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Learn More About Converting 16mm Film to Digital

Redwood Film Transfer Colorful 8mm Film Cannisters

If you have 16mm film that you’d like to transfer or convert to digital a digital format like DVD or Bluray, then we’d love to do that for you, in our state of the art lab, in Redwood City, California.

In case you’re wondering what’s the technical history of your movie memory treasure, you may find this interesting. The 16mm film was released by Eastman Kodak in 1923 by selling a complete “outfit” for $335. A lot of money in those days! The “outfit” included a camera, a projector, a tripod, screen and even a splicer.

If your 16mm film has sound, it may be the optical sound-on-film type created by RCA-Victor for its sound movie projector, that it released in 1935.

No matter what type of film you have, we can transfer it to digital, DVD or Bluray using state of the art equipment, and top-notch technicians, in our Redwood City Video Lab.

When we say “state of the art”, we mean it. We only use the latest and highest quality of equipment available. It’s the only way to guarantee the highest quality of 16mm film transfer to DVD or Blueray results you expect.

Since this process involves not just a lot of technology, but a lot of skill and know-how, all our staff involved with your 16mm film conversion have at minimum, a B.A. in film, video and audio technology.

We do urge you to handle your film with care, since all film breaks down over time. This also means that it’s not advisable to view your old film in a projector. The bulb can create excessive heat and literally burn the film, and that’s not repairable. Also, the film may jam, or the sprockets can tear the brittle 16mm film. These are just three of a dozen reasons not to view them as they are – but have them converted. Even if you’re not sure what’s on them, the risk of previewing is too great. All of your treasured memories are risk.

Also, it’s not advisable that you clean your film at home. It likely does need to be cleaned, and perhaps even repaired (we include that at no cost). The 16mm film was manufactured using chemicals, and it’s impossible to tell how any cleaning agent (more chemicals) will react to the film. Moisture can be particularly damaging to film, and if it gets in to the reels, then mold can form. A household cleaning solution may remove the mold, but will likely damage the film beyond repair. Please hold off – let us do that for you.

Redwood Film Transfer Vintage Film Strips.jpgPreserving your memories and movies shot on 16mm film is our mission, and has been for over 30 years. And we’ve never lost a single reel!

The enjoyment of your film goes beyond preservation however, and we take care of all those details too. In addition to cleaning, splicing, repairing and lubricating your existing 16mm film (so it once again extends its life), we can add (also at no cost), background music, leaders, and even a title.

Also, it’s not advisable that you clean your film at home. It likely does need to be cleaned, and perhaps even repaired (we include that at no cost). The 16mm film was manufactured using chemicals, and it’s impossible to tell how any cleaning agent (more chemicals) will react to the film. Moisture can be particularly damaging to film, and if it gets in to the reels, then mold can form. A household cleaning solution may remove the mold, but will likely damage the film beyond repair. Please hold off – let us do that for you.

One of the primary “enjoyment benefits” of digitizing your 16mm film is the removal of any “flickers” you may have seen in old movies, and the balancing of color, brightness and contrast. Literally “updating” your old 16mm film and movies in the transfer process.

The equipment we use does not use sprockets, which means we’re able to capture each image one at a time, in full, corner-to-corner width and transfer it to digital. Then, we correct and adjust (enhance) the entire film for optimal viewing experience. Even the audio is scrubbed, synced and cleaned for any background noise.

So the process of transferring and converting your 16mm film goes well beyond what you may have expected.

How Long Does it Take?

Processing time to transfer your 16mm film to digital can be as fast as 1 day, or as long as 4 weeks. It all depends on the size and complexity of your order. Quality of results takes higher precedence over speed of delivery. On average however, most orders are processed within two weeks.

Free Return Shipping by UPS for Orders Over $200

We also make the entire process simple and painless for you. As soon as you check out, and if your order is over $200, you’ll get free (round trip) shipping for your 16mm film! You’ll receive an email with a pre-paid UPS shipping label to attach to your box. You’ll even get a list of UPS drop-off locations so you don’t have to search for one.

As soon as your 16mm film is received, into our location, you’ll be notified. Then, after we complete the work and ship your newly digitized memories back to you – along with your original film – we’ll let you know that it’s been shipped out, from our lab back to you.

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