Re: gross photography setups
|From:||Jeffrey S Crews <firstname.lastname@example.org>|
Random thoughts from my digital gross photo experience:
Any small copy stand will do, and really is a must. The small ones will
fit inside a fume hood, too, although you may have to saw off a bit of
platform or post.
I strongly recommend getting a camera with a threaded lens ring on it.
This allows you to screw on extra closeup lenses if you need to. Tiffen
makes them in a variety of diameters to fit just about any threaded ring.
The camera should also have a "macro" setting. Autofocus often does not
work in "macro," so you may need to establish a standard height for
taking your photos.
A remote shutter button is nice, especially if you're in a hood.
You shouldn't need to worry about a flash for this setup, since the
camera will be mounted. Standard copy stand lights should work.
Running the camera off of a laptop really isn't necessary once you get
your settings worked out.
Media and uploading: uploading images through a serial port takes
FOREVER. Make sure the camera can upload to the computer via USB, or via
a removeable flash memory card. Most of them are CompactFlash format, for
which you can get a card reader to attach to your serial port. Some are
Smartmedia. The advantage of Smartmedia is that there is a floppy-disc
sized adapter that allows you to dump pics into your computer via the
floppy drive. This means you can upload to any computer on which you've
installed the floppy reader drivers. I've tried this and it works well.
For a cheap setup I used a Kodak DC120, which worked fine. For
somewhatbetter quality I used an Olympus DL600. This was a few years ago,
so I'm sure there are other models out now.
There are also "purpose-built" systems out for this application, but make
sure you demo them thoroughly first to make sure they're worth the money.
I was doing it on the cheap, so I didn't try those. I'm sure some vendors
will be contacting you, so if you have the bucks one of these systems
will probably be easier.
As for software, whatever comes with the camera works for uploading and
saving to various formats. For adding captions, cropping, etc., there are
many, many digital image programs available. I doubt you will need the
level of function of Photo$hop.
If you need to do morphometric analysis, NIH has a very good and free
program for this, but it only works on Macs.
And finally, you WILL need a storage and archival system for these
images. Don't just leave them on your harddrive, and if I were you I
wouldn't rely just on the backups made by your IT group, either. Digging
around in archival tapes is a pain. Get a CD writer, at least. CD's are
less volatile than magnetic media.
If you have any particular questions, you can email me directly.
Jeffrey Crews, HTL (ASCP)
On Wed, 11 Jul 2001 11:37:16 -0500 "Horn, Hazel V"
>We are looking for a new gross photography set up. Digital camera,
>software, camera stand.....etc. Can anyone help us out with
>Vendors are welcome to reply to me personally.
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