Trust Our Award-Winning Quality To Save Your Precious Memories Try Our Movie Services Today!

Estimate the home movie footage you're sending

x $0.34 =

Choose what you get back?

Digital Download

x $10.00 =

USB Drive

 x $19.00 = $0.00

Hard Drive

 x $80.00 = $0.00

Total = $0.00


When 16mm film was introduced by Kodak in 1923, it was considered more of an innovation than the boxy, hand cranked Cine-Kodak amateur movie camera it was designed for. With a frame size measuring one-fourth that of 35mm film, 16mm film transformed moviemaking into an economical and portable hobby. The format was dubbed safety film because it was made of noncombustible acetate plastic, unlike the highly flammable cellulose nitrate used in 35mm film. Because it was a direct reversal film, the costly and cumbersome two-step process of creating a negative and printing a positive was eliminated. And another perk was that 16mm film could be loaded in daylight.

This film format became so popular that Kodak established a 16mm film collection that people could rent or purchase for the home or classroom – the original Blockbuster! And another indication that 16mm was the king of mid-20th century filmmaking is that it’s the most common format found in the collections of archives, libraries, and museums.

What Sets Our 16mm Film Transfer Services Apart

If you’re looking for the best and highest quality 16mm film to digital service, you’ve come to the right place. ScanCafe is an award-winning company that has been professionally digitizing family memories since 2006. And unlike many companies that outsource your precious home movies, we employ dedicated trained technicians that digitize 16mm film at our state-of-the-art lab in Indianapolis. Any company can scan – at ScanCafe, we breathe life into celluloid memories, restoring them to their original glory so you can relive and share them with future generations.

How Converting 16mm Film to Digital Works

Regardless of the 16mm film reel sizes you send in, we charge by the foot and include color correction and dust/scratch reduction in this service to ensure the highest quality 16mm to digital transfer.

At ScanCafe, we’ve designed the whole process to be as PAIN-FREE as possible!



All you need to do is ship your 16mm film to us and we’ll take care of the rest for you.


ScanCafe's Technicians

Our digital experts curate every reel with care and convert it into sustainable digital formats which can be stored for later viewing. Your movies will be transferred at our Indianapolis lab with a 3-4 week turnaround time.


Enjoy & Share

The end result is memories safely transferred from 16mm film to your choice of a digital download or USB drive.

16mm Film vs. 8mm Film

Although they’re similar, the biggest difference between these two films is their size – 16mm film is twice the width of 8mm. Silent 16mm film has sprocket holes on both sides and on one side if it has sound, whereas 8mm film has sprocket holes on one side, whether it’s a silent movie or one with sound. The other telltale sign is that 16mm reels tend to be much larger – in fact, their diameter can measure the size of an extra-large pizza!

Delivery Options for 16mm Film to Digital

After we digitize 16mm film, we offer the choice of several delivery options. Our standard delivery method is a digital download with a link that remains active for 30 days from the time of "Checkout". You can also select from any of these options to enjoy your trip down memory lane:

  • USB Drive
  • Slightly Compressed H.264/MPEG-4 Files
  • Lightly compressed digital files on a hard drive for editing with video editing software

Please note that if you wish to continue downloading content after 30 days, you must contact our customer service team prior to this date at [email protected] or call us at (866) 234-3909. If you don’t contact us, our servers automatically delete content after 30 days. Keep in mind that when you ask us to reactivate the link, it’s only valid for 7 days.

Check Out Our Other Services

We convert Super 8, 35mm, 8mm and more!

FAQs on Converting 16mm Film to Digital

We do clean your movie film, both physically and electronically. This is an important quality step, because old movie film can often be amazingly dirty. Each speck of dirt will show up on your final image, and it can make watching your old home movies less enjoyable. Your film will be spot cleaned and simple repairs like bad splices will be handled for you at no additional charge.

The length of the film can be estimated using the following chart:

Reel Diameter Estimated film length
3 in 50 ft
4 in 100 ft
5 in 200 ft
6 in 300 ft
7 in 400 ft
8 in 600 ft
10 in 800 ft

Please leave film in the original packaging. If you group and label your originals inside your box, we will scan your order accordingly and your USB if opted will be organized as such. If you choose to label film, we ask that you keep the copy relatively short (20 characters or so). You can also fill out a titles worksheet we have available online when you place your order. Make sure this worksheet corresponds to how you label the reels, because we’ll use your information to make chapter titles on your USB.

For example, if you send in five 8mm reels, you could label them 1,2,3,4 and 5. Then on the titles worksheet, where it indicates reel #1, you could write "Christmas 1954", and so on. Or you could simply write "Christmas 1954" on both the reel and the titles worksheet. For additional packing tips, click here.

The best answer is, it doesn't matter! For nearly any conceivable movie film format that you have, chances are it's either 8mm, 35mm, Super 8mm, or 16mm. And our price for all of those is exactly the same.

A quick way to check: if your movie film is on a reel, and it has sprocket holes, then chances are excellent we can scan it.

The cost to convert 16mm film to digital with ScanCafe depends on the amount of footage being converted and the delivery option chosen. The estimate for the home movie footage is $0.34 per foot. The customer can choose between a digital download for $10.00, a USB drive for $19.00, or a hard drive for $80.00. The total cost will vary depending on the length of the film and the chosen delivery option.