A system for identifying and matching key blanks when duplicating an original key. A key holder is provided which positions the key horizontally along its longitudinal axis with the key's flat sides in a vertical plane. A lensing subsystem lights and forms an image of the front profile of the key. A video camera converts the light image into an electrical signal which is digitized and stored in computer memory. The computer compares the key image with stored images of known key blanks and signals the locksmith by means of an output subsystem the proper key blank to be used in duplicating the key.