The aim of this work was to investigate the structural features of type I collagen isoforms and collagen-based films at atomic and molecular scales, in order to evaluate whether and to what extent different protocols of slurry synthesis may change the protein structure and the final properties of the developed scaffolds. Wide Angle X-ray Scattering data on raw materials demonstrated the preferential orientation of collagen molecules in equine tendon-derived collagens, while randomly oriented molecules were found in bovine skin collagens, together with a lower crystalline degree, analyzed by the assessment of FWHM (Full Width at Half Maximum), and a certain degree of salt contamination. WAXS and FT-IR (Fourier Transform Infrared) analyses on bovine collagen-based films, showed that mechanical homogenization of slurry in acidic solution was the treatment ensuring a high content of super-organization of collagen into triple helices and a high crystalline domain into the material. In vitro tests on rat Schwannoma cells showed that Schwann cell differentiation into myelinating cells was dependent on the specific collagen film being used, and was found to be stimulated in case of homogenization-treated samples. Finally DHT/EDC crosslinking treatment was shown to affect mechanical stiffness of films depending on collagen source and processing conditions. © 2018 The Author(s).