How to Convert Color Slides to Digital

By Greyson Ferguson

Updated September 22, 2017

Items you will need

  • Color slides

  • Slide scanner

Convert your camera slides to a digital format.
i film-camera on camera-bag image by Andrii Oleksiienko from

Color slides more often than not come from a color still camera. The film negatives are then cut up into slides and used with a slide projector. However, with the decline of film in still cameras and the increase of slide presentation software (such as PowerPoint), you may want to convert your color slides to a digital format. When doing so you have two options: convert the slides yourself with a slide scanner or take the slides to a film developer.

Film development location

Take your slides into a location that develops film (such as Target, Walmart or Wallgreens). These locations also offer slide development and place the images onto a CD. Keep in mind you pay per slide, so if you have a few hundred slides, this is not an advantageous way to go about converting your color slides. However, it works just fine if you have just a few.

Drop off the slides. This form of development typically takes longer than the standard one hour promised by many locations.

Return at the given time, pick up the slides, and pay for them.

Slide scanner

Connect a slide scanner to your computer, then install all the required drivers (they come on a CD with the scanner).

Insert the first slide into the scanner and click "Start," "All Programs," "Accessories" and finally "Camera and Scanner Wizard." This is a default scanning program installed on all Windows computers.

Select "Scan," then choose the connected color scanner as the device you want to use.

Click "Scan" and the color slide is scanned into the computer. Once the scan finishes, click "File," "Save," then name the scan, choose a location to save the file to and click "OK."