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Digitization Station

Preserve and share your memories.

RPL now offers a Digitization Station for public use, free!

Our Digitization Station can help you convert VHS tapes, film, negatives, slides, photos, documents, etc. into digital formats that you can view on most modern day devices - such as smartphones, tablets, computers, smart TVs, DVD/Bluray players and more. Don't let your memories fade to dust, digitize them and preserve your personal history for future generations to enjoy!

Digitization Station Photo

Service features and expectations

Here's a bit more information on the digitization services available on this workstation:

»  Photo / Slide / Negative Scanning - Digitize your personal photography collections with a one-click friendly flatbed scanner. Save photos, slides, or negatives in a digital format for photo preservation and enhanced digital viewing experiences (e.g., TVs, digital photo frames, tablets, computers, smartphones, etc.). Note: Scanning slides or negatives requires special inserts for the scanner that are located in the file folder holder on the Digitization Station desk. The tutorial videos and manuals will instruct you on how to use them. Our scanner can digitize:

  • Photographs printed on paper (matte or glossy are both fine)
  • 35mm Standard slides (up to 12 at a time)
  • 35mm (135) Standard film negatives (up to 6 images at a time as stills)
  • 110 "Instamatic" film negatives (up to 6 images at a time as stills)

»  VHS Tape to DVD - One Click conversion from VHS tape to DVD format (playable in DVD/Blu-ray players). This process converts content in real time. One hour of tape will take one hour to convert over to DVD format. Note: We have a VHS-C adapter available that can help you convert VHS-C and Super VHS-C camcorder cassettes to DVD. Ask at our Circulation Desk to borrow it for in-house use!

»  VHS Tape to Digital Media File Format (e.g. AVI, MKV, MPEG, etc.) - Convert VHS tape to commonly used digital media formats playable on computers, tablets, smartphones and other digital media players. Note: We have a VHS-C adapter available that can help you convert VHS-C and Super VHS-C camcorder cassettes to digital media files. Ask at our Circulation Desk to borrow it for in-house use!

»  Data File Storage - Access digital files stored on media drive formats that are no longer commonplace on newly purchased computers and media players (i.e. many new device rely on USB peripherals and wireless streaming to consume media content and do not include built-in disc drives). This workstations provides the following disc drives functions:

  • 3.5 floppy disc (read/write)
  • CD/ DVD drive (read/write)
  • Blu-ray drive (read only)

Important Notes:

  • This is a self-serve workstation and library staff are not trained to provide technical support.
    • Technical support content is provided on the workstation desktop to assist users with basic functionality (e.g., how to videos, manuals, etc.). Basic computer skills are required.
  • The library is not responsible for any damage customers may incur to their personal property when using this workstation.
  • You must supply your own file storage media (e.g., CD/DVD, USB Drive, cloud drive account for upload via internet, etc.) to save your digitized files to. The digitization station will be wiped of all data and user activity once your session is over.
  • Make sure to save your files to personal storage before your session timer runs out. A timer will display at the bottom right corner of the screen, and when it hits zero your session will end and all of your work will be wiped clean for the next user. Saving files to external devices may take longer than you think, so make sure you leave yourself enough time to transfer all of your files before your session ends.
  • Planning to digitize a VHS tape? Bear in mind that the file sizes can be quite large and you may not be able to save a single large file (4GB or more) to your USB drive. This is due to limitations of the file system used by most USB drives (called FAT32). We recommend using drives formatted to use the NTFS or exFAT file system. Which file system is right for you depends on a number of factors.

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Need more help?

Tutorial videos and manuals are also available.

 

Book yourself in now! 

The Digitization Station is bookable in 4 hour blocks during hours of operation for the downtown Central Library location and can be found just outside the Digital Media Studio on the main floor.

When you arrive for your booking a library staff member will be available to walk you through a brief orientation of the digitization station equipment and show you where you can access additional support material to guide you through the basic functions of converting VHS tapes, photos, slides, and negatives to digital format.

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