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Please confine yourself to only one question per letter. Both postal letters and e-mails are fine, although we prefer e-mail as the most efficient form of communication. Send your e-mail queries to firstname.lastname@example.org with Help in the subject header and your return e-mail address at the end of your message. Although we make every effort, we cannot promise to answer every HELP! letter.
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Q. I have a Kodak Carousel slide projector that continues to function. I enjoy projecting slides of our trips for family, friends, and coworkers. I often photograph diagrams and maps in brochures from the tour agencies, government, or my own sketches. The maps enhance the presentation. Recently I found the 24 slides my wife and I had taken on a Greek cruise. Several weeks ago I photographed several maps and diagrams with a close-up lens. I tried several processors in the Hampton Roads, Virginia area, but they turned me down on making slides. They said they could put the images on a DVD.
A. I checked the websites of some of the advertisers in the Photo Lab Showcase listing in the current issue of Shutterbug and found two that indicate they still process E-6 35mm color transparencies and mount them for use in 2x2 slide projectors. Holland Photo Imaging in Austin, Texas processes E-6 chromes in all sizes from 35mm up to 8x10. Check them out at: (877) 310-8703 or www.hollandphoto.com. Another lab you might want to try is Color Services in California: (800) 207-7927 or www.colorservices.com. I agree emphatically with you about the convenience of projected images and the fact that you can easily alter the sequence to suit each audience. I’m sure one of these labs can handle your color slide processing and mounting needs. This used to be a readily available service at any major lab, but the digitization of photography has lessened the need for slide film processing and mounting.
Canon FD And FL To EF?
Q. I have used Canon equipment for over 40 years and accumulated literally dozens of Canon FD and FL lenses from 14mm to 800mm at enormous expense. I am very satisfied with the quality of these lenses but I want to go digital and there is not a single digital body that these lenses will fit. I realize that camera companies sell cameras but they really only want to sell lenses, so Canon will almost certainly never, ever make a body that I can fit these lenses. I am unwilling to reward Canon for deserting me by starting all over again with the EOS system. Is there any chance that anyone will ever make a digital body that I can fit these Canon FD and FL lenses to or make a digital back that can be fitted to the removable back bodies I currently have?
A. You can use your extensive collection of Canon FL and FD mount lenses with new Canon D-SLR cameras—but with severe limitations and the proper adapter. You will have to obtain one of two versions of the FD-EOS lens mount converters Canon offered. The FD-EOS Macro Lens Mount Converter was suitable for macro use only, as it would not allow the lens to focus to infinity. An earlier FD-EOS Lens Mount Converter contained a tele-extender that increased the lens focal length by a factor of 1.26x, but was only suitable for use with FL/FD lenses with a focal length of 200mm or longer. Both of these adapters should be obtainable used.
When you use either of them with an older FL/FD lens, you will have to manually stop down the lens. There are two ways you can control exposure. Use full Manual mode when you set both the shutter speed and adjust the aperture or use Stop-Down (Aperture-Priority) AE mode so the camera automatically sets the shutter speed.
I recently learned of some lens mount adapters offered at www.fotodiox.com that include an FD to Canon EOS adapter that they claim can be focused to infinity because it includes a built-in 1.4x correction lens. But with this, or the Canon adapters mentioned earlier, auto diaphragm, autofocusing, and other advanced functions will not operate correctly so you will have to use stop-down metering and Manual mode. As a final note, be aware that your older Canon flash units will not be compatible with the new Canon digital products.
Q. I recently acquired a Minolta XTsi camera and have been having a hard time trying to get an Owners Manual for this camera. Do you know where I might find one?
A. There are a couple of online sources for older photo product instruction books. For example, www.craigcamera.com indicates they have a stock of over 150,000 manuals. I found they have the Minolta Maxxum XTsi (#MIN-0560) listed new for $25 or a reprint for $18 plus a S&H fee of $5.95. At www.photobooksonline.com they list your camera manual for $15. While researching web locations for instruction books, I also found another source at: www.manualsink.com. There you can purchase a download of the XTsi manual for $4.99, get it on CD for $8.99, or get a printed version for $14. Any of these online firms should be able to assist you in learning how to better use your Minolta SLR.