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The gold standard of image quality specification and verification.


Manufactured by

ISA logo

GoldenThread™ is designed  to communicate image quality standards within the digital archiving industry, eliminating waste, sub-quality products, frustration and strained partnerships caused by the current maze of image quality specifications. ISA products enable quality control for the digitization of both transmissive and reflective material from books to historic maps to artwork, baseball cards and more. Utilizing the  GoldenThread System provides the technical guidelines for digitizing heritage materials and offers a strong foundation for a FADGI-compliant digitization program.


The full GoldenThread System includes the standard (9-1/4" x 1") object-level target, a device-level target, analysis software and standard support. Components can be purchased separately.

GoldenThread System

The GoldenThread System includes two “Gold Standard” quality targets that incorporate all the necessary features to specify and assess the quality of your imaging system, including:

  • "Slanted-edge” feature for measuring Spatial Frequency Response and color plane registration

  • 12-step Spectrally Neutral Patches from 0.05 to 2.43 optical density for measuring the Opto-Electronic Conversion Function (OECF), color neutrality, and noise

  • 18 Munsell color patches to assess color encoding accuracy

  • Neutral density patches to assess uniformity (device-level only)

  • All data is saved to individual reports in Microsoft Excel and to appended reports in a Microsoft Access database to facilitate statistical process control and quality assurance

  • GoldenThread System adheres to digitization best practices of FADGI to provide uniform quality.

GoldenThread Analysis Software


Stand-alone GoldenThread software is intended for customers who have digitized material and need to inspect completed jobs. It is ideal for ensuring that a job has been completed to the specifications defined in a job profile. The inspector merely has to select the test profile to be measured against and run the received images. Data is quickly assessed for all acceptance criteria. Digitized material should include the Object Level Target for GoldenThread to evaluate pass/fail criteria.


  • All data is saved to individual reports in Microsoft Excel and to appended reports in a Microsoft Access database to facilitate statistical process control and quality assurance.

GoldenThread Analysis Software


Working with GoldenThread, a FADGI-compliant tool, you can avoid image challenges with the ability to track, report, and in many cases, diagnose, troubleshoot and fix incorrect exposures and image quality for a more consistent imaging product.  

GoldenThread Logo


GoldenThread is compatible with all Windows version from XP up to Windows10. ISA does not recommend running it on Vista due to numerous security hurdles.

The software includes 32 and 64 bit versions, and at least 6 Gbytes of RAM is recommended.

Many users (including ISA) run it on a Mac using either a Fusion or Parallels emulators. While these solutions were clumsy in the past, they are seamless today and work very well, sometimes even better.


GoldenThread software has also been successfully installed on servers for wider institutional access by multiple users. For suggestions, CLICK HERE.

Dongle versions of the software are also available where the GoldenThread software can be installed on multiple platforms but only executed with the USB dongle key installed.

Benefits of GoldenThread


For Collection Owners, specifying the use of GoldenThread with your suppliers and using it to verify compliance of the received product will ensure that your collections are properly preserved for future use.


Don’t get stuck with a collection of digital images that are out of focus, noisy or off color.


As a reseller for ISA, Image Retrieval provides a method to quantify your specifications and communicate them clearly to your suppliers. The Federal Agencies Digital Guidelines Initiative (FADGI) provides a common set of benchmarks for digitization service providers and manufacturers.  

For Service Providers, GoldenThread reduces the ambiguity of the quoting process by explicitly communicating image quality specifications.


With GoldenThread, you’ll reduce cost and rework by ensuring that the job is done right the first time.


GoldenThread is used for quality control throughout the production process, while providing FADGI-compliance to your customer specifications.

For Device Manufacturers, accurately assessing your system components for Spatial Frequency Response, noise and OECF will allow you to fit the cost of your product to the needs of the customer.


You will be able to demonstrate that a customer’s image quality performance specifications are achievable with your equipment.

Minimal customer service assistance is needed, which gives you the opportunity to align your products more accurately for a more tailored customer experience.

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