File Formats Used by the Digital Heritage Center

Below are the file formats we most typically create and retain at the Digital Heritage Center:

Access copies:

  • JPEG2000 and JPEG (most common)
  • PDF (less common – usually city directories, some scrapbooks)
  • MP4 (moving images)
  • MP3 (audio)

Preservation copies that the Digital Heritage Center retains:

  • JPEG2000 (newspaper images)
  • TIF (non-newspaper images)
  • MP4 (moving images)
  • MP3 (audio)

Preservation copies available to partners immediately after digitization:

  • TIF (print newspapers)

In some instances, our partners provide us with files to share that are different in format or quality from those listed above. In those cases we provide access to the highest quality version we can. 

Images are often given intelligent identifiers – names that give some sense of what the item is about and/or where it’s from.

Copies of files are stored in multiple locations on multiple platforms to help ensure retention. They are in directories named after the item’s owning institution to make them easier to locate. Each metadata record includes the file and/or folder name.

Updated September 2022