Frequently Asked Questions (F.A.Q)

Below are some of the common questions we are asked. If your question is not listed then please contact us.

Q. I haven't received any emails from you, is there a problem?
If you have placed an order with us you should have received an automated welcome email and an order confirmation email containing your order details, further emails will also be automatically sent by our booking system once your order is arrives and another email once your order is complete and ready for payment. If you have not received these then please check your junk / Spam email folder as our emails are sometimes treated as junk. If the emails are in your junk folder then please add info@filmscanuk.com as a safe sender to ensure any future emails are received directly to your inbox.

 

Q. Are my images safe with you?
Yes they are very safe. Your package is opened upon receipt to check the contents and then stored securely until they are processed. We do not reproduce, sell, pass them onto any 3rd party or claim any copyright over any images. They are yours and yours to keep. We have scanned millions of images for many thousands of customers including a number of high profile TV celebrities.

 

Q. What payment methods do you accept ?
We use PayPal as our 3rd party payment provider. Most Credit / Debit cards are accepted by PayPal, or if you are an existing PayPal account holder you can use your PayPal account. You can also pay by direct bank transfer, cheque or cash.

 

Q. Do you transfer cine film, video, APS films or Microfiche?
No, transfer of these types to digital is not currently offered.

 

Q. How long does it take ?
We have a dedicated page showing our current queue length and estimated completion dates.

 

Q. How quick is the Fast Track service ?
A Fast Track order jumps directly to the top of the queue when it arrives. It is normally started the same day (depending when it arrives and how many other Fast Track orders we have to process).


Q. When do I pay ?
Payment is not required until we have completed the scanning and confirmed the number of items. Once your order is complete we will notify you and then despatch your order after we have received your payment.

 

Q. Are you a real company?
Yes, we are registered with Companies House. We accept credit / debit cards as payment via PayPal for business which required us to be vetted by PayPal.

 

Q. Do you send the originals back ?
Yes we return everything you send us, unless you instruct us to dispose of the items after scanning.

 

Q. How do I identify my order to you?
When you place an order via this website you are given a unique order number. Please write this number on the package and somewhere inside the package. Alternatively you can include a covering letter or note with your contact details. Any items that arrive with no details and cannot be matched against any online orders will sit on the shelf until we hear from you.

 

Q. My film negatives are bigger than 35mm can you scan these?
Yes, anything bigger than 35mm is classed as Medium Format or Large Format.

 

Q. Which is best negatives or photos, I have both?
You get a much better result from negatives, providing they are still in reasonable condition. Photographs are a lot cheaper to scan than negatives though.

 

Q. I have one slide that I want you to scan, will you do this for me?
Yes, but we have a minimum order amount of £10.00, plus the return postage to you in order to cover our administrative expenses.

 

Q. Why is Medium Format film more expensive to scan than 35mm ?
35mm film and slides are quicker to handle and scan as our 35mm scanners are designed to handle this common size of film quickly with minimum preparation and scanning time required. Medium Format film has to be treated individually and manually mounted into a suitable film holder, scanned and then removed. The larger film surface also takes more time to scan, so the cost is directly linked to the time it takes us to scan each frame.

 

Q. What is the "Raw" inspection option ?
The "RAW" option, is as the name suggests just a scan of your items but with no colour or brightness processing or rotation checking being applied and as such the unit cost per item scanned is reduced.

Slides and film negatives are always scanned in "Landscape" orientation due to the alignment of the optics within the scanners. As the "Raw" option includes no checking of the images after scanning, any "Portrait" images will be returned to you in "Landscape mode" and will require rotating clockwise or anti-clockwise.

The "Raw" option is therefore solely aimed at users who plan on processing the images themselves and have access to a suitable software package to perform the processing.

 

Q. Why is photo album scanning so expensive compared to loose photo scanning ?
Loose photos are fed through a batch photo scanner which scans and processes each photo reasonably quickly. Photo albums have to be scanned in situ as the photographs are normally stuck to the page. The whole page is scanned on a large flatbed scanner and each image has to be cropped and saved individually which is a time consuming process. If you can, it is best to send the photos loose.

 

Q. Can I just send my images to you without registering online?
Yes you can. Simply send your items to us, not forgetting to include your contact in the package details (you will be surprised how many items we receive with no contact details) and we will transfer them for you.

 

Q. Will I be able to put the CD or DVD in my DVD player and view the images on my TV?
Possibly, it depends on your DVD player. Our data discs are designed to be viewed on equipment that can handle standard JPG files. If your DVD player can handle JPG files then it will probably work fine. If your player does not accept JPG files then you will likely require a DVD slideshow which is a rolling movie displaying each of your images in turn. DVD slideshows are made to order and can be requested when placing your order or at a later date if required.

Most smart digital TV's also include a USB socket that you can plug a USB memory stick into to view the contents directly onto the TV. You can select to have your images returned on a USB stick during the quotation / ordering process.

 

Q. Can you transfer my images in a given order or put them into groups ?
Yes we can. Each container, box or folder you send us can be stored in a separate folder on the disc and named accordingly. Simply let us know you require this and the folder name required.

Each container, box or folder will be processed in the order held within the container. Any loose photos, slides or film will be processed in the order we find them. To ensure the images are transferred in a specific order you must clearly number the items before sending them to us.

All images are given a sequential number during digitisation, so if you wish to change the order of the images at a later date, you can simply change the number in the filename or move the image into a different group folder.

Unfortunately, due to the way we scan photos we cannot always guarantee the ordering but we do try our best. However each batch of photos or album will be placed in named folders if required.

 

Q. How should I send my items to you?
We will accept your images in whatever you currently store them in. You can ship them in boxes, padded bags, slide carousels, slide holders or whatever you have to hand. When you package your items, please remember the following:

  • Consider removing any slides from bulky containers and wrap them in elastic bands to maintain the correct order
  • Use a sturdy cardboard box or padded bag that will be able to withstand shipping and won't be easily crushed or damaged, plastic storage boxes are not suitable and normally crack and break during transit.
  • Small shipments of photo's should be placed in a card or protected envelope to prevent them from being folded
  • Wrap any loose photos or films in paper or a plastic bag, such as a food bag, to stop them from being scratched
  • Make sure they are secured and won't move around in the container during shipment
  • If you are using a box, fill the empty voids with newspaper or other suitable packing material
  • Avoid using packing materials that generate dust or fine debris that could contaminate your items, such as shredded paper
  • Due to their extra weight, photo albums should be shipped in double walled boxes as single walled boxes generally fail and more often than not arrive damaged

 

Q. Can you transfer black and white film or slides ?
Yes we can, though the automated dust and scratch removal software will not work with these types of film, so the marks will be visible on the scanned image.

 

Q. Can you transfer glass mounted slides?
Yes we can, but any dust and debris trapped inside the glass mounts will likely be visible on the scanned image. We generally advise that the slide should be dismantled and scanned without glass in place in order to achieve a higher quality scan. For an additional charge we can remove the film from the glass mount prior to scanning. However, not all glass mounts can be dismantled and reassembled, some are permanently glued together, dismantling these slides generally breaks the glass.

 

Q. My slides are very moldy or dusty can you still scan them?
Yes, but we will have to clean them prior to scanning using specialised cleaning fluid and wipes. A charge of 20p per slide or frame will be levied to cover the time and material cost of the cleaning items. We recommend that all mold infested slides and film are cleaned as the mold will eventually destroy the chemicals on the film damaging it irreparably. In some cases the cleaning fluid can damage the paper frames by unbonding the glued surfaces. In these cases it is generally recommended that infected paper mounted slides are remounted.

 

Q. What equipment do you use?
We have invested heavily and continue to do so in our scanning equipment. Plustek Opticfilm 120, Nikon Coolscan 5000ED dedicated slide and film scanners with after-market ANR glass film holders. Epson V750 professional flatbed scanners are used to scan large format sheet film. Kodak Perfect Touch photo scanners are used to bulk scan photos and Epson DS-50000N flatbed scanners are used for Album and framed photograph scanning.

We do not use hugely expensive drum scanners for film scanning which can produce slightly better results than our scanners, however the typical cost of drum scanning a single film frame is generally around £30 which we consider out of reach of most budgets.


Q. Can I copy the disc or USB drive you send to me?
Yes, you are free to copy any of the discs or drives we send to you.

 

Q. Do you develop films?
No, we do not develop any films in house. If you send us a film that requires developing we can have it developed for you at an additional cost.

 

Q. Do you keep a copy of the images after scanning ?
Yes. All the images we scan and repair are held on our secure storage system for around 12 months after despatch. If you require modifications or repair to an image after this time you will likely need to supply us with the original image so that we can re-scan it for you.

 

Q. Do you charge VAT?
No, we no longer charge VAT, so our prices are more competitive.


If you can't find an answer in these Frequently Asked Questions then please e-mail your question to info@filmscanuk.com