have access to a high quality scanner, and can't afford to have it done professionally. Could I do it by creating some sort of DIY setup and shooting the negatives with the 60mm Macro?

If possible, what would be the best way to do this to achieve maximum quality and avoid damaging the plates?

Thanks for all input!
-Martin (BrewsterPilot)

A quick shot of what I'm talking about:

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Oct 26, 2008 17:47 |  #2

I would just pop for a mid range flat bed scanner. I don't think that the macro thing would give the best results.

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Oct 27, 2008 10:35 as a reply to  @ Grimes's post |  #3

Try this.. Tape a piece of white fine grained paper to act as a ight diffuser to a window where its in the shade.. Tape the glass plate to the inside of the window and with your camera and macro lens mounted on a tripod rephotograph the plate.. Play around with different exposures.. Try to keep your aperture smaller than F/8..

If all is well you should have a copy of the negative digitally.. I don't know what photo editing programme you are using but in Photoshop you can invert (reverse) the image to form a positive..

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Old Photographic Plates to Digital?
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