We have a 5 step film transfer process at Rocky Mountain Audio Video Productions, Inc. to transfer your film to DVD, Blu-Ray or digital files.
Step 1: Preparing Your Film
Once we receive your film, our process starts with careful cleaning to remove any dust or debris, and examining your film for any splices that need repair. This step also helps lubricate your film so your film will be returned to you in better shape than when we received it! This is a very important step, which if skipped, can result in a poor image transfer. We perform 8mm film transfers, Super 8mm, and 16mm film to DVD, Blu-Ray and digital files.
Step 2: Consolidating Your Film Reels
For 8mm and Super 8mm film, we will combine all your shorter reels onto a larger 400’ reel. All your original reels and boxes will be returned to you. Please, let us know at the time of your order if you don’t want us to combine your reels. With 16mm film, we will NOT consolidate your smaller reels onto a larger reel.
Step 3: Digital Film Scanning and Transfer
We scan at a native resolution of 2K (2048 x 1536) with all 35mm, 16mm, and 8mm film. All of your film is scanned FRAME by FRAME! What this means is that we are scanning every frame of your film and creating a high resolution digital image of every frame of your film. We’ll end up with thousands of these images that will result in a stunning transfer that captures the smallest details with amazing clarity and color. *Some other film transfer companies use systems that project onto a mirror or screen that can produce blurry images with multiple frames overlapping one another.*
Handling of your film: Your film is old and precious! Our film scanner handles the film ONLY by the edges for maximum film safety. No sprockets, no advance claws and no pinch rollers to possibly damage your film. Utilizing an enlarged film gate, we capture the entire frame of film - nothing lost and no over-cropping. Most of all, the light source in our systems is a “no heat” diffused ultra-cool LED light source, so your film will never be burned or stressed by a hot lamp.
Step 4: Color Correction
As film ages over time, the chemical makeup will start to break down and create a blue or pink hue to the images. With our color correction, we will restore the look and feel of times gone past!
Step 5: Select your output format to Digital File, DVD, or Blu-Ray Disc
Before we output your transfer to disc or hard drive, our technicians will thoroughly quality check all aspects of your job. Many people don’t realize the process of outputting your film transfer to DVD or Blu-Ray is just as important as the transfer process. We go the extra mile and Author your DVD or Blu-Ray (complete with a custom intro), and we never use inexpensive DVD/Blu-ray recorders that can over compress and degenerate your high quality film transfers. Our authoring process is a time consuming effort that includes using broadcast software to control all aspects of encoding your digitally scanned film to MP4 Digital File, DVD or Blu-Ray so it will look it's absolute best when viewed.
HD (High Definition) File format output options:
Option #1 - Native Telecine .MOV file output
This will be a 2K or HD Quick Time Movie (motion JPEG-A) for video and if your film has a sound track, WAV files will be created for audio.
Note – Film Transfers with Audio: Capturing the audio from film is a separate process from scanning the film to video. Existing audio will be captured as a separate WAV file. When requesting “native telecine digital files”, you will receive 2 files – a QT file for the film transfer and a separate WAV file for the audio. If you prefer a single file with the audio embedded, we are happy to output a file of your choice for $25.
Option #2 - Image Sequence
Most commonly used by archivist is JPEG, but we can also do PNG, BMP, or TIF for an additional $25 per project. This option is ideal for archiving or if you are going to do additional editing of the film. There will be exactly one digital file sequentially numbered for each frame of film. If the footage was shot at 18 fps (frames per second), that’s the speed the image sequence will play back. This image sequence may then be brought into an editing program and the speed adjusted using that software.
*Need a specific file format? Just let us know. We can also output to many other digital formats like ProRes, MP4, etc.