How to Transfer 35mm Slides to DVD

Updated February 21, 2017

Getting your slides onto a DVD is a two-step process. First you have to turn your slides into digital images. You can then burn them onto a DVD using a slide show program such as DVD Slideshow or iPhoto. If you are burning them to DVD for storage only (as data) you won't need slide show software.

Prepare your scanner for the slides. A dedicated slide scanner will produce the highest-quality images, but for home use, a flatbed scanner should be sufficient. Place the slides on the scanner (use the flat slide tray if one is provided with your scanner), and scan them directly to your computer or import them into a photo retouch program such as Photoshop. Using a high resolution, such as 3200 dpi, will yield the best results, but if the images are too big, your computer may have trouble managing them, depending on how much memory you have.

If you are burning the slides to DVD for storage, you can do that with Windows Media Center or Windows Explorer (on a PC) or in Finder (on a Mac). If you are creating a slide show, format the digital scans to the specifications of your DVD slide show software. Most programs can accommodate virtually any size or format of image, but if you have scanned very large images (say 20 MB or above) you may want to shrink them before you import them to speed things up. Save the files as .jpeg or .tiff, depending on the instructions of your DVD slide show software; .jpegs have a smaller file size but are lower quality, and .tiffs are larger, high-quality images.

Once you have the slide images in digital format on your computer, import them into your DVD slide show program. You then can arrange them however you want and add transitions, music and special effects such as dissolves or wipes.

Once you have the slide show set up, you're ready to burn the DVD. Follow the instructions on your DVD slide show program, burn and enjoy.

Things You'll Need

  • Slides
  • A slide scanner or a commercial slide scanning service
  • A computer that will burn DVDs
  • DVD slide show software (if creating a slide show)
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About the Author

Bill Brown has been a freelance writer for more than 14 years. Focusing on trade journals covering construction and home topics, his work appears in online and print publications. Brown holds a Master of Arts in liberal arts from St. John's University and is currently based in Houston.