Ultimate Future Games …

I didn't think we would see any of these issues turning up after VultureStreet left the scanning scene but lo and behold Alex1 supplied us with a further three issues of this short-lived title. First up on the release front we have issue 14  🙂

 

Donated by: Alex1
Scanner: Kiwi

Clarifications on Quality …

In my previous post I singled out Gladiator and CVG as an example of the way magazine age and paper composition have a huge impact of the survivability of magazines over extended periods of time. This was not in any way intended to portray his work in a negative light whatsoever. It was merely meant to provide an example of the issues scanning members face when dealing with twenty plus year old magazines.

I felt the need to clarify my position in case this came across as a personal attack on one of my scanning members. I assure you nothing could be further from the truth.

I have nothing but admiration and heartfelt thanks for anyone who sacrifices their personal time and energy to scan magazines for the purposes of preserving them for future generations to enjoy. Furthermore, I am more than happy to admit that no-one, myself included, isn't guilty of creating less than perfect scans. We deal with physical age factors of the source material, imperfect printing by the publishers (angled printing etc), glue residue and a myriad other factors when scanning magazines. The only way to obtain perfect scans is to screen capture copies of digital issues which is impossible for pre-2009 produced magazines for the most part.

Hopefully that clears up things.

Don't forget, if you have good condition magazines issues in your possession and where our scanned versions might not be the best due to the condition of our original sources, feel free to let us know if you are prepared to sacrifice them for the preservation cause. Poor conditon print copies make for poor scans. The only way to fix this is acquiring magazines in good physical condition.

N64 Magazine …

A week after making this available to Dan everyone else gets their chance to grab issue 26. That leaves me with one remaining issue 27 left to scan. Editing is 1/3rd complete on that issue but it has been put aside while I focus of scanning and making our recent donations from Alex1 available. With another package of magazines inbound as well I don't see 27 being released for a while yet.

 

Scanned by: Dan
Edited by: Kiwi 

Game Informer (AUS) …

Jason's on somewhat of a forced scanning hiatus at the present time but did manage to sneak through issue 84 before going dark. 🙂

 

Scanner: Jason

NOTE: This issue is not available for download. It has been archived strictly for preservation purposes in the event that the publisher were to cease to exist and digital editions were no longer able to be acquired legitimately.

 

The Question of Quality …

I have received a couple of comments regarding differences in the quality of scans being submitted to the site so I thought it prudent to throw a few words out there on the subject.

Yes, there are differences in the magazines submitted. These can most times boil down to the following:

  • Scanners – there are a wide variety of scanners out there using different optical technologies. Fujitsu scanners for example have excellent colour fidelity (the ability to render fluro/neon colors closer to the printed page) but are also seriously expensive. Mustek scanners are the cheapest A3 scanner you can buy but they use older technology, are generally unreliable and scans are usually average quality. Other scanners sit somewhere between those in regards to cost and quality. Additionally, if someone only has an A4 scanner and they are scanning oversized magazines it will result in cropped pages. There's no way around this unless the person scans each page twice and stitches the resulting pages together.
  • Software –  different software running the scanners results in different scans based upon their settings.
  • Magazines – the magazines themselves can result in wildly differing quality levels based upon the type of paper printed on (shiny vs newsprint) and the thickness of the paper itself. Add to that the age of the magazines which can result in yellowing of pages as the paper ages
  • Age – No-one really gave much thought to keeping good condition magazines for scanning/preservation at some point in the future. I know I certainly didn't otherwise I would never have dumped whole collections of magazines like PC Gamer (USA) that I had purchased from new. The result is that we are now having to play catch-up on acquiring magazines dating back to the 1980's for the purpose of preservation. Unfortunately, lots of this type of content is now longer in the greatest condition so one has take what they can get and hope that at some point in the future a better quality version will become available for purchase at a reasonable price.

A few comments have been made around CVG quality so let's look at this title specifically. Early issues up to mid 40's were printed on good paper stock so scan extremely bright. From then on due to cost cutting they were printed on newsprint paper which also happens to be very thin. This results in bleedthru of content from the other side of the page when scanning. If you have a document scanner like me you tend to turn off backlighting to reduce this bleedthru but it drops the overall brightness of the scan. The added problem with this particular newsprint is that as it ages it becomes brittle and is easily prone to physical damage. From around issue 126 they reverted to a heavier gauge newsprint for one reason or another. This has resulted in those issues staying in far better condition over time. Take Gladiator's scans for example. The last few issues in the 80 number range have been certainly been somewhat less than optimal yet his scans on the same scanning equipment from the 120's upward are fine. You can boil this down to the fact that issues printed in the late 1980's/ early 1990's were printed on low grade paper stocks so they simply haven't stood up to the ravages of time all that well. At the end of the day I have to make a judgement call on whether to put up peoples scans. I take the view that if the scans are better than existing ones like Mort's old scans there's no reason not to make them available. At the end of the day it's also better to have something than nothing AND we can always replace those issues with better scans if/when another one becomes available.

If you have physical copies of magazine issues in good condition and you are prepared to sacrifice your copy for the purposes of obtaining a better quality digital version that the one currently available feel free to let me know and I will try and work out how to ship it to me at a reasonable cost for the purposes of scanning it.