/picasa/?hl=en
2/14/09
Original Poster
mwoodyf

Using OVT Scanner

I'm using an OVT Scanner to digitize slides on a Vista laptop. How many slides can Picasa3 import at one time? I could orginally only import 100 at a time on Picasa2. After I downloaded Picasa3 yesterday I no longer get thumbnail views on the Import Tray until I finish a group of transferred slides. (It helps to see if the transfer took). Also, the Scanner froze after only a few slides. I uninstalled OVT and reinstalled several times without success in preventing the freeze. Today I reinstalled Picasa3 and the first batch of 100 slides digitized OK without the freeze.
 
BTW the original program that came with the OVT Scanner did not work with Vista--it did work on my old Windows XP but took forver (up to five minutes per slide). After four phone calls and trying all the suggestions, the company agreed to take it back with a refund. Then I "accidentally" opened Picasa2 (came loaded on my new computer) and low-and-behold it works. I'm at 1200 of maybe 9000 to digitize--100 at a time.
 
Any words of wisdom from anybody?
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All Replies (22)
tom.ohaver
2/15/09
tom.ohaver
No wisdom here.  It looks like you're doing the best that can be expected under those circumstances.  Ordinarily, I prefer to use a scanner's own software when scanning, rather than the generic TWAIN driver that Picasa uses; I just save the scans in a place where Picasa can see them.  But in your case the scanner's software does not seem to work.  Five minutes per slide is pretty slow; most scanners take only about 1 minute per slide (depending on resolution and whatnot). 
echoch1
2/16/09
echoch1
Mwoodyf, Can you tell us what driver you're using. I've been working with this scanner that I've gotten from Hammacher Schlemmer and it shows up as the OVT on device manager. I can't tell what model it is, and it appears that vupoint has an xp only, and an xp/vista, model. I don't know which I have. HS said it was Vista compatible. But trying this 3-4 times, I've had the software freeze up after using snapshot on 2-3 slides... the live view freezes or blanks and there's no way to do anything. I've had to reboot to get the sw working again.
 
I am wondering whether your solution - using Picasa will make a difference with the problem we're having.
 
Eric
2/17/09
Original Poster
mwoodyf
Eric--The driver is classified as OVT X86. Mine came with the scanner from Brookstone. Brookstone advised me about three weekas ago when they sent me another disc that it was the latest so I would have assumed it was Vista capable. I found a website several weeks ago that had two years worth of frustrated comments from OVT users. It appears that both companies use the same OVT driver and many users have the same problems we have had. The program that came with it is an ArcSoft with PhotoImpression 6 program. That's the one that would not work on Vista even thought the literature says it should. After I did maybe 700 slides to begin with, I upgraded from Picasa2 to Picasa3 last week and got the freeze-up after only a few slides. However the ones I had transferred did show up on the Import Tray and I was able to save them. Then I downloaded Picasa3 again and it's been working fine for about 800 more slides. The only thing I have now with Picasa3 is that the transferred slides don't show on the Import Tray like they did with Picasa2 until I Exit the Digitizing. And it will transfer only up to 100 slides at a time into Picasa3 for cleaning up the slides and getting into folders for eventual burning onto DVDs. I'm not sure going back to Picasa2 is practical but it is an option accordng to a website.
 
Woody
rwspiegel
2/17/09
rwspiegel
Hi folks,
 
Thanks for ideas with Picasa. I have Vista, purchased my OVT from Brookstone, and had the same results - no worky. Now with Picasa I can acquire. However, the contrast is poor; typically, scans are over exposed, and I loose both the bright and dark areas. Anyone have any ideas on how to get the full exposure range of the slide into a scan?
 
Thanks,
 
Rolfe
2/17/09
Original Poster
mwoodyf
My pic results in Picasa are similar to the original PhotoImpressions 6 program on my old Windows XP computer.. I'm not sure why the program decides to do what you describe. Mine react the same way. Then there are slides that start out dark and it will improve them significantly. It will also take some that start overexposed and slowly darken them. After 1500 slides, I'm getting a good feel what it will and will not do. You can usually tell in a split second if it will darken it or lighten it. On several occasions, I was able to "retry" the slide and the camera captured it before it horribly overexposed. After I load the digitized pictures into the base Picasa program I right click the photos, click "View and Edit" and try some of the the possible "fixes". If you click the "Tuning" section, you can darken, lighten etc to make them look better. Yes, it's not a perfect capture. I've looked at what else may be avaiable and some hardware and programs look mighty expensive. Maybe that's what it takes to get a "Perfect" result. But realistically, my early (late 1950's) slides were nothing to write home about to begin with. Some outdoor (non-flash) pics do digitize more realistically.
rwspiegel
2/20/09
rwspiegel
mwoodyf-
thanks. that is encouraging. i think i'll keep the OVT and play with it longer.
i also talked to my photographer friend who does this for a living (she's a professional). she has lots of professional quality slides and scanned versions of those slides. she said i'll never get stuff like she does out of the OVT. If i'm serious about it, i need to go look at a Nikon Coolscan... I'm probably not going to spend several thousand dollars on a scanner, but she said that's what it will take to get good images from my slides. i have some pretty good slides of my own, mostly outdoors. i've always been into textures, shadows in the trees and clouds contrast, and the OVT just doesn't get that off the slide (yet).
 
thanks
rolfe
2/20/09
Original Poster
mwoodyf
Rolfe
 
You might also try to "spruce up" the digitized slides in "Windows Photo Galary" after trying them in PICASA. So far the bulk of my digitizing has been family pics of which most of them are from my oldest camera and taken with the old flash bulb phtography.
 
mwoodyf
JC_spotless
2/21/09
JC_spotless
I have been experimenting with Veho Slide scanner. The drivers which came with software are next to useless (i'm currently using XP). As as been stated above scan time are high and give poor image quality. I found the best results using XP default twain drivers. I have used these from Paint Shop Pro and straight from scanner and camera wizard with successful. I tried using import from within Picassa 3 but the program crashed everytime. Looks like I'll be using paint shop for a while.
3/7/09
Original Poster
mwoodyf
I have just stumbled on an answer to the major wahed-out results of the digitizing of slides. I open Picasa and ask for OVT to import the slides. The OVT Scanner comes on and the left view of the Scanner view gets somewhat dark in ateps. I have been using the Camera icon (snap shot) on the scaner view and then the Transfer icon to capture the digitized slide. I have discovered that the button on the OVT unit is a little faster in caturing the picture to digitize (really dumb on my part to ignore the button on the OVT unit). But that is only part of the solution of washed-out downloads. Typically each slide gets progressively lighter when in the unit for digitizing. Some of them start light and do get darker. I have not been able to establish a pattern of why some get darker and some get lighter--until now. The area of the scanner view that captures the digitized snap shot gets completely white or clear after the first snap shot of the three in a tray. The next two to twelve (I have four trays with three slides per tray) then start with the background completely clear and digitized picture somewhat washed out. I have discoverd if I remove the tray and let the area get dark again, and replace the tray to the next slide, I can capture a decent digitized picture, one after the other. Talk about a slow tedious process. I'm sure it'll lead to missing some slides and forgetting to Transfer some. Naturely I need to decide what to do. I have digitized around 2000 slides so far with some reasonable success. I have cropped each slide to get the best view of the picture and also tried to do a certain amount of tweeking (color, lighter, darker, etc) to get the best final result. I have deleted at least 15 - 20% of the results because they were just not worth "saving." Of course I'm debating whether to start over. This new procedure will triple the time it takes to get the digitzed slide. I realize this process is something that we and our family will enjoy for a long time. It may be worth it. But with many thousands more to go, it'll really become a project.
 
By the way, uninstall and reinstall of the OVT driver makes no difference. Hopefully some of you will check on this post and pick this up.
 
Woody
Don80465
3/8/09
Don80465
I have been having the same problems and have decided to use a company to do it for me. Its going to cost a couple hundred dollars but will save much time and frustration. I have found several one the internet,
11 MORE
Google user
10/16/10
Google user
I too purchased one of these scanners and experienced all the problems described when trying to use it on my Vista based laptop. I then tried it on my wife's XP based desktop. It worked fine if a little slowly - but not unacceptably so. Then I had a thought and decided to run the MS Programme Compatibilty Wizard on the PhotoImpressions 6 software installed on the laptop instructing Vista to treat it as an XP programme. I've only done a few copies so far but is working very well and responds almost instantaneously. I'll post again if I run into any more problems.
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