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Thread: Scanners

  1. #1
    Registered User bluehole's Avatar
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    Scanners

    I have a printer/scanner at home (Dell 968W) and it does a fine job with most of the stuff I use it for. The recent Pre-Digital thread has me interested in scanning more photos. I am a bit disappointed in the quality of my photo scans. I suppose that by nature, scans will not be as good as a digital photo (especially with my general purpose scanner). Are there certain settings I should look to adjust...the dpi for example? Or must one purchase a scanner dedicated to copying pictures and negatives to get good quality picture scans?

  2. #2
    Small road corner junkie pffog's Avatar
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    I too had a high quality flat bed, it did O.K., but I also had about 6000 slides I wanted to scan, which would be very tedious. So I finally broke down and picked up a Nikon Coolscan 5000, with a slide feeder. Software is professional level and lets you really tweek old faded slides and negatives. The auto settings actually do a great job, once you dial them in, so you can just load a bunch of slides and come back 1/2 hour later.

    It is big $$$, but if patient you can find deals. I still have mine, and have a few negitives to finish, I will then sell it and should actually make about $200 on the deal

  3. #3
    univers zero tessler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bluehole View Post
    I have a printer/scanner at home (Dell 968W) and it does a fine job with most of the stuff I use it for. The recent Pre-Digital thread has me interested in scanning more photos. I am a bit disappointed in the quality of my photo scans. I suppose that by nature, scans will not be as good as a digital photo (especially with my general purpose scanner). Are there certain settings I should look to adjust...the dpi for example? Or must one purchase a scanner dedicated to copying pictures and negatives to get good quality picture scans?
    Unless you're a graphics professional, your Dell should do a fine all around job (and seems to) for all your needs. As a multifunction machine, it has a max resolution spec of only 1200x1200, which is ok for scanning an original (pre-digital photo-print) and sending it off in an email or posting to a website, but I'd not want to use it for professional reproduction (high end scanners used for magazines or book printing) or archiving.

    I suppose that by nature, scans will not be as good as a digital photo
    Actually, with the appropriate equipment, scans can be much better than digital photos, especially if your original is a print, original artwork or a transparency. No matter how fine/high the resolution of a digital image, its still based on arrays of pixels (whereas film captures continuous tone).

    If archiving your film/print photos is really important to you, for about $100 you can get a 4800 dpi (optical resolution) Epson Perfection flat-bed scanner (some have transparency feeders too) that can do a great job.

  4. #4
    Registered User rcliffor's Avatar
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    After scanning the old photos, I use Panit Shop Photo X3 to process the photos. It really helps on old photos that are poor quality or faded. I can also add labels.

    Also, many of our old photo albums have multiple photos glued to the page. I can scan a full page and use X3 to crop and straigten individual photos.

  5. #5
    Registered User bluehole's Avatar
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    This has been a great thread for me because I now realize 1) I do have lots of slides I would like to have scanned and 2) I would like to use this process to archieve slides and pictures.

    tessler, I checked out the Epsons. There are several to choose from. Would something like the the V300 or 4490 Photo Scanner (not Office Scanner) be sufficient or should I look at something better?

  6. #6
    univers zero tessler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bluehole View Post
    This has been a great thread for me because I now realize 1) I do have lots of slides I would like to have scanned and 2) I would like to use this process to archieve slides and pictures.

    tessler, I checked out the Epsons. There are several to choose from. Would something like the the V300 or 4490 Photo Scanner (not Office Scanner) be sufficient or should I look at something better?
    Bluehole, I think the Epson v300 would be more than sufficient for your purposes. It has quite a few positive reviews from satisfied purchasers on Amazon and is under $90 to boot.

    I've been using an Epson Perfection 3200 Photo Scanner in my office as a general workhorse for the past 4 years without a single problem (mostly using it to scan original line art to be imported into Photoshop or Illustrator, but it's great for other applications too).

  7. #7
    Registered User bluehole's Avatar
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    Thanks tessler, I am going to check the V300 out. I appreciate the help.

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