[Tig] Archival work flows--Best--Can you define the objectives?

percy at digitalmagic.com.hk percy at digitalmagic.com.hk
Fri Dec 13 01:49:48 GMT 2013

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Percy Fung
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percy at digitalmagic.com.hk
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----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Ted Langdell" <tedlangdell at gmail.com>
To: <tig at colorist.org>
Cc: "Ted Langdell" <tedlangdell at gmail.com>
Sent: Friday, December 13, 2013 5:38 AM
Subject: Re: [Tig] Archival work flows--Best--Can you define the objectives?

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On Dec 12, 2013, at 7:45 AM, Bill Holley wrote:
> What work flows are people using for Film archiving?
> Spirit 4k with 2k plus?
> Bones?
> Which is best?
> Best regards,
> Bill.
> William R. Holley
> Colorist
> National Film Board of Canada


I don't think you'll find hard and fast rules or actual practices that apply 
across the archiving community.

There are recommendations and practices that archives aspire to, but what 
each archive considers appropriate for different circumstances or uses may 
define the term "Best" for those specific circumstances.

Are there specific objectives, type(s) and gauge(s) of film involved at the 
National Film Board that prompt the question?

If the objective is to obtain the highest quality possible—particularly if 
restoration may be in the film's future—4K is an appropriate objective.

One of our customers anticipates 4K as their goal for 16mm and possibly 8K 
for 35mm. But then, they have the ability to store, back up and migrate the 
massive data that results from that approach.

The archives I have contact with may do different things depending on 
whether the goal is a "highest possible quality" preservation element or 
something that doesn't require huge volumes of data to be stored... such as 
material for access, or that would be incorporated into an HD documentary, 
or that the end user or requestor doesn't need at max resolution.

Money also plays a role, as the cost of scanner/scanning and storing data at 
4K (or higher) may not be the what is the most appropriate  option for the 
archive, a project or an individual film.

With changing technology expanding the range of scanning equipment and 
post-scanning tools on the market today, there are options for institutions 
and service providers that don't lock them into a single tool set or 

We have archive users of our Vario2K+™ and Choice2K+™  scanners that are 
transferring a lot of 4:3 aspect material to 16:9 HD using various 
compressed codecs such as ProRes 4:2:2 HQ, although they have the capability 
to do 2336 x 1752 DPX or TIFF files 24-bit 48KHz WAV audio files.

Some archives do nothing to alter the way the film looks during or after 
transfer (and may have rules preventing licensees from mkaking alterations, 
such as dust busting/scratch removal, color correction, etc) while others do 
attempt to make the film look better or allow licensees to do so.

What is "Best?" I suggest that the answer depends on the objectives and what 
one has for resources.


Ted Langdell
ted at flashscan8.us

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