Adhesion failures of Ti2 and Ta2O5 thin films deposited by reactive evaporation (RE), reactive ion plating (IP) and plasma impulse chemical vapour deposition (PICVD) on fused silica, AF 45, TEMPAX and soda-lime glass substrates are investigated by means of a micro-scratch tester. The oxide films possess thickness between 60 and 500 nm and show different mass densities depending on the deposition conditions. Scratch testing exhibits well pronounced detachment for thicker films on hard substrates. The clearance of the scratch signal is reduced with decreasing layer thickness or for softer substrate materials. The test results are also influenced by the various substrates and different chemical and mechanical properties of the films due to the alternate deposition techniques.