Facts You Should Know About Microfilm

Microfilm has been with us for many years. For decades, it was used as a preservation tool for recorded history. Microfilm was also used not only as an easy and effective way to store documents, but also as an easy way to distribute documents within business organizations.

Today, there are many misconceptions about microfilm and many people don’t have the correct information concerning its role in our digital world.  For this reason, we, a document management company that serves the gulf south (USA) for document scanning/merging, micrographics, document indexing, and many other related document services, thought it wise to clear the air by compiling a list of facts about microfilm. Check them out!

  • Microfilm is among the three main microforms. Precisely, there are three main microforms including microfiche, microfilm and aperture cards. Among the three, microfilm is the most common microform. It’s a tool used for storing different types and sizes of documents.
  • Microfilm is an unchangeable, eye-readable and stable format that was and still is the most trusted form of document preservation. For this reason, it’s often used to preserve critical and confidential documents. Microfilm preserves documents for approximately 500 years.
  • Microfilm is affordable. To record documents on microfilm, you’ll incur the same cost as you would to make a copy or print. Compared to digital storage, the cost of storing documents on microfilm is less expensive especially overtime. On digital storage, you would have to upgrade software and hardware when migrating digital data over many years. With digital storage, you also risk degradation of data and data corruption. Compared to paper documents, microfilm cost less to store.
  • The law allows for the use of a microfilm record as a legal record in a court of law.
  • All the three microforms including microfilm can be scanned at any time for easy and everyday access to stored documents.
  • 16mm microfilm is best for long-term storage of ledger size documents and other office documents such as letters.
  • 35mm microfilm is often used for archiving wide format documents especially those that are confidential and vital to certain organizations such as government agencies, manufacturing companies and utilities. Documents such as newspapers, ledger books, engineering drawings and maps are often recorded on 35mm microfilm because it offers sufficient resolution (300dpi or better), which ensures proper reading by people or scanner anytime in the future.