Converting printed pictures to digital files

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ddurrett896
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Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by ddurrett896 » Mon Dec 25, 2017 8:33 pm

my printed pictures have taken over and it’s time to convert them to digital files. Anyone done this and have advice or best practice?

Current computer is a MacBook Pro and iPhone X if there is a decent scanning app. Thanks!

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Tyrobi
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by Tyrobi » Mon Dec 25, 2017 9:29 pm

I use free app from Google: PhotoScan.

After converting pictures into digital files on my iPhone X, it's super quick and easy to transfer to my MacBook Pro.
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Sandtrap
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by Sandtrap » Mon Dec 25, 2017 9:33 pm

This does an incredible job and was rated very high for the price.
Epson Perfection V600 Color Photo, Image, Film, Negative & Document
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002O ... UTF8&psc=1
The ICE technology to clean up the pictures is incredible. Can use in Auto or Professional mode.
I have printed the scans and compared with the original pics and the scans were excellent.

We also use this for our office document scanner.

Alternatively, you can simply take pictures of your pictures with a decent camera. It depends on what quality result you want.
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Ged
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by Ged » Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:15 pm

Sandtrap wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 9:33 pm
Epson Perfection V600 Color Photo, Image, Film, Negative & Document
I have one of these Epsons. It is very good for prints. For negatives I would look for a Nikon Coolscan. I bought one, used it for my negative and slide collection and then resold it on EBay as I am never going to have new negatives. Total expense was negligible because the resale value on these is strong.

For an office scanner it is hard to beat a Fujitsu ScanSnap.

22twain
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by 22twain » Tue Dec 26, 2017 1:47 am

For scanning printed material and photos I use a Canon MX922 all-in-one printer+scanner+fax. It's several years old, but I'm sure there are similar units on the market nowadays from Canon, Epson, etc. Each company provides basic scanning software. For about 15 years I've used the independent Vuescan software which is compatible with many scanners, both flatbed (print) scanners and film scanners like the Nikon Coolscan that I use for negatives and slides.

I also use an old version of Photoshop to tweak the images that I get from my scanners, but Vuescan has tools that would probably work OK for not-too-critical use. Also, there are cheaper (even free) image-editing programs than Photoshop.
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lthenderson
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by lthenderson » Tue Dec 26, 2017 9:42 am

I would not use your phone to scan pictures. It can be done but is very hard to control the lighting to end up with decent pictures. As others mentioned above, I would use a bed scanner hooked up to your computer. The advantages are that you can get the correct lighting every time as well as focus and can do some basic editing automatically versus having to do it all manually with a phone camera.

My bed scanner is a longer version that can scan up to legal document sizes which I have found useful. It also came with attachments to allow one to scan slides and negatives which I have used quite extensively in saving some of the old pictures I have inherited over the years. It also allows for scanning photo albums by the page which is very useful when working with very old albums where removing the pictures out one at a time can damage the album, the picture or both. It also comes with a hinge on the top lid that will allow books to be scanned easily instead of just a single page at a time. I just turn to the page I'm working on and put the album face down on the scanner bed, select the pictures and scan. I just received my great grandfather's World War I album of pictures he took and am using that method to digitize them.

Lots of scanners come with better software that will allow beyond the basics photo editing. This is great in helping to restore the luster to old faded photographs.

For reference, I use a Canon CanoScan8800 Scanner that I've had for most of a decade and scanned somewhere around 50,000+ photos/slides/negatives with in that time without a problem.

Katietsu
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by Katietsu » Tue Dec 26, 2017 10:11 am

You do want a flatbed scanner. I have the Epson V600 and am happy with it. There are higher quality scanners but if you are starting with average family photos as I was, the extra oomph does not help.

I have a mid range HP all in one printer which I intermittently use to scan. It does not do as good of a job on photos as the Epson dedicated scanner but it is convenient. Scanning apps on a phone can be convenient for a quick snap here or there but not for preserving photos. To get good consistent quality, you would need a physical set up with lighting etc that nobody would do these days when you have alternatives.

Also, decide what type of file management system you plan to use. It is much easy to organize the digital photos as you go than to do so afterwards.

tibbitts
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by tibbitts » Tue Dec 26, 2017 10:23 am

ddurrett896 wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 8:33 pm
my printed pictures have taken over and it’s time to convert them to digital files. Anyone done this and have advice or best practice?

Current computer is a MacBook Pro and iPhone X if there is a decent scanning app. Thanks!
You have to specify how many printed pictures. At some point you need some kind of automation. The time it would take to feed tens of thousands of photos into a manual scanner and then scan them would be prohibitive.

A camera on a copy stand will copy faster than a scanner, although it's a bit tricky to get the lighting set up correctly at first. Once that's done you then just have the issue of placing each photo and removing it, with virtually no time to capture it vs. the amount of time a scanner would require.

bob60014
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by bob60014 » Tue Dec 26, 2017 11:06 am

I have about 2000 old photos, mostly 4 x 6's and 3 x 5's, and have been looking at the Epson FF 640 for scanning then spend the time after to post process. Due to the number of photos the flat bed would take forever.

obgraham
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by obgraham » Tue Dec 26, 2017 1:08 pm

bob60014 wrote:
Tue Dec 26, 2017 11:06 am
I have about 2000 old photos, mostly 4 x 6's and 3 x 5's, and have been looking at the Epson FF 640 for scanning then spend the time after to post process. Due to the number of photos the flat bed would take forever.
If you just want a copy of your print, then automation can speed it up a lot.

But if you want a high quality digital copy, then, yes, it will take "forever".

I've scanned upwards of 10,000 photos. Prints, slides, and negatives. It takes a long time. Many of them benefit from some fixing-up at the scanning stage, with or without post-scan tweaking.

nativenewenglander
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by nativenewenglander » Tue Dec 26, 2017 1:19 pm

I use a Brother 3 in 1 it does a very good job on photos. Scanning the pictures is the easy part, cropping and resizing takes time, lots of time. I would guess and say four or five minutes per picture. Once you have them all done you want to save them to a folder. I try and organize them as I go, but everyone has their own method I suppose. It seems it would be a nightmare to sort through them later. The great thing about digitizing them is now you can share them with all of family members, then they can enjoy them as well. I've gone on an printed many pictures of relatives from 120 years ago, those old photos can be enlarged quite big without getting grainy. Good Luck.

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lthenderson
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by lthenderson » Tue Dec 26, 2017 3:19 pm

obgraham wrote:
Tue Dec 26, 2017 1:08 pm
bob60014 wrote:
Tue Dec 26, 2017 11:06 am
I have about 2000 old photos, mostly 4 x 6's and 3 x 5's, and have been looking at the Epson FF 640 for scanning then spend the time after to post process. Due to the number of photos the flat bed would take forever.
If you just want a copy of your print, then automation can speed it up a lot.

But if you want a high quality digital copy, then, yes, it will take "forever".

I've scanned upwards of 10,000 photos. Prints, slides, and negatives. It takes a long time. Many of them benefit from some fixing-up at the scanning stage, with or without post-scan tweaking.
I'm up over 50,000 images scanned. My flatbed scanner came with software that can pick up many pictures randomly put on the bed of the scanner, straighten them up and even run batch processing of each as it is scanned. It then pops them up on the screen so I only have to put a name and click save. I say this because when I go to the office to catch up on bogleheads forum, I will throw a handful of prints on the scanner and click go. By the time I read one topic of interest it is done and I can save them, reload and click go before proceeding to the next topic on bogleheads. In this fashion, it really adds little extra time to my day but I end up with perhaps a few dozen pictures scanned during on session of bogleheads reading.

ddurrett896
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by ddurrett896 » Tue Dec 26, 2017 3:28 pm

Tyrobi wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 9:29 pm
I use free app from Google: PhotoScan.

After converting pictures into digital files on my iPhone X, it's super quick and easy to transfer to my MacBook Pro.
Went this route and it works PERFECT!!! Can’t believe the app is free.

DetroitRick
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by DetroitRick » Tue Dec 26, 2017 4:03 pm

I've done a large amount of scanning (both old photos and slides), and will echo what others have said about the Epson V600 photo scanner. That is what I am currently using, and have used a predecessor model with the same success and satisfaction in the past. Besides the scanner software, I also use Photoshop Elements to do more intricate editing tasks. Happy with that too. While I'm in the Windows environment, both scanner and software are available in the Mac world.

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runner9
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by runner9 » Tue Dec 26, 2017 4:05 pm

I'm reading this thread with interest. We have a bookshelf of old photos, and we know that my wife's grandma has lots of old photos, slides, etc. Would be great to scan them or have them scanned. I could scan while watching tv if it didn't need hooked up to a computer close by (either memory or a long cord) but I can't seem myself spending tons of hours anytime soon to do so.

ddurrett896
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Re: Converting printed pictures to digital files

Post by ddurrett896 » Tue Dec 26, 2017 6:27 pm

Try the PhotoScan app recommended above. I scanned with iPhone, moved to shared photo album with MacBook, moved photos from MacBook shared album to local folder on hard drive then deleted the shared album. So simple!

I wouldn’t sit and do 5,000 at a time, but just do a couple piles here and there.

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