How-To Articles

Scanning for Different Media

The use of a scanner is plain and simple; it functions exactly just like a photocopier because it uses that same scanning bar technology. The difference between a scanner and a photocopier is that a scanner can copy directly to your computer when you feed your document and you also have the option to print out a physical copy. Another added benefit is that you also can make some changes to the document once you have the file and a basic photo editing software installed on your machine.

Colour Scanning

Scanning using coloured pictures produces astonishing results but it can also pose some challenges. Sometimes the quality may or may not be the same as the original copy.

Often, it is hard to determine what the exact resolution or dpi (dots per inch) should be for the papers you wish to scan. Many scanners give you the ease of choosing a resolution usually around 75-6000 dpi but this also greatly depends on the scanner being used and current advances in scanning technology.

What are dots per inch

The higher the dots per inch are when scanning the better the quality the final output will be. When the dpi is high, it in turn creates a larger file. A 400 dpi colour scan is equal to 2 megabytes while a 100 dpi black and white scan is somewhere between 50-100 kilobytes. There is also a big discrepancy in the smoothness and softness of colour shading. When set to a lower resolution, the scanned document or file is rough in texture and irregular.

A lower resolution is only good because the file is small and can be attached to an e-mail easily but the quality is compromised. When the file is large, it will take some time before it attaches but the quality of the finished image or document is much better.

Black & White Scanning

Scanning a black and while document is a much easier task overall. All you need to do is to adjust the contrast of the colour black by making it darker or lighter. Photoshop helps when there are minor problems with the scanned document or image.

Always be careful when scanning a scanned copy, it may still look good but the more times a copy is scanned the lower the quality of the final image will be. You can test this yourself by scanning your original document then scanning the copy and scanning the latest copy etc. When scanning copies keep an open mind and do not expect it to look as good as an original document. There will always be imperfections and blemishes to the copy. You can help by double checking the glass scanner and keeping it clean, free from cracks, wrinkles and marks to create a perfect looking scanned copy.

Find out what else you can do using your scanner, experiment and try to apply different principles and keep them in mind for future copies. The more you use the scanner and play around you with it, the more you will see the benefits it can offer and how it can be used in many different ways.