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Digitising Slides, Negatives and Prints

Published by Paul Chappell, 20th February 2024

The Berlin Wall at the Brandenburg gate, 1988 A couple of years ago I visited a local Photography Club’s annual exhibition and spoke to one of their members about digitising my old photos. The upshot was: most of the members don’t bother, it’s not easy, it takes too long, and the results are not always good.

The cost of equipment can also be expensive. You can buy a scanner for as little as £20/30, but how good are they? I read a few reviews and quickly realised that to get a decent scanner I was going to have to spend getting on for £200. So, I decided not to bother digitising my old photos.

Looking over the Berlin Wall towards the Brandenburg gate, 1988 However, I have many old images that I would really like to publish on this blog, like the photos on this page. They are of the Berlin Wall at the Brandenburg Gate and behind the Reichstag, taken in 1988. The actual photos were scanned using an old scanner. They don’t look too bad and show that you can use old photos in a blog.

So, I’m going to investigate further. My current thinking is that that digitising an old photo may (or almost certainly will) result in a poorer image, but the image may still be OK for a website. Also, it might take time, but I have a lot of time on my hands because I’m retired. It might be that the club members want high-definition digitisation, which is not really an issue to me. The problem is finding a suitable scanner, I’ll write about that in a future post.

The Berlin Wall behind the Reichstag, 1988