Professionalism meets passion

 

We bring your analogue treasures into the digital world

Digitalisation of all sorts of different formats is a fundamental core element of what we do. Converting analogue and digital content to current technical standards is both exciting and challenging, making continual interaction with the client essential. Whether it be historical film gems, analogue video or audio tapes with unique recordings, all formats are entitled to be backed up or published. The focus here is on preservation of the audio-visual heritage, which can subsequently be refined through post-processing.

Film scanning

A high-quality scan is the key to an optimum digital back-up and for any subsequent further work. From 8mm small-gauge film all the way to high-end digitalisation of 70mm films, we have the fitting solution.

The enormous variety of formats as well as the increasing demands in respect, for instance, of high levels of resolution, picture stability and optical quality call for excellent film scanners. The film material is a valuable asset that experiences a best possible level of protection as it is being digitalised by our scanners. It is certainly possible here to optimise the desired result through the purposeful additional use of a wet gate.

Even badly damaged or shrivelled film material can be entrusted to our experienced, professionally trained team. The spectrum extends not just from small-gauge to wide-gauge film, but also offers resolutions up to 14K with 16-bit colour depth and HDR.

Olaf Legenbauer

Manager Technical Operations Film Department

OXScan 14K

In the shape of the OXScan, the company has a state of the art scanner for 35mm and wide-gauge (65mm, 70mm, IMAX) films. It has a native 14K surface sensor and genuine 16-bit RGB depth of colour. Depending on film material, transport can be sprocketless or pin registered.

Scanity HDR

For 8mm, S16mm and 35mm films we have for many years put our trust in the Scanity, which was developed specifically for the needs of archives. This high-quality film scanner fulfils a multitude of requirements that can come along with the ageing of historic celluloid. For the digitalisation process it is possible to use a wet gate or, in the case of particularly dense black and white films, HDR technology.

Eco Scanning

Specially developed for small-gauge formats, the Filmfabriek HDS+ scanner digitalises 16mm, S16, 8mm, S8 and 9.5 Pathé up to a resolution of 4K. It also has a simple wet gate for use in the case of bad scratching. Even film material that has shrivelled by up to 10% can be scanned without any problem.

Wet gate

In the course of a film's life, especially in the case of high wear and heavy use, damage may occur to the analogue material. A process of ‘wet scanning’ makes scratches or other marks on the shiny side almost invisible, without the creation of any unwanted artefacts. This procedure is available on the Scanity for 16mm and 35mm films and on the Eco Scan for small-gauge films.

Film preparation

The careful preparation of analogue film material ensures that the film runs through the scanner not only without getting damaged but also in the optimum way. This guarantees protection of the material and contributes to a best possible digitalisation result.

Scuffs, scratches, spots, defective splices, small tears or damaged areas in the perforation lead to major reductions in quality or even to a faulty scan. It is therefore essential to have the film first checked and repaired by an experienced specialist.

Subsequent cleaning in a film washing machine is an integral part of optimum preparation. Very fragile material, on the other hand, is washed by hand with the utmost care. In this way the films are perfectly prepared for a scan or any subsequent storing of the material.

Repairs

Careful mechanical preparation of the film material is a demanding process and can sometimes take a very long time. Regardless of any digitalisation, the aim is to preserve the material for as long as possible. To this end replacing film canisters can also be necessary. We record all materials in a storeroom database.

Appraisal and selection

Frequently, what exists of a film are multiple pieces of video and audio material, which differ in condition, type and completeness. Through a detailed appraisal it is possible to select the most suitable materials. This process always happens in collaboration with our clients.

Washing film

The general principle that applies is: the cleaner the film material is before being digitalised, the less time and effort is involved in any digital post-processing. Fragile material and small-gauge films are exclusively cleaned by hand.

Digital restoration

Restoring a film's original appearance can only be done in close consultation with the client. The aim is the effective use of appropriate restoration tools with the greatest possible avoidance of any digital artefacts.

Depending on the condition of the material, there are almost no limits to what is possible when it comes to digital restoration. How to proceed in terms of technical, scientific and economic possibilities is therefore weighed up in advance with the client in order to achieve the greatest possible authenticity. Regardless of resolution, the implementation is done on the most suitable system for the requirements, e.g. HS-Art’s Diamant or Digital Vision’s Phoenix Finish.

Our employees bring with them many years of experience, which is essential for a successful result. During a project, matters are regularly agreed with our clients.

Sabine Appl

Colourist, Digital Restoration

Grading

Grading is a creative process and opens up a broad spectrum of creative options. This ranges from authentic colour reproduction in the case of an historical movie all the way to the typical ‘look’ of a new production – be it on a monitor or the big screen.

Our grading suites are equipped with Nucoda and DaVinci colour correctors. The extensive technical equipment naturally also includes 4K HDR reference monitors and, for cinema productions, a 4K laser phosphor projection system. Our colourists have expertise in both fields gained over many years. The spectrum here extends from historical productions, via fiction, documentaries and TV series, all the way to concerts for VOD.

Whatever you require of us, we go passionately about the fulfilment of your wishes without, however, losing sight of the technical requirements for broadcasting on TV or showing in the cinema.

Monitor grading

For our colourists, professional monitors are the absolute reference tool for their work. It is for that reason that we use various different calibrated monitors, which with OLED and LCD panels are capable of 4K and HDR.

Cinema grading

The grading process in our cinema suite is a very special experience. Take a seat on the sofa and enjoy the unique projection. Guaranteeing this is the 4K laser phosphor projector, which even shows colour corrections in the P3 colour space.

A.D.A.M. high-volume digitalisation

When it comes to digitalising large stocks of video, an automated workflow is essential. For SD and HD video tapes we put our faith in Leipzig in the tried and tested A.D.A.M. robotics systems.

Sometimes it simply has to be done quickly. For this we make use in Leipzig of a robot-assisted development that has been customised and adapted to our needs. In a defined workflow that includes cleaning, digitalisation and technical quality control, the A.D.A.M. system takes care 24/7, 365 days a year of processing a multitude of analogue or digital video tapes and transferring them over as a digital product.

Up to 40,000 hours of content a year are possible, for Sony and for Panasonic formats. Specially trained on this system, our administrators ensure a smooth and continuous workflow, adhering to the quality standards defined by the clients.

Steffen Zelmanski

Administrator A.D.A.M.

Digitalisation/transfer

In addition to the digitalisation of film material, our focus is also on the backing up of video and audio tapes. The recipient receives the digital target formats either conventionally on a media storage device or digitally via file transfer.

Preserving the content of audio-visual storage devices is an important task. Play-out systems are no longer being made, replacement parts are in the main scarce. In the case of older analogue video and audio tapes especially a transfer to digital target formats is urgently needed if the danger of losing the content is to be avoided. We take on this responsibility and keep a multitude of devices of various different video and audio formats in stock for digitalisation.

Converting digital files to currently popular file formats and distributing data, including in high volumes, via high-performance lines are also requirements that we satisfy with appropriate infrastructure.

Thomas Thoben

Technical Supervisor

Digitalisation of analogue media

Backing up analogue tapes presents clients such as service providers with increasingly big challenges. 1 inch, U-Matic, Betacam SP, VHS, 1/4 inch and Super 8 tapes, music cassettes and vinyl records are just a selection of critical formats that, thanks not least to our employees’ expertise, can be professionally digitalised.

File conversion and transfer

Due to the diversity that exists, transcoding into a huge range of different file formats is very complex. The infrastructure that we have available for transferring files to clients includes not only high-performance data lines, but also various different servers, e.g. MediaShuttle, Aspera, MFT and ARD HYBNET. Transferring onto hard drive or LTO tape is also a popular standard.

Media storage

Longer-term projects make it necessary to store the media entrusted to us. However, thanks to the capacities we have, long-term storage of physical media or digital content is also a service we can provide.

As a service provider we support our clients not only with the digitalisation and editing of productions. Some requirements also lead to temporary or relatively long-term storage of the physical source material or the digital target media. For this purpose we have available on our premises not only storage capability within the building, but multiple special containers outside as well.

We are also certified for working on nitrate material and storing it in cabinets suited to the purpose. And what about digital data? There are appropriate storage options for such data on the main LTO standards in a tape library or also on servers, hard drive or LTO tape.

Thomas Thoben

Technical Supervisor

Physical media

There is ample capacity at OMNIMAGO for storing media storage devices. On our site in Ingelheim, for example, we have at our disposal multiple climate-controlled, lockable containers - plus authorisation to store nitrate film material. All stored media is documented in a dedicated storage database.

Digital media

The backing up of digital data is no less demanding than the storing of, for example, celluloid. Data is not ‘tangible’, but nevertheless requires appropriate care and reliable storage systems. In addition to production storage devices for ongoing jobs, data can also be stored and played out again on LTO tapes in a tape library, all using automated procedures.

Ingelheim+49 6132 79002-0
Leipzig+49 341 3500 2440
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