Photo Scanners by Epson

May 10, 2016 at 5:33 pm

When people start looking for a photo scanner they quickly find that many of the top models available are made by Epson.

Having so many options in photo scanners just from Epson makes it easy to compare features across the various models. You can see what you get and what you don’t at the different price points. Comparing image scanners across manufacturers often can be a bit more difficult as it can be hard to determine how similar certain features are like image-enhancing technologies.

If you are shopping for the best scanner for photos and are considering a Epson there are a few choices. Here I will list most of the bestselling Epson scanners and try to break down the key differences between models.

epson scanners

FACT: Epson’s photo scanner models increase in features and price alongside the model number. So the V700 has more features and a higher price tag than the V300.

Most Popular Epson Models

The Epson V300 is one of the cheaper photo scanners that can still handle film and slides. Compared to pricier Epson models it does not feature Digital ICE and does not come with Adobe Photoshop Elements.

The V330 is very similar to the V300 in features but does include ArcSoft Scan-n-Stitch Deluxe software for scanning large items. A good cheap alternative to a larger scanner.

The Epson V500 offers the Digital ICE technology (dust and scratch removal) for film scanning along with a step up in optical resolution over the V300. Photoshop Elements is also included with purchase.

The V600 is very similar to the V500 except it offers Digital ICE for both film and photo scanning. A good medium value photo scanner and a great digital slide converter.

The Epson V700 is a very high quality photo scanner designed more for film and slide scanning. It has a higher optical density rating than the V600 (improved image quality) and can handle 3 times more slides in one run. It can also scan large-format film. Comes with LaserSoft Imaging SilverFast software in addition to Photoshop Elements.

photo scanning tips

Tips on Photo Scanning

Whether you buy an Epson photo scanner, a Canon scanner or something else even, here are a few tips to help you with scanning your photos.

1. Read the scanner manual.

If you have a new scanner or have never scanned a photo before, take a few moments to read through your scanner’s manual. I know, it isn’t terribly exciting, but familiarizing yourself with the scanner and how it functions will make the process easier in the long run.

2. Clean your scanner and photos

Just a little bit of dust will be easily picked up when you start scanning, so make sure you clean off the scanner’s glass before you start. Never use a paper towel and Windex! You want to use a lint-free cloth and just wipe gently in one direction.

Same goes for your photos. Wipe them off gently with a lint-free cloth to remove any dirt and dust. Compressed air will also work.

3. Test your scanner

Before you run off and start scanning 50 photos in a row, do a few test runs and see if you are happy with the results. If you are unsure of what resolution to use to scan your photos, try scanning one photo at 3 to 4 different resolutions and see if going higher makes any difference (300 dpi is a good starting point).

The higher the resolution you use to scan, the larger your file sizes will be and the more time it will take to scan. So less is more within reason – you still want good scans.

4. Batch scan if possible

Most photo scanners will allow you to scan multiple photos at one time. If so, do another test run to see how many photos you can place on the scanner bed at once without the scanner merging pictures. Scanning in batches will save you some a fair amount of time.

5. Organize your files

Make sure you save all your scans to a particular folder. Even better is to save the images into subfolders based on the time period or subject in the photos. This will make future retrieval easier.

Choosing The Best Flatbed Scanner

April 30, 2016 at 11:11 am

This is a scanner buying guide written by a friend of mine. I have shared some of these tips before but there is some additional information available here that shoppers may find valuable.

buying guidelines

Peripherals are a major part of your computer system. They allow you to perform tasks that you would ordinarily not be able to do like printing, faxing, extra storage and maneuver your pointer around your screen. One additional peripheral is a scanner.

When buying a scanner you should know how to choose the best scanner for your needs. With a few tips on what to look for this should be a relatively simple task, but do take your time before making a decision.

Compatibility

If your operating system comes across a program that it cannot understand it is said to be incompatible. It is important to ensure that the scanner chosen is specifically for the system your computer uses. They will usually plug into a USB port or hub. These are the most common units available. There are some units that are intended for larger systems such as in an office which most always uses a Mac operating system.

Software

There is normally no control panel to flatbed scanners. Instead they are generally sold with software that tells the scanner what to do and how to do it. This is where all of the options such as scan, copy, resolution and options are located. The only buttons or switches that are usually found on the scanner is an on and off button. Occasionally if it is a part of a large unit with a fax, copier and printer, it will have a control panel located on the unit itself.

Software is usually always included with each unit sold. This is the program that allows you to choose such options as resolution, color depth, scan or copy and in most cases a photo editing program. The editing program will let you crop and modify any document or photo you have scanned. An operating software will let you print or save the edited image to your computer or send it to a printer.

Color Depth

Color depth refers to whether you get true colors when scanning an object, picture or document. The unit uses bit color to determine whether the color is true or just close. Most commonly used in home or personal units is 36-bit color. This means there are 36 possible colors that an image can be displayed. The more bits you scanner can produce, the truer the colors will be.

Dots per Inch (DPI)

Many people do not understand what a dpi is. This is how many dots are in each square inch contains – dots per inch. It is what makes up the resolution of an image. Typically the more dpi the image contains, the more crisp and clear it is displayed on your computer screen or when printed.

Warranty

A warranty is very important when choosing your flatbed scanner. Most come with at least a 90 day warranty. If you are offered the option of purchasing additional warranty, do so. The least you should have is a one year policy. This ensures the device is covered should it fail to operate properly.

Price

When you compare the options and features of the various models of scanners available, you will notice you also have options in the price. The more options and features the unit contains, the more you will normally have to pay. Specialty scanners like a business card scanner may cost a bit more than your basic flatbed. If you want it primarily for copying and producing photos, you should consider one of the more expensive ones that offers the best options.

These are only a few tips on how to choose the best flatbed scanner. Recommendations are always a help for choosing so take the time to do your research and see what is available to suit your needs.

Scanning and Organizing Important Paperwork

April 23, 2016 at 7:44 pm

Preserving and organizing important documents is a necessity in today’s world. Whether it be your home business paperwork or your family’s financial documents, having a system in place will make your life easier. While a filing system of some kind is a good start an even better method is some type of electronic storage system. This type of system takes up less physical space and is less vulnerable to loss through water damage or the like (assuming you back up your computer). An electronic system can also make locating a document much easier if you do it correctly.

paper scanning

Getting Started

If you want to implement an electronic filing system then the first thing you will need is a scanner. If you do not have a lot of documents then a flatbed or even portable scanner may suffice. But the best scanner for paper scanning is a document scanner because it is specifically designed to scan quickly and in bulk. Most of the better document scanners also have document management software that can help to organize your scans and even extract important data. Otherwise, you can invest in a separate software program for organizational needs.

If you buy a scanner the best place to start is by reading the manual to see what the scanner is or isn’t capable of. Scanning a document is fairly easy but tweaking certain settings and understanding the software upfront will enable you to get the most out of your scanned documents. I also recommend you do a few test runs with a single document to see what method works best for you.

save to folders

File and Folder Organization

The second step for electronic conversion of paperwork is proper organization. If you were to scan all of your documents to one folder with unidentifiable file names you will have accomplished preservation but missed out on management. You want to be able to find a certain document at any point by utilizing either the scanning software’s or your own filing system.

The benefit of document organization is the ease of locating documents when you need them. If you only have a few documents here or there this may not seem like a big deal but over time an unorganized electronic system will become a burden. Of course, everyone needs to come up with their own logical system which makes sense for them. I may prefer to organize by date while you may be better off organizing by subject. Try considering how you organize physical documents for inspiration.

Keep or Shred Originals

After you have all of your documents scanned and organized you will need to decide how to handle the original paperwork. If you have physical storage space you may want to keep the originals as a backup. But if you are short on space and have a digital backup for your hard drive you could consider disposing of the original copies. When doing so make sure that you shred any docs that contain personal information or financial information that could pose a risk.

Tips In Choosing The Best Slide Scanner

April 5, 2016 at 12:55 pm

Deciding which device to purchase from a slide scanner selection can be frustrating considering the fact that there are several brands and models being sold in the market today. There are several factors that you need to consider because slide scanners come in different sizes and shapes. Their features and functions also vary depending on the manufacturer. To help you out in deciding which scanner suits your needs, below are some practical tips you can follow.

Slide Scanner

1) How will you be using the slide scanner? Keep in mind that scanners are specifically designed and manufactured to be used on 35mm slides and various film negatives. Here’s what you need to know – some scanners are better suited for 35mm slides while other models are more appropriate for film negatives. With that said, you should choose a scanner based on where you are going to use it. Additionally, you must keep in mind that there are entry-level scanners and there are high-end scanners. The majority of entry-level scanners can only work on 35mm slides while their high-end counterparts can be used to scan several mounted slides in batches. Obviously, the high-end variants will be more expensive because they can accomplish more in less time.

2) Consider the software that is used to control the scanner. Many slide scanners are plug-and-play devices which mean you can start using them after you’ve plugged them into your computer. Usually, you will have to install some software so that you can manipulate the scanned photos using your computer. Some scanners enable you to connect the software with third-party applications like Photoshop. On the other hand, some scanners come with their own complete set of editing and storing functions. This means that you can do everything you want with your scanned images using the scanner’s built-in software.

3) Consider the quality of the scanned images. This is one of the most important things you must take into account when choosing from a slide scanner selection. You should look at the specs of the scanner with regards to hardware resolution and optical resolution. You must also make comparisons with regards to color depth or bit depth and Dmax (dynamic range). Basically, this is the measurement of the amount of detail that the scanner is capable of recording digitally. If you are not familiar with these terms, you should seek advice from a graphics artist or professional photographer.

4) Only choose scanners manufactured by reputable brands. As we mentioned earlier, there are dozens of slide scanners being sold out there. It’s highly recommended that you only buy from well-known manufacturers. Not only do they sell high-quality scanners, they offer quick customer support as well. When it comes to quality, the best slide scanners in the market today include the Wolverine F2D Mighty, the Sharper Image Photo Converter, the Pacific Image ImageBox MF, the Hammacher Schlemmer Superior, and the ION Film 2 SD Plus.

If you follow these simple but practical tips, choosing from a slide scanner selection shouldn’t be too difficult. To summarize, you should consider how you are going to use the scanner, the software that comes with the device, the quality of the scanned images, and the brand that manufactures the gadget.