UC1 – Film preservation for CyBC

By the end of 2013, the Cyprus Broadcast Corporation contracted with Vectracom for the digitisation of part if their historical audiovisual archives. The project mainly included 1800 16mm films for 200 hours (most of them Black & White) and 50% mute. For 30% of them, audio was on a second tape (SEPMAG). Also, some audio heritage was concerned with a limited quantity of ¼ inch tapes and LP discs.

All films have been manually restored. Perforations and breaks were mended. Old adhesive have been replaced when required and adhesive waste has been eliminated during manual cleaning to prepare digitisation process. Finally, all reels were stored in new ventilated cans.

Ultrasonic cleaning was performed before scanning on Spirit 2K Telecine synchronised with a magnetic tape reader. AV sequences are stored in DPX sequences

Color grading and restoration took place just after the transfer, mainly on NUCODA to finalise the preservation versions of the AV heritage. The idea was to clean enough the media to provide versions that could be used in NEWS broadcasting so main scratches were eliminated without alteration of the initial content.

HD versions for daily use at CyBC were created in AVC Intra (100Mb/s) directly by the restoration systems. Also, H264 browsing versions were created from the exploitation versions using Promedia Carbon transcoding technology and posted on Vectracom server/site for CyBC to have a permanent view of the on-going processes and for them to apply a first level of acceptance test.

After quality control of all files, preservation and exploitation versions were delivered on LTO cartridges in scheduled deliveries together with reporting spreadsheets.

The complete project was finalised in about 8 months. Logistic and custom clearance issues were managed by Vectracom. Airfreight was mainly concerned.