How will my old movie film be processed and what can I expect?

Please keep in mind that your film may be decades beyond its process before date and what we are doing here is a salvage job.  We do our best to get good quality images from these very old films but the results are highly variable.  The quality we get range from good to just barely discernable.

  • Kodachrome and Kodachrome type  film, process K-11, K-12, K-14, K-40 — Can only be processed into a B&W <i>negative</I> which is then transferred to a digital format as B&W positive.  There is no color processing option for this film anywhere.
  • Ektachrome process EM-25 & EM-26 – With Ektachrome film you have the choice of us processing it the safest way possible, into a B&W negative – or into color.  About 15 to 20 percent of these long expired films processed into color will actually have decent color quality.  Most of the others processed into color will turn out as recognizable, though will likely have little color fidelity remaining. Some may turn out blank in color, when we could have salvaged an image if we’d processed into B&W negative. If salvaging an image from these films is the most important factor and you want to play it safe then choose the B&W negative option.  This is particularly true if the film has been in poor storage conditions or improperly exposed. If color is important to you and you’re ok with taking some risk, choose the color option.
  • All other movie film – By default these are processed into a B&W negative which is then transferred to digital video as B&W positive. Color processing is possible with some Agfa  films (e.g. Moviechrome) but in many cases isn’t advised (eg Agfachrome).  We can recommend an approach to these once we can see the specific label on the cassettes.

Typical chance of recognizable image on properly exposed and stored film:

1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s+
30% trend: very poor 50% trend: very poor to poor 60% trend: poor 70% trend:poor to fair near 100% trend fair