Slide-To-Photo: Convert slides with your digicam (UPDATED)|
(Monday, April 5, 2004 - 09:43 EDT)
Note: This item has been updated with current (May 2010) information on the Slide-to-Photo and alternatives. Please read the update at the end of the item for current information. Thanks!
Cloudburst Inc. has announced a rather interesting kit that allows you to convert slides to digital images with your digital camera, without having to remove them from slide carousels.
In brief, Cloudburst's Slide-To-Photo kit consists of a stand for your slide projector with a mount for a digital camera above it, along with a mini-screen with photographic paper face on which images are projected. The entire kit is made of plastic that slots together without tools, and several variants are available depending on your projector brand and model. Digital camera requirements are that your camera has a resolution of at least two megapixels, an optical zoom lens and a minimum focusing distance of 2.5 to 3 feet or closer.
We've requested an evaluation unit to take a look at, so you can expect to see a review on our site in the future. The Cloudburst Slide-To-Photo costs $45.95 currently (regularly $57.95), and can be ordered from the Slide-To-Photo website.
UPDATED 2010-05-27 13:17ET:
This news item is one of a handful that just keeps on giving. Over six years later, we continue to receive emails asking where readers can obtain the Slide-to-Photo device. We're sorry to say that Cloudburst Inc., the Felton CA-based company behind the Slide-to-Photo, stopped selling it in September 2005. Cloudburst's website is long since gone, but you can still see their announcement on the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine website.
Given that the Slide-to-Photo was only sold for a couple of years or less, finding one five years after they were discontinued will likely prove a challenge. The best bets are likely to be Ebay, Craigslist, and local photo retailers that offer second-hand gear. There aren't really any acceptable alternatives, either. The main hook of the Slide-to-Photo was that it accepted slide carousels, potentially saving a lot of work manually switching and scanning slides. We're only aware of one other solution that offered carousel support, and it too has been discontinued for years. Called the Pacific Image PowerSlide 3600, this device received rather mixed reviews at the time, and is likely not worth the effort of tracking down, either.
This leaves readers with only two options. The first would be to take the slides out of their carousels and scan them singly or in small batches (depending on how the device works), with either a dedicated film scanner or flatbed that accepts transparencies. It's a lot of work, but achievable, and there are plenty of scanners of both types available with which to perform the task, both new and second-hand, at pretty much every price point. The only other option would be to find a slide scanning service, and pay them to do the work for you.
We regret that we can't offer more help to readers with obtaining the Slide-to-Photo or similar gadgets, and wish you luck in your quests to bring your film memories into the digital age...