Help to order from NARA

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Georg_S
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Help to order from NARA

Post by Georg_S » 01 Mar 2020 09:59

Hello,

Its been a while since I acually made an order form the NARA directly and I have forgot how to order rolls from them. I have tried to find where and how but I really don´t find how I do it. Cam someone send me a link to the correct place wherre I make a electronic order/transfer. I have been using one of the researchers for a while, but I have noticed that the quality between them (not attached to NARA) and the rolls from NARA is to big, even if it will cost me $40 more and takes a bit longer the wait will be worth it. My work has to slow down because of that.

Thanks in advance

Best regards
Georg
Waffen-SS, SS-TV, KZ/KL SS-Pz.A.A.
- http://wennallebruderschweigen.blogspot.com/

pgdwiking
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by pgdwiking » 01 Mar 2020 10:18


Mori
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by Mori » 01 Mar 2020 12:06

Georg_S wrote:
01 Mar 2020 09:59
I have been using one of the researchers for a while, but I have noticed that the quality between them (not attached to NARA) and the rolls from NARA is to big,
Unless your researcher can digitize rolls with a scanner, quality is pretty bad. As far as I understand, one of the researchers takes pictures of a computer screen (=> pitiful) while the other has realized he could use a scanner.

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Georg_S
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by Georg_S » 01 Mar 2020 13:27

My researcher uses a scanner but I think the quality is still not as I wished for so, I prefere the scanner NARA uses which cost $80 000 . With that I know I get the as possible best quality

//Georg
Waffen-SS, SS-TV, KZ/KL SS-Pz.A.A.
- http://wennallebruderschweigen.blogspot.com/

smetanin albert
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by smetanin albert » 01 Mar 2020 17:59

Hello,

NARA has only copies of documents!!!
The quality of the documents is medium or poor.
Some documents (in NARA) have defects (fall apart from time to time).

Good quality can be obtained in Berlin (from copies of the originals).
You must first convince the administration of the archive.

Intermediaries charge 150-200 euros per hour for their work.
God created the Internet, but devil created Darknet.

Mori
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by Mori » 02 Mar 2020 09:38

smetanin albert wrote:
01 Mar 2020 17:59
Good quality can be obtained in Berlin (from copies of the originals).
You must first convince the administration of the archive.
Also in Freiburg for Army Personalakten. One is not supposed to make copies of these files (although I suspect many did...).
Intermediaries charge 150-200 euros per hour for their work.
Which is an insane price for a low skilled job such as taking pictures of a file. No research there.

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Bart V.
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by Bart V. » 04 Mar 2020 15:35

smetanin albert wrote:
01 Mar 2020 17:59
Intermediaries charge 150-200 euros per hour for their work.
For that price, I will do research for you and others there. I don't live that far away and I will ask much less :thumbsup:

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Natter
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by Natter » 05 Mar 2020 18:17

Georg_S wrote:My researcher uses a scanner but I think the quality is still not as I wished for so, I prefere the scanner NARA uses which cost $80 000 . With that I know I get the as possible best quality
Until a few years ago, NARA delivered 600 dpi digital scans of the microfilm rolls, but now you'll only get 300 dpi (for most cases more than enough for text, and in terms of maps/drawings/photos the original photgraphic quality isn't that good anyway, so 600 dpi wouldn't make a lot of difference).
smetanin albert wrote:Good quality can be obtained in Berlin (from copies of the originals).
You must first convince the administration of the archive.
Intermediaries charge 150-200 euros per hour for their work.
SELKE don't have a monopoly at BaMa anymore: You can make your own copies for free, like you're able to in most archives like NARA, TNA etc.

tzt4
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by tzt4 » 06 Mar 2020 03:25

“ in terms of maps/drawings/photos the original photographic quality isn't that good anyway, so 600 dpi wouldn't make a lot of difference).”

@Natter, I am not so sure it would not make a difference, though I do not have a good solution.
I am interested in various ‘West’ Army and Korps situation maps and Kriegsgliederungen, such as AOK7 on R1570, LXXXI.A.K on R1594. I have a good collection of generously-shared rolls from axis history forum members like you and as people say that is usually sufficient for text, not for detail on maps and some large OOB sheets.
I have taken iphone photos of some frames of those rolls from the viewers at NARA.
The lighting is poor, uneven and yellow.
The viewer screen has grain and some registration marks that get in the way.
It is a pain to try to get a good clean shot at the right magnification.

I gave up trying to capture the full set of AOK 7 maps for June 44 on R1570 and the 40-ish LXXXI CORPS maps on R1594

But if you magnify the microfilm in the viewer it far surpasses what is on the available shared microfilm rolls.

So while of course the original documents now at BAMA are best, in my opinion there is a lot of good detail to be had from the rolls at NARA.

Problem is, the viewing and reproduction equipment. Having to make 8-12 shots of parts of a map to see the detail, still with all the imperfections I listed. Very frustrating! I asked room attendants and they knew nothing about the online roll reproduction service, its quality or the reproduction device.

They now have a digital viewer. I have not tried it and I think the reproduction cost is high per page downloaded to a thumb drive you bring in there.

So it pains and dismays me further to hear your impression is that more recently they have downgraded the resolution.

To be sure, when I get around to it I will email NARA to get the facts from somebody knowledgeable there... unless somebody else beats me to it!

Tom Z

Mori
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by Mori » 06 Mar 2020 09:51

tzt4 wrote:
06 Mar 2020 03:25
They now have a digital viewer. I have not tried it and I think the reproduction cost is high per page downloaded to a thumb drive you bring in there.
Last time I was there, cost was ct 40 per page. That made a typical roll (1200 frames) cost $480, way more expensive than ordering it. Also, the time it takes to save a frame is pretty long, several clicks. I did see a guy taking pictures of the computer screen to save money...

MLW
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by MLW » 06 Mar 2020 17:29

I may have some information that is useful to this conversation. It has been at least a year since NARA stopped digitizing microfilm rolls at any resolution above 300dpi. As others have pointed put here, that means detailed documents such as maps or order of battle charts and tables are often difficult to read. NARA has two tabletop scanners. It costs 40 cents for each scan, and the scanners can only be reserved for 45 minutes at a time. Unfortunately, NARA's scanners only scan to 600dpi. Theydo have fairly large monitors so it is possible to get readable images by photographing the microfilm frames from the monitor screen. The only way to get higher resolution scans of the microfilm rolls is use a desktop scanner with software that allows scanning at 800 or 1,200 dpi. Yet, that too has its limits for clarity because the images on the microfilm are small and even high resolution scanning does not guarantee a completely readable scan. To add to the matter, some rolls were poorly made and the documents can be out of focus, too dark, or too light. Notably, high-numbered T-315 and the T-971 and T-1022 series rolls have this problem. It can be also found in the T-78 series rolls. Lastly, a significant number of documents on the T-315 rolls were damaged by fire when the German archive was bombed late in the war and are now only partially readable. In the end, it means that each roll of microfilm is different and the best means for digitizing documents on a roll depends on whether the purpose is for data retrieval or publication.

Regards,
Marc

Mori
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by Mori » 06 Mar 2020 17:43

MLW wrote:
06 Mar 2020 17:29
the scanners can only be reserved for 45 minutes at a time.
The microfilm floor is not overcrowded and this limit is not a problem for anyone under normal circumstances.
To add to the matter, some rolls were poorly made and the documents can be out of focus, too dark, or too light. Notably, high-numbered T-315 and the T-971 and T-1022 series rolls have this problem. It can be also found in the T-78 series rolls.
I came to realize there were several microfilming efforts after the war, and I wonder whether what's in NARA II always is the 'source' microfilm or a copy of a previously made microfilm. This might explain those NARA rolls solely containing maps, none of them legible : whomever made the microfilm in the first place probably checked whether his/her work was of any use; and wouldn't have kept on microfilm maps for nothing.

Also, I have several examples of folders missing from the NARA catalog but available on microfilms held at other sites than NARA (with originals in Freiburg). So we know they did not microfilm everything they had.
Last edited by Mori on 06 Mar 2020 17:44, edited 1 time in total.

smetanin albert
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by smetanin albert » 06 Mar 2020 17:43

Hallo,
A small remark.
I attached a copy of SS-Staf Adam's personal file(A3343 SSO).
Can this be read?
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Mori
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by Mori » 06 Mar 2020 17:45

Short answer: no. But try an image editing software (like PhotoScape) and brighten the image 100%. At times I could "save" documents this way.

smetanin albert
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Re: Help to order from NARA

Post by smetanin albert » 06 Mar 2020 17:50

Another example.
This is a copy of a personal file made by cameras in Berlin.
I degraded the quality by 3 times(then - reduced it to 40%).
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