The Moving Image Preservation studios accommodate and restore a broad range of formats historically employed by performing artists and arts organizations to document dance performances and theater productions. Each year tape formats and associated playback units become increasingly scarce and more challenging to maintain. Some of the media on which moving images are recorded are especially susceptible to rapid aging. The decay inherent to certain media, such as acetate motion picture film, and magnetic tape, can make it difficult or impossible to extract the content from this media. The staff in the Moving Image Preservation program have the equipment and expertise to handle a wide variety of formats including: HDV, DV, Digital Betacam, BetacamSP, Betamax, Open Reel EIAJ, 3/4" U-matic and 1"C open reel. Titles can be re-mastered to Digital Betacam or digital files from any of these formats. The studios are equipped with both Mac and PC-based systems with RAID storage for capture, transcoding, editing and DVD burning. After evaluation, in-house treatments may include cassette re-housing, tape cleaning, splice repair and incubation. Original recordings and preservation masters are stored off site in a stable temperature and humidity controlled facility.
The moving image studios generate footage request copies for programs, exhibitions, donors, artists, broadcast and documentaries as well as preservation copies and access copies.
Every year, the moving image studios are visited and consulted by graduate students, scholars, filmmakers, donors, and peers in the preservation community. Moving Image Preservation staff respond to reference inquiries pertaining to media on which moving images are recorded and the preservation of moving image materials.