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Solutions for Oversized Materials

Shooting oversized materials is especially demanding, as large items such as wall-sized murals or large maps challenge resolution requirements. Digitizing such collections requires a solution that delivers conservation handling, preservation image quality, production speed, and extensive flexibility. DTDCH has several systems that meet these demands and are ideal for digitizing oversized materials.

Image Courtesy of the Minneapolis Museum of Art 

Conservation Handling

Oversized materials require careful handling to ensure the process of digitization does not degrade their condition. When using DTDCH solutions the user remains fully in control of the materials, allowing them to use traditional conservation-friendly techniques and methods to ensure their safety. Our systems are designed so that they do not require contact for digitizing oversized works on paper such as large blueprints. This gives the user complete control, unlike the process with sheet fed systems that could potentially damage the material.


Preservation Quality

DTDCH solutions meet and exceed FADGI 4-Star and Metamorfoze-Strict standards. We achieve this by using Schneider large format digitar lenses and vibration free electronic shutters, along with Phase One medium format digital backs with up to 150 megapixels per capture. That resolution can be multiplied by stitching with no upper limit. This results in true Preservation Digital Objects for originals of any size with accurate color, tone, and detail. Many manufacturers claim their equipment attains FADGI 4-star quality, but very few do.

Leveraging the raw processing in Capture One Cultural Heritage Edition software, and its class-leading debayering algorithms, DTDCH solutions extract pixel level detail and color accuracy previously only seen in cumbersome multi-shot systems.


Production Speed

Typically there is a lower volume when digitizing oversized collections. However,  a faster and more efficient workflow can still save hours of time and should not be discounted. DTDCH solutions are designed to deliver a faster workflow in both the  capture and post-processing stages.

Capture Stage
Our systems capture nearly instantly (e.g. 1/60th sec) and display almost immediately. In Capture One CH tools such as Focus Mask and Multiple Focus Checking Points can be used to quickly evaluate focus. Other tools, like Overlay, are invaluable at allowing precise and consistent alignment during stitching. Fully integrated live view allows an easy preview of the capture in real time.

Post-Processing Stage
Most digitization software looks like it was developed in the 1990s, because most of it was. Capture One CH is a modern solution built on the venerable and widely used Capture One software. It is designed for cultural heritage workflows, supports all modern operating systems, is frequently updated, and can handle massive numbers of files with ease. Checking focus, zooming in on high resolution images, and scrolling through pages for quality control is lightning fast.

Capture One CH is ideal for digitizing oversized material with tools such as  Even Fielding (LCC), Batch Processing, LAB Support, Resolution Ruler, Raw-Stage Quality Control, and Stitching Scripts. These tools enable the automation of tedious post-production tasks that are inherent to the post-processing stage of digitizing oversized objects.

Extensive Flexibility

The encyclopedic collections of cultural heritage institutions are rarely homogenous. Our systems are versatile, interoperable, and modularly upgradeable to ensure you’re not stuck with a limited tool box. They are also flexible in their use, allowing techniques that are impossible with other systems.

Interoperable and Modularly Upgradable
Typically, our solution for digitizing oversized materials comprise a Phase One XF body and Phase One digital back. These components are highly interoperable with the rest of our product line. For instance, an institution that purchased an [DT Versa + DT RCam + Phase One IQ4 150] for scanning newspapers would only need to add a wall mount to digitize oversized materials.

Limitless Size
The DT Versa and DT Element have columns that can be remounted from their usual position (suspending the camera over the waist-high working surface) to face backward. This allows capture of material at floor level of up to 50” x 70” in a single capture, up to 90” x 120” in two captures, and any panoramic material of any length (up to 90” wide) using stitching.

Rolling Capture
Some oversized collections are stored in rolled form, and often unwise or impractical to unroll the entirety of the material at once. In such cases DTDCH systems can be used to capture segments of the material and stitch them together. This solution works especially well with our systems because we maintain such high pixel sharpness throughout the frame; the sharper the detail the better stitching software can combine the segments without artifact.

National Archives and Records Administration

DT Titan

Digitizing large material presents a unique challenge to most typical copy stands. From historical maps and oversized artworks, to textiles and elephant folios, finding a surface to support the subject, as well as getting the entire piece in the image sensor’s field of view, can be a struggle. With those specific needs in mind, DT has created our largest digitization system—The DT Titan


The DT VERSA is a multi-role copy stand that allows the digitization of many different types of material sizes. From books (using the glass top plate), film (partnered with DT FSK), loose manuscripts and flat art. The DT VERSA is a fast and versatile digitizing machine that is a great compliment to any institutions preservation needs.


Legacy copy stands were designed to meet the relatively loose precision required for film capture. The DT ELEMENT Reprographic System was built from the ground up for the era of digital capture.

Have more questions about our solutions or looking for something more custom?