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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK... so I'm going through old photos and scanning them, the scanner has a setting for photos... but the quality of the scans are very poor... when I scan the images at say full colour at 600x600 the images look better but the size of the image becomes outrageous (100 meg uncompressed).

Given the amount of time it takes to place something on the scanner... scan... crop... save, etc... I'm wondering if I am not further ahead to to digital photos of the pictures with my Sony CD-400.

I am not looking to print these pictures out in hard copy, only use them for iPhoto slideshows and iMovie.

Any thoughs folks?
 

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So, what kind of scanner, what software, what OS, what Mac model, etc???

Have you configured ColorSync for the scanner and monitor?

In general, scanners work pretty well, even cheap consumer models. It's important to have decent software for post-processing, not necessarily Photoshop, but something better than iPhoto.

Cheers :-> Bill
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm using an HP 750 (all in one). Typical "relatively" modern consumer scanner.

I'm using the HP scanning software.

Photoshop 6 for editing

iPhoto is only used for slideshows

PB 12" G4 867 640meg
 

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I was taught to scan the image at the highest resolution possible (yes, it does results in large files) and then sample down and crop the image for final

this gives the best results

it can be laborious with a large amount of photos
 

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If you are only using the photos for iMovie then there is no need to scan above 72 dpi resolution. The defaualt setting for all televisions is 72 DPI. If you are plannig to print to a colour printer or do a zoom out on photo in iMovie then you need to scan at 300 dpi or 600 dpi. I have been video editing documentaries for years and you will be fine with 72 dpi.
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If you are only using the photos for iMovie then there is no need to scan above 72 dpi resolution. The defaualt setting for all televisions is 72 DPI. If you are plannig to print to a colour printer or do a zoom out on photo in iMovie then you need to scan at 300 dpi or 600 dpi. I have been video editing documentaries for years and you will be fine with 72 dpi.
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As a general rule, scan at 2x the intended final resolution. There are some exceptions, so it pays to know what you intend to do with the output later, but in general 2x will keep you out of most trouble.

This sometimes causes some confusion when deciding what size to scan for same-size output from a photo printer, because some typically claim some pretty high resoluitions (eg 4800x1200 dpi).

In your case, 144 dpi (2x72) is fine for scanning; resize in PhotoShop to 72 and you're good for high-quality, same-size images onscreen.

Dye-sub printers (the ones that just make high quality digital prints on photo paper) typically print at a number like 207 dpi. To keep things simple, let's call it 233dpi (easier number to divide/multiply). So, for output to a high quality photo printer scan at 466 dpi (2x 233).

This will give you good results on any decent inkjet that can print on photo paper, dye-sub or not, and also for most publishing. When it's time to use the image on the web, you can rescale to 72dpi.

The high resolution scanners offer today is really more for those who want to scale the photos larger than same-size.

So, if you have a 4x5 photo you want to print at 8x10, use a higher scanning resolution; in this case instead of 466dpi go with 932dpi, which will be 2x 233 at 8x10 size.

If you're scanning a bunch of old heirloom photos, I would simply pick a reasonable final print size (8x10 would be my choice, but whatever) and scale all the originals to that by adjusting the scanning resolution accordingly.

There are shareware/freeware tools that can help you make these kinds of adjustments, or you may find your scanner software helps you if you put the numbers in the right boxes.

You will get smaller final output with most digital cameras simply because they (usually) compress all images (JPEG). However, you should probably save as uncompressed TIFF or PS files, because every time you open and save JPEG you are re-compressing the image and throwing away bits of useful data.

Best practice is to have the hi-res uncompressed format around, and once you're done with whatever manipulations in PS, save as TIFF (for archiving or re-working in PS) and finally save as JPEG for the final copy only (to go onscreen). If you don't want to bother saving your manipulations, skip the "Save As: TIFF" step.

Be sure to use the "Save As" dialog, not "Save" unless you want to rewrite the original uncompressed image. You can archive them to CD/DVD and use stuffit or gzip if HD space is a problem.

[ October 10, 2003, 02:25 PM: Message edited by: gordguide ]
 
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