Monday, November 12, 2007

Comparing Prices for Digitized Negatives

I have been comparing prices from a variety of places which digitize 35mm negatives to see who has good deals. In addition to the price per frame, most places charge for shipping and some places have additional charges for disks or other hidden fees. So creating a price that is truly comparative was a bit of a challenge. It is also complicated by the fact that not all vendors digitize at the same resolutions. Many vendors will digitize at 2000 dpi or 4000 dpi, and some also provide 3000 dpi.

The chart below presents prices for each of the vendors based on the estimated cost to digitize a 25-exposure roll of 35mm color film. I chose 25 exposures because most people who use 24-exposure rolls are usually able to squeeze one or two extra frames on the end. I arrived at this estimate by calculating the total cost for scanning 300 frames, including any additional fees for disks and return shipping. Then this number was divided by 12. This estimate allows for consolidation of multiple rolls on a single DVD as well as amortizing the cost of shipping across a larger order. If there was no information on the cost of return shipping I estimated it to be $10. I have also included approximate turnaround times. Note that none of these prices includes the cost of shipping materials to the vendor.

Estimated price to digitize a 25-frame roll of color 35mm film:

White Glove711.0217.27
Image Preserve1017.0821.2524.58

Notes: Imagers includes 4 scans per image: at 2800, 2222, 1300, and 360. ScanCafe ships material to India for processing. BritePix ships its material to Costa Rica for processing. Both PixMonix and DigMyPix provide web-based post-scan approval before cutting the disk.

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