Better Digitization with Betterlight

For the last year NUAMPS has utilized its Hi-Resolution Digitization Studio to bring professional digitization services to the Northwestern community. The latest addition to the studio is the Betterlight Super 8K-HS digital camera back, a 4 x 5 scanning back capable of an 8000 x 10600 pixel grab at native CCD resolution and a 12,000 x 15,990 pixel grab with Enhanced Resolution™. In the past, due to the constraints of acquisition equipment, NUAMPS employees were often required to hand assemble multiple captures of photographed items in order to achieve the extremely high resolution imagery needed for academic and scholarly investigation. With the Betterlight, however, the majority of objects can be photographed in single captures meaning that the final product is truer to its physical antecedent, and oversized or delicate volumes and objects require less handling.

The maiden project for the NUAMPS Betterlight is the digitization of the Winterton Collection of East African Photographs through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). The collection is part of the Herskovits Library of African Studies and consists of about 7,600 photographs depicting life in Africa between the 1860’s and 1960’s.