Memories last for a lifetime?

On our website and on our flyers we claim that we save your memories for a lifetime. We recommend and advice you to digitise your old slides or photos to save them before they get stained and your memories get lost forever. Some of you take the chance of our offer to get them scanned to DVD and save them forever.

Onseveral trade fairs you ask us many times the same question, not only there but our customer support gets many queries with the same topic, too: What is the durability of the provided DVDs and how reliable are these DVD as storage for my memories?

Unfortunately we can’t provide you with an exact and guaranteed answer about that topic with that blog post. We have to rely and trust the details of the producer, too. Some of them claim a life span of almost 100 years for their DVD’s, others – independent researches – mention a lifespan between five to ten years. We think that a life span of 10 years is more realistic, though every one of us has many music CD’s in the shelves which are older than 10 years.

The next question of you might be, if it is sufficient to renew the own DVDs which contain the valuable memories after a specific period?

We recommend you to save your memories from the beginning on a different device, either on a cloud or on your PC to avoid any reading errors or other troubles with your DVD. Nowadays there are many cheap external hard discs available which are useful to save your important data. In addition we recommend you to renew your DVD every two years to have another copy of your important files.

If you are done with these steps to save your valuable data, you can enjoy your images or movies on your PC or tablet and you don’t have to worry about losing your memories for a lifetime.

If you need any further assistance about the right storage device or if you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact our customer support.

About ScanCorner

ScanCorner offers one of the best value digitisation services in UK. Every memory is handled by professionals who scan and restore them to bring out the best quality. We also create a personalised online gallery with the digitised images which you can share with your friends and family.

 

Digitisation blog: Scanning tips, DPI and Resolution

WHY SCAN?

Chances are you have a stack of photo albums, negatives and slides change color and fade with time due to collection of dust and exposure to light. Having your photos, negatives and slides digitised protects them from being lost or damaged and you can cherish the good old memories for lifetime. Scanning photos opens up so many doors to how you enjoy your memories with the easy to use digital Sharing options.

Photos and Slides Fade

Colour photos stored in ideal conditions will fade over time. The primary cause of fading is due to exposure to light. Another main cause is simply the way the photo was developed. The material used to create the photo has a limited lifespan and will start to fade.

Photos Change Color

The chemical reaction used to produce the old photos on the paper is not permanent and the photo starts to break down and lose its colour over time. The most common reaction is a yellow haze or a reddish haze that develops over the photo. The scanning process utilises software that attempts to correct this problem, thus bringing back the natural colour of the photo in digital form.

Photos and Slides Have Dust and Scratches

Slides are particularly easy to scratch and always have some amount of dust on them. By scanning, minor dust and scratches from the final image can be eliminated easily to obtain clearer image resulted due to digital ICE procedure.

Keep Your Photos and Slides Safe From Disaster

Unfortunately the precious photos and slides stored in boxes or albums are subjected  to possible fire, water or smoke damage, animals, pets, theft, or simply misplacing them. Scanning them to digital format allows you to have all your photos and slides on a DVD and having them on your computer.

For Gifting and Sharing and Sharing With Friends and Family

Once you get your photos and slides on a DVD, you can share them with family members.  You can also have the images on a USB which you can simply plug into your computer or HDTV, which will give access to the digital images. Social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+ are making it easier than ever to share your photos with friends and family. Scanning your photos and slides lets you share those precious memories easily and quickly. These digital files will also make great gifts which you can make use of to create photo books, calendars and similar wonderful gifts for a family member or friend.

CHOOSING SCANNER

The first thing to decide when beginning with scanning is what type of scanner you want. There are various kinds of scanners available. When choosing your scanner, there are two important features that you should look for:

Scanner Resolution

A better scanner resolution will mean a better quality scan of your photo which makes it really important. It’s best to look for a scanner that gives you a resolution of at least 3000 dpi.

Dynamic Range

A scanner’s Dynamic Range relates to how much detail the scanner can bring out in highlights and shadows. It’s measured on a scale of 0-4 and is usually called Dmax. Ideally, look for a scanner with at least a rating of 3.

SCANNING TIPS:

For the highest quality, set up your scanner in a dust-free environment. First, remove any dust or dirt from your photo prints with a microfiber cloth or alcohol-based cleaning wipe. It’s important that you thoroughly clean both the photos and scanner, as the scanner’s sensitive sensor will pick up even a speck of dust on the glass or on the photo.

Here are tips to how to clean the glass on your scanner safely and effectively:

Step 1: Unplug the power cord from the scanner.

Step 2: Using a soft, lint-free cloth, like a microfiber cloth, wipe off the dust from the scanner glass.

Step 3: If the glass has smudges or other contaminants, use a little bit of glass cleaner on a microfiber cloth and wipe the glass.

Step 4: Using a dry microfiber cloth, dry off any remaining moisture or residue.

Do not use any glass cleaners that contain the following cleaning agents:

Acetone, ammonia, benzene, carbon tetrachloride

The above chemicals can damage the scanner glass. Though some manufacturers suggest using isopropyl alcohol, it tends to leave streaks.

We also do not recommend using compressed air for dusting because the force of the air could end up blowing dust into the edges of the scanner and end up underneath the glass, which is a lot harder to clean.

Before you scan the photos, consider the way in which you’ll organise them – by date or by event? How will the files be named? Choose a system before you scan, and organise your printed photos, negatives and slides into stacks accordingly.

Here are some tips:

Scan multiple photos at once. On an average-sized scanner bed, you should be able to scan four 4×6 photos at once, and crop them later. Some scanners even come with software that does this automatically for you. Use this method to cut down scanning time.

Select a resolution of at least 300 dpi and up to 600 dpi for photos, if you plan to order enlargements.

Take advantage of editing options. Most scanning software will allow you to crop, adjust colour and brightness, remove scratches, dust and red-eye.

CHOOSING A RESOLUTION

For photo prints, 300 dpi is fine in general. To make sure you get all the details hidden in your prints, scan at 600 dpi. Scanning beyond 600 dpi will make the files bigger without giving you any additional image detail. Plus, higher the resolution, the more time it takes to scan each photo.

For slides and negatives, 2000 dpi will give you the equivalent of a 6-megapixel photo, which is good enough for most standard print sizes. If the scanner can go higher (such as 4000 dpi), take advantage of it to enable high-quality cropping.

RESOLUTION, DPI AND PPI

The resolution of a digital photo is its pixels, expressed as megapixels – the horizontal pixel dimensions multiplied by its vertical pixel dimensions.

DPI stands for Dots Per Pixel. It is a measure of the number of dots that can be placed within a 1 inch span line.

PPI stands for Pixels Per Inch. It is the digital photo’s pixels dimension divided into the size of the paper to be printed. PPI occurs only when it is printed.

WHICH FILE FORMAT?

JPEG(Joint Photographic Experts Group): Sometimes referred to as JPG. JPEG is the standard file format and compatible image format supported by almost all of today’s imaging software. Some image data is lost when the file is compressed. The amount of compression can be varied. More the compression, more data is discarded and smaller a file becomes. JPEG is great for creating smaller file sizes for uploading on the Internet, or for use with e-mail.

PROS:

  • Smaller File Size: JPEG uses lossy compresion to reduce file size making its use on the Internet or creating backup CDs hassle free.
  • Supported by most software and photo sharing websites.

CONS:

  • Lossy Compresion: Lossy means with data loss. JPEG compression does discard some image data based on the amount of compression used.
  • High Quality but not the absolute best.
  • Not a good choice for editing: JPEG files use lossy compression. If you plan to edit a photo and then re-save it, you will lose some quality. It loses quality, detail and information each time you edit and re-save it.

TIFF(Tagged Image File Format): TIFF (RAW) format is the standard for most commercial and professional printing needs. TIFF format means that no image data is lost after scanning. It is a great choice for archiving images where all details must be preserved and file size is not a consideration. TIFF files are very large in size compared to JPEGs because no compression is used.

PROS:

  • No Compression: TIFF files are not compressed files. This means 100% of the data captured during scanning is retained.
  • Absolute best quality.
  • Better choice if you plan to edit because TIFF files don’t use compression and quality is not lost each time the photo is edited.

CONS:

  • Large File Size: TIFF files are much larger than JPEGs making them harder to upload or email.
  • Not supported by most photo sharing websites but is supported by most software.

HOW BIG WILL MY FILES BE?

This depends on the format they are saved to. The charts below list file sizes you can expect from TIFF and JPEG files.

35 MM FILM SCANNING: PIXEL & FILE SIZE OF A STANDARD 35MM FRAME
Scan Resolution Pixel Dimensions Megapixels JPEG File Size TIFF File Size
2000 DPI 2700 x 1800 4.8 2.2 MB – 3.8 MB 14.2 MB
3000 DPI 4050 x 2700 10.9 4.3 MB – 7.1 MB 32.0 MB
4000 DPI 5400 x 3600 19.4 6.7 MB – 10.8 MB 56.9 MB
* Based on 24 bit scanning and JPEG quality of 10 using Adobe Photoshop. JPEG file sizes vary.
35 MM FILM SCANNING: PIXEL & FILE SIZE OF A STANDARD 35MM FRAME
Scan Resolution Pixel Dimensions Megapixels JPEG File Size TIFF File Size
2000 DPI 2700 x 1800 4.8 2.2 MB – 3.8 MB 14.2 MB
3000 DPI 4050 x 2700 10.9 4.3 MB – 7.1 MB 32.0 MB
4000 DPI 5400 x 3600 19.4 6.7 MB – 10.8 MB 56.9 MB
* Based on 24 bit scanning and JPEG quality of 10 using Adobe Photoshop. JPEG file sizes vary.
300 DPI PRINT SCANS:
Pixel Dimensions JPEG File Size TIFF File Size
3 X 5 900 x 1500 650 KB – 1 MB 3.9 MB
4 X 6 1200 x 1800 1.1 MB – 1.6 MB 6.3 MB
5 X 7 1500 x 2100 1.6 MB – 2.3 MB 9.2 MB
8 X 10 2400 x 3000 3.2 – 4.5 MB 21.2 MB
* Based on 24 bit scanning and JPEG quality of 10 using Adobe Photoshop. JPEG file sizes vary.
600 DPI PRINT SCANS:
Pixel Dimensions JPEG File Size TIFF File Size
3 X 5 1800 x 3000 2.4 MB – 3.5 MB 15.8 MB
4 X 6 2400 x 3600 3.6 MB – 5.2 MB 25.3 MB
5 X 7 3000 x 4200 4.8 MB – 6.9 MB 36.9 MB
8 X 10 4800 x 6000 9.1 MB – 14.3 MB 84.4 MB
* Based on 24 bit scanning and JPEG quality of 10 using Adobe Photoshop. JPEG file sizes vary.

How to Transfer an Analog Video to a PC using a Video Capture Device

Do you have analog videos and you want to transfer them to your computer or on a DVD?

Let this article teach you how to capture your analog video into a computer or DVD using an external video capture device.

Before we start learning the steps, let us first know what are the things that you will need to use during the process. You will have to prepare the following:

  • a computer
  • an analog source (example: standard VCR, 8mm, hi8 or a VHS-C camcorder)
  • a video capture device (example: DVD Xpress)
  • a video capture software (example: Pinnacle Studio Plus 9)
  • a video editing software, if you’re planning to edit your video
  • a DVD recording software, if you’re planning to record your video to a DVD
  • a DVD burner to physically record the video to a DVD

Here are the steps in capturing your analog video:

  1. Set up your video capture hardware by plugging in the USB 2.0 cable to the device and connect it to the port on your computer. Plug your capture device to an electrical outlet and turn it on.
  2. Turn on your computer. Once your computer’s power is turned on it should recognize your capture device.
  3. Plug in the source device’s video and audio out cables into the video and audio inputs on the capture device.
    1. If you are using a VHS VCR, connect the RCA video (yellow cable) output and the RCA audio (white and red cables) outputs to the RCA inputs on your video capture device, like the DVD Xpress.
  4. Start your video capture software and double click the icon on your desktop or click the “Start Menu”, hover in to “Programs” and select the program that you will use, such as Pinnacle Studio Plus 9, to run the software.
  5. Configure your capture software so that you will know what format you will need to encode in the video.
    1. If you plan to record the video on a CD, select the MPEG-1 format.
    2. If you plan to record the video on a DVD, select the MPEG-2 format.
    3. Click the “Settings” button and select the “Capture Format” tab. Change the MPEG and quality setting to high (for DVD transfers).
  6. In order to start capturing the video, click the “Start Capture” button. When a dialog box pops up, enter a file name and click the “Start Capture” button again.
  7. Once your video is captured or transferred into your computer’s hard drive, you can then import the video into an editing software application so that you can start editing. Or may start recording the video to a CD or DVD using a CD/DVD Recording software and CD/DVD writer.

Things to remember:

  • The quality of the video that will be captured on your computer will depend on the quality of the analog video source. So, if the tapes are worn out, then the captured footage will also reflect that.
  • Before you start capturing your video, “pack” your videotape by fast-forwarding to the end of the tape and then rewinding it back to the beginning before you play it. This will allow for a smooth playback while you are capturing the video.
  • If your source device has an S-Video output, make sure that you use that instead of the composite (RCA) video output. S-Video delivers a much higher picture quality than composite video or RCA.
  • If you’re planning to capture lots of videos, you have to make sure that you have a large hard drive space available, or better yet, you may use a separate hard drive for video storage.

Now you’re ready to capture your analog videos to your computer or CD or DVD. If you don’t have the time to this task yourself, don’t worry, ScanCorner is always available to help you. Kindly visit us at www.scancorner.co.uk.