- Tell me about photo scanners
Someone is supposed to be lending me some old photos that I would like to have scanned. Dimensions unknown, but probably small and likely black and white. All that I know is that higher dpi resolution and more bit color is betterer.
Should I just use one of those kiosks at photo place or should I buy a scanner? If so, what should I be looking for?Posted 4 years agocouldashouldawouldaMember
I used to make a living from such leading edge stuff back in the day!
Anyway, alternatives – what’s your budget? You ok with used scanners? Windows/ Mac? How big a deal is it for you / family to have it perfect?
(Lastly – there are no miracles without negs).Posted 4 years ago
Have you got a 3-in-one printer? If you have, like an Epson, or a Canon, then the quality of scan that you can get from one of those is outstanding. Scan at 600dpi, and select and scan each one individually, the quality will be more than good enough for repro, and if the photos are quite small, then enlarge them as well, maybe 200%, if they’re around 6″x4″, or smaller. You’ll end up with files of maybe 20Mb, I used to reckon on an A4 scan at 300dpi producing a 40-50Mb file, and you can save them as TIFF or EPS files.Posted 4 years ago
I didn’t use a scanner/printer/whatever, BTW, I scanned using a Crosfield 6250 drum scanner. About £64,000, if I recall correctly.
If they’re old mono photos, they’re likely to have a fair amount of damage, cracking, missing emulsion, silvering of the surface, spotting, etc. While its very tempting to start retouching them, don’t. Believe me, it takes a lot of time, experience and skill to do without it being very obvious that the photo’s been messed with, and it’s far better to leave as-is, as part of the photo’s history, than to cock it up.
Retouching scans for high-quality repro used to be my job, and I did thousands, so I have a bit of experience, and I know how easy it is for the ham-fisted to leave worse damage behind; a work colleague thought he could do what I did.
He couldn’t… 🙄
CSW – I guess I’m ok w/used or even borrowing one for a bit; would have to be Windows version. I’m not looking for perfection, but would like the scans to be good enough for the future. As in, the number of pixels in an image goes up rapidly with time, so don’t want a 1 MP scan. Good tip on negs, I would not have thought of that.
CZ – no, I don’t have one of those all-in-one inkjet jobs. I have a B&W laser printer w/sheetfeed scanner (fantastic for documents) and a color laser printer only (bit the bullet to avoid discarding 1/2 used ink cartridges that clog up). I have no plans at all to try to retouch the photos. They’re old photos, not brand new digital ones!
So, 600 dpi is enough? For color, as well?
I really hadn’t considered a used one till I read CSW’s post; will have a look on Craigslist. And I’ll certainly keep a sharp eye out for one of those Crosfield 6250 drum scanners, too! 😉Posted 4 years ago
Depends on a) what make it is, and b) how you set it up. I don’t have any photos scanned with my Epson, but I have a Mint Sauce original that was scanned on a mates Epson almost identical to mine, bought about a year before, and mine is now a few years old.Posted 4 years ago
I was amazed at how good the scans were, the old Crosfield was replaced by a Scitex flatbed scanner, cost over £3000 at the time, and for scan quality the little £150 Epson wee’d in its shoes.
[/url] Mint Sauce 4 by CountZero1, on Flickr[/img]
Results from prints can be patchy, if you have those textured satin finish prints that the likes of Boots tend to do, then any scan will pick up the surface texture, and high-gloss ones can show dark patches where the shiny surface interacts with the glass, causing interference patterns, and moíre rings. I used to use sheets of clear plastic with a lightly etched surface to stop that, or you can spray a very light dusting of hair spray onto the print. Negs are the way to go, if you can get them, but if they’re colour, then issues of using the correct colour profile in the scanner software comes in, as you have to allow for the orange of the film substrate. Mono’s a piece of piss by comparison!Posted 4 years ago
Oh, and I’ve found someone with a Crosfield/Fuji 6200 scanner for sale! http://www.machineseeker.com/A393691/Drumscaner-Crosfield-Fuji-Celsis-6200.html
Finding somewhere to put it might be a problem, though; you’ll need to clear out the garage… 😉
And here’s someone who still uses one:
Fantastic machine, gave amazing results, working on a 100Mb scan from an old glass plate print was a joy.
Here’s a photo I scanned on the Crosfield, originally for a book of photos showing Calne, in Wilts, through the years.Posted 4 years ago
I liked it so much I did another, much bigger copy, about A4, 300dpi, and cleaned up most of the damage.
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