When we say photo scanning as a service, most of us think that it is an easy process and if we take some time out of our schedule, we should be able to manage it. But in reality, if you think about the quality of the photo scans, then you will realize that it’s way too complex in terms of the amount of time it takes.
Right from knowing the purpose of scanning to the output cropped and the categorization that has to be followed, ready to be uploaded, it takes a lot of effort to have your photos scanned. It will be a pinch on your routine especially if you have a full-time job.
What is the best way to scan photos?
The first step towards scanning photos is to find the right scanner for the purpose. There is a wide range of scanners that you can check out in this article here. You need to understand the different types of scanners listed out there before gathering the photos and categorizing them.
Based on a decade’s experience in this field, after trying out all types of scanners, if you really care for your photos, the best scanner is a flatbed scanner.
Placing the photos on the flatbed carefully, without touching the glass (as it might add fingerprints to the bed), you can carefully scan in thumbnail mode, which will be talking later in this article.
Trust me, this is not easy at all. It takes a good amount of time, and at any time throughout the article, if you think it is tough, you can get in touch with us from this link.
Is it better to scan or photograph old photos?
As I have already spoken in the previous section, it is always better to use a flatbed scanner, and that’s what we have figured out in a decade in this field. Please find below the points to consider before scanning using a camera photographing the already “camera captured” pictures.
- The quality of the prints usually is glossy and even if it is not, it is still shiny.
- Due to the shiny nature of the photographs, the captured photos will reflect and might miss out on capturing some objects
- This is due to the distance between the camera and the photos. With that distance, the camera will capture the reflection from the photograph, which is not the case with flatbed scanners
- Moreover, if the photographs are bent even a little, the captured image from the camera will be distorted and might need dewarping using special software that might take a lot of time
- In addition to all this, the photos captured by a camera need to be cropped manually as against the flatbed scanner that scans an already cropped photo and stores
If you understood from the above points, it is always better to scan using a flatbed scanner as opposed to a camera, especially if you want quality scans. The camera captures might be extremely fast, but the quality of the scans will certainly be compromised.
What is the best program to scan photos?
In over a decade, we have witnessed a lot of programs out there. Initially, in the 2010s there was a very famous software that has still retained its popularity to date, called VueScan.
This has a lot of options and is an extremely powerful program to scan photos from any scanner provided you have the right scanner drivers, which you need to anyway have.
But if you want to keep it simple, we would always suggest that you use Epson Scanners, as we have found that they are the easiest scanners out there to scan photos that come with software that are easy to use. You can check out this article that explains more on how to scan using this software here.
So, all in all, if you are an expert in the field and know about photography, lighting, and the likes, you can use VueScan. If you want to just leave most of the things to the scanner and enjoy the process of scanning, you can start using the software that by default comes with Epson Scanners.
What is the best scanner for old photos?
I will repeat the same thing with some best models available in different types of scanners. For a common man without technological background, the best scanner to scan photos sitting at home is Epson Perfection V39 Scanner.
This scanner is not very expensive, which does not require an additional plug point. This just uses the USB port of the computer and scans a variety of photos in resolutions up to 1200 dpi.
If you are ready to put your photos at risk at the cost of fast scanning, then the next set of scanners are Plustek ePhoto Scanner and Epson FastFoto FF-640.
These scanners take the photos as input from a tray. The tray can have multiple photos and all of them are scanned one by one by the scanners by sucking the photos in. You can view more details about the scanners here.
The dangerous thing about such scanners is when the photos get stuck in the tray. There are all chances that the photos might get damaged. There are two main models in this, one from Epson and the other from Plustek.
While the Plustek scanner can only scan up to 600 dpi, from our one-year usage of Epson fast scanner we experienced the rubber grip that sucks in the photos getting damaged.
This is the reason why we suggest flatbed scanners, especially for old photos.
Will scanning an old photo, damage it?
When you are using the best scanner, we can assure you that the photos will not be damaged, however old they may be. But at the same time, not using the right scanner can damage your photos to an extent that they might get torn off.
How do I digitize thousands of photos?
Until now, we learned the different ways of handling photos with care and the type of scanners to use. Here let us figure out what procedure we have to follow while we scan thousands of photos. We have been doing photo scanning services for a long time and here is what we have learned.
Before scanning, spend some time categorizing, sorting, counting the photos in a way that will make it easy going forward. The categorization is done based on the events the photos are captured on. In addition to that, you can also sort based on the resolution you would want for each of the photos.
This can be decided based on the size and sharpness of the photos. The bigger the size of the photo, the smaller the resolution that it can be scanned in.
At the same time, there could be some important photos that you would want to scan in higher resolution, sort them accordingly.
Remember, the categories that you create here are the folders that the scanned photos will go into. So, if you mess up or be careless here, it might be difficult for you to retrieve the photos easily at a later stage.
You can either take out the photos from the album following a specific order so that it will be easier for you to place them back after scanning, or you can keep them in the albums only to remove them during the time of scanning and place them back as soon as you scan them.
Scan and Enhance
When you start scanning the photos you make sure you scan them based on the inputs that we have provided you with from the previous sections, like selecting the right scanners, etc.
Once you decide on everything start by using the software from the link here.
The most important two things are:
- Location the photos are saved in
To enhance the photos there are some auto tools that the Epson scanner software provides you with automatically.
For this, you need to select the below-mentioned three options based on your requirement.
- Backlight Correction: brightens the photo
- Color Restoration: Colors are restored from a faded photos
- Dust Removal: Small scratches are dust are removed
While scanning, you should also not forget to create relevant folders that have an album associated with it or if loose photos, a stack dedicated to it.
There is also one more important thing, which is, cropping of the photos. The photos when scanned in a flatbed scanner scans in two modes.
- Manual Crop
In the thumbnail mode, you first preview the photos, which is when the photos are automatically detected and cropped. Don’t forget to place the photos parallel to the scanner to get the best results. Once the preview is displayed, you can now rotate the required photos and scan them.
While in the manual crop, we have to first preview the photos, later select the part of the scan, which in our case are the photos, and scan them. We can even select multiple parts by holding the CTRL-key.
What you have scanned till now is in compressed format. If you want raw images, you will have to decide on them before scanning. You can change the format by clicking the below button.
There you can select the format and compression both at once. But in the raw format, there is no compression. If you scan without compression, the images might be around 16 times the compressed images.
Once you think you are done with scanning, sit with your albums and loose photos and check them with the scanned images one by one. This is when you come to know that you might have missed scanning some really important photos.
Some of the photos might not be cropped at all and some might be cropped way too much. These are to be taken care of in this step. Of course, rescanning them is the only option.
By following these four steps, we would have scanned all the photos without missing out on any. This is the procedure of the photo scanning service that we follow at ScanJunction.
How can I digitize my photos quickly?
To quickly digitize your photos you need to have the below photo scanners that are of Automated Document Feeder type. Please follow this link to know how to scan photos quickly.
What to do with old photos after scanning?
After scanning, the photos have to be disposed of in most cases. The best way to dispose of the printed photos is to use a shredder. A shredder cuts the photos into pieces not revealing the identity.
Once the photos are shred, they can be disposed of anywhere without bothering that your identity is at stake.
Where can I convert my photos to digital?
There are several places where you can digitize your photos. ScanJunction is one such portal from where you can place orders and get your photos scanned without getting worried about the safety and quality of your memories.