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Frequently Asked Questions
1. ScanDigital Process
7. Gift Card
8. FAQ's for Video
9. Gallery Guide
1. ScanDigital Process
1.1 Why choose ScanDigital?
ScanDigital is the world's premier, photo digitization service. We provide high quality scans and provide them to you both on DVD or CD and through our online gallery. Using our fully interactive online gallery, you can share your photos with friends and family, upload additional digital images and compile an online collection of memories. Simply put, ScanDigital provides the most user-friendly experience available. We place the customer at the center of everything we do throughout the entire order process.
1.2 I am worried about shipping my photos, is the process safe?
Our fully integrated and centralized process ensures that your photos will be safe throughout the entire process. Through our website you can automatically generate a shipping label with UPS which will allow us to track your package. If you live within the Los Angeles area, you can drop your photos off at our location in Torrance. For more information please see our Contact Us Page. While being scanned, your photos stay in our centralized headquarters and are returned to you via the shipping option you choose with an easy to use tracking number.
1.3 Why not scan my pictures myself?
Scanning photos can be an intensely laborious process. Scanning a few photos can be accomplished relatively easily by an individual; however, the digitization of mass quantities of photographs becomes difficult. Our highly trained, professional technicians combine their expertise with the best scanning equipment to provide the highest quality product. We believe that converting your photos to a digital format is something that should be done right one time. In addition, our fully interactive website allows you to begin enjoying your photos immediately after they have been digitized, saving you the additional time of uploading to other photo sharing sites.
1.4 Why scan/digitize my photos? Why convert to digital?
Your memories are irreplaceable. Your family probably has thousands of photos in multiple formats. The benefit of conversion to digital is twofold: first, by keeping a copy of your photos both on DVD/CD and online you preserve these memories forever. Secondly, modern technologies allow you to enjoy your digital photographs in many more ways than traditional printed photographs. With your photos in a digital format, you will be able to effortlessly organize, share, reprint and compile your photo library. In addition, simple software applications allow you to easily create customized slideshows or photo books for special occasions.
2.1 What format of originals do you scan?
We provide scanning for 35 mm negatives, 35 mm slides and printed paper photos up to 8" by 10". Our professional quality scanning equipment allows us to scan both black and white photos and color photos.
2.2 My photos are in albums, will ScanDigital accept these albums?
Yes, ScanDigital will accept your photo albums. Please provide albums that do not include photos that are permanently glued down. ScanDigital will remove your photos, scan them and replace them. ScanDigital charges $0.68 per image when scanning using a resolution of 300 dpi and $0.88 per image when scanning using a resolution of 600 dpi.
2.3 My slides are housed in carousels, magazines and protective slide pages, what should I send?
We accept carousels, magazines and protective slide pages. As part of our scanning process we will remove the slides from their packaging and guarantee they will be returned in the same order as they were received. Regardless of how you ship them, please secure them tight using rubber bands and wrap them in plastic. Slides, negatives and prints are very durable and do not need excessive protection, but they should be well packaged.
2.4 How will my images be organized online? How long will my photos be stored online?
All of your photos will be organized online according to whatever labels you provide when you send us your photos. If you do not wish to spend your time organizing your photos prior to sending them to us, that is totally fine. Our online gallery gives you the ability to rearrange photos within galleries, albums and sub-albums, label and comment on photos, share photos with friends and family and order reprints. Your photos will be stored online indefinitely. Should that policy change, you will be informed via email and be given at least 30 days notice.
2.5 Can I email my digital photos to friends and family?
Absolutely. Within your online galleries you have the ability to share individual photos, albums and sub-albums via email with your friends and family.
2.6 Where do you process the photos and digital images?
All of our orders are processed in our centralized headquarters located within Los Angeles County in the City of El Segundo, California. Given the high level of importance and value we place on your photos and memories, it was essential for us to locate our business in the largest MSA (metropolitan statistical area) in the United States. Our location within the greater Los Angeles basin provides us access to the highest trained technological workforce in the world. This allows us to provide the world's premier digitization service. Your photos remain in one location throughout the entire process until we return them to you via a trackable shipping option. This ensures that our service provides an unparalleled level of security.
3.1 What is DPI? What resolution do I need?
DPI stands for dots per inch or pixels per inch. DPI represents the resolution, accuracy, sharpness and clarity of your digital picture. A higher DPI is generally associated with a higher quality image; however, if the DPI exceeds the resolution of the original media, a higher DPI can actual diminish the quality of the image. Our default scanning is performed at 300 DPI for paper photos which is more than sufficient for using your digital photos electronically and also provides the ability to reprint any photo in the same size as its original. We provide an option to scan your paper photos with 600 DPI and with this higher resolution you can enlarge your image to a size twice as large as the original. Based on millions of scans, we find that the optimal DPI levels are: 300 - 600 DPI for paper photos depending on your expected use and 2000 - 4000 DPI for slides and negatives. ScanDigital's service includes the following: high resolution scanning, Kodak Digital ICE (to remove dust and blemishes) and manual processing to crop, rotate and color correct your photos.
3.2 I have negatives and paper photos. Which is best for scanning?
In most cases, scanning from negatives produces a higher quality result. Furthermore, organizing your photos based on a roll of negatives tends to be much easier. If possible please send in your negatives.
3.3 Should I use CDs or DVDs for storing my digital images? How many pictures fit on a DVD or CD?
If your computer has a DVD drive, DVDs are the preferred method as they hold approximately seven times the number of images that a CD holds. If you do not have access to a DVD drive, CDs will work fine. ScanDigital includes one set of discs with every order free of charge. Additional copies can be included at the rate of $10 per copy. Photography DVDs are created as data discs and may not play in all DVD players. If your DVD player cannot play data discs, you can purchase a simple slideshow for $15 and your images will be loaded to a video DVD disc.
3.4 How will the images be stored and organized? Will I be able to view my images and play them on a DVD player?
Your photos will be stored as jpeg images on a computer disc. Additionally, your photos will be stored in a personalized online gallery. From this gallery, you can share your images with friends and family. These computer discs are created for use on a computer or with DVD players that can read computer discs. Your pictures will be organized in folders if you have provided labels. For example, if you have an envelope of photos labeled "Mary's Birthday", we will create a folder on your disc titled "Mary's Birthday" and an album within your online gallery with a corresponding label.
3.5 What is Digital ICE?
Digital ICE is a technology that allows scanners to automatically identify and remove dust marks and minor scratches. Digital ICE performs a scan of the film with Infra-red (IR) light. Using the IR scan, the machine visualizes surface defects in the film, like dust or scratches, and then scans the film normally. Once both scans are completed, special software uses the IR defect map to replace the defective areas. The results can be a dramatic improvement from the original.
3.6 Once the photos are scanned do you do any additional work with the photos?
We will manually rotate your photos and crop any black border left after the scanning process. In addition, we will color correct, remove dust, minor blemishes and digitally optimize the photos to provide you the best digital images possible. ScanDigital was founded to provide the premier, highest quality services available; all of which are included with our standard pricing.
3.7 What type of equipment do you use?
We have implemented a highly refined, professional process which utilizes the Epson 4490 and 4990 scanners for prints and the Nikon Super CoolScan 5000 ED for slides and negatives. Our process relies on Digital ICE during the initial processing phase, but every image is manually processed to remove any remaining blemishes, ensuring the highest quality available and providing unsurpassed customer care.
3.8 How big can I enlarge/reprint my photos?
Using our 300 dpi service for prints, you can reprint a photo to be the same size as the original. With our 600 dpi service, you can reprint a photo up to at least twice the size of the original. With 2000 dpi scans for slides and negatives, these can be printed to a size of at a least 8" by 10".
3.9 Do you clean the photos before scanning?
Yes. When necessary, we use compressed air to remove dust from slides and negatives. We use special professional grade photo cleaner on printed photos in need of dust removal. In addition, our scanners use Digital ICE technology for slides and negatives to automatically remove dust and minor scratches.
4.1 How should I package my photos for shipping?
We will accept your photos in whatever format you currently store them in. You can ship your photos to us in boxes, slide carousels or zip lock bags. When you package your photos, please do the following:
Make sure they are secured and won't shift during shipment. If they are in a box, stuff the box with paper
to fill the empty voids.
We also recommend you wrap them in plastic to protect them against moisture and dust during the shipment process.
Avoid using packing materials that generate dust or debris.
Use a sturdy box that will be able to withstand shipping and won't be easily crushed.
4.2 Explain your shipping process. Where should I ship my photos?
As part of ScanDigital's industry leading service, we offer several integrated shipping options via UPS. ScanDigital has an extremely secure UPS shipping process integrated into our website. When you place an order, a shipping label with our correct shipping address and a tracking code will be generated. We strongly recommend that you use one of the shipping options integrated into our site. All of our options are tracked from the minute your package is picked up to the minute we receive it at our centralized facility. If you are unable to use UPS for some reason, we highly recommend that you use a trackable shipping option. Call our customer service line at 888-333-2808 with any questions.
4.3 If I would prefer to drop off my materials, where are you located?
Please click here to see our hours and drop off location.
5.1 How does ScanDigital ensure my images are kept private?
6.1 How much does it cost? When will you bill me?
For more details on pricing, please see our pricing page. When you place your order, we simply charge you a $5 refundable deposit. We will then bill you for the processing cost once we have processed and uploaded your scans to our website. We have adopted a very simple pricing method that does not include extra costs for DVDs or other hidden costs. We offer shipping through UPS using their fully trackable ground service. For customers that wish to simplify the cost even further, ScanDigital offers a number of pre-paid packages.
7. Gift Card
7.1 Why purchase a ScanDigital gift card?
The ScanDigital gift card makes a great gift for any occasion. Your ScanDigital gift card allows the recipient to digitize and preserve their memories forever. Recipients of the ScanDigital gift card enjoy all the benefits of the ScanDigital service including: Free & Unlimited Online Gallery, Free Digital Optimization, their photos on a CD/DVD, the ability to order reprints, their work performed in the USA, the fastest turnaround time available and ScanDigital's 100% Satisfaction Guarantee. Give your loved ones the gift of memories today!
7.2 How can the ScanDigital gift card be redeemed?
Once you have given the gift card to someone, they can use the gift card code provided to redeem the amount of the gift card. The recipient should input the gift card code in the coupon code box when placing their order. The gift cards are a declining balance, meaning that if the entire credit is not used for one order the remaining balance can be applied to a future order.
7.3 What is the difference between email delivery, normal delivery and the gift wrap option?
When placing a gift card order, you will be asked to select a delivery option. You can have the gift card code and custom message emailed to you or to a recipient free of charge. The normal delivery includes the gift card, your customized note and a brochure informing the recipient of our various services. For the gift-wrap option, the recipient will receive a gift wrapped package, which includes the gift card, your customized note and materials on the ScanDigital process to assist them in redeeming the gift card. Any of these options can be sent to the purchaser or directly to the gift card recipient.
7.4 What if I have a gift card, how do I use it?
To redeem your gift card just click on the "Get Started" button on the ScanDigital website. You will need to create an account and place your order. Be sure to input your gift card code in the coupon box on ScanDigital's user-friendly order form. This will associate the code with your order and we will apply the gift card balance to your total upon completion. If your order total is less than the amount of your gift card the remaining balance can be applied to a subsequent order.
8. FAQ's for Video
8.1 How do you transfer video and film. What is the process for transferring video and film?
We use proprietary equipment and the most secure process possible when transferring your film and video. Thousands of hours and dollars have gone into developing a process that returns the highest quality possible, in a reasonable turnaround time for a fair price.
8.2 What is your pricing? How much should I expect this to cost?
Pricing varies based on the type of material you are sending us. Pricing for video and film conversions can be found here: www.scandigital.com/scandigital-film-video-transfer.php
8.3 Will your DVD play on my DVD player?
We use the highest compatibility standards when processing your order. Our brand name DVD-R has been proven the most compatible general use media. DVDs are printed directly during our process, eliminating stickers or labels that sometimes cause issues with DVD players.
8.4 I have very specific needs for my menu, chapters, editing, etc. Can you help?
Most customers find our standard removal of blank film and chapter insertion sufficient, but we are always happy to work with you to meet your needs. During the transfer, we use barcode scanners to ensure that each reel of film will be a separate chapter on your DVD. For customers wishing to edit their movies post conversion, we recommend our hard drive option.
Customer Tip: Please provide as much information as possible either in your package or via email. This will ensure we are able to meet your needs.
8.5 What is your turnaround time for film and video orders?
Our average video turnaround time is 2-4 weeks. On top of this time, please add 1-5 days for shipping within the continental US. Expedited shipping options are always available to reduce this turnaround time.
8.6 What types of film do you convert?
We specialize in 8mm film, Super8 film, and 16mm film. Optical and magnetic sound will transfer with the footage.
8.7 How can I be sure my order is secure?
We receive hundreds of orders from around the world on a daily basis. We have gone to great lengths to ensure that your materials are safe throughout our entire process. Movies and film are not damaged during our transfer process. Everything you provide, we return including: film, boxes, reels and cans. A trained operator is with your movie during every step of the process.
8.8 Do you guarantee your work, what if I'm not satisfied?
ScanDigital offers a 100% customer satisfaction guarantee on all orders.
8.9 What is the best way to preserve my home movies?
We recommend that you transfer your film to a DVD plus a hard drive. The hard drive will serve as a back up and archive for your videos.
8.10 How many DVDs or hard drives will I receive? How many DVDs will it take to complete my order?
We will provide as many DVDs or hard drives as necessary. We have removed the need for you to count, presort or organize your film and videos. There is no guesswork involved in our process. For example, if your order takes 20 DVDs to create a complete copy, that is what we deliver.
8.11 How many feet of film will fit on one DVD?
We can put roughly 1500 feet of film on one DVD. This can vary due to the sizes of your reels and other factors.
8.12 I want to edit my new DVD on my own computer. What is the best option for me to do this?
Hard drives are the easiest option for customers wishing to edit their movies. With our hard drive you will receive the following:
External, 3.0 USB Hard Drive, NTFS formatted
Editable Files: View the sample file types here.
What you'll need:
Computer with USB port
Editing software or other software capable of editing
8.13 Can I order more copies once my order has been processed?
Please contact us to order additional copies. Video files are deleted from our system based on our storage needs. If your files are still on our server, we will be able to create additional copies
8.14 How much footage are on my film reels?
The running time for 8mm film, Super8 film are approximately:
3" reel (50 feet) 2-3 minutes
4" reel (100 feet) 5-6 minutes
5" reel (200 feet) 12-14 minutes
6" reel (300 feet) 19-22 minutes
7" reel (400 feet) 26-29 minutes
16mm film running time will be approximately half of 8mm film or super8 film.
8.15 How are tapes over 2 hours billed?
Each DVD can only contain up to 2 hours of video footage. Once that limit has been reached we are required to start a new transfer for the remaining footage and, therefore, charge for a second transfer. All footage exceeding the 2 hour limit will receive a separate DVD. Example a 4 hour cassettes will receive 2 separate DVDs one for the first two hours and one for the remaining 2 hours and will be charged for 2 transfers.
9. Gallery Guide
9.1 Creating Your Gallery
Once in this main area all of your photos will be contained within different galleries of photos. From here you can separate your photos into as many separate of galleries each containing any number of albums you choose. To create a new gallery click on the bar titled "Create New Gallery" located in the top left of the screen. A prompt will appear on the main screen asking for a title and a short description of the contents of the gallery. To access a new gallery or pre-existing gallery click on the stack of photos icon which will feature the cover photo of the gallery.
9.2 Creating Albums
Now that you are in your gallery all of your photos will be collected into individual photos or collective albums. Collective albums appear as a stack of photos with a cover photo on top identical to the gallery symbol. Individual photos appear as solitary pictures. There will be a familiar bar in the upper right hand portion of the screen titled "Create New Album". This will serve a similar function as the "Create New Gallery" bar and create a new album with a title and brief description. You can continue to use this function to create any number of sub-albums. To access the individual photos or sub-albums on this or pre-existing album click on the cover photo in the stack of photos icon.
Starting in the main gallery screen, the most efficient way to navigate through your photos, albums, and sub-albums is to simply click on the large cover photo for each. From the main screen click on the cover photo of the gallery to enter the albums. From there click on the album which will appear as the same stack of photos icon. In the album view thumbnails of all of the sub-albums and individual pictures will appear. A link on the bottom right portion of the page will number the amount of pages in your album followed by a single arrow and a double arrow. Selecting the page number will transport you to that particular page of the album. Clicking the single arrow will access the next page over while the double arrow will send you to the last page of the album. To access the full view feature for any particular photo simply click on the desired photo. This can also be done by clicking the box in the corner of the picture where a check mark will appear, then select the "Full View" icon in the top right corner of the screen. Checking this box can be used whenever selecting an individual photo or album for an action and will be used for multiple actions. Once in full view, a larger image of the photo will appear and the rest of the photos in the album will scroll across the bottom of the screen. To return from the full view to the album or sub-album views select the "Thumbnails" icon in the top right corner of the screen. At any point if you want to return to the main gallery screen select the "Gallery" icon adjacent to the "Thumbnails" icon. While selecting particular albums, sub-albums and photos a blue link in the top left portion of the screen will trace your path. To quickly backtrack without having to use your browser's back arrow click on the desired area at any point.
9.4 Moving Photos and Albums
Any new galleries or albums created will start off blank and will require moving photos to fill them. The drag down menu entitled "Move Selected To:" located at the bottom of the toolbar allows easy transportation of photos to these album and galleries. Check the box at the top left of the desired photo(s) or album(s). Note that you are limited to selecting only those photos or albums on the current page as the selected photos will not remain selected if you leave the album or gallery page. After the desired items are selected click the arrow next to the "Move" menu and all of your galleries, albums and sub-albums will appear. Albums and sub-albums will appear accompanied by a dash for albums and multiple dashes for sub-albums. These will be located directly underneath the gallery or album in which they are contained. Select the desired location to move all selected items.
9.5 Cover Photos and Slide Shows
On the right hand side of the screen within the gallery or album there is a toolbar with several commands. The first command is "Set Image as Cover Photo". This is performed by checking the box on the upper right side corner of any individual photo or clicking on the individual photo. The "Set Image as Cover Photo" will only work on individual photos within an album so do not try to select an entire album. Hit the "Set Image as Cover Photo" button and a box will appear with two options. The first sets the photo as the cover for only the album or sub-album currently viewed. The second option sets the photo as the cover for that album as well as any gallery or album in which the photo is contained. The second command accesses the Slide Show. Make sure that pop-ups are allowed from ScanDigital.com as your browser may attempt to block this function. The Slide Show will automatically cycle through the photos of the particular album or gallery every five seconds or you can manually cycle through with the tool bar at the top.
9.6 Arrange, Edit, and Delete Photos
The "Arrange Photos" bar allows you to arrange the order of photos within an album or gallery and decide how many photos can be viewed per page. Simply click and drag a photo to its desired position to change the order of your photos. The drag down menu at the top of the page entitled "Show" adjusts the number of photos per page when viewing the album or gallery, allowing anywhere from 6 to 60 thumbnails to be viewed at one time. Click the arrow next to the number and choose the desired number. Make sure to hit save before exiting the menu. The "Download" selection will enable you to download a particular photo or entire album onto your computer or save it to a disk. This will allow for easy photo editing and transportation of your photos. Click the icon and after a brief download period select either save to disk or open in the desired desktop program. To edit the title and description of any photo, album, or gallery check the box at the top left portion of the desired photo and select "Edit".
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Local Phone: 310.341.0172
Business Hours (Pacific):
Monday - Friday: 8AM - 6PM
Saturday: 10AM - 5PM
Your memories are safe
Through our integration with UPS and our world class EssentialTracker system for internal tracking, your order is carefully monitored from door to door
We scan by hand
To ensure the highest quality and to protect every image, we will never use an auto-feeder to process your materials.
"Note that I am most pleased with the quality of your work. Plus excellent customer service / follow-up!"
- Ronald - Plymouth, MI - December 2007 -
Preserve your favorite vacation memories. You will love reliving your travel adventures on DVD!