The Upgrade to NextScan Lumintec

We upgraded to NextScan’s Lumintec lighting system yesterday. It uses LEDs (or more precisely, an array of strobed red LEDs) to illuminate the microfilm while it’s passing through the scanner rather than traditional halogen “hot lights.” Apparently, the CCD camera is more sensitive to the red wavelengths, and there are no IR emissions like you get from plain old “bulbs.”

Essentially, this was a quality-driven decision for us. The halogen bulbs tend to cause hotspotting in the middle of the image, an effect which is particularly noticeable on larger positive frames (such as the ubiquitous 35mm newspaper diazo readers found in nearly every public library nationwide, which represent a lot of the film that we process). Well . . . that issue is gone thanks to the Lumintec lighting.

It’s a night-and-day upgrade — lots more light (critical at higher reduction ratios, where the camera is physically more distant from the film) which lets us run stopped-down when appropriate, more even illumination, no heat, 1/10th the power consumption of hot lights (yes . . . we’re green!), sharper images and less blurring due to the strobing, no chance of lamp failure (changing the bulb was previously a rather labor-intensive operation and represented real down-time) , and, well, it just looks cool when it’s on. :-) Our microfilm customers will see an immediate improvement to the quality of their images.

Obligatory NextScan white paper at:

http://www.nextscan.com/products/documents/LuminTecWhitePaper.pdf

Pics soon!

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2 weeks ago

Creekside Digital

The Digitization Program Office (DPO) is pleased to present its 2018 Annual Report outlining the work and special activities that took place over the course of the year.

DPO works to implement a vision of “Discovery through Digitization” by partnering with others to increase the quantity, quality, and impact of digitized Smithsonian collections.

View and download the report at:
dpo.si.edu/resources
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2 months ago

Creekside Digital

Now for some music with #smithsonianmusic! We're currently working with National Museum of American History Archives Center to digitize thousands of posters related to WWI and WWII, including this troop morale poster from 1917: collections.si.edu/search/detail/edanmdm:siris_arc_176697

According to an article from the New York Times published in the fall of 1918, the Phonograph Records Recruiting Corps was created by Vivien Burnett, son of novelist and playwright Frances Hodgson Burnett, to collect records, machines, and needles to provide music to soldiers overseas during WWI, by recruiting and drafting "slacker records."

Learn more about the Smithsonian Year of Music: music.si.edu/ and stay tuned as we continue to digitize more collections from National Museum of American History!
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