Outsourcing Film to Digital Transfer

Because MLA came in January this year, our household is a week or so behind its usual schedule for getting Christmas put away. Typically we do this earlier in January, trying to get our Christmas tree on the curb in time for it to be recycled for coastal restoration. Unfortunately, that recycling program is not happening this year: none of the parishes — Louisiana has parishes instead of counties — involved has any money for it. (If you are keeping track of the casualty count for the economic downturn in Louisiana, it’s: public health, higher education, the coast.) And so our clean up got put off until the MLK weekend.

And so out came the plastic bins to put away the Christmas decorations. But, what’s that? Aren’t you a little tired of that closet threatening your life every time you open it? Well, then, let’s take out all the bins, sort through them, throw some things away, give some things away, repack some things and begin to get a little order in here.

*Hey, here’s a whole box of APS film canisters.*

I have a lot of negatives lying around. Much of it is probably not worth spending too much money to preserve, but if it can be digitized in bulk for a reasonable price, then I am open to the idea. I don’t have that many APS canisters. Most of my film photography was done with a 35mm camera, but a lot of that is on slides, which are all neatly tucked into binders … and I don’t know when I will work up the energy to get that digitized. (My colleague Barry Jean Ancelet was fortunate enough to have a few semesters of graduate students to do the digitizing for him. Perhaps, one day, when I have a similar status, I can enjoy something similar. *Gotta get that book done.* — yes, Craig Gill, I *am* working on it. I promise.)

But let’s focus on the APS to digital for the time being, and see what we can learn:

* [ScanMyPhotos.com](http://scanmyphotos.com) will do 2000 dpi scanning for $10 a roll or 4000 dpi scanning for $20 a roll. All scans are output as JPGs. (This makes no sense to me.) They will also scan slides and prints.
* [FotoBridge](http://www.fotobridge.com/) also does scanning, but it doesn’t have anything on APS scanning. Their price for scanning up to 250 slides at 2000 dpi is $90. 3000 dpi costs $102, and 4000 dpi $115. The [prices drop](http://www.fotobridge.com/pricing_slides.php) as you increase the amount you have scanned.