SD Scanning versus HD Scanning (HDTV compatible)

These screen shots below illustrate two key differences between HD and SD:

Screen capture from High Definition Scan 1,920 X 1,080 (16:9). This is the exact screen ratio of an HD television.

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Return to the high definition film transfer page.

Screen capture from Standard Definition Scan 640 X 480 (4:3). Playback on an HD television will enlarge the image and add black bars on either side to achieve 16:9

  1. HD screen ratio allows for the full frame of film to be captured. Many movie cameras captured images through the sprocket area – however, the left and right edges were cropped by the projector. SD screen ratio requires a similar crop of the left and right sides of the film frame.
  2. These two pictures demonstrate the relative pixel size of an HD frame vs SD. An HD frame has more than 4 times the amount of pixels vs the SD.  If the lower image is enlarged to approximate the size of the upper image it will become "pixilated" and degraded in clarity. This is what happens when an SD movie is played on an HD television.
Happy Savingtape Clients -- Our film transfer clients include the Minnesota Historical Society, the Hennepin History Museum and others. We gladly provide free output samples on film archive projects over 5,000 feet.