Understanding More about Microfilm and Microfiche

Microfiche and microfilm scanning for converting the documents to digital formats for further use is now being increasingly sought after by organizations and companies. So what does this mean?  Why is this sentence all alone?  What is the point you are trying to make?

Why do Organizations use Microfiche and Microfilm?

These storage films were once commonly used mainly due to their ability to store large amounts of data in a compressed form.  Architectural drawings, diagrams, files, and reference volumes could all be conveniently stored, and the film was known to have a long lifespan. More and more data volumes could be accommodated and stored in these thin, transparent sheets without the need for a corresponding increase in physical storage space. 

Disadvantages of Microfilm and Microfiche Storage

However, one of the major drawbacks of these microfiche or microfilm storage devices is that their obsoleteness has been magnified with the arrival of the digital age. Digital files are easier to transmit, read and edit.

Moreover, microfiche and microfilm files can be read only through specific scanning machines that magnify the contents of the file. These devices are expensive and obsolete, which is why government institutions, libraries and private firms are looking for microfiche and microfilm scanning services to convert the files into digital formats.             

Before you look for microfiche scanning though, here’s a peek into the various kinds of these amazing storage devices. There are different kinds of microfiche and microfilm. They vary in their capacity to hold data and the way in which they accommodate it.

Microfilm vs. Microfiche

There are the 16mm microfilm and microfiche as well as the 35mm microfilm and microfiche. There is a slight difference between the microfilm and the microfiche.  
  • While the microfilm contains continuous negative frames of images, the microfiche contains these negative frames held inside a plastic sleeve which is called a ‘fiche’. This is more convenient to view since various topics can be arranged into various sleeves.
  • The 16mm microfilm can accommodate around 2500 A4 or A3 sized images set up as a reel with each frame being of the 16mm x 16mm size. The 35mm microfilm can obviously store documents of much larger size ranging up to the A0 size. However, it can only have around 500 files in large format.
  • The 16mm microfiche can accommodate around 60 negative frames. The 35mm microfiche can hold around 9 frames of double the parameters.
  • Although microfilms have the capability of holding more files in the smallest possible space, they are not as convenient to set up or use as the microfiche.                    
The COM Microfiche and Combi Fiche

The COM 16mm microfiche is a rarer variety which has the dimensions of a regular 16mm microfiche but can store around 270 negative frames. The Combi fiche is basically a combined 16mm and 35mm microfiche. This was particularly used when A4 documents needed to be stored along with architectural plans or drawings. 

Aperture Card

The aperture card is basically one negative frame in a cardboard sleeve. Aperture cards were used when there was the need to just accommodate one isolated image such as a drawing or a plan.

Experienced document scanning companies offer comprehensive and cost-effective microfilm and microfiche scanning services.

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