Video Slideshows FAQ
- Can I include video clips in my photo slideshow DVD?
- Sure! All of our packages include the option to include video clips. It is a good idea to keep clips less than 2 minutes long to increase the dramatic effect of the slideshow. We are able to work with .mpg, .mov, .mpeg, and .avi file types. If you choose to include any video clips, please let us know the start/stopping points.
- Can I scan my photos myself rather than sending them to you to be scanned?
- By all means! This is a great way to avoid the additional labor charge for us to scan them in for you. Just be sure you are using the highest dpi setting (at least 300dpi) on your scanner to ensure the best quality images for your video slideshow. If you have questions about our scanning services, please see our Photo Archiving Info.
- How should I mail my photographs/CDs/documents to VistaPix?
- We recommend any form of shipping that can track your shipment. The speed at which you send your items directly impacts how quickly we can start working on your video slideshow, so the faster, the better. Take great care in packaging your photos, mark them "Photos - Do Not Bend" and package them inside a Ziploc bag to protect them from any water damage they could encounter during shipment. VistaPix Media cannot be held responsible for the handling of your material during shipment, but guarantee their security while they are in our care.
- What size pictures should I send?
- If you are sending digital files, you may send us .JPEG, .PNG, or .TIF files. They should be at least 1000x750 pixels (right click on the photo, select "Properties" and look at the "Details" tab to find this number). If you are scanning in your photos and sending the digital versions to us, please make sure to scan at 300dpi or more. If you are sending us paper photographs, we can accept anything from wallet size to 8x10.
- What type of photos should I use for my slideshow?
- While digital photos are preferred for both the quality and ease in transfer, you may certainly send us your paper photos to be scanned in at the highest quality (600dpi). Our scanning process automatically performs basic color adjustments as well as dust and scratch removal to assure the best quality possible for your video slideshow. We can also scan negatives as well as slides. Photos that have been cropped at odd angles, used in scrapbooks, or have extensive tears or water damage are not recommended for slideshows. In addition, having a variety of horizontal and vertical photos will give more dimension to your slideshow.
- How many photos should I use in a slideshow?
- In general, each photo will have a 7 second screen time (including transition time between photos). So, that would equal about 8-9 photos per minute. If an average song lasts 3 minutes, you would need about 24-27 photos per song. This will also allow for an intro and conclusion if you so wish. Keep in mind, more basic transitions and photo effects will run slightly faster than the more complex ones. We will determine the style of slideshow you prefer by asking you some simple questions after you place your order. In general, we don't recommend making a slideshow with more than 200 photos as it can be very lengthy to view as well as to create.
- What makes your video slideshow services different from others?
- At VistaPix Media, we believe in the power of a picture. It can invoke emotion, capture a fleeting moment forever, or be the catalyst that sells an idea. We enjoy creating video slideshows for the same reason you enjoy watching them. For some, it may be to celebrate a life changing event like a wedding, birth of a child, or retirement. For others, it may be a somber occasion to pay tribute to a loved one. For a business owner, a slideshow on their website may be the difference between them and the competition. No matter what the occasion, we are honored to play a part in how you remember it. We strive to creatively capture the intent of your slideshow while conveying a message of joy, admiration, reverence, or professionalism. VistaPix Media creates a captivating journey with your photographs by using their individual significance to create a collective presentation that is far more powerful. View our Portfolio to see the VistaPix difference.
- How do you get the music I want to play in the slideshow?
- VistaPix Media can use any song(s) you request by either purchasing them on your behalf from iTunes (included in the package price) or by having you send the CD that contains the song directly to us. Because these songs are purchased legally and for your personal use, we are abiding by FAIR USE Act Provisions (2007). If you need suggestions for music, please contact us and we'd be happy to suggest the perfect accompaniment to your slideshow. One note regarding song choices: Be sure you listen to the whole song to make sure the lyrics are appropriate for the tone and subject of your slideshow. Sometimes an instrumental version of the song may be a better choice.
Photo Archiving FAQ
- Can I play the DVD disc of my photos on a DVD player?
- The short answer is no. We use DVD discs as data discs just like a CD - except they hold more information. But most DVD players are not able to read the type of file your photos will be burned as (jpeg). The DVD disc is compatible with any PC/Mac computer and some DVD players that can read data (check your DVD player specifications). Keep in mind that our photo scanning is not the same as our photo slideshow service in which we add music, special transitions and effects and can be viewed as a movie on your DVD player.
- I have a quantity of photos/slides that is in between your packages, which one should I order?
- It's rare that clients have exactly 500, 1000 or 2,000 photos. This is why we have the discounted "overage" fee listed in each of our packages. We recommend purchasing the lesser quantity of the two packages you fall between and upon completion, we will either bill you the overage fee for the remaining photos or charge for an additional package, whichever is cheaper. For example, if you have 2500 photos, you don't need to purchase a 2000 photo package and (1) additional 500 photo package. Just purchase a 2000-Photo package and we'll charge the 10 cents/per photo for the remaining 500 ($50) upon completion. Alternatively, if you purchased a 500-Photo package but send us 1000 photos, it would be cheaper to upgrade you to the 1000-Photo package ($58) rather than charge the 15 cents/per photo overage ($75).
- Why should I archive my photos?
- Photographs are truly priceless, irreplaceable "bookmarks" that hold each page of our lives as a visual reminder of our past. For something so significant, it is vital to preserve them the best way we know how; digitally. Digital media won't deteriorate, discolor, or fade with time. They can be stored in a much smaller space than the boxes of photographs currently taking up room in closets, attics, and basements. Multiple copies can be made to share with family and friends. Lastly, the process of transferring your photos is an easy, but time consuming task. That's where VistaPix Media comes in. Visit our Photo Archiving Information to place an order and have your most treasured memories preserved.
- Will my photos be safe while they are in your possession?
- Absolutely! From the time they arrive at our door, we will ensure their safety and confidentiality. We pride ourselves on a fast turnaround time so your precious photos will be out of your possession for the shortest length of time possible. They will be kept under lock and key at all times, except when we are scanning them or packaging them up securely to return to you. Although we cannot accept liability of your photos during shipment, we have had very good service using FedEx.
- What quality are my photos scanned at?
- We prefer to scan photos at 600dpi. Although this results in a little more time spent scanning, you end up with digital images suitable for large reprints (in most cases). If you are simply scanning photos to be archived digitally with no desire for reprints, 300dpi is perfectly suitable. However, using 600dpi (assuming you are sending us photos that are at least 4x6 in size), reprints can be made up to 11x14. Please see our reprint recommendation table below based on 600dpi.
Wallet 3.5x5 4x6 5x7 5x7
- Can you scan negatives and slides?
- Yes! Our state-of-the-art scanners allow us to scan your slides and negatives at a very high dpi setting (3000). A couple of things to remember: do not cut your negatives apart and leave them in the sleeves (if you have them). Contact us for quotes on negatives and visit our slide scanning page for current pricing and packages.
- How should my Scan-A-Box be packaged?
- VistaPix wants to make the process as easy as possible for you. We will send you a medium sized box (11 3/4" x 8 1/2" x 6") along with a return mailing label. Simply add your photos to the box, seal and send back to us. For a details on how to pack your box (and avoid additional charges), please click here to view our "Scan-A-Box Instructions". You can also view our blog post for tips on how to organize your photos before shipment.
- How do you order the photos on the discs when they are scanned?
- We will scan the photos in the order by which we receive them from you. For example, if you have a collection of photos documenting a child growing up, please stack the photos in order from youngest to oldest and we will scan in that order. If we receive photos in no particular order, we will assume you did not have any preference in scan order.
- Can I specify the file name of each photo?
- Unfortunately, due to the time consuming process of renaming photos, we cannot accommodate custom file names. All files will be .JPG files and arranged in numerical order such as "00001.JPG" (or similar). However, we are able to organize photos into named folders on the CD. When you organize the photos being sent, please bundle them in the groups that you want to be in each named folder. Notate the name you want the folder to have at the top of the bundle. Preferably, we would like to have at least 25 photos for a folder to be created.
- I have photos that are still stuck to album pages. Do they need to be removed first?
- The photos will need to be removed from the pages for the best quality. However, if removing them from the album will cause damage to the photo(s), we can still attempt to scan the entire page, and then crop the photo. Using this process may result in a poorer quality scan, but that is a better alternative than a torn picture. There is an additional fee to scan album pages charged at $1.00/per page plus possible shipping fees. Contact us directly if you have questions regarding albums.
- I have photos that were cropped or cut at strange angles (for scrapbooking, etc.), can those be scanned?
- The short answer is yes. Most anything can be scanned. However, the photo will scan exactly as it is cropped, so those areas won't be filled in with anything except white/gray space. The preferred shape for scanning is rectangular or square with 4 corners. Photos with rounded corners may have a small amount of uncropped space at each corner. Polaroids are acceptable for scanning.
- Can you scan copyrighted material?
- Yes, but only with a VALID copyright release from the photographer. If a copyright release cannot be obtained, the Photo Archiving Order Form contains a waiver stating that the photos are reproduced for personal archival use ONLY and not for commercial distribution.
Photo Restoration FAQ
- Can I see examples of your work?
- Absolutely! We have some examples of photos we've restored that were color faded, creased, stained, and torn on our Photo Restoration Info page.
- What do I get when I order a photo restoration?
- Once the restoration work is complete, you will receive a digital copy of your restored photo on a high quality CD-ROM. In addition, if you would like reprints from the restored image, it will be offered on the Photo Restoration Order Form. You may view our reprint prices on the Photo Restoration Info page.
- How will I know you can restore my photo?
- We offer two ways of evaluating your photo. You can scan the photo yourself and email it to us for evaluation (prior to sending us the original print), -OR- if you don't have scanning capabilities, you can mail us the original photo and we will evaluate it in our facility. If we are able to restore the photo, we will call you with an estimate. If we aren't able to restore it due to extensive damage, we will ship the photo back to you free of charge with our recommendations for companies who can assist you.
- What type of damage are you able to repair?
- We are able to repair most moderate damage such as color fading, yellowing, dust and scratches, minor tears, and red eye. If you have major damage to your photo, we recommend consulting with a dedicated photo restoration company.
- How should I send my original photo(s) to you?
- Write your name and phone number on the outside of a Ziploc baggie large enough to hold each photo. Place the photo inside the bag to protect it from any moisture it could encounter during the shipping process.
- Sandwich it between cardboard pieces, and then tape the edges so the photo can't slide out.
- Insert the wrapped photo and the Photo Restoration Order Form into an envelope (or box). If there is extra space in the box, fill it with bubble wrap, newspaper, or plastic bags.
- Seal the package securely and write "Photos - Do Not Bend" on the outside. Be sure to include your return address!
- Mail the package to us using a TRACKABLE shipper such as UPS, FedEx, or US Postal Service.
VistaPix Media, LLC
919 Hospital Dr.
Niceville, FL 32578** We cannot accept responsibility for your photo during shipment, so please use method of shipment that allows real-time tracking. We will contact you within 24-48 hours of receiving your photo to let you know we received it safely.
Negative Scanning FAQ
- What formats do you scan and what is the cost?
- We're glad you asked! We scan all formats of film and the pricing is listed below (based on quantity). Please call us to order any negative scanning services!
Notes 35mm (3200dpi)
Bulk discounts available depending on quantity (see chart below) Quantity Price 100-499 30¢/frame 500-1000 27¢/frame 1001-5000 25¢/frame 5000+ Contact Us Medium Format (up to 2 ¼ x 3 ½)
2000dpi Large Format(> 2 ¼ x 3 ½)