While they are many, one of the inhibitors to the wide spread diffusion of PACS systems has been robust, cost effective digital archive storage solutions. Moreover, an automated Nearline solution is key to a central, sharable data repository, enabling many applications such as PACS, telemedicine and teleradiology, and information warehousing and data mining for research such as patient outcome analysis. Selecting the right solution depends on a number of factors: capacity requirements, write and retrieval performance requirements, scaleability in capacity and performance, configuration architecture and flexibility, subsystem availability and reliability, security requirements, system cost, achievable benefits and cost savings, investment protection, strategic fit and more.This paper addresses many of these issues. It compares and positions optical disk and magnetic tape technologies, which are the predominant archive mediums today. Price and performance comparisons will be made at different archive capacities, plus the effect of file size on storage system throughput will be analyzed. The concept of automated migration of images from high performance, high cost storage devices to high capacity, low cost storage devices will be introduced as a viable way to minimize overall storage costs for an archive. The concept of access density will also be introduced and applied to the selection of the most cost effective archive solution.