Another company producing dismal results

We pride ourselves in providing our customers with stunning videos of their films at an affordable price. We are disappointed when we have a customer come in saying that they’ve had a bad experience with another company. Look at this video of our scan and the other company’s scan:

A customer kindly let us show his 16mm film before and after (left bottom). We were very disappointed that a "professional" company (somewhere in the Eastern USA) did such an abismal job of scanning the 16mm film and charged the customer good money for it.

Oops! Scanned a slide using negative settings

A 35mm slide scanned as a negative

A 35mm slide scanned as a negative

I received an enquiry from someone who scanned a bunch of slides using the scanner settings for a negative. So, therefore all the digital images of the slides, which are positives, were imaged as negatives.

Having never done this myself, I wanted to see the impact. So, we scanned a slide as both negative and positive. We used ACDSee to edit the images. We took the positve and brightened and dehazed the image. We took the negative and applied "special effect" "negative". Here's how the results compared:

Compare negative (inverted to positive) on left to positive plus editing on right

Compare negative (inverted to positive) on left to positive plus editing on right

The negative definitely suffers from a blue cast and a lack of depth. The positive has a blue tint in the sky whereas the negative is washed out. The negative blacks are also crushed. Comparing the histograms (at the bottom of the images above) of the RGB and luminence there is an obvious improvement for the positive scan!

Thoughts: A negative has much larger range of darks and lights than a positive. So, when setting to negative the scanner expects the images to have this large range. In our case the positive does not have this large range and it shows in the resulting image above. This confirms that negative setting should be used for negatives and positive setting for positives.

However, if the someone really does not want to re-scan everything, they could invert the image digitally and it will work...just not the best result.

Back from AMIA Conference

Film Editing Equipment

Film Editing Equipment

Just back from an amazing mind expanding AMIA conference in Portland Oregon.  AMIA is the Association of Moving Image Archivists and we are a group of people from around the world with a passion for helping the world preserve and share film, video, and audio media for future generations.  Made new friends and renewed old acquaintances with people from Ireland, Netherlands, Canada, Mexico, USA, Israel, Switzerland, Iceland, Mexico, etc    We discussed and shared ideas, new tools, and new methods; all with a focus of keeping our heritage safe for future.  We saw films that had been found and restored some dating back to the early 1900’s.  Many films had interesting stories such as, Santo Contra El Cerebro Del Mar, which was an unfinished film interrupted by the Cuban revolution and smuggled out of Cuba in 1958 in a coffin.

Now I’m back and ready to preserve your treasure.

A testimonial about our film scanning....

"BEFORE" is another service provider.  "AFTER" is the customer's screen shots from our transfer, Lifetime Heritage Films.

"BEFORE" is another service provider.  "AFTER" is the customer's screen shots from our transfer, Lifetime Heritage Films.

A few months ago a customer, Kieran McGreal of Vancouver, wrote a testimonial that I'd like to share.

"Lifetime Heritage Films did a wonderful job scanning my Super 8 film into HD.

I had previously overpaid a company to do low-res video transfers using outdated telecine techniques. The results were akin to someone projecting my film onto a dirty bath towel, and then videotaping the projection with an early 90's camcorder. Having never shot Super 8, I just assumed that's what it was supposed to look like. Wrong.

Suffice to say I was blown away when I got my scans back from LHF.

My Ektachrome looked like what I would expect from Ektachrome;

Instead of a washed out, blown out mess, I finally got to see the robust latitude of my film. The difference was so comically extreme that I had to include screen captures."



9.5mm or Pathé Film Scanning Coming This Week


We are extremely excited to announce that within a week we will have the ability to scan 9.5mm or Pathé or Pathé Baby film with our 5K archival film scanner.

Our customers have waited patiently, some for years, for us to add 9.5mm film scanning to our services.  We will be the only company in Canada that can scan 9.5mm film in high resolution.

Contact us today to check out this new service.


Bad film - emulsion missing

Bad film - emulsion missing

bad film - severely shrunken

bad film - severely shrunken

There are many risks to your audio and visual media. Some media can deteriorate simply sitting on the shelf. Generally keeping media in a cool but not humid environment would be the best storage conditions. Mold is probably the biggest issue with media that we see in our office. Mold will eat the emulsion (the picture) of film, negatives, photos, etc. Mold is also dangerous to handle without proper handling procedures. Once mold has eaten the emulsion, nothing can restore the image. However, we can arrest further damage, kill the mold, and salvage the remaining image. Many times this can mean salvaging more than 90% of the media. Mechanical damage to your media is the next major issue. We see damage such as torn film, missing pieces of photos, wrinkles, etc. Our equipment and expertise can handle many of these issues and in many cases digitize most if not all of the image. Wear and tear is probably the issue that is most difficult to resolve. Video tapes with wrinkled video or worse is almost impossible to fix. Many other issues with wear and tear, such as film scratches can be minimized using special equipment, software, and techniques. Contact us, your archival media specialists, and we can help assess your collection.


If you haven’t already figured out, I’m passionate about preserving films.  We are your archival film specialists. From the early 1900’s to the later part of the 1900’s film recorded our adventures, our dreams, our families’ birthdays, weddings, vacations and many other memorable events.

Here are a couple of youtube videos about my passion, film preservation and why it is so important.

Restoring Old Movies


Here’s an excellent film on preservation involving many of the experts that I follow.  They show some amazing films clips, many of which you may have heard of.

Lost Forever: The Art of Film Preservation


I really don’t feel comfortable writing this blog but I felt that customers need to know.

Now that we are on the verge taking another leap forward in our film transfer offerings (see 5K Film Scanning), I was looking back over some of the film transfer work that we’ve done in the the last few years.  In 2014 a customer came to us with some concerns over a transfer he had done at a local competitor.  We had a look at the DVD’s he had received and we were not thrilled with the quality of the competition.  We encouraged the customer to take it back and ask them to redo the transfer and the competitor refused.  We re-did the transfer for customer and the customer was amazed at the quality difference.  We found the original transfer had the image too bright (blown out) in areas, the image was dirty (not cleaned), and the colour was off.  Here’s is a frame grab example of the competition and the a re-transfer done by us:


Competition's bad quality
Our good quality

It was also obvious that the competition did not do a frame-by-frame scan as many of the videos’ frames were blended and not unique.  This makes the competitions scan softer and less sharp.

Customers come to us because we are passionate about doing it right!