New scanner?

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by Axell, Nov 10, 2009.

  1. Axell

    Axell TPF Noob!

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    Hi!

    I have an old Mustek 1200cp and I want to scan my old family albums. Most of the photos are black and white.

    Will my scanner do a good job or will I get better results if I bought a new one like Epson perfection v300 or a more expensive one?

    Is 600dpi to high a resolution to use? I have no intention of enlarging them later.

    How many bits are sufficient, 24 or 48?
     
  2. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Given the age of the scanner you likely to get a better result with a new one. But this is just an assumption. But pretty much any of the new scanners produce reasonably good results.

    The PPI (note dpi is something to do with printers mixing colours) to scan at depends entirely on the image, and what you want to do with it. You're scanning them. One day you may like to print them. If you scan an image at 600ppi, you'll end up with an image you can reasonably enlarge twice it's size, 300ppi being a somewhat standard "quality" measure. That said it wouldn't hurt to scan at 600ppi. The formula for sizes is based on the name. Pixels Per Inch. So 600ppi * 6inches gives 3600 pixels wide. Print it now at 300ppi gives 3600/300 = 12" wide.

    How many bits again depends on what you want to do. If you want to edit then scan at 48bits. If you don't then scan at 24bits. The scanner will often scan at 48bits regardless, because the scanner driver makes many adjustments that require all this detail to come up with a good looking, nicely toned final 24bit file. At least that's how my Canon driver works. So in summary there's no reason to scan 48bit if you don't intend to edit your photos.
     
  3. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    600ppi is generally the maximum that you should use when scanning prints. Printing paper doesn't resolve detail much beyond 300-400ppi. Higher scanning resolutions than 300ppi usuallly only capture more fine detail in the surface scratches and flaws and not more image detail. Slight overscanning at 600ppi is often a good choice when you are going to retouch the surface flaws as the retouching can more easily be blended without becoming detectable.
     

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