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Chapter 10. Photo Restorations > Scanning Your Photos

Scanning Your Photos

Whether you’re scanning prints or negatives as fodder for composites, grabbing images so you can retouch the defects, or simply scanning treasured photographs so they can be archived safely, the process is easy (although time-consuming).

Just about any scanner (even those under-$100 models you see on sale) does a decent job with prints. Even though low-end scanners rarely deliver the image quality and resolution they claim, it usually doesn’t matter that much. You’ll rarely need to use resolutions higher than 200 samples per inch for photographs, so the difference between a 600 × 600 spi and a 2400 × 2400 spi scanner isn’t much of a difference. If you can scan a sample with the scanner you plan on buying to make sure it delivers decent sharpness and good contrast (which is very important), you can usually choose a scanner yourself with no trouble. If you’re serious about scanning; however, I recommend spending at least $200-$300 and getting a good, name-brand model from companies such as Hewlett-Packard, Epson, or Canon. Their models offer extra quality, but also operate faster (important when you’re scanning a whole stack of photos) and come with a more versatile selection of software.


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