INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY MADE SIMPLE
FilmToaster, all-metal platform, facilitates integration of camera, film, and lighting; all in a high-performance, modern desktop environment, digitizing 35mm through 4x5 B&W, color or slides–many times faster than flatbed or dedicated film scanners—and resolution limited only by your camera. Usage of already owned gear, and full-frame mirrorless camera bodies, combining with lens adaptation of specific lenses, make excellent digitization systems. Mirrorless technology, camera choice of inventor, translates into minimal movement and a viewing concept that's always, "Live View."
Speedwise, what about 1/25 of a second per scan versus two minute flatbed scans? Consider functionality of FilmToaster as 'Swiss Army Knife' of film duplicators!
Review: Jon Sienkiewicz, former vice president of marketing, Minolta, (Konica Minolta Photo Imaging USA,Inc.) contributing editor, SHUTTERBUG, PC, DIGITAL PHOTO PRO:
"FilmToaster, brainchild of Cecil Williams (accomplished professional photographer, inventor and author of four books) is a contraption that combining best characteristics of film scanners with those of slide duplicators. If you’re old enough to remember Bowens Illumitran, you’ll see family resemblance straight away."
"FilmToaster uses your DSLR (full-frame mirrorless model preferred), macro lens, and in some cases, extension tubes. The official list of requirements cites these three components plus a steady desktop, an electrical connection and general understanding of both your camera and macro photography. To that list I add the following: patience, an eagerness to experiment and a fistful of negatives or slides."
"The verdict? If you have hundreds of same format film to scan, or require super-high resolution output, you’re better off with a self-contained film scanner, something like a used Nikon Coolscan or a used Minolta Scan Multi. Unfortunately, both brands of scanners have been discontinued for quite a while. If you have a collection of various types and sizes of film and slides—even up to 6x9 and 4x5—then FilmToaster is perfect for you."
- Jon Sienkiewicz
From very first FilmToaster experience, you will understand this camera-scanning innovation, (while transforming back to days of chemistry darkrooms) maintains ambience of "FILM" while enabling conversion to digital; no more chalky blown highlights, fuzzy focus, and long scanning times. Instantly, first captures will have gradation smoothness and faithfulness of original film...impossible to duplicate with dedicated or document flatbed scanners.
Ever tried focusing with a flatbed? You can't!!! With your camera connected to FilmToaster, you control focusing, cropping, tweaking!
In fact, even without FilmToaster, any camera capture of film will probably blow away most scanners!
Dubbed "Object of Desire," by highly regarded PDN Magazine:
"Basically FilmToaster lets you use your own camera to digitize your archive, which is potentially faster than a flatbed and delivers very high-resolution results," he continues. "On one end, you mount your camera using filter thread of your macro lens. On the other, there is a removable Light Pad that features battery and AC power. In middle of the FilmToaster are slots where you slide in film or slide carriers much like bread slides into a toaster."
- Gregg Scoblete, technology editor
A sleek metal constructed hybrid platform with aesthetics matching a modern desktop workstation, FilmToaster was created with sixty-five laser CNC machining steps, and seventeen other precision parts specifically for large-scale image digitization projects. Platform requires use of your camera, a lens with a focal length between 60 and 105 mm that will attach to filter thread (based on full-frame sensor), and sometimes extension tubes to achieve full-size, edge to edge, duplicates. Professional and modern digitization platform rises to the advent of becoming FilmToaster.
COMPLETE STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTION MANUAL - DOWNLOAD FROM RESOURCES PAGE
Before digital cameras appeared in the mid-90s, generations of photographers invested talent, time, and resources in countless billions of images on various size rolls or sheet film. Today, because film equipment is declining–and all film fade and deteriorate–transforming film images into a digital format is inevitable. Plus, think of all of benefits of having digital files of all media created from your earlier film photography?
Although standard in most archival equipment inventories, document flatbed scanners are easy to use, but slow, and 30% original content lost because tedious film thickness issues compromise sharpness. Dedicated film scanners produce better results but also slow, touchy and ugly algorithms appear with high resolution scanning. Now, since film content begins as a pristine image, FilmToaster and your precision digital camera —everything changes!
Toasting, that is, from perspective of FilmToaster—digitally capturing 35mm, 120mm, or 4x5 into DSLRs—begins by placing film, filmstrips, or slides into one of many available film holders and inserting into one of selective slots. Isn't that similar to toasting a slice of bread?
Setting new standards of scanning with a repeatable workflow, digital images of film can be captured on a memory card or tethered from camera to computer, then, with one keystroke, inverted in Photoshop, or a special Lightroom presets. At that point, the digital capture might also be cropped, tweaked, made ready for adding metadata.Slots, adapter rings, and technology are designed on an open platform and offer customization opportunities for future usage. Imagine, in addition to speed, image quality, all within an ergonomically stable bench system, drum scanner resolution is achievable with Film Toaster—at 80% less cost!
In hands of advanced photographers, commercial film laboratories, digital libraries, university and governmental labs, archival installations, curators, imaging specialists, preservationists, and others acquiring cultural collections photographed on film, FilmToaster becomes a product capable of extreme image-capturing capabilities.**
Exclusive to FilmToaster
Depending on cut length, 35mm and 120 film strips of 4–6 require manual advancing and take longer, but higher capturing quality – and this method, easily outperforms batch scanning and industry standard, flatbed technology.
To a degree, FilmToaster's capture concept may be similar to slide duplicators popular decades ago but with dozens more features. It's designed the way a photographer would design a camera device, not way an engineer would.
In addition to experience in macro and closeup photography, a DSLR, mirrorless, or four-thirds camera body, equipment such as a macro lenses, extension tubes, add-on filter rings, other closeup lens might be required. With correct optics, settings on newer DSLR are relatively easy with auto settings. Other factors in process may take in consideration, a camera's sensor size, precise focusing, shutter speed, white balance, and alignment. With recommended equipment, image sharpness and initial cropping with Film Toaster is achieved between 3-7 inches. With vast array of digital equipment available today, some experimentation may be required to obtain perfect and predictable results. Yes, it also accepts video cameras and some cell phone accessory lenses may be fitted!
Obviously, FilmToaster offers options not welcomed by everyone. Recently, it apparently ruffled feathers of one flatbed manufacturer who labeled it, "a convenient $2000 copy stand." That's OK and actually, sheer flattery big conglomerate takes notice. Decades ago, Honeywell Repronar, Bowens Illumitran, Beseler Dual Slide Duplicator, and Kenro Spectra, manufacturers of similar analog slide duplicators, heard thunderous assertions from 'big yellow box' towards innovations which – with a slightly different twist – offered time saving photographic duplicating solutions.
FilmToaster may be mounted on a tripod or tabletop or with rails, in a horizontal position, however, its native and most ergonomically versatile position is vertical. FT45 Wedge/Rails is available at $399 as an accessory base for alternate angled mounting of FilmToaster.
More on how it works:
Concept and workflow of FilmToaster is passive and simple, yet highly effective. Lensplate end attaches to a rotating connector that connects to adapter thread of a macro or other lens capable of capturing closeups. Image cropping and minor alignments are easily made with lens board which may also be adjusted vertically. IF (internal focus) macro lenses work best because physical size remains constant.
Included with FilmToaster is a 5000K LED light panel which provides flicker-free illumination. Or, an optional external LED, electronic flash or other source of illumination, may be used at outer front-end where an acrylic plate serves as a diffuser and stand.
Amazingly, with its open architecture and customization potentials, FilmToaster supports a wide range of film holder sizes: 35mm, various medium formats, and 4x5. Seasoned professionals who formerly shot film will especially appreciate a 'black box' capable of hands-on film to digital integration, reminiscent of darkroom as well.
As a bridge accessory and platform mating film and digital, FilmToaster has no comparison. It will never become obsolete because it has no internal electronics...when updating DSLRs and lens, FilmToaster accepts update via threaded adapters.
Camera-scanning medium format film is an area where FilmToaster excels like nothing else. Yesterday's medium format cameras exploited numerous image sizes: 645, 6x6, 6x7, 6x9; all easily scanned in versatile open-faced 120mm holder available from FilmToaster. Four 35mm holders are available, one for standard 35mm film, one for 35mm slides only, one for four mounted 35mm slides, plus film strips, and even long bulk rolls, one for 35mm twin bay strips. A 32-page operation guide is included. For optimal results, some closeup photography experience is necessary using above recommended closeup equipment and accessories.
Invented by a Photographer
Development of FilmToaster platform came about because the creator was challenged to find a solution to preserving tens of thousands of historically significant film images created over a 60-year photography career.
More and more, with FilmToaster’s low tech and passive concept that avoids obsolescence, you will grow to understand its long term value as one of your best investments as the ultimate innovation – from film to digital.
**All FilmToasters are custom built for your equipment -no returns allowed.**
MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS USING THIS EQUIPMENT
FilmToaster requires additional equipment not furnished or included with purchase. Also needed are following similar to requirements in macro photography:
1. DSLR Camera with media card
2. General understanding of your DSLR and manual settings
3. Film Holder to accommodate film format
4. IF Macro Lens/lenses with 52 - 58mm connectivity, capable of acquiring 3 - 9 inch focus range
5. Set of manual or auto extension tubes
6. Platform or sturdy desk
7. Electrical connection
8. General understanding of macro & close-up concepts
9. Understanding of Post Production Software & Computers
*All below copyrights and trademarks belong to their respective owners.
* Although average image capture rate is possible at four 35mm scans (six seconds each) in approximately 30 seconds including focusing, selecting and inserting new strips into film holder and image review, consumes time; therefore, yielding approximately 200 hourly.
**FilmToaster is a DIY professional-industrial product, not for novice photographers expecting an out-of-the-box solution. Precision and predictable results are only attainable after testing with your equipment, lenses, and format.
For orders outside United States, FilmToaster is not responsible for any duties, taxes, or brokerage fees.
www.filmtoaster.photography • 1865 LAKE DRIVE • ORANGEBURG SOUTH CAROLINA 29115 • 803•531•1662