Microfiche Conversion over the years

DMI has been providing digital Microfiche scanning services for over 45 years.  We’ve constantly upgraded our fiche scanners with the newest technologies.

Over the years our Scanning laboratory converted hundreds of millions of images from microfilm, microfiche and aperture cards.

No matter how you spell it – microfish, microfich, microfesh or microfiche, the French word for miniature cards have been one of our specialties.

Fiche are referred to as Unitized Records. The information pertaining to one employee, one location, etc. is all contained on a single or few cards.  When introduced, the approach was considered to be state-of-the-art.  Huge volumes of paper could be reduced to a small fraction of the original sizes, easily retrieved and, importantly, duplicated for storage in a different location for backup and disaster recovery.

Microfiche Formats

There are a wide variety of fiche sizes and formats, some are 4″ X 6″, others 105mm X 148mm and still others IBM-Card size. Some fiche are larger. Within the media itself, reduction ratios vary from 12X to 72X (there’s even a specialty item, Ultrafiche, with higher reduction). We configure our scanners to properly convert each type of microfiche.

The most common microfiche are:

  • “Jackets” produced from microfilm rolls cut into strips and inserted into sleeves. Duplicates of jackets are made using the Diazo process.
  • Computer Output Microfilm (COM) was widely used to inexpensively output data when the cost of digital storage was extremely high. We’re able to scan and convert legacy data back to the original database structure for research and litigation.
  • Step-and-Repeat fiche are made from cameras that scan paper documents and automatically generate individual fiche without first creating and cutting a roll.

Microfiche Scanning Services

Photo courtesy of nextScan

Microfiche conversion is similar to microfilm scanning. Both are photographic reproductions and output is similar.  Since microfiche are individual sheets that have to be inserted into a scanner, they take longer to scan than a continuous roll of film.

As a unitized record, the information on a jacket can be accrued over time. HR Employee Records might be updated with annual reviews, benefit changes, etc. Over years, the cameras used to generate the film may produce different reduction ratios, image orientation differences, etc. Conversion of jackets can thus be more complex than COM or Step-and-Repeat.

Indexing Alternatives to improve usability

The identifying information on a fiche is on a header strip that is eye-readable.

This information, say Part Number and Part Name, is generally used to create the file name for a multi-page file that contains all of the images within the microfiche.

If more detailed indexing is required, our technicians can review the individual images produced from the fiche and create individual files or more discrete groups of files.

DMI’s Scanning Service Expertise

Our microfiche scanning services are in good hands with DMI. We have the capability to do your microfiche conversion project on-site at your location – or ours – depending on your need. An example of our expertise at all types of microfiche, microfilm and slide digitizing can be viewed here.

For Your Microfiche Conversion project, Call for a Quick Quote 203-536-6889.