Convert Carousels of 35mm Slides to Digital Images/Pictures

An automated, do-it-yourself setup using a digital camera

Operating the Slide Converter

Here are some tips, tricks, and techniques to help make the slide
conversion process flow more smoothly.

System Setup


Position slides in Carousel so emulsion/dull side faces camera.  Position all slides horizontally with images UP if possible.  You will get mirror images so use a batch converter to correct mirror image.  Clean slides if practical.  ALL dust will show.

Carousel Light Settings

Set the Carousel Lamp voltage at 11 Volts by adjusting the transformer.

Camera Settings

Automatic Slide Conversion is a bit of a misnomer unless you set the camera at a fixed focus and exposure. I ran my camera on Auto and had some glitches. (See your camera's conditions where auto settings don't work.)

Camera (Canon Digital EOS Rebel XT) SHOOTING Settings for P mode:

  • AFMode OneShot
  • Metering Mode for "Evaluative Metering"
  • Exposure compensation None
  • AEB Normal
  • FLASH Settings   Flash Off
  • Red-eye Off
  • IMAGE-RECORDING Settings    RAW+L Selection
  • ISO speed setting 100
  • White balance AWB
  • To compensate for 12V carousel lamp color, set camera:
  • WB SHIFT/BKT B9,G6/+-0
  • Color space sRGB
  • Processing parameter setting 1

Additional Notes

  • When shooting in Auto Focus and Auto Metering, the camera can't always deal with "difficult subjects" (see camera manual).
  • Use Manual focus on all or just the "difficult subjects".
  • I shot the tray on Auto (no flash) first then shot in P (Program AE) mode capturing RAW and jpg files at the same time.
  • The system will skip slides it can't "see".

  • If the system causes the carousel to "run away", just hit the "kill"/PlugStrip switch and start over. I'm not sure what causes it.
  • For each Tray/File, I run a tray though on "AUTO/no flash" first to be sure I picked up all slides.
  • For archival runs my camera is set on P (Program, Auto Exposure) at RAW + JPEG 3456 x 2304 pixels. The system runs faster if pictures go to the Computer instead of the CF Card.
  • My Camera will take 3 shots per second (0.333 seconds per shot).
  • Digital Negative (DNG) is a publicly available archival format for the raw files generated by digital cameras.
  • Every brand of camera seems to have their own version of RAW files.  Download DNG Converter.

ClickSlide Software Settings

Although these should be the defaults once you install the software, here are settings for ClickSlide software that seemed to work for my camera set to AUTO/no flash:

  • Carousel - Pre 500mS (1000mS w/ RAW) Dwell 150mS Post 1200mS
  • Focus - Pre 0mS Dwell 230mS Post 0mS
  • Shutter - Pre 0mS Dwell 103mS Post 0mS

To help improve the reliability of the timing, close all but the ClickSlide and EOS camera windows during operation.

Operating Sequence

  1. Power Strip ON
  2. Projector light on, Projector on
  3. Plug in ClickSlide box power and USB
  4. Turn on Camera
  5. Set EOS Utility Software camera settings for 'Remote Shooting'
  6. With each tray change, in EOS Preferences use Destination Folder and Remote Shooting Folder
  7. For Starting Setup, In Preferences in Basic settings, Startup Action, check "Show main window" and "Start EOS Utility automatically when the camera is connected"
  8. For Starting Setup, In Preferences in the Linked Software Folder use ZoomBrowser EX, check "Display the folder at the save destination"

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