Everyone has an important photo scanning or video conversion project that they have been meaning to get started sooner or later. Oftentimes different things come up throughout the course of a year, and in some cases budget can be a limiting factor. Here are some tips from us on the most efficient ways we can help you save on your next media conversion project.
1. Take out the unnecessary photos
This is the most intuitive way to think about cutting down the costs on a project. Most families have thousands of photos and invariable a significant portion of them are not worth preserving. Photos of the landscapes or vacation sunsets may have seemed nice at the time, but are not crucial to get preserved for posterity. The same goes for burst duplicates–dozens of photos grouped around the same moment that are essentially the same. Pick the best one and discard the rest of them. This process is easiest for photos where quick decisions can be made. Negatives and slides take a little bit more time because they usually require a light box and/or a magnifying slide-viewer.
The trade-off here is obviously time. You will be saving a lot of money on your scanning project if you cut down your collection by 40%, but it could take hours of your time to go through your whole collection. Luckily, we can do it for you! We’ve saved clients thousands of dollars on scanning projects by doing the photo selections for them. Your consultant works with you to get the criteria for the photos you want to keep and set a target for how much of the collection to preserve. Going this route is $.10 per photo for the photos we are sorting through as opposed to the full scanning price. The end result is a well curated selection of photos that will be preserved for posterity.
2) Use our Digital package to save as much as 33%
Last year, we added ‘Digital Only’ options for all of our videotape and film reel conversions. Getting this package for video files means that we upload the tapes to a private website and give you the password to access the digital files. The videos can then be downloaded right from the website to your desktop computer, tablet or mobile device. Once there, you have free reign over the files. It can be downloaded as many times as you like and loaded onto USBs or DVDs if you’d like to share that way with friends and family.
The Digital Only package is only $16 to transfer a video tape and just $0.18 per foot for film reels. These are savings of 33% and 24% respectively off the Standard package items.
3) Use our Viewing Station to view tapes and film
Watching video tapes and film reels that haven’t been seen in years– sometimes decades– can be a special moment for families. It’s also a great way to screen out any unwanted tapes. If you have dozens in your collection and you know that you don’t want to convert all of them to digital, spend a couple hours in our viewing station at our Newton, MA Headquarters.
We have equipment for viewing VHS tapes, VHS-C tapes, 8mm tapes, Hi8 tapes, Digital8 tapes and mini DVs as well as 16mm, 8mm and Super8 film. Once you have viewed the tapes, you can decide whether or not to leave them with us to convert to DVD or digital. The viewing station is free for an hour for all of our clients, and after that it’s just $25 per hour to keep viewing.
If you have a big collection and you still aren’t sure where to start, give us a call. Sometimes an in-home consultation is the right way to start and can save tons in the long run.
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