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Is Microfilm Still Important in This Digital Age?


MicrofilmMicrofilm scanning and conversion is a value-added service provided by a document conversion company. This involves converting the microfilm documents into a common, high quality digital format. Businesses digitize their microfilm resources to ensure easier access and distribution across desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones. Digitization brings advantages such as improved productivity at your office, reduced operating costs, collaborate quickly with co-workers, and send files to customers and external suppliers.

But is microfilm still important? Let us see what microfilm is and how it may still be important. Microfilm is a type of film-based image that is used for long-term preservation of documents, documents reconstruction and storage. It is a very small black and white photographic negative image of a paper or digital document. It is an analog image of a document similar to a document on paper. Microfilms with small size widths such as 16mm and 35 mm are typically used. The documents that are microfilmed can be read with the help of a viewer. In this way, they are different from digital images that can be read only by a computing machine with the appropriate software.

Microfilm is a safe storage medium. While a digital archive is an ideal option for everyday use, it can be vulnerable and fragile. Microfilms have a 500-year-life and assure long-term security. Here are some of its advantages that bring out its relevance even in this digital age.


  • Easy storage: Microfilms are easy to store and should be kept in a room with a controlled environment. It is one of the smallest forms of film that takes very less space when compared to other traditional paper documents or photographs. They save about 95% of the space required for storing paper documents.
  • Economical: It is the most economical way of archiving government and business records and remaining compliant with laws and mandates.
  • No data loss concerns: With microfilms, you need have no concerns about data loss or migration issues.
  • Saved for longer span of time: Microfilms can be stored for at least 500 years which shows that they are durable and the records can be kept safe and secure for a longer period of time.
  • Much stronger and stable: Microfilms are stronger that traditional film as they are made of polyester and not cellulose. Hence microfilms do not break that often and are much thinner. Microfilms do not react with humidity or temperature, and this makes them more stable.
  • Quick data retrieval: Microfilms can be retrieved quickly and make it easy to view the original documents. The system of microfilm data retrieval does not change with the changes in technology.
  • True readable images: You can get true, readable images from document sizes more than 17”x22” (A2) on 35mm microfilm.
  • Disaster resistant: Microfilms stay safe from natural disasters like flood, hurricane and other events.

However, if you want to digitize your microfilm resources, approach a reliable document scanning company that clearly understands the scope of your project. You can benefit from a customized solution that ideally fits your budget and requirements. Moreover, they use advanced scanning equipment and powerful image processing tools to ensure high resolution images that will definitely meet and exceed your expectations.

About Julie Clements

Julie Clements

Joined the MOS team in March of 2008. Julie Clements has background in the healthcare staffing arena; as well as 6 years as Director of Sales and Marketing at a 4 star resort. Julie was instrumental in the creation of the medical record review division (and new web site); and has especially grown this division along with data conversion of all kinds.