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Lioner Zoom Slide duplicator

plex2 7 3
28 Apr 2013 9:07PM
I just got a Lioner slide duplicator from ebay, trying to copy some of my old slides. I am hooking this up with my Canon EOS Xti. This unit has a zoom adjustment but no FOCUS adjustment. How do you focus the slide to make the duplicate?
Can someone help?

Sooty_1 10 1.5k 221 United Kingdom
28 Apr 2013 9:21PM
You shouldn't need to focus. The lens element and the length of the tube place the slide at prime focus to give a full frame (35mm) sharp image on film or digi sensor. Thus if you use a crop sensor (and I think the Xti is an APS-C size), you won't be able to copy the whole frame, only a proportion equal to the size of the cropped sensor.

The zoom enables you to enlarge portions of the frame, but you will only be able to get part of the frame anyway even if zoomed out as far as you can go.

They are best used with a diffused flash. You can experiment to find the optimum distance away for it, then every slide will be the same, and lower the contrast on your camera, as the copying process boosts contrast and you can end up with "soot and whitewash" pictures.

plex2 7 3
28 Apr 2013 9:49PM
Thanks Nick. That was very helpful as I have never use this before. Yes, my Xti has a reduced size sensor and produce 1.6 magnification.

So is the unit actually focused to infinity, that's why there is no need to focus?
I don't have a flash unit, is there another light source that I can use as an alternative?
I did not realize that one can lower the contrast on my camera. Is there an adjustment on the Xti?

Pete 19 18.8k 97 England
28 Apr 2013 10:18PM

Quote:So is the unit actually focused to infinity, that's why there is no need to focus?

Not infinity - it should be focused at the position where the slide is mounted. Some of the better slide duplicators did have an extending barrel to the rear near the camera body that could be unlocked and adjusted to offer more precise focus. Looking at photos of the Linear it appears to be fixed, so hopefully is focused at the right point.
Sooty_1 10 1.5k 221 United Kingdom
29 Apr 2013 12:12AM
You can adjust contrast and other parameters in the "picture style" menu - look at page 78 in the manual (if your manual is the same as the online one). If you shoot RAW it's not so important, but any detail lost cannot be recovered later, so better to get it right in camera if possible.

If you don't have a flash (a cheap non-dedicated one is fine, as long as you can fire it via a test button - you don't have to attach it to the camera) you can use any light source, but the colour temperature will vary, and will need to be corrected for in processing. Again, better to get it right straight off.

The easiest way to do it with repeatable results, is to put your camera on a tripod (even a table top one will do), select a long shutter speed and as you trip the shutter, fire the flash at the slide end, which should have a white diffuser on it. After a couple of tries, you will know exactly how far away the flash needs to be for a perfect exposure (use an "average" kind of slide first time and check the histogram. If it's over exposed, move the flash further away etc). For any subsequent exposures, you can use the same distance and the exposure will be correct every time.

You could use a lamp (colour balance will be out and you will need to adjust white balance in camera) or daylight (unpredictable intensity and only during the day) or even a lightbox.

plex2 7 3
29 Apr 2013 2:28AM
Thank you Nick and Pete. Very appreciative of getting such helpful information.

I managed to dig up an very old Vivitar 91 flash that has a cable connector. It still works by shorting the connector pin.
I also found the instruction for lowering the contrast in my camera. Thanks. Never knew it existed.

Still not totally at ease with the focus. I bought and "T/T2 to EOS" adapter from EzFoto. It fits just fine. I screwed it on until it's snug. But I am not sure it is designed with the proper number of turns to get this duplicator in the perfect focus distance. Seems like there should be a way to adjust the focus. If I have gotten another adapter from a different manufacturer, would it have a different focus distance. I wonder?

Thanks again for all your help.

Pete 19 18.8k 97 England
29 Apr 2013 9:30AM
The T2 to EOS adaptor should be set correctly for a T2 accessory to allow it to function correctly. But if the precision is out because it's a copy of an original one that may be an issue. It wouldn't matter so much on a normal preset lens as there would be focus control. The slide duplicator does not have focus control unless we've missed a hidden trombone style adjustment near the mount.
Sooty_1 10 1.5k 221 United Kingdom
30 Apr 2013 1:49AM
Have you tried copying with it to see if focus is out? Is the focus of the original slide spot on?
On some T-mounts you could loosen a couple of screws and move the tube slightly. Is this possible on yours? Is the slide in the right place?

Sometimes slides can 'pop' with changes in temperature. With projectors you just refocus, but without focus facility you have to wait for the slide to cool and 'pop' back.
plex2 7 3
30 Apr 2013 2:08AM
I checked my unit. No trombone adjustment or screws that allow moving the tube in or out.
I suppose I can make some focus adjustment by backing out some turns on the T-mounting screw thread. I will try that if I find out I needed to.
But first I am going to try what Nick suggested. It may be already in focus. I will find out and check my slides to be sure that they are sharp.

Thanks to both of you, Pete and Nick for all the time you spent giving me such helpful advice.

rjoslin New Member
12 Feb 2021 4:23PM
I know this is an old thread, but am hoping someone will see this new post.Grin I bought the Lioner optical slide duplicator probably 15 to 20 years ago. I think I remember using it with my old Pentax Spotmatic SLR (screw-mount), but not sure. It's been sitting in its box in the closet for years; it had one adapter ring (with the letters "T-PS" ?maybe PS is Pentax-Screw?) screwed onto the end of it, and another presumed adapter ring in the box The other ring labelled "M-SR".

The duplicator itself is ~6 inches long and has external threads at the camera end. The T-PS ring has internal threads that match these. The M-SR ring does not SEEM to fit either the adapter itself or the T-PS ring, whether attached to the adapter or not.

My "old man guess" is that the "M" could stand for "Minolta" which, back in the day, was the main alternative to "screw mount" (Pentax alone, I think).

My goal, after all the above, is to use the adapter on my DSLR, an Canon EOS T-something. I bought a T-adapter ring specifically for the Canon EOS, but it doesn't seem to mate with the duplicator or either of the. It does mate with the camera and it has internal threads at the other (non-camera) end.

If anyone out there has successfully mated this duplicator with a Canon Eos type DSLR, PLEASE let me know.

Sorry for the length of this post.
rjoslin New Member
13 Feb 2021 1:02PM
In case anyone is composing a long reply to my post above, this is an important update. I read in (of all places) a Wikipedia article on "T mounts" that a T-mount had male threads on the end of the lens (in this case the duplicator). When I remove the T-PS ring, I found no male threads, but instead ANOTHER ring on the end of the duplicator (and flush with its body) that could easily be unscrewed, and under it were the male threads that would screw into my Canon EOS adapter ring (an $8 item). So my problem is fixed...well, I haven't actually tried to dupe a slide yet Grin but I will, don't worry. If anyone needs details or pictures, just reply to this thread and I should get a notification.

In other words, the post above is now mostly redundant. I bet, however, that there are more of these Lioner (not Linnear) dupers out there and maybe someone else is scratching their heads trying to attach it to their "new" Canon DSLR. My old Pentax is long-gone, although I took thousands of pictures with it over many years.

Apparently there are some cropping issues described in at least one of the posts above, and I guess I find out about them as I try duping slides, and I'll be surprised in the exposure control apparatus will work without an actual Canon lens attached to the camera. Maybe I'll be wrong.
Signing off

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