My name is Mike Lester and I live in Normal, IL. I'm a retired guy and got into this business quite by accident. Old Films & Faded Photos was started because other businesses that transferred my 8mm and Super 8mm films didn't quite give me the whole truth, gave me inferior service, and just seemed to not care after I had paid my bill. When my mother-in-law died, there were reels after reels of old 8mm and Super 8mm films in her home. She and her husband had six children but no one really knew what to do with the films. After doing some searching, I found places on the internet that would transfer 8mm and Super 8mm films to DVDs. I would have the films put on DVDs and make copies for every member of the family. That way all those old home movies would be preserved for generation after generation. BOY WAS THAT A PIPE DREAM! Luckily, instead of sending all those reels to one place and having them transferred, I sent just ten of the three inch reels to places to see how good they would look. Also, I really felt apprehensive sending those old films by a carrier because who knew what mishaps could happen in transit! The quality of the transfers was not very good. One of the places, which stated it had roots with Hollywood, didn't have the color adjusted correctly. The scenes and people had a blue tint. Another place apparently had set their transfer wrong because when watching the transferred film, the video kept going in and out of focus. If you want to give yourself a headache, try watching that for a few minutes! After many decades, there was a lot of dirt and fuzz on all the films. One place didn't even try to clean the film. That was an experience trying to watch the video as the massive amount of blotches and hairy fuzz kept whisking by on the screen! Another place had cropped or cut down the frame size so much that nearly one fourth of the viewing area was not showing. All these places appeared to know what they were doing because they had excellent looking websites. What they were doing was making money without delivering a quality product. All these places disturbed me because they were not respectful of other people's trust nor did they really care about saving the memories of people's ancestors. After doing a lot of studying and research, and I mean a LOT, I learned: DVDs are not the way to archive ancestral footage. The best way currently is on more than one external hard drive. Old films need to be cleaned with cleaners that contain no water. Archived 8mm & Super 8mm films should be stored below freezing. Digitalized formats need to include information so future generations know what is going on in the video and who the people are. Relatives need to be directly involved with including information in the digitalized formats. Archiving in High Definition is usually better than Standard Definition. Now armed with all this new knowledge, and the bad experiences with transfer companies, I looked for a good transfer company but didn't find any with whom I felt comfortable. So I decided to do it myself. I spent thousands of dollars to purchase the best equipment and software to get the best possible results because my wife's family films were full of family history and were not replaceable! Many, many hours, days, weeks, & months were invested into learning the best way of every facet for preparing and digitizing old 8mm and Super 8mm films. I now have thousands of dollars worth of equipment and a lot of know how and experience on digitizing 8mm film. I'm retired and want something to do. So why not do something I love...digitizing film for people and show them how to pass along those valuable videos to all their relatives. I realized I have one thing all those transfer companies don't have...I'm retired and have an income so my major goal is not to make a living at this nor to make a lot of money: My main goal is to save what is on those old films for a Family's future generations!